Monday, January 31, 2011

Long Ago Cookout

The next to the last day of February, 1960, which was Leap Year, found Ray on our patio in Ft. Madison, Iowa,  grilling steak for his 34th birthday dinner.  Doesn't that always taste extra special when the grilling is done in winter with snow on the ground?  Thought this was a good picture for today when they are forecasting horrible weather for so much of the country.  It's been an extreme weather year all over.
This picture was also taken  in Ft. Madison.  We were soooo young.  A good picture of Ray.  (Click to enlarge)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Postcard Friendship Friday

Such a cute illustration - I thought it might be the same artist that did the Dolly Dingle dolls but it is not.  Grace Payton was the lady who is responsible for those cuties.  There is a name, Mary Eleanor George, printed on the card but I can find nothing on her.  However, enjoy the valentine and the message on the back to the professor.  The sender did not sign a name and there are just initials for the addressee - so is this a lady sending her valentine message to her beau or the beau sending one to his lady?   And I take it the "tar" is another term for sailor.   A little mystery for this sweet season coming up.  Many thanks, Beth, for hosting PFF.  Stop by her blog at  and you will find lots of great old postcards.
Enjoy!  (Click to enlarge)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Old Chillicothe

I was able to find this picture on the internet of a beautiful, old home on the highway that went through Chillicothe, Illinois.  This is the Mead home.  I don't remember what the first name of the man was that was the head of this household, but I do know he was one of the mainstays of  the city of Chillicothe.  How I would love to have been able to go through this wonderful old place.  It was such fun to drive by when we went "uptown" for groceries.  This was torn down a long time ago and replaced with a gas station, I think.  So sad.  In my next life, I would love to buy a really old home and have it all fixed up - that would be wonderful.
Here is the Methodist Church in Chilli.  This is actually where my husband and I were married.  His family had been Methodist forever, and mine was a potpourri.  I wonder what the little arrows on the left of the pictures point to - probably someone was indicating where they lived.  Should have saved this for PFF, but have some others for that.  (Click to enlarge)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

From Fashion Friday on Funoldhag

They come around so quickly - Fashion Fridays, I mean. On this rather gloomy day here in Michigan, I am posting a picture of little Carol (who grew up to be Funoldhag) as she sits on the bannister of her grandparents' porch. What a fashionable little girl in a faux fur coat, cute little tam and shiney shoes with straps. She is wearing stockings and mittens so it was probably kind of chilly that day.

And here she is again, this time with her favorite Aunt Leah. It was a different day most likely since she is wearing laced up shoes but the same coat. Probably a little warmer since there is no tam or mittens. Aunt Leah is looking pretty with a chic hairdo, very pretty fur trimmed coat and strappy shoes. This would have been in the early 1930's. So many of the pictures taken at my grandparents' home were taken in the front yard and you can see over time that they enclosed the porch and made a sunroom and closed entry.    This was posted in October, 2009,  on Funoldhag. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Postcard Friendship Friday

Happy PFF - here's a postcard from years and years ago that was sent right here in Michigan. 
I wonder what the writer was reminding the addressee to remember. The little caption written under the photo "Make a fuss over me" is pretty cute.  For more postcards, go to Beth's blog at  Thank you again, Beth, for being our hostess. (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

A Word to the Wise Woman

 Life can be so wonderful when you use the right products!
 By shopping wisely and saving money on everyday essentials, you will even be able to treat yourself to extras such as this beautiful girdle which will further enhance you.

 How wonderful to be so smart and know what to use to make yourself beautiful and desirable for your "significant other".

You could receive the gift of a lifetime that you had been yearning for for so long from the man of your dreams in appreciation of the way you take care of yourself by using the right products.  (Click to enlarge)

Monday, January 17, 2011


 Remember this little gadget that I posted about not so many days ago? 

Here is the first slide that I put on my computer files yesterday!!  I had sent an e-mail to the company a week or more ago and yesterday received an answer and apology for taking so long for their response.   As would be expected, right after the holiday would be a terrible time for a company that manufactures such items.  The writer gave very specific instructions and if I could not make it work, I was to get back to them.  Hallelujah - it worked!  I don't know that it will produce the best copies of the slides and, if not, I will probably look into one that is better.  The nice thing is that at least I can make copies - and there are plenty to go through!  In this picture of the two good looking young people are my son, Bill, and his pretty wife, Ann, in 1984.   The color is not really good but I will work on editing.  At least it's working. 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Pearces

 Pieces of the Past really got started because of all of the pictures I have of the Pearce family - my maternal grandparents.  Along with those I have and ones that were sent to me by my brother and by a  cousin in California, I decided it would be fun to do a blog and use them along with many other old family pictures from my husband's family, my paternal grandparents, and our family.  I am sure the above picture of the Pearces is already in this blog way, way back, but I wanted to put it in along with the two that follow.  Above are Nan, my mother, Maggie, my grandmother, Leah, Dan, my grandfather, Ed, the youngest, Nelle who is in many of the Fashion Fridays over on my Funoldhag blog, and Harry, or Ham, as everyone called him. 
In 1951, Aunt Nelle and Uncle Ham came back from California for a visit.  My grandfather had been gone quite a long time but here is the Pearce family at that time--- Leah, Ham, Grandma Pearce, Ed, Mom and Nelle.  I am so glad I have this photo.  Ray and I were living in an apartment owned by an Italian couple, Sam and Reena Marini.  They lived on the ground floor while we lived upstairs.  In the basement, they had an Italian restaurant.   The family had a dinner at Marini's while Nelle and Lambert, her husband, and Uncle Ham were back.  I don't remember why my Aunt Della, Ham's wife, was not able to come back with them. Below is the picture of our entire family at that time.  Ray and I were expecting Sherry.

The first couple is my parents, Nan and Charlie, my sister, Joanne and Bob, her husband,  Nelle and Lambert,  Ham and Grandma Pearce, Ed and Henrietta, his cute wife, Ray and me, and my brother, Bud, and Aunt Leah.  Hard for me to believe this was almost 60 years ago!    (Click to enlarge) 

Friday, January 14, 2011

Postcard Friendship Friday

 Here is a sextist postcard - but isn't it cute and very funny.  It is an artist signed card by C. Ryan.   I had no idea there were so many wonderful cards out there and it's lots of fun looking for something to post.  I do have some actual cards but would not call it a collection.  Hope it's not a problem posting cyber cards and I do have permission to do that. 
Love the message to Verna from Irving (I think) which I believe is "Dear Verna, Don't you think this is an awful card.  This is not my opinion so don't be angry dear.  Your good letter recd.  Lovingly, Irving".
Verna may never have seen this card since it has not been stamped and cancelled.  He could have just given it to her, though.  Again to Beth at  thanks so much for being our lovely hostess.  Happy PFF to all.  (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A Very, Very Old Wedding Invitation

 Again, in things that belonged to my husband's mother, I found this very old wedding invitation inviting someone in the family to the wedding of Miss Clementine Fraser to Mr. John W. Rusk.
The wedding was in 1889 in Brimfield, Illinois.  My mother-in-law, whose name was also Clementine, was a  Rusk and I am positive that John was her uncle.  There is a handwritten list of the family of William Rusk and Mary Ann Wiley Rusk and John is on that list along with Samuel Rusk, who was Clemie's father.  I thought the invitation was so very pretty with its little embossed flowers and pretty script.    There is a little envelope the same size and color  and written faintly on the upper lefthand corner is "for Leatha" which is the name of Clemie's older sister.  Very sweet little piece of the past.  (Click to enlarge)

Monday, January 10, 2011

From FOH Fashion Friday

It says right on the picture that this is Anna Pearce in Champagne, Ill, but I don't know how Anna is related to my grandfather's family. I do know that Dan and Maggie had some very good friends in Champagne. This pretty lady may have been married to the son of one of my grandfather Dan's brothers. Most certainly, it looks as if there is a bird perched on her hat! Her outfit is fresh and summery with a skirt and overskirt and pretty blouse sporting a pin or brooch.  And the hat!! Anna wins the prize for the best hat in pictures of my ancestors! Don't you agree? Interesting little purse she is carrying - looks like it could be a carton of Chinese food.  How fun it would be to know where she has been, with who and what is making her have such a beautiful dimpled smile on her face.  One of my favorite pictures from the Pearces.   (Click to enlarge)

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Long Ago Christmas Memorabilia

Carolyn at sent me a folder containing this wonderful picture and memorabilia that her mother, Virginia Lee, had done in the early part of the 1900's.   She was going to do (and did)  a post on her blog at Christmas time but thought I might not get to see it when I was gone over the holiday.   I asked her if she would mind if I did a post using these lovely pieces and she was happy to let me do it.  The picture is of her mother when she was five years old in 1916.  Then comes the envelope and letter to Santa Claus from 1918.  What a sweet letter - I love the "And thats all" underlined to emphasize her wishes which are very specific and not excessive at all.  Along the side is something about a ring, I think, which she would like to have if he has any.  She has underlined "go to" then added the address of her home. 

There is also  one of her colored drawings which is what Christmas is all about.  How sweet, how refreshing,  and how fortunate for Carolyn that she has this wonderful group of items from her mother's childhood.  Thanks for sharing, Carolyn.
(Click to enlarge)

Friday, January 7, 2011

Postcard Friendship Friday

This postcard for Oscar Mayer commemorates a fun memory of my son, Bill.   The summer before he started high school, we were transferred to Newton, Kansas, a small town just north of Wichita.  This was the hardest move we made with the Santa Fe--Newton was an okay little town but it is harder moving to a small town than a bigger one.  Sherry, my daughter, left for KU at the end of summer,  and my husband was also gone a lot more and was "on call" all the time so had to go to derailments, etc., at all hours and for as long as it took.  A much different life.  However, we all survived and flourished and were only there three years than on to KC.  

One day at work, I received a call from the highschool asking me to come in to see the principal.   When I went in, I was informed that Bill had blown an "Oscar Mayer weinie whistle" in art class!  I can't remember what happened or if there was any discipline - all I can remember is that it was actually kind of humorous although I am sure I didn't laugh.  At least, I hope I didn't.
Last summer when we were in Portland for Molly's wedding, some of the family took a hike to see the falls that were nearby.  They spotted an Oscar Mayer Weiner Wagon in a parking lot and took this picture of Bill pointing out the logo of the infamous whistle he blew in the Newton High School art class in the early 1970's.  Another fond memory!    

Thank you, Beth,  for hosting PFF.  Check out her blog and find lots of other fun postcards.   (Click to enlarge)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Home Entertainment

The look and type of home entertainment has certainly changed since this old catalog was published in 1933.  Where were the televisions, the dvd players, the computers, and all the magnificent things that have come, been replaced by new technology and gone.  Meager pickings!  I can still remember sitting and listening to the radio and being every bit as caught up in the programs as I am in television.  It was wonderful for your imagination - like reading;   You pulled up a picture in your mind and just knew that was how it was.
There were soap operas (Julie of Hilltop House, Stella Dallas), variety shows (The Hit Parade) , children's serials (Little Orphan Annie, Jack Armstrong the All American Boy),  scarey programs (The Shadow), dramas (One Man's Family), comedy (George Burns and Gracie Allen, Jack Benny, Phil Harris, Amos and Andy, Fibber McGee and Molly, Red Skelton).  Something for everyone.   
Around the time I graduated from high school and went to work, we got this radio-phonograph which was a Philco and called the "Bing Crosby" model.  Why, I don't know.  The little door at the bottom with the slot was opened and a record inserted for instant music.  I thought it was just wonderful - our family had never had anything like that ever.  Naturally, we always had a radio - but a phonograph?  Bliss.  Back then, it was a long long time before all of the gadgets that now let you carry your music with you were even invented.
And here is an album that we played on the old Philco.  Dorothy Shay, the Beverly Hillbilly, sang her kookie songs in a charming style.  If you would like to hear a sample of Dorothy's music, click on the arrow below.  Enjoy.  (Click to enlarge)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

It Won't Work!!

I have in my basement box after box of 35mm slides taken from the late 70's until sometime in the 90's.  Lots and lots of pictures that I would love to be able to use for Pieces of the Past.  Last fall, I purchased this little scanner at Staples, tried to install it and had no luck.  I am not the most high tech person around, but I have been using the computer since 1996 and have installed lots of software over those years without too much problem.  There have been some things that I have installed that just about frazzled my nerves but I made it through.   This little gadget would be the answer to getting those slides on my computer where I want them.  I have installed, uninstalled, reinstalled, uninstalled, on and on.  It always tells me it cannot find the 35mm scanner.  The photo program is there and I even e-mailed the company about my problem.  They sent me a lengthy e-mail directing me to a website for a driver.  Last week I did what it said and I am sure I have the driver but the darned thing still does not recognize the scanner.  Then yesterday I called the number they gave me if I needed further help.  I was on hold for a long time - finally someone came on and took my name and number to call me back since they were so backed up.  No call.  I will try calling again, but I can't deal with it today.  I may just pack it up and send it to them and tell them to fix it or to trade it in on something that works!!!   Not a very interesting post!! 

Sunday, January 2, 2011

From Fashion Friday on Funoldhag

Today finds Nan, wearing a summery white frock with three-quarter sleeves, a pretty satin sash, and lovely dark hat with a light band, posing with her sister, Nelle, and a very pretty friend that I am unable to identify. Nelle, looking very sophisticated, is wearing a chic dress with a three tiered skirt, many buttons, and a dark belt. Her hat is beautiful and features a very large floppy brim and a pretty band. She looks to be carrying gloves. The pretty friend also is wearing a white frock that features a two tiered skirt and a lovely wide sash made of a printed fabric. She is hatless so we are able to see her cute hairdo. I always wonder where the girls were going in their lovely outfits. In front of the front porch at the Pearce home was a favorite place to take photos, and I appreciate those photos more all the time. Hope you enjoyed today's show.  (Posted earlier on Funoldhag - click to enlarge)