October 26, 2011

Vintage-y Finds...

So, I traveled away from my Ohio home back to my "home" in NY this weekend.  Home - where I was born and raised.  I must say, I do still miss it very much.  This trip "home" had some purpose.  I was alone, for one, which meant I didn't feel the pressure of making sure The Hubs and The Boy or The Girl were entertained.  (Not that they take much entertaining, as long as they control the TV remote control or can get on their computer games somewhere, somehow.) 

I had originally intended to try and visit some old friends and past neighbors that I haven't seen in too many years.  I pondered it quite a bit, actually.  I never took the steps to actually do so, though.  I did get to meet up with one of my sisters and brothers in law for a lovely lunch and chitter chatter, but outside of my dad and stepmom, that was it for my "visiting" while home.

What I did do was join my dad in the basement looking at some old photos and maps.  This prompted me to hike my bod up into my dad's attic and pull down all of the photos I could find.  And what finds I found!   

One of my favorite finds wasn't a photo.  As my dad and I were pawing through things in the attic, and in the basement, he pulled out a book that I was so familiar with, it was like a long lost friend when I saw it again.  My sisters, for sure, would be even MORE familiar with it, as they had more time with it:

Betty Crocker's Picture Cook Book - Revised and Enlarged!

My mom's cookbook.  It was given to her (per a message written in the inside cover) by her Aunt in 1957.  The book itself was published in 1956.  Now, I realize there are many of you out there reading this that may not think of this as "vintage", but as it is from my very young childhood (circa mid 70's) I certainly feel it is vintage.  At the very least, it invokes imagery in your mind from certain days gone by...

For example, the images in the book:

As someone who seeks out and uses images in training materials I create, I would definitely classify those images as "vintage".

My favorite part of the book, however, is the Special Helps section.  There are some amazing tidbits of wisdom here, even for today's "day and age", while still very plainly making clear what the woman of the house should be doing each day. 

I love that the second page of the Special Helps focuses on getting exercise and fresh air... wearing comfortable shoes and educating the reader that sitting takes less energy than standing.  Here are a few examples of these golden nuggets of wisdom:

But when I read this, I was a little shocked:

Really?  The floor?  Not even allowed to take a quick nap on a bed, or even a couch... but no, lie down on the floor on your back.  Light as a feather, stiff as a board...

But a few Special Help blocks away there was this concession:

Ahhhhh... there we are.  We are allowed, if but for a moment, to rest in a chair.  I can feel the bliss now...

Then there was this gem:

Uhm, yeah... this is, like, an every day situation at my house.  The only day I DO cook?  Sunday.

But my all time favorite that holds true even today?  This one...

It was a great weekend.  I had a blast going through tons of photos, finding memories from my childhood like this cook book and generally spending time in my hometown with my family (or pieces of my family).  It was tough to come back, but I have so many new plans for things I wish to do.  Things to refresh my spirits.

I hope everyone out there is making the time, and taking the time, to refresh your spirits!


  1. what a wonderful find, and I love those instruction and even though I am probably your Dad's age I would class them as vintage too.

  2. I wouldn't class them as vintage as I was 7 yrs old then and I think vintage dates from before I was born! I remember lying on the floor when I was 5 years old at school. Every afternoon after lunch a thin plastic mat would be laid out on the floor of the classroom for each child and we were told to lie down and rest.

  3. Awesome find...its amazing to see how our perspective on home-making and what constitutes a "help" have changed over the years. LOVE it!


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