Monday, April 30, 2012

Embroidery Scrapbook

After a long and rainy weekend with not a whole lot to do, I finally found a project!  Yea!  I had forgotten about this little 6x6 scrapbook I'd bought at Hobby Lobby.  (Bonus:  It was in the clearance aisle!) 

For sometime now, I have wanted a little booklet to document embroidery projects.  A place to keep track of what DMC colors I used with certain patterns and fabrics, and a place for fabric scraps and embroidery patterns.

One of the decorating ideas I had for this plain, gingham scrapbook, was to put a strip of vintage material down the side.  But I didn't want to cut up any of my fruity, vintage tea towels to do so.   Frustrated, I put the book in a drawer and forgot about it for awhile. 

Last week I was digging through a box of craft goodies that had spent the winter in the shed.  I found a little sundress that I'd picked up at a garage sale for a dollar and a little light bulb went on.  I'll use it on the embroidery scrapbook! 

But today as I was standing there, scissors in hand and ready to cut, I just couldn't do it.  I have a soft spot for adorable little dresses and this one is cute.  So I did the next best thing I could think of.  I color copied the dress at 75%, colored the fruits a little darker with colored pencils (because photocopies never turn out color perfect), then cut out the fruits.

I glued them onto a strip of paper and attached it to the book.  Now for some ric-rack!  I had to hot glue the ric-rack to get it to stay put.

I added a few red buttons.


Now I have a place to keep everything.  It's not completely finished, there are some little finishing touches I'd like to add. 
Have a Happy Day!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

My Favorite Husband

I want to share another radio show that I enjoy called "My Favorite Husband" starring Lucille Ball and Richard Denning.  It's a lot like "I Love Lucy" and was actually written by the same writters.  Autumn and I love watching vintage episodes of "I Love Lucy" so it only makes sense that I'd like "My Favorite Husband" as well.  Here is a sample episode of the radio show all about mother-in-laws from You Tube.  Enjoy and don't forget to pause the playlist to the right.

Here is a link to My Favorite Husband's Wikipedia page.
It's full of information about how the show got started in 1948 and later moved to television.  The show's sponsor was JELL-O! 
From Wikipedia....
"The 1948 radio version opened with:
Bob LeMond: It's time for My Favorite Husband starring Lucille Ball!
Lucille Ball: Jell-O, everybody!
Theme music [composed by Marlin Skiles, conducted by Wilbur Hatch]
LeMond: Yes, it's the gay family comedy series starring Lucille Ball with Richard Denning and is brought to you by the Jell-O family of Red-Letter Desserts:
O! The big red letters stand for the Jell-O family,
Oh, the big red letters stand for the Jell-O family,
That's Jell-O!
Yum, yum, yum!
Jell-O pudding!
Yum, yum, yum!
Jell-O tapioca pudding, yes sir-ee!"
Have a Happy Day!  Maybe I'll go make myself some Jell-o!"

Friday, April 13, 2012

Memories of Epping and Our Grocery Store

Back in 3rd grade at Epping Public School, our music teacher, Mr. Langseth, taught us a song Ive never forgotten. "I love those dear hearts and gentle people, that live in my home town." It was my favorite song to sing because it reminded me of all the nice people around me.
I grew up in Epping ND a small town with a population of about 90 people in the 1980's. 
Here is the Epping Website.

I'm proud to be able to say I grew up in such a small town. Somtimes as adults we tend to look back on our childhoods through rose colored glasses. We remember what we liked best. But I'm not so naive to think that it was all roses and rainbows for everyone. There were families in town, and kids who didn't have it as easy as I did, and I do remember some scary accidents and fires. But most of the things I remember from that time are good things, which shows that my parents did a good job of sheltering us a bit and letting us be kids.  We didn't seem to have a care in the world.

Our house didn't have air conditioning, but it didn't matter as we played outside all summer anyway. We ate picnic lunch at Bible School, and rode our bikes on cracking sidewalks. At school we played "fox and geese" in the winter snow and marbles in the spring dirt. We played on the hot, metal slide at the school playground (how we didn't end up with 2nd degree burns is beyond me).
On Halloween we'd stop at each and every house because we knew everyone, and people gave away homemade treats like popcorn balls. Mr. and Mrs. Marrow, who lived on the outskirts of town, always gave us silver dollars on Halloween. (I still have mine).
We walked down the alley to Grandma's house and went through a white picket gate. We grew gardens, caught rain in pots for my mother's plants and caught snakes. 
Growing up in Epping in the 1980's was almost like growing up in some kind of mid-century "time-warp" (but in a good way). We had museums full of antiques. We knew our neighbors, and had a gas station attendant that would come out of the garage to fill our car with gas and wipe our windows. We had a post office with antique boxes that opened with a two-knob combination, and if you were too little to reach the mail box the post master would just smile and give you your mail right threw the window.  We had a small-town grocery store with a kind husband and wife team behind the counter. 

As a child I can remember walking the 2 long blocks to The Friendly Village Market.  At that time it was owned by Lyle and Dorothy Westphal.  I remember how patient he would be when my brother and I would bring our 35 cents up to the candy counter and would take such a long time to decide what kind of candy to buy.  If I recall, when you first walked in through the door, a screen door that had a screen door "slam" to it, you'd see the first aisle that ran in front of the large, west windows.  This is where the softener salt was kept along with the dog food, cat food, soap and household type of supplies.  There was a display shelf of greeting cards in the center of the store and a large grate in the floor that was for heating, as the furnace was in the basement.  There was a small case with jewelery and in it was a beautiful butterfly necklace made with different colored rhinestones.  I wanted it so badly and I remember my Grandma Henderson bought it for me on one of her visits to Epping.  I still have it.  I remember there was a cooler on the east end of the store that had ice cream treats in it. 
But what I remember most was the long counter with it's cash register and the wall of candy behind it.

Here is a link to a site called Two Wheel Journal written by bicyclists who traveled through Epping and had nice things to say about it.  I'm glad they enjoyed their time in Epping.
I'm borrowing their picture of the building that I remember as the "Friendly Village Market"
This is the building as it stands today.  I hope someone is working to restore it. 
Here is the building long ago, possibly when it was a hardware store.

Here is another picture of the store with newer sidewalks.  I like the sign.  But I do not know what that metal looking box on a pedestal is.  Any guesses?
Here is some information about the Friendly Village Market from my Dad. 
He said that once upon a time, a long time ago, the upstairs room was used to show Model Ts.  They had a hoist- type of contraption that would lift the cars up to the top floor.  The building was also at one time owned by Fern Miller and a portion of the building was used as a Pool Hall.  I remember reading in The Wonder of Williams books that the Fern Miller family had triplets but none of them survived.  They are buried in the Epping Cemetery and their names are Faith, Hope, and Charity.  I remember seeing their little headstone at the Epping Cemetery and thinking about how sad that would've been for the parents. 
The building was sold to a man named Beachler and he owned a hardware store.  There was another hardware store across the street to the south.  After BeachlerWestphal bought the building and continued to keep it as the town's grocery store. 
My dad remembers when he was young he had a paper route, and after he'd picked up his stack of Minot Daily papers at the post office, he'd ride across the street on his bike and pick up a pack of Reese's Peanut Butter cups.  He says it got to the point where he'd just walk through the door and Mr. Westphal would toss him a pack. 
In the basement was the furnace which was at first heated with coal.  Both Mr. Jacobson and Mr. Westphal would have to bank the furnace well before heading home on winter nights to prevent the store from freezing. 
The cash register was at the left end of the counter (left from the customer's perspective) and Dad says there was a large roll of paper and ball of twine to wrap items in.
There was a cooler at the end of the counter with hamburger and fruits and veggies in it and then the ice cream in another smaller cooler.  There was shelving that ran East to West that held canned goods and box mixes, etc.  Mr. Westphal was one of the first to have JELL-O boxed cheesecake mix (November 1966 is when this was introduced) on his shelves in our area.  They were kept on the first row, top shelf.  He'd always try to stock the latest products such as Life Cereal.  If a few customers liked it, he'd keep stocking it.

I remember that store fondly as well as it's owners.  I believe there is a story about my Dad "liquor-treating" one year and Mr. Westphal giving him Scope???  That's another day and phone call, Dad.

Here is an old receipt from the Friendly Village Market from the year 1983.  Apparently my folks would run a "tab" and pay a few times a month.  Apparently we bought quite a few treats there. 

Have a Happy Day!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Grocery Shopping and Grocery Stamps

Our local grocery store has these little red stamps that you lick and stick onto cards.  Once a card is full you can buy certain foods for a discounted price.  For example this week a 2Lb bag of carrots is just $.29 cents with a filled grocery/gas card. 
I love these little stamps and I love using them!
I keep my loose stamps in my little red Pyrex dish on the counter.  Then every couple of months I take the time to lick and stick them to their cards.  It feels like a very "vintage" thing to be doing, so I usually throw on a vintage radio broadcast while doing so. 
Using these stamps makes a person feel like they're getting a great deal.  Not to sound like a pessimist, but lately I've been wondering about how good a deal it really is.  Are other items going up in price to accommodate the discount of other items on sale?  There must be a catch...a way for grocery stores to offer these stamps and "great deals" without "losing" too much themselves.  I'm supposing price hikes on other products is the way they do it.
I'm a "list" shopper and I always try hard to buy only what is on the list.
I review the sales flier before going to the store so that I know which sale items I need to stock-up on.
I steer clear of frivolous items such as donuts, chips and candy.  My husband is the opposite, if he's hungry for it, he buys it.  Fresh baked Carmel rolls for 5$?  Sure!  Throw them in!....That's so not how I roll.
I'm more the type of person who will go into the grocery store and stock up on items that are on sale.  I buy certain things at their regular prices, milk, hamburger, etc.  But when pantry and freezer items go on sale I stock up.  Yes, I'm "that lady" in the market line with the two cases of mac-n-cheese on the conveyor belt because they are down to 30 cents a box.  I rarely buy pantry items at full price.
I only buy the cereal I like most if it is on sale.  Of course with cereal rising up to almost $5.00 a box where we live, you almost have to wait for a sale.  Cheerios at 2/5$ will do just fine for this week.  The expensive kiddie cereal I love has too much sugar added anyways.  Ha!

I really don't enjoy grocery shopping all that much.  I do it mostly right after work during the 5:30 pre-supper rush or on the weekends when it is busiest.
Grocery shopping just doesn't seem friendly.  It's difficult to explain what I mean by that, but I'll try.  You see, not too long ago I had a very good experience while grocery shopping and no other time has ever lived up to that experience.  So apparently I just shop at the wrong times of day.  I would love to be able to shop during the week day, but we do what we have to do.
It was a clear and sunny, Thursday morning.  I had taken a vacation day and had just dropped Autumn off at her first day of school.  I went to the grocery store early and apparently it was Senior Citizens day at the store because most of my fellow customers were Senior Citizens.  (I capitalize Senior Citizens because it's a matter of respect.  If you've lived long enough to be a Senior Citizen you've seen your share of good times and bad, you deserve capitol letters.)  Most of the people my age must have been at their jobs, home or wherever, but few were shopping for groceries. 
The store was quiet.  People were courteous and said "excuse me".  There was no rush, no weaving through aisles trying to stay out of anyone's way.  And if there was someone else in the aisle they made notice and we both moved our carts to our side of the aisle.  No one hogged the right away.
No one lingered in the middle of the aisle, blocking the path while gossiping with someone else as their hooligan children ran around jumping in and out of those stupid, car carts. (Don't even get me started about the car carts.) 
There was hardly a line at all in the checkout line. I stood patiently waiting as a lady took out her precious coupons from her purse and lined them up one by one, and wrote her check ever so carefully and slowly. Had it been Saturday afternoon, I would've heard from others behind me, "what's the hold-up" or "what's the deal up there". I have heard these comments before and do my best not to say them myself. Whatever happened to being patient with people?  So many of us seem to be in such a hurry much of the time.  So many of us forget to be compassionate.  Sometimes when I'm feeling impatient I need to take the time to think, "maybe that older lady is taking so long to write her check because she doesn't see so well anymore." or "maybe that driver is driving like an idiot because he's not from here and the roads aren't marked as well as they should be".  Take time and think about what that other person might be going through!  It's not that hard.
That reminds me of a commercial I saw the other day for Liberty Mutual that made me think...take a look (pause the play list at the right so you can hear it properly.)
I enjoyed the commercial until the woman's voice said "responsibility".  And for some reason I said to my husband, "since when has common courtesy become responsibility?"  He actually laughed out loud, which I rarely get him to do.  He said, "you should put that on Facebook." 
When I think of the word responsibility, I think of a chore, something we are suppose to do put upon us by others.  The laundry is my responsibility,  mowing the lawn is Shannan's responsibility.  Helping my neighbor rake her leaves is not my responsibility, it is more a common courtesy. 
But, whatever, maybe I am off base on that one as it IS a national commercial and I'm sure their marketing firm knows more about the definition of responsibility than I do. Ha!  And I DID like the gist of the commercial.

How did I get here, when I was talking about groceries?  Uff-da poof-da.
Here is an advertisement to lighten the mood.  It's for A&P Grocery Stores and is from 1946.  French Frou Frou on Etsy has this advertisement for sale!
The mother and daughter are wearing the same outfit right down to their little basket purses and gloves!  I wonder if moms did that often?  I suppose it made sense to do so, especially for mothers who made their own clothes and had yardage left over.  And women wore gloves to the grocery store.  I know it was the fashion back in those days, but think of the practicality of it also.  They touched less germy surfaces!
Tomorrow, I will share my memories of the local grocery stores we had when I was young including  Epping's own "Friendly Village Market".
Have a Happy Day!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Vintage Commercials Part 3

Supermarket Commercials Part 3.  The second one wouldn't transfer to the blog.  So we'll skip that one and go onto Part 3.
There are many laundry soap commercials in this line-up including Rinso and Tide, also some from Campbell's Soup "the drinkable soups".
My favorite is the VEL commercial.   

Have a Happy Day!!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A Butterfly For Carol

Here is an easy butterfly idea from the web.  This took me about 10 minutes to do, it might take a smaller child a little bit longer. 
I started with 3 rectangular sheets of tissue paper.
I stacked the papers one on top of another, twisted them in the middle, then secured them with a pipe cleaner.
Place a clothespin in the middle.  I pushed the tissue as far as I could into the clothespin to make sure it would hold.
You can draw a face on your butterfly's clothespin.
Finally, I added a little note to the front.  I just used a piece of scotch tape.  I also trimmed the edges of the wings to make them rounder.  I liked them better untrimmed. 
There's an easy butterfly and very colorful too!
Have a Happy Day!

Dying Easter Eggs and McCormick Food Coloring

For the first time ever we dyed Easter eggs as a daycare group.  This year I have such a great group of kids and they had a blast!
The yellow and green were my favorite colors.  To make the dye we used hot water, vinegar and food coloring.

The bigger kids made two-tone eggs and even three-tone eggs.
Here's a fun, vintage advertisement to McCormick Egg Dye from 1956.

When we cleaned out Grandma Eva's house one of the things I found in her spice cabinet was this pack of vintage Schilling/McCormick food coloring.  I've researched the internet for this particular packaging (with the plastic case) and can only fine one other one like it, and they are selling it for 8$ Wow!  I would be interested to know what year they are from (I'm guessing the 70's). The package is marked 29 cents!  Food coloring now-a-days is almost 5$ a package!

You can faintly see the 29 cents on the top.
Have a Happy Day!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Kroger Eggs

Here is an advertisement for Kroger Eggs from the 1950's.
I get such a kick out of the chicken when she faints at the sight of a rectangular egg!

Easter at our house went well!  A big thank you to all who helped out, especially my parents and Shannan's parents.  Unfortunately, I was so busy, I didn't stop to take any pictures.  So, it will be the Easter of no pictures.  But that's okay, it turned out to be a nice day and one to remember (at least for me).
Have a Happy Day!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Homemade Lemonade

Autumn wanted to make homemade lemonade, so my mom bought her 2 lemons.  We used the recipe from our Little House on the Prairie book.  1 Cup Boiling Water, 1 Cup Sugar, 3 lemons squeezed, 3 Cups cold water.

She poured a cup of sugar into a mixing bowl while the water was busy boiling.
She added 1 cup of boiling water and stirred the mixture until the sugar dissolved.
We squished the lemons by rolling them before cutting them open to get them nice and juicy.
If life hands you might be dyslexic.
Sqeeeeeeeeeeeeeze the lemons into the mixture.  We sqeeeeeeezed 4 halves.  Our hand were pretty tired after that.
After the lemon had been added, we put the mixture in a pitcher and added 3 cups of very cold water.
The lemonade was delicious!  It was very sweet!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Vintage Commercials Part 1

I found these on You Tube the other night when Autumn said, "Mom, let's watch old commercials".  Okay! Can't argue with that one!  As we were searching we came across these vintage commercial sets.  There are quite a few of these on You Tube but for today we will start with part 1.  It's about 10 minutes long.  Please remember to pause the playlist off to the right to get the full, vintage experience (giggle).
Supermarket Commercials Part 1
Bordens to Bumble Bee

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Ghosts of North Dakota

At first glance you might think The Ghosts of North Dakota website is about haunted buildings in North Dakota. It isn't, it's better than that. 
Ghosts of North Dakota is a website dedicated to the ghost towns of North Dakota.  Some of the towns are so small no one inhabits them.  Some of the towns have only a handful of people living in them or on nearby farms.  There are photographs of empty streets and buildings, crumbling sidewalks, deserted playgrounds.  Towns that were once thriving with a busy main streets, churches and schools are now gone, but not necessarily forgotten. 
Many of these little towns popped up along the railroad lines.  The rail road came and went.  "Too much, too fast and too soon" as my college history professor would say.  Many of these small towns thrived in the 1910's, 20's, many even into the mid-century.  But now grass has taken over sidewalks and streets, and trees and bushes slowly cover old buildings that sit empty.  These buildings are reminders of the past, and to be honest, some of them are downright erie looking.
Ghosts of North Dakota is a great website for history buffs like me who wish we could preserve these places, and maybe even restore them to their former glory.  I wish there was a portal somewhere we could walk through enabling us to zip back in time for just a moment, so that we could get a quick glimpse of these past places.  I'd love to see these houses and schools while they were lived in and being used. 
Here is a news report done by a KVLY news crew in Fargo.  It explains what Troy and Rat (The G of ND guys) do.  (Don't forget to pause the playlist off to the right as you don't want to miss what they have to say!)

I come from the small town of Epping.  I was lucky enough to live the "small-town" life at an early age and often long for it still.  Little towns around us such as Springbrook and Wheelock were close to being ghost towns when I was a kid.  Schools were torn down, grocery stores were closed as well as churches.  It was strange to think that on occasion we would worship in the church that now stands empty in Wheelock.  And now that church building, along with the school, are being reclaimed by the earth. 
Well, enough of my rambling.  Here is the website.  I commend the guys who run it, Troy and Rat, and thank them for all of the time and effort they put into their site.  They do such a great job!!

One of my favorite locations is Forbes.  Other favorites are Ambrose, Gardenia, Regan, Marmarth (many pictures) and Merricort.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Hippity Hoppity Easter's on It's Way

Easter will soon be here and I'm sorry it's been so long since my last post.
Because we very rarely have people over for holidays, I usually don't decorate for any of them with the exception being Christmas.  But this year we are hosting Easter, therefore, I've been digging out my decorations and what a fun time it is.  I've also been cleaning house, organizing cupboards, and even cleaned out from under the stove (was that ever a chore!)

Today I thought I would share some of my favorite Easter things.
These are blown eggs with paper dots glued onto them like fish scales.  I made my first one ever during my highschool years just for fun.  After I married Shannan, I made a few more.  The best paper to use was from a paper note cube I'd purchased from Staples.  It had many colors as the colors melted into each other and it was swirled or twisted.  I've never been able to find another one like it (not even online) and because I've used up the one I had I can no longer make paper dot eggs.  Sad.
Then I started painting eggs.

You get the idea.  These were fun, but took lots of time.  I didn't make any of these this year.

I found these cute little deviled egg chicks on Pinterest.  I wish I knew whos blog they came from!

And how cute would these utensil carrots be for an Easter kids' table?!!  What a cool idea!

Browsing through my March 1951 Woman's Day I found many Easter related ads, mostly for shortening, and cake mixes.  This first one is for Baker's Coconut.  I appologize for the photos.  My scanner hasn't worked for years.  Until I get a new one these photos will have to do.
My Grandma Eva used to make a coconut bunny cake.  Here is a picture of my little (not so little anymore) brother and his bunny cake.  His birthday sometimes fell right around Easter, so this might've been a birthday cake.

And here's a pretty cake made with pastel toppers (candy maybe?)

And here is a Gingerbread Bunny! 

And finally, here's an ad for Swan's Down Cake Flour.  Beautiful cake!
Ha ha, the last line in the bubble makes me laugh. "A girl's best friend when she bakes for a man".  Being able to put a decent cake on the table must've been a big deal back in '51.  My husband doesn't eat or like cake (I know, crazy right?)  so my cake baking abilities were not as important in 1997 as they would've been back in the 50's.
I do wonder what the difference is between regular white flour and "cake flour".  Maybe cake flour was sweeter?  Will have to do some research.
Until tomorrow, have a Happy Day!