Monday

December 31, 1950 - Happy New Years Eve!

Another year has passed and as they do I slip further and further into the past that I unfortunately never had the chance to experience myself.
Yesterday I got a chance to go down to my favorite fabric store and get my hands on some new fabric for my ever growing stash.  Here it is: (By the way it will also be on my two hours a day blog if anyone wants to look at it there too.)

 Who could go wrong with some aqua gingham.  I thought that this might make a nice jumper dress.
 Blue Terry Cloth to be used with Vogart 215.  I was looking over my new Etiquette book and so far as I can tell, the entire time I was engaged.  That was nearly a year and a half I was supposed to be embroidering and sewing a trousseau (basically the newer version of a dowry) of all of the linens that I would need to set up house.  Unfortunately, that is just one more thing that is forgotten and is left up to the couple to deal with when they have all of the other expenses of starting their home together.  I am going to do an entire post on the trousseau and what you are expected to have when starting up your new home next year.

 Brown flannel to make a nice warm skirt, I was thinking of doing some embroidery along the bottom, perhaps some flowers or ivy.  I'm not a wonderful embroider just yet but it is a skill I plan to tackle in the new year.
 This is a very nice cotton that seems to drape like a dream.  I will be making this into a nice dress, perhaps with some black embellishments around the collar or at the sleeves and a black thick belt.
 Like the one above this is a navy blue flannel.  I know how much of my grandmothers wardrobe as far as bottoms are concerned were either navy or brown so I can only assume that these two colors were staples of the ladies winter wardrobe and since I cannot wear warm pants all the time I think a nice warm flannel skirt is a nice addition to the closet.
 I know that I am already in possession of some nice muslin that I am going to make into shirts but I thought, hey a lady can never have too many, especially when they are all made with different patterns so that they all look different.  Even if some of then garner some rick-rack or some lace to set them apart so I acquired 6 yards of ivory broadcloth.
 This is a color that I see over and over again in the catalogs of the early fifties, it is a salmon pink and I thought that it would make a lovely shopping skirt.  Something that I can jaunt around town in, maybe I will make two pencil skirts or one full skirt.  I have yet to decide.
Last but most certainly not least is the material for my first attempt at lingerie.  I have an old pattern for a slip that I need desperately, seeing as so many materials can be seen through and I really don't want to waste the time or the expense of lining nearly everything I make, so here is some warm silky cotton to make a slip out of.  I will probably show the results on two hours a day.


Well that's all for now I hope everyone has a safe and happy New Years Eve and a wonderful year to come.

Till Later!
Andrea

Wednesday

December 26, 1950 - Meet My Favorite Boy!

Little Harvey in his Santa Suit
No he was not a Christmas gift, I have had him on my lap for six months now.  He is my 11 month old baby Schnoodle Harvey.  He is honestly the light of my life, he makes me so happy and there are days when I can't wait to get home to him at night.  He's my best friend next to my most amazing husband, whom by the way got me the archive book from better homes and gardens July-December 1959 for Christmas as well as many other things.
Oh by the way I have picked my monthly book club book, it is called the Boy from Maine and was written by Katharine Brush in 1947 and I can't wait to get into the pages.  The book discussion will be on the 23rd of January if anyone has any opinions, please share.

Till Later!
Andrea

Monday

December 17, 1950 - Christmas Dinner Recipes

Here they are, as promised.  Yes, I know a day late, however there were many things to do around the house before the holiday began.  My deepest apologies.

Baked Smoked Ham with Cranberry Glaze
12 to 14 pound smoked ham          2 cups whole cranberries
1/2 cup water          6 thin lemon slices, halves
3/4 cup corn syrup          1/2 cup sugar

Place ham, fat side up, on rack in open roasting pan.  Insert meat thermometer so that bulb touches the middle of the thickest part.  Be careful that the bulb does not sit in the fat or rest on the bone.  Do not cover.  Roast in a slow oven (300F) until meat thermometer reaches 160F.  Allow 18 to 20 minutes per pound for roasting.  While meat is cooking put cranberries, water, lemon slices, corn syrup and sugar in a saucepan.  Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture thickens and berries pop or about 10 minutes.  About 15 minutes before ham is finished cooking, spread with cranberry mixture.


Rose Cranberry Sauce
1 cup cranberries          6 whole cloves
1 tablespoon cornstarch          1 teaspoon grated orange peel
2/3 cup sugar          1/2 cup orange juice
Dash of salt          1/2 cup rose wine

Wash and pick over berries.  Combine cornstarch, sugar and salt together in a saucepan.  Add wine cloves, orange peel and orange juice.  Heat stirring until sugar is dissolved.  Boil 2 to 3 minutes.  Add cranberries and cook until skins have popped.  Serve hot or cold.  Makes 2 cups sauce.


Lemon Balls
2/3 cup shortening          3/4 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten          3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel          2 cups sifted flour
2 teaspoons baking powder         1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons sugar          1 teaspoon cinnamon

Cream sugar and shortening together until light and fluffy.  Add egg, lemon juice and peel.  Sift together baking soda, flour and salt.  Gradually stir into creamed mixture.  Chill.  Shape into balls the size of walnuts; combine 3 tablespoons sugar and cinnamon and roll balls in this mixture.  Place on oiled baking sheets.  Bake in moderate 350F oven for 12 to 15 minutes.  Makes 4 dozen cookies.

There they are I hope you enjoy them.  I may try the cranberry glazed ham for Easter.  In our family we have a beef roast for Christmas Day so maybe I will share my recipe for that before the month is out.  I hope you all have a wonderful day.  

Till Later!
Andrea


Sunday

December 16, 1950 - Day Off!

I know I promised more recipes today but I need a day off so here are a few cute Christmas cards to get you through.





Merry day of rest to all!

Here's your idea.  Please send out your Christmas cards soon.  Regardless of  how annoying it is to write them all out it is far more disappointing when you don't receive one from someone you care about.

Till Later!
Andrea

Saturday

December 15, 1950 - Christmas Breakfast Recipes

These are the recipes that I promised from yesterday.  First we will do the breakfast ones and then tomorrow the ones for the dinner.

Lemon Broiled Peaches
1 (No. 2 1/2) cling peaches          1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon peel          3 tablespoons brown sugar

Drain peaches and place cup side up in shallow baking dish.  Combine remaining ingredients and spoon into peachesBroil about 4 inches from heat, until peaches are thoroughly heated and lightly browned.  Serve piping hot.  Makes 6 to 8 servings.


Christmas Buns
2 medium sized potatoes          1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup sugar          1 1/4 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup butter          1/2 cup warm (not hot) water
2 cups active dry yeast          3 eggs
4 1/2 cups sifted flour          Grated peel of 1 lemon
1/2 cup of raisins          1/2 cup chopped nuts
1/2 cup sifted confectioners sugar

Peel and cook potatoes until tender.  Drain and mash until smooth.  Scald Milk.  Stir in sugar, salt, butter and 3/4 cup mashed potatoes.  Cool to lukewarm.  Put water in a large mixing bowl and sprinkle yeast on water and stir until dissolved.  Add lukewarm potato-milk mixture.  Beat two of the eggs and add to yeast mixture.  Stir in half the flour and lemon peel.  Beat until smooth.  Add remaining flour or enough to make an easily handled dough.  Turn out onto a floured board and kneed quickly and lightly until smooth and elastic - 8 to 10 minutes.  Let rise until doubled in bulk.  Punch dough down and turn out onto a lightly floured board.  Kneed nuts and raisins into dough.  Divide dough in half.  Shape one half into smooth ropes 1/3 inch thick and about 14 inches long.  On greased baking sheet shape each rope into a Christmas tree.  Roll remaining half of dough into a circle 1/2 inch thick.  Cut into rounds with 2 1/2 inch cookie cutter.  Place on greased baking sheet about 1 inch apart.  Separate remaining egg, beat egg yolk with 2 tablespoons water and brush buns with the mixture.  Cover buns and set in a warm place, free from draft, until doubled in bulk.  Bake in moderately hot oven (375F) about 25 minutes.  Beat remaining egg white and mix in enough confectioners sugar to make spreading consistency.  Use to frost buns.  Decorate as desired and makes 2 dozen or so Christmas Buns.

The last one seems a little complicated so I don't recommend it for a beginner, but I do think that anyone can make it as long as you follow it step by step.Good luck and Merry Christmas!
Till Later!
Andrea

Friday

December 14, 1950 - Two Holiday Menus

Christmas Morning Breakfast
Frosted Cranberry Juice
Scrambled Eggs & Mushrooms
Crisp Bacon          Baked Sausage Links
Lemon Broiled Peaches*
Christmas Buns*
Hot Coffee
Hot Chocolate with Mini Marshmallows


Festive Ham Dinner
Melon Malderilene
Baked Smoked Ham with Cranberry Glaze*
Glazed Sweet Potatoes
Brussels Sprouts          Rose Cranberry Sauce*
Artichokes Piquant on Romaine
Rose Wine
Hot Rolls          Crisp Relishes
Holiday Flaming Sundae
Lemon Balls*          Assorted Mints
Coffee
Brandy

*Over the next two days I will be giving these recipes right here all from the 1958 Today's Woman Christmas ideas book.

Till Later!
Andrea

Thursday

December 13, 1950 - Start with a Silver Ball

These are three ideas for home made decorations that are started with just a simple silver Christmas ball. From the December 1950 issue of McCalls.

1. For your tree there is a drum major.  Take a silver ball and paint a face on it.  Decorate a dixie cup like a drum majors hat.  Poke a hole in the top.  Take a small bunch of tinsel and double it over using a long-ish piece of string to secure it in the center to make a tassel.  Feed the string through the top of the dixie cup and glue the cup on top of the silver ball.  Simple and so cute, I might do this one myself.

2. For a favor, as an angel.  Cover either a toilet paper tube or half of a paper towel tube with gilt paper or paint it silver. Run a string through the metal loop end of the ball and feed it through the tube and through a cardboard base that is about three inches flat and round with a hole poked in the center.  Now add tinsel hair and garland wings as well as garland around the base, get creative!

3. For a money gift.  Remove the metal cap.  Roll the bills or bills and place them inside and replace the metal cap.  Decorate the top with ribbons tiny balls and bells and paint break me on the ball.  I love this idea.  It just needs to be completed in a very controlled environment so that no one gets hurt.

Hope you liked these ideas.  I think at least one of them is genius and I hope some of you try them out.  There is nothing better than a truly homemade decoration.

Till Later!
Andrea

Wednesday

December 12, 1950 - The Christmas Candle

The Christmas candle is a traditional centerpiece in many homes with more ways to display it then there are days in a year.  Here are a few ideas on how to display yours.

1. On a cake plate -  Surround a fat 5-inch candle with red and silver balls of varying sizes.

2. On a Cloud - place one or several candles on a mirrored plate with small amounts of buffalo snow surrounding them and if desired add a few sparkly or shiny stars in the snow to give it a more cloudish feeling.  Please be careful with this one because if you don't watch it, it can become a fire hazard.

3. Wrapped with jewels - Take a taper candle and wrap it gingerly with Christmas beads going up.  Then make a circle of silver (or whatever matches your color scheme) Christmas balls around the base.

These ideas are from the December 1950 issue of McCalls.

Tuesday

December 11, 1950 - Christmas Tree Salad

Just a simple post today of something I found in the December 5, 1949 issue of Life Magazine released by J-ello.


Monday

December 10, 1950 - Wrapping it Up!

One of the most important parts of Christmas is wrapping up those all important gifts.  I know that it is one thing that many people don't like doing.  However, what a wonderful project that it can be.  What if you made just an ordinary shirt box into a "shirt" box by wrapping it in a plain paper and then affixing a different type of paper cut to the shape of a tie and also a plain colored paper to make a collar.
Or a little box chimney wrapped with brick wrapping paper set atop a larger rectangle wrapped in white or gray with paper dots glued to the top to mimic snow.  There are many articles with all of the details about making all sorts of neat things out of your presents.  What a way to make your tree look beautiful.  Only two more weeks until Christmas!

Till Later!
Andrea

Sunday

December 9, 1950 - More Recipes for Your Vintage Christmas Dinner

Here are a few more recipes to make your christmas day merry and bright.  From the pages of the 1958 Today's Women Magazine Christmas Ideas.

Melon Ball Cup
2 melons          1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup port wine          Confectioners sugar

Cut the melons in half and remove seeds.  Scoop out the flesh of the melon with a small melon baller. Place balls in a deep bowl and cover with wine and orange juice.  Sweeten to taste with confectioners sugar.  Chill in refrigerator for several hours before serving, spooning juice over balls occasionally.  Serve in sherbet glasses, topped with sprigs of mint, if available.  Makes 8 to 10 servings.


Roast Loin of Pork
Crown roast of pork          Salt and Pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped onion          1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1/4 cup drippings          3 cups soft bread crumbs
1 cup finely chopped tart apple          1/4 teaspoon marjoram
1/4 teaspoon thyme          1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup brown sugar          1/4 cup water

Have your butcher make a crown of 14 ribs of pork.  Season with salt and pepper.  Place the roast rib ends down, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan.  Roast in a moderate oven (350F) about 1 hour.  Cook onion and celery in drippings until tender.  Combine with remaining ingredients.  Remove roast from oven and invert roast in pan so rib ends are up.  Fill center with stuffing.  Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the roast, being careful that it doesn't rest in fat or on bone.  Continue roasting in moderate oven until the thermometer registers 185F.  Allow about 40 minutes per pound for roasting.


Ginger Glazed Onions
18 medium sized onions peeled          1/4 cup honey
2 tablespoons butter           1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt          1/4 teaspoon ginger

Cook onions in boiling salted water 20 minutes or until just tender, drain and place in a baking dish.  Combine remaining ingredients in a saucepan.  Boil 5 minutes.  Pour over onions.  Bake in moderately slow oven 325F for about 10 minutes or until glazed.  Makes 8 servings. 


Yuletide Prune Cake
1/2 cup butter          1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
3 large eggs          2 cups sifted flour
1 teaspoon baking powder          1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt          1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg          1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon vinegar          1 cup milk
1 cup coarsely chopped prunes          1 cup chopped walnuts

Cream butter and brown sugar together until light and fluffy.  Add eggs, singly, beating well after each addition.  Sift together flour, baking powder, soda, salt and spices.  Add vinegar to milk.  Add Add flour mixture alternately with milk to creamed mixture, beating well after each addition.  Add prunes and nuts and blend well.  Pour into a well greased 9-inch tube pan.  Bake in a moderate oven 350F for 1 hour or until done.  Frost with confectioners sugar icing flavored with lemon juice and grated lemon peel.

I hope that these are a few great recipes to try and are delicious.  I am honestly looking forward to trying out the glazed onions.  I have never had just an onion as a side dish before.  Have a merry day!
Till Later!
Andrea

Saturday

December 8, 1950 - Christmas Aprons

Christmas aprons are by far one of the easiest things in the world to make.  Aside from a quick and easy skirt, an apron is the first thing that I ever self drafted.
During the Christmas season you will be doing a lot of messy baking and cooking that may leave you with clothing stains that can be a pain or even impossible to remove.  What is the best idea in the world?  An Apron!  Even better a festive apron.  They are so simple to make and look great while putting you in the Christmas Spirit.  Best of all you can make a really nice one reasonably cheap and in a single afternoon.
There are countless patterns for aprons and any of them can be used to make a Christmas apron.  There are so many pieces of Christmas fabric out there and you only need about half a yard for a very full apron.  Even if you don't want to do that, aprons were so abundant in the fifties that there are a great deal of them still available today.  In fact I recently bought a hand embroidered one from a local antiques mall for a mere $3 and have been using it pretty consistently throughout this week.
I hope you all give it a try and have a wonderful day!

Till Later!
Andrea

Friday

December 7, 1950 - The Christmas Table

A couple more recipes for your Christmas Table

Pecan Yule Log
 1 cup butter          4 tablespoon confectioners sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla          2 cup flour
1 cup pecans, chopped 

Mix ingredients together. Roll into logs.
Bake 350F for 12 minutes. After cooling dust with additional confectioners sugar and design with candied cherries and pecans.



Creamed Broccoli With Bread Crumbs
2 pounds broccoli          2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoon flour          1 cup milk
1/4 teaspoon salt          1/8 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon grated onion or onion juice          bread crumbs
grated cheese

 Soak broccoli in cold water for 12 minutes. Drain well. Remove the large leaves and the tough part of the stalks. Cut deep gashes in the bottom of the stalks. Place the broccoli in boiling salted water that nearly covers it. Cook it covered until it is barely tender. Drain it and chop it very fine.
Melt butter and stir in flour. Slowly stir in milk. Season it with salt, paprika and onion. Add broccoli and mix well. Place in a baking dish and sprinkle it with bread crumbs and cheese. Bake at 425 degrees until cheese is melted.  

That's all for today, I hope you all have a jolly day!  

Till Later!
Andrea

Thursday

December 6, 1950 - Popcorn Garland

Who can forget the old fashioned favorite decoration that has been done for more than 100 years that's fun, pretty & yummy to boot.  POPCORN GARLAND!
I'm sure that everyone already knows how to make popcorn garland but I will give you a quick refresher just in case.  What you do is take some strong white string and feed a long piece of thread through the eye of a pretty thin needle (the thinner the better because it is easier to keep the popcorn from breaking apart as you sting it.
Next, you pop a whole lot of popcorn.  I say this because you will undoubtedly eat some in the process.  I suggest that you air pop or use the kind that has no flavoring for two reasons, the first is so that you won't make your tree forever smell like popcorn (if you use an artificial tree) and the second is to keep out unwanted pests that can smell the butter from a mile away.  This is also a preventive for curious pets that may enthusiastically pull down your entire tree.
Some people also add cranberries to their holiday garland.  Although this is very pretty I have never done this.  I think that it makes it a little too expensive.  Besides if I buy cranberries I want to eat them, not throw them away at the end of the season.
You take one piece of popcorn at a time and try to put the needle straight through the center of the kernel, or at least as close as you can and if it breaks just pop the pieces in your mouth and move on.  After not to long you will have a vintage sweet addition to your Christmas tree that may just become a tradition in and of itself.
Have a very happy day!

Till Later!
Andrea

Wednesday

December 5, 1950 - Charm & Color with Paper & Paste

From the pages of December 1953 Women's Day.  The idea that we are going to talk about today is about what is now I believe referred to as decoupage. 
You can take a very simple wooden frame that can cost you no more than a dollar and add some wrapping paper, whether you use the Christmas type or use more of a year round type.  You can then mix up a mixture of water and flour or use a professional shellack to make it all stick. 
A few other ideas are buying a plain composition book and gluing paper over the cover to personalize it or paper over the cover of a photo album that you make for the ones that you love.
A bonus good idea is that when the glue is still wet, run a rolling pin over it and you will get rid of all of those pesky bubbles.
Hope everyone has a festive day and enjoy yourselves!

Till Later!
Andrea

Tuesday

December 4, 1950 - Christmas Cookies Recipes

Today's little share is from the December 1953 issue of Woman's Day magazine and from the article entitled 24 Christmas Cookies to treasure.

Royal Crowns
Makes about 2 dozen
2 hard-cooked egg yolks              1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon salt                            1 cup sifted flour
1/2 cup butter            red and green candied cherries
1/4 cup granulated sugar

Force egg yolks through a course sieve, add salt.  Cream butter, add sugar and flavoring; beat until light.  Add egg yolks and flour; mix well.  Force dough through a crown design on a cookie press, or drop by teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheets.  Decorate crowns with "jewels" of candied cherries.  Bake in a moderate oven, 375F for 7 to 10 minutes.


Filled Butter Rings
Makes 2 dozen
1 cup butter          1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup granulated sugar          apricot or other preserves
3 cups sifted flour          confectioners sugar

Cream butter; add sugar; beat until light.  Add flour and salt.  Roll to 1/8 inch thickness.  Cut with floured, 3-inch cookie cutterCut out the centers of half of the cookies with 2 inch cutter.  Bake all cookies on cookie sheets in hot oven 400F for 10 minutes, or until lightly browned.  Cool on wire racks.  Spread whole 3 inch cookie with preserves, piled high at the center.  Top with cookies rings.  Sprinkle confectioners sugar around the edge.

Swiss Cinnamon Stars
Makes 5 dozen
2 cups blanched almonds          confectioners sugar - about 1 1/2 lbs
4 egg whites          2 tablespoons cinnamon
Grated rind and juice of 1/2 a lemon

Grate almonds in rotary graterBeat egg whites until stiff.  Add rind, juice and 2 cups sugar.  Continue beating until very stiff.  Measure 1 cup and reserve. To remaining mixture, add almonds and cinnamon.  Place on board generously sprinkled with confectioners sugar.  Sprinkle top with sugar, roll very thin with sugar dusted rolling pin.  Cut with star shaped cookie cutter, put on brown paper on cookie sheets.  Spread with egg white mixture.  Bake in slow oven 250F for about 30 minutes.  Slip paper onto wet table or board.  Let stand for 1 minute.  Loosen stars and lift to rack.  Store airtight for 1 week before using.

I have dreams of these beautiful cookie spreads that would impress nearly everyone that sees it.  I know that it is a far off dream because time, supplies and the fact that I don't want to eat twenty pounds of cookies.  But I will be trying a few and I plan on sharing those experiences right here with you.  

Till Later!
Andrea

Monday

December 3, 1950 - Gift Ideas

Good morning everyone, it's time for my Christmas idea of the day and I have today for you some practical gifts ideas for under $5 [$35]* for your loved one.  Everything that is on this list is mentioned in the December 1952 issue of Better Living Magazine, however I found the closest equivalent product on the computer for you to purchase for your vintage-y Christmas
Let's start with the kiddies.+
For your little girl you can never go wrong with a simple doll like the You & Me 14 inch Hugs & Holds Doll that retails for $1.50 [$9.99] and you can add the You & Me Doll Accessories Tote Bag for an additional $1.25 [$8.99] and still be way under your $5 budget.
For your little boy try the Real Construction Deluxe Set With Tool  at a cost of $2.60 [$17.98] and with parental supervision this would probably be hours of fun for any little future architect.  Or how about the Melissa & Doug Figure 8 Train Set for $4.25 [$29.99] which is a beautiful wooden set.
A quick list of gifts for her that she will love are:
For the man in your life:
 I hope that this helps everyone in their holiday shopping experience and may you all have a very vintage Christmas.

Till Later!
Andrea


*All prices in the brackets are modern 2012 amounts
+All of these toys and prices are from toysrus.com and are available through their website

Sunday

December 2, 1950 - Christmas Card Party

The idea that I am going to be sharing today is from the December 1952 issue of Woman's Day and it is a fun idea for both adults and children.
What a wonderful idea it is to have a Christmas Card making party.  Gather everyone together with a bunch of arts and crafts supplies, you can even have everyone bring some supplies to share, such as one person brings several different colors of card stock and another brings many different colors of glitter or pom poms or even simple construction paper.  The ideas are endless when a bunch of creative or even semi creative people get together.
Send out these personal handmade cards to those you love and I'm sure they will always have a special place in their heart.
Another idea is along the same premise but very much more for the adults in the family.  While the children are out school why don't all of the mommies get together and have a wrapping party.  Set aside some coffee, cookies and little sandwiches and talk, listen to Christmas music and wrap all of those gifts.  So many people find the task of wrapping daunting and if you are all together and laughing and having fun perhaps it just might make it a little more of an enjoyable experience for all.  Also, just think is everyone brought a few types of wrapping paper to share, you more than likely could make yourself a very colorful Christmas morning with not two gifts wrapped in the same paper at no more added expense then a few large rolls.

Till Later!
Andrea

Saturday

December 1, 1950 - Happy December!

 
I honestly can't believe that it has been nearly another year.  Christmas is by far my favorite time of year.  The decorations, the food, the music,TV specials and movies, even the spirit of the time is the most wonderful thing that the year has to offer.
I am going to try and share as much about my vintage Christmas as I can.  Most of my life I have treasured all of my Christmas with my family.  I spent most of them with my grandparents and quite a few years of my adult life with my husbands grandparents, this is going to be the first year that Christmas (day at least) will be at my house.  We will be having my in-laws in to spend the night and I have a beautiful menu planned and since he decision was made by both my husband and myself that my work hours are to be cut back I will have plenty of time to be the house wife that I have dreamed of being.
As for things to share with you I have been lucky enough that last year the sweet dear hubby gave me as a Christmas gift half a dozen new era magazines including several Woman's Day and a couple Family Circle.  I have also recently acquired the 1958 & 1959 volumes of Today's Woman Christmas Ideas and inside their pages are seemingly endless ideas for crafts, games and food, even some menus.
I also have collected almost two dozen Christmas movies that range from 1935 to 1957 to give me my movies afternoon for the entirety of the Christmas season.
Let's start it out with a recipe from Today's Woman Christmas Ideas:

Champagne Party Punch
1 bottle champagne                1 pint cognac
1 bottle white wine                          1 quart sparkling water
Chill all ingredients.  Place a large cake of ice in the punch bowl.  Pour in ingredients, stir gently.  Garnish with orange and limes slices and strawberries, if desired.  Makes about 35 servings.

I hope that everyone has a beautiful start to the holiday season and please keep in mind it's about the spirit, not about the presents.  Don't get angry about not being able to get everyone the perfect gift and don't be selfish about getting just what your asking for.  Remember your family and your loved ones and just having fun together.  

Till Later!
Andrea

Friday

November 23, 1950 - Happy Thanksgiving!

I know that Thanksgiving was yesterday, but I was away at my mother-in-laws for the holiday.  We were blessed enough to be with family in the country for the holiday.  The only thing that was missing was the cranberry sauce.  Everyone forgot about it until we sat down.
Since Thanksgiving is over it is now time to think about Christmas.  Most of our decorating is already done thanks to the persistence of my husband who was determined to get it done last weekend, since today I must suffer through a dentists appointment.  Today however, we will be putting the ornaments on the tree.  I am not one of those people that participates in the mass confusion that is Black Friday shopping, I am actually nearly done with my Christmas shopping.  This year I'm also making a gift for everyone, I am very proud of it but I will not mention what it is here so that if any of my family members happen upon this I don't want them to know what I'm making them.  I also when a little more practical with the gifts for the hubby.  Things that he could really use. Thing that he would probably never buy for himself unless the ones that he had are completely unusable.
I also got a couple of fun things for him too.  We don't have any children, so really the only people that we really need to buy for is each other.  Little things for the in-laws and friends but definitely mainly just each other.  I can't wait for my real vintage Christmas to begin.

Till Later!
Andrea

November 16, 1950 - A Little Thing I Noticed

I have been searching lately for some new jewelry using the 1952 Sears Christmas Catalog and the worldwide garage sale [ebay].  Now when I was about 6 years old in the eighties I was like nearly every other little girl and I got my ears pierced
Since I have started looking for earrings I have noticed that much more often then not earrings were of the clip-on nature.  Now, when I was young and played with my Grandmother's jewelry I came to the knowledge that clip on earrings hurt, bad, especially on pierced ears.
There have only been a few reasonably priced pairs that I was even willing to try for.  One being a set that I won that are pictured to the right, they are very sweet and small.  Keep in mind that I am trying to find more day to day earrings, not so much the very nice ones to wear out, I have some of those.  On a day to day basis I have worn my pearl studs everyday.  However, like every women that is getting a little old and I would like to mix it up a bit.  I have a couple more pairs that I am trying to get but we will see if I am out bit.

Till Later!
Andrea

Saturday

November 10,1950 - My Research Findings

I'm always on the lookout for ways to have authentic news material from the era and let me tell you readable newspapers are very hard to come by.  The 1800's are actually easier to find then anything from the fifties. 
However, recently I found two wonderful things on Google.  I try not to spend to much time on the internet but in the morning and late in the evening I like to read while the hubby watches the tube.  This is the closest way that I can stay in my little world and he can watch just what he wants to watch and we can still be together.
Now for what I found on Google, they have archives of both old issues all throughout the fifties for Life Magazine and the other thing is I found a link to the newspaper archives for the Reading Eagle which is the closest to my hometown that I have ever found.  I have been to Reading many, many times, especially to see the Reading Phillies with hubby.  It's only an hour or so from my house.  I know that sounds pretty far away but really it isn't to this point I used papers from places I had never even heard of.
I couldn't be happier to find something like this.  I know it means a little more time on the computer but hey that means I get real semi-local news. 

Till Later!
Andrea

Friday

November 9, 1950 - New Aquisitions

Christmas is always a bad time for me to gain anything new for my fifties collection.  My husband is a great Christmas shopper so I always end up scrambling to keep up with him volume wise with gifts.  Every year I end up opening presents for at least a half an hour after he is done.  This year however I'm doing pretty good getting him some pretty nifty and practical things.

On the bright side there was a deal on 'the department store' that I simply couldn't pass up.  There was a January & September 1950 issue of Cosmopolitan.  I have one other issue of Cosmo but usually they are very expensive.  However, this little collection wasn't even fifteen dollars for the two.
On another note, last night I made the hubby liver and onions something that I understand that this is something that was a staple of the fifties diet.  Personally I cannot stomach the stuff so I had leftover roast and the same sides.  It was a delicious dinner anyway.  I also made Cornflake Macaroons where I only made half the recipe and although they were difficult to get off the pan even when cool, they were some of the most delicious cookies that I have ever had.

CORN FLAKE MACAROONS
1 egg white
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 cup cornflakes
1/2 cup coconut
1/4 cup walnut pieces

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Beat egg white until stiff, slowly beat in sugar.  Fold in the rest of the ingredients.  Drop in rounded teaspoons onto a greased cookie sheet and bake for 10 - 15 minutes until lightly golden brown. 

Make sure not to try and remove them from the cookie sheet until they are good and cool because they will fall apart.  I know this from experience.  Also watch them closely, due to all of the sugars they burn easily, I left them in for 12 minutes without looking and although they were still delicious they were burned around the edges.
I hope that everyone has a wonderful weekend, I will be starting to decorate for Christmas and doing some more Christmas shopping.  I know that a lot of you may think that I am jumping the gun but this year I decided to stop fighting the fact that the Christmas season just starts on November 1.  In fact I went to K-Mart a couple of weeks ago and they had the Christmas Trees up right in front of the Halloween decorations and costumes.  There is just something weird about pretty Christmas Trees in front of fake blood and skeletons.

Till Later!
Andrea

Sunday

November 4, 1950 - Sorry for the Absence

I must apologize for my long absence from blogging, honestly I have no excuse other than just getting caught up in life.
I have been thinking quite a bit lately about a topic that I have touched on more than once.  It is very frustrating when I attempt to do something that was simply old hat for ladies from the fifties but for me just seems like something that I simply can't get the hang of.  For example, sewing.  I have such a hard time making clothes for myself that fit.  Nearly everything that I have made since the beginning of my project has had to be pulled apart in one form or another and reassembled so that it fit properly. 
After weeks of working on a skirt for the fair I ended up making it nearly a foot shorter than I wanted it to be because of some hemming issues.  Also, my Halloween skirt that I self-drafted (although wearable the first time) had to be re-done because of issues with the drastic difference in the length of the alternating panels.  If these were skills that were taught to me from being a little girl this may not be as difficult of a task as it is right now.
It has taken me years and years to gather the cooking skills that I now have.  There was nothing in my life that I have ever worked harder at.  There were so many terms to learn and techniques that had to be practiced that to this day I don't know them all and I consider myself to be a pretty good cook, however, if I was let to help around the kitchen in childhood this might not have taken quite as long to master.  So I must say that I encourage all of you women with little girls, that even if she is reluctant, take her into the kitchen and teach her what it takes to provide a nutritious and delicious meal for her family. 
On the same token, if you decide that it would be a good idea to start making your own clothes, or even learning to sew, include your little girl in your venture, just think of all of the self confidence she will have when she is walking around at school in a shirt that is not only completely original and no one else will have it, but she also made it herself.
Sorry, don't mean for my first post back to be a diatribe, this is just something that grinds my gears.

PS What do you think of the second one down in the right with this material:










Till Later!
Andrea

Monday

September 17, 1950 - Material Galore and The Last Cookout

Well the weather here in Pennsylvania is starting to slowly turn to fall and here I am with the fence around my property finally done. I am going to use tonight as the final opportunity to grill our dinner. I'll be making Grilled Ribs, Grilled Asparagus coated in bacon fat and corn bread with berries and cream for dessert. One final chance to eat dinner in the back yard before the weather gets the best of me. I will also be grilling some burgers to use whats left of some hamburger in the fridge, but I will be using that for lunches for the rest of the week.
As for the material that I bought over, well two shopping trips now and unfortunately have not had much time to touch yet. Here it is in all it's glory.

 For starters a white muslin for blouses to wear with the many skirts that I am making.  I got nearly six yards which will make three shirts or so. 
Black broadcloth which will be used to make a belt, a skirt along with another material and embellishments on a few outfits.
Brown broadcloth for a utility skirt.  I look forward to having a few, sort of house skirts for all occasions that involve just being home.
Navy broadcloth for the same reason as above, this one however I have a pattern in mind and can't wait to try out one of those Lutterloh patterns.
Pink Gingham, who wouldn't want a skirt made out of this to go to the fair in.  We have our state fair coming up in just a couple of weeks so I can't wait to make this one and wear it there.
Wonderful material for a fall skirt, at first I thought that this wasn't very fifties in it's styling but when I was looking up 1950's fall fashions I saw one very close to this and can't wait to show it off.
Candy Corn Cotton, well tis the season for some candy corn and although this is not a very fifties material I couldn't resist, so I will be playing it down a bit by making it into a peek-a-boo skirt with the black broadcloth, this will be great to take trick or treaters.
Christmas is closer then some of us realize and with that comes the occasion to wear Christmas garb and I am no exception and although I already have a skirt from last year a girl cannot have too many.  I may even make a dress for Christmas Day either this year or next.
I thought that this floral just screamed to be made into a billowy skirt.  I have enough material to make it quite flow-y and look forward to doing so.
Shirt-Dress here I come, I already have the pattern all picked out and can't wait to get started.  I thought this one could make a nice shopping dress with a black sweater.
Red silk brocade, Although this one was a little above what I normally pay when I go to the fabric store I couldn't resist the opportunity to make something gorgeous with this material.  Normally I would never be caught dead wearing red but, hey you only live once and it will be Valentine's Day before you know it.
Silk white lace remnant, I got this for an incredible bargain, which it what it is all about.  I think that I a going to try and make sleeves for one of my blouses out of it.  I think it will be pretty.  Perhaps use the rest to make a hair handkerchief.





So that's all of it and I am about to go get started, if you want to follow me just check out 2 hours a day above.

Till Later!
Andrea

Sunday

September 2, 1950 - Another Day of Shopping

Yesterday was our weekly shopping trip, however we went out of town for this one and I was able to stop at the only fabric store in a 50 mile radius. I bought tons of fabric and plan to work on my 2 hours a day wardrobe. I bought some fall colors as well as a few materials that will work for some occasions coming up. I also invested in some new jewelry that will be pretty and subtle. I just can't wait to show off my new look. Now all I need is to figure out how to make stockings. Till Later! Andrea

Saturday

August 18, 1950 - Off My Lazy Behind

I have been talking forever about having a whole new wardrobe to work with and I just never seemed to get around to making it.  Sure I had a project here and there, like the apron that I desperately needed, I already had the material for that one, or the summer dress that I just can't seem to finish even though it is half way through August. 
Well I have finally made a pact with myself that I am going to work hard to create a completely new wardrobe to replace my wardrobe over the next two years, well 100 weeks to be more precise about it.  I have started a sub-blog that is linked to the top of this page called In Two Hours a Day which is pretty self-explanatory.  I have decided to try to put aside a maximum of 2 hours everyday (that it is possible) to sewing.  I want to at least work on something everyday.  Sat - Tue I am your everyday ordinary housewife which makes this pretty simple to stick to, however, on Wed - Fri I work ten hours a day and am gone from the house for at least twelve, on those days this is going to be a much more difficult task to stick to.
I must admit I have kind of a difficult time sticking to my projects but this is something that I have been dreaming of for years and it is finally going to come to fruition. Wish me luck!

Till Later!
Andrea

Friday

August 17, 1950 - Just a Note

I have decided to delete the Ladies League Forum.  This is because I was the only person that ever posted anything and despite my efforts I only attracted one member in a month.  This is mainly my fault.  With the way that I enjoy living my life, I don't spend very much time on the internet and that means that I don't have the time or the desire to search through countless pages of search results just to self promote.
I would much rather just stick to expressing my opinions about all things 1950 right here with you.  Thank you for understanding.

Till Later!
Andrea

Tuesday

August 14, 1950 - Just Checking In

Good Morning;

   How is everyone on this rainy morning?  This is just going to be a quick note of hello because I have a full day ahead of me.  Since it will be winter before you know it I'm going to be starting up my end of summer cleaning today.  I will be doing all of those boring chores that you put off for as long as you can like scrubbing the grouting in the bathtub and washing the curtains. 
    I'll let you know if I think of any really good tips or tricks that I can pass along but really for the most part it's just me and my comet doing the dirty work.  I'm also going to try and get some sewing done today.  I still have to put the embellishments and pockets on my apron and I'm going to also try to finish up my summer dress before it is too cold to wear it anywhere.
    By the way I got to looking at some ideas for a Halloween costume and I already have the pattern for this:
It's a costume for a roulette wheel.  I don't know if I would leave the blouse the same or if I would make it gold so that it would be like the top of the roulette wheel.  I might sketch something out sometime this week and if I do I'll post the sketch and see what you guys all think.  It actually seems pretty simple to make, it's simply a bunch of panels sewn together.  We'll see.

Till Later!
Andrea

August 7, 1950 - When Husband Comes Home

   My dear sweet husband owns a series of books called Uncle John's Bathroom readers and although I stay away from them myself he found something that he pointed out to me the other day.  There was an article inside it's pages that pertains to my life.  Now don't get me wrong, it's not as though he was hinting or anything, he just thought that I would like the article.
   It is from a 1950's Home Economics Book:

Have dinner ready: "Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal - on time.  This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs.  Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospects of a good meal are part of the warm welcome needed."

Prepare yourself:  "Take 15 minutes to rest so you will be refreshed when he arrives.  Touch up your make-up put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking.  He has just been with a lot of work weary people.  Be a little gay and a little more interesting.  His boring day may need a lift."

Clear away clutter:  "Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives, gathering up school books, toys, paper, ect.  Then run a dust cloth over the tables.  your husband will feel he has reached a haven for rest and order, and it will give you a lift, too."

Prepare the children:  "Take a few minutes to wash the children's hands and faces (if they are small) comb their hair, and if necessary, change their clothes.  They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part."

Minimize all noise:  "At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of washer, dryer, dishwasher or vacuum.  Try to encourage the children to be quiet.  Be happy to see him: Greet him with a warm smile and be glad to see him."

Some don'ts:  "Don't greet him with problems or complaints.  Don't complain if he's late for dinner.  Count this as a minor compared with what he may have gone through that day."

Make him comfortable:  "Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or suggest he lie down in the bedroom.  Have a cool or warm drink ready for him.  Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes.  Speak in a low, soft, soothing and pleasant voice.  Allow him to relax - unwind."

Listen to him:  "You may have a dozen things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time.  Let him talk first."

Make the evening his:  "Never complain if he does not take you out to dinner or to the other places of entertainment.  Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure, his need to be home and relax."


   Now by and large I think that these are great rules to live by.  I love my husband and I want him to be as happy as possible when he comes home from work.  As with all articles like this a few things are going too far.  I mean I don't think he would want me to offer to take off his shoes for him but having dinner ready on time so he doesn't have to wait, sprucing myself up so he sees something fresh and happy when he arrives home and listening to him and not complaining are great ways to make the hubby feel loved, thought about and appreciated everyday.

Till Later!
Andrea

Monday

August 6, 1950 - My New Do!

I have been looking forward for quite some time to changing up my hairstyle and making it a little more authentic.  I am very untrusting of hair dressers because I have been burned again and again by their inability to follow simple instructions, so I have been cutting my own hair for years now. 
This is the first day in quite some time that I have had the entire day to myself to do whatever I wanted to and I decided to make it a beauty day.  I worked very hard to get the house spic and span last night so that I had nothing to worry about today and here I am after three hours of work with a style that looks similar to Donna Reed's right there on the left.
Ava Gardner had beautiful hair and that is probably close to what it will look like when it gets to be a bit longer again.  I am blonde however.  I have had a similar style before but since I don't go to a hairdresser it is hard to keep up after.  It is easy to cut a few inches of, it is much harder to give yourself a trim.
Another thing that I am doing today is watching a very good movie called Pin-up Girl starring the incomparable Betty Grable.  The music is beautiful and the costumes are to die for.  If only I didn't have to go make dinner (we are having a sort of mid-year thanksgiving dinner) I could sit here all afternoon and talk about the musicals that I love.


Till Later!
Andrea


Thursday

July 26, 1950 - Our Anniversary

Two days ago hubby and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary with a massive antiquing trip to the local antiques mall. I spent a very large sum of money, but came home with many beautiful new items that I am insanely proud to have including two Sears catalogs. I will scan a few of the pages for you guys in the future. I'll also post pictures of everything else I bought. However, for now I am off to work.

Till Later!

Andrea

Monday

July 23, 1950 - My 30 Day Challenge

Starting today I am beginning a thirty day challenge that will help me to live exclusively in my world.  I am going to be spending the next thirty days completely immersed in the 1950's.  To this day I am faced with new technology, new ways of doing things and I am forced to integrate them into my life. Not for the next thirty days I won't.
I am giving up all things new with the exception of my computer that I must use to chart my progress and stay in touch with all of you, as well as supplies shopping. However, I will be limiting my time on here to a mere 1 hour, every other day so if I don't talk for too long you will all know why. Thank you for humoring me.
I'll write soon.

Till Later!
Andrea