Monday, June 27, 2011

The Orchard Behind Our Old House

When we were growing up in Rome, Illinois, we lived in a very old house - as they used to say,  5 rooms and a path.  However, that does not mean our childhood was not happy - it was.  I do think that it might be better to not have so many toys, clothes, etc. - but always plenty of love and food.  It makes your imagination develop.  Right behind our house (my parents rented) was an orchard.

So gorgeous in the spring.  It wasn't a well maintained orchard and I don't remember having many apples but it wasn't ours.  Here is a picture of my sister and brother, Jo and Bud,  posing under one of the trees.  You can see two people walking on the path through the orchard and see the "gray barn" a short distance away.  That was where my father kept our car and he had his tools there, also.  The people who owned everything were from Peoria.  There were three cottages, the mother owning one and two sons the other two.  My father used to take care of the yards and do odd jobs for them to pay off the rent for our house which was $10.00 a month.  Hard to believe.  Dad, a very hard worker,  also worked at Pabst Brewery in Peoria. My parents never did completely recover from the depression - and I am certain there were many, many couples that were in the same situation.  Back to the picture, I have no idea who is walking through the orchard.  They look dressed up - maybe if my brother sees this he can let me know who he thinks they are.  I can also spot on the side of the barn the "hot bed" dad always had to start plants early for the garden. 
This has to be me - what do you suppose I was doing.  It was a very pretty orchard and fun to play in.

This is what the old house looked like in the 60's or 70's.  It was burned down by the fire department not long after this was taken and a batting cage put up on the land.  Click to enlarge)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Items from 1965 Spiegel Catalog

Love to look through the old catalogs.  I have two of them - the 1961 and 1965 Spiegel wishbooks.  Here are some of the familiar items listed that were in many of our homes back at that time.  Melmac dinnerware - unbreakable everyday dishes was used by many families for their family meals.  I kept a meat platter for years and I think my daughter has it now.
Another item in most homes - the pole lamp.  The one at our house had the glass shades - in an amber color.  I always rather liked pole lamps.

This is very similar to the stereo we had.  You could pile on 10 or 12 records and have music for a long time.  How cool it was to have the sounds coming separately from the speakers.  I recall one record we had
we had - Enoch Light and the Light Brigade - where the separation was awesome.  Can't believe all that has come and gone since then.  I found a little video on Youtube that is from the old album we had.  I think I recognized the cover - but regardless it's Enoch Light.  Hope this works in case you would like to hear it.  Goodness, this was a long time ago!  I also discovered that it's Enoch Light's music that is used for Mad Men's theme song - - you might want to check that out also. 

Monday, June 20, 2011

Favorite Picture Rerun - Bathing Beauties

This is a cute picture that was in those that my brother sent me. Two of my aunts are showing off some pretty nice legs! Aunt Leah is on the left end and Aunt Nelle is on the right. The four gals in between are unknown to me. I imagine this was taken when my grandmother and Aunt Leah were visiting Nelle and family in California and that these were Nelle's friends. Look closely and you can see that Nelle is wearing stockings and they are hooked to garters! That is a new look, Nellie! They certainly appear to be having a fun time. You go, girls. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, June 17, 2011

Postcard Friendship Friday

I know nothing about this wonderful old postcard and there is no image of the back.  However, I think this must be gracious living at its finest.  The lady seated at the right seems to be almost highlighted and she surely is the birthday girl in the photo.  The message written on the card is -

"This is my class taken at my home on my 60th birthday.  Always remember the fine happy hours and always remain as chaste and good as you are today.  Your motherly friend."

I wonder what her class was about.  Maybe she was a piano teacher or voice coach.  It's for sure we'll never know! 

This seens like  an appropriate card for me to post since my daughter celebrated her 60th birthday on Wednesday.   Some wishes---Happy Father's Day to all the dads, grandpas, uncles and husbands!!  And Happy PFF - check out for more postcards listed on Beth's blog, and thanks to her for hosting PFF.  (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Favorite Picture Rerun--Long Ago Ballgame

Take me out to the ball game! There certainly was a good crowd at the game somewhere around Rome or Chillicothe, Illinois, many years ago. Look at the great automobiles! And it is amazing how dressed up the fellows walking across the field are! No blue jeans and t-shirts with all kinds of messages on the front. My, my, how times have changed!

Play Ball! Dad is the middle fellow in the back row. The second player in the back row was my sister's father-in-law, another Charlie. The fellow on the end is E. A. Lawson whose General Merchandise Store is in a previous post. Third from the left in the front row is my Uncle Carl, Aunt Carrie's husband. I see an "R" on the sleeves of a couple of the fellows toward the left of the picture. Go, Rome!

My father all ready for the game.

His two sisters, Barbara and Caroline, with their husbands, Joe Thorne and Carl Kirk Aunt Carrie and Aunt Barb.

Dad, Carrie and Barb.

One of only three or four pictures of my grandmother, Caroline, on my dad's side shown her with her youngest daughter, Carrie.  I have a few memories of her but not many.   These are special old photos that I have posted  a couple of years ago, but thought I would bring them forward.  (Click to enlarge)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Back to 1936

Some more pictures from the little book published in 1936 with pictures of the businesses and residences in the little town of Chillicothe, Illinois.  Since I lived in Rome and not Chillicothe as a child,  my mom never shopped at this little neighborhood grocery.  I believe there were at least two other ones in town.  Mom would shop at Kroger or the A & P when we made the three mile trip to Chilli for groceries.  Back then, it seemed like a long way.  Rome had it's own little store and you can check out a post I did on that earlier by clicking on  Lawson's  

One of the two drug stores on the main street in Chillicothe.   Carlisle's was there forever, but Moffitt's was the one the kids liked since it had a soda fountain.  What a treat it was to have some chocolate ice cream with marshmallow and pineapple.  Yummy!  Cherry cokes were also a tasty treat.  Chillicothe's main business district was two blocks long on Second Street.  It was a thriving little place for a lot of years but then went the way of most of the businesses in small towns when people started to travel further to shop in big malls in larger cities.  In this case, it was Peoria that lured the shoppers to come spend their money outside of town.   

An added note - this weekend was the Alumni Banquet in Chillicothe.  This is the 65th anniversary of my graduation from high school with a class of 45 - 30 girls and 15 boys.  Our class has had a reunion every five years in connection with the banquet which meant that you not only saw your class members, but many of the people who were in school at the same time with you.  This is the first one I have missed - makes me a bit sad as I think you feel more like siblings than classmates when the class is so small.  Five years ago my daughter drove me there and that was a lot of fun.   Maybe I will get there for my 70th!!  If my sis were still living, I would have been there for sure.  Life continues to change and we just have to continue to embrace the changes!  I hope they had fun and I am sure they missed me!   (Click to enlarge)

Friday, June 10, 2011

Postcard Friendship Friday

If I am reading the date right,  this was taken in Portland, OR, about 82 years ago today.  Lovely picture even though it is faded.  I love the soft, sepia color. 
No message on the back.  I just did a little search and the 2011 festival is going on now.   If you would like to check out the calendar of events, just click the link

And here is one for Flag Day.  Betsy Ross sews another stripe to our flag. 

And another link for you to use is  which will take you over to Beth's blog where you can find more postcards on this PFF.  Thank you again for hosting!  Happy PFF to all.  (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Favorite Picture Rerun

Another of my very favorite old family pictures - this one from my husband's family most likely taken in the 1890's.  The little baby on the left is his father, Harry, and the sweet little girl standing next to him is Harry's sister, Ethel.  The family would later grow by three more boys and one more girl.   It's hard to tell what the setup is that little Harry is seated on.  Looks almost like a chair covered by something furry - a little odd to say the least.   I love the expressions on the little faces and the pretty little dresses they wear.  What a sweet picture.  (Click to enlarge)

Monday, June 6, 2011

A Very Old Quilt

I know some of you who read this blog know that I am an obsessed quilter and have been for over 35 years.  I love anything and everything about quilts and do have some lovely old things that I treasure.  Back in the 1930's,  it was quite a common practice for newspapers to publish the patterns for quilts  by doing it a block a week.  This came from the Peoria Journal Star and the blocks were embroidered by my husband's mother, Clemie, and I believe the blocks were made into a quilt and quilted by Ray's grandmother on his father's side. 
A hoot owl sits on a branch in this block and

a pretty blue bird sits on a branch with blossoms.  It is a very pale quilt but pretty regardless. 

Here is a shot of the quilting which is very nice and even.  The colors are quite true in the picture.  A very lovely "piece of the past" I am happy to share with you.  (Click to enlarge)

Friday, June 3, 2011

Postcard Friendship Friday

A sweet card for the month of June (already!!!) on this PFF. 
And an interesting little message to Mr. Castill.  Wonder how that turned out?  Hope you have a Happy PFF and that you stop by  and check out the  cards for this first week in June.  Thank you, Beth, for hosting!  (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Vintage Sextist Ads

So awesome how the use of certain products can change your life and make you so amazing!  Even toilet soap.  This one reminds me of a lame joke way back when I was a little kid.  Are you ready? 
What did the red soap say to the green soap?  May I kiss your palm, Olive?
And what did the green soap say to the red soap?  Not on your life, Bouy!
For you younguns out there, Palmolive was green and Lifebouy (a deodorant soap) was red.  Couldn't resist!

How all ladies dress when they are in the food preparing mode!  Or maybe she is a guest in the fellow's home!  Anyway, enjoy these ads of yore. (Click to enlarge)