Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Tatting - Two Edgings and a Motif from 1949

From Clark's Tatting, published in 1949.  The pattern can be downloaded from my Flickr account.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Notes on a Funeral

My older sister (USA 1973-1976) is wearing her four miniature medals.  My younger sister (USN 1982-1986) is wearing her two ribbons.  I am wearing a small “USMC-Retired” lapel pin.

Oldest Sister: Why aren’t you wearing your medals?
Me:  I have too many.

The man from the VA begins hoisting the urn with my father’s ashes into the vault.

9 Year Old Nephew:  What’s that?
Oldest Sister:  That’s Granddad.
9 Year Old Nephew (indignantly):  He'd never fit in there!

We are back at Brother #3’s house and several of us are sitting around the table when the youngest great-grandchild, six weeks old, begins loudly wailing from her infant seat in the next room.

Me:  Awww…and she’s been so good up till now.
Niece:  Maybe she just realized we’re all related.

Half a dozen small children have been turfed out of doors to amuse themselves.

Sister (looking out of window):  Is [Nephew A] hitting [Nephew B] with a stick?
Niece:  Yeah, it’s all Lord of the Flies out there.  They’ll work it out.
Sister in Law (a little later, seeing them heaping the sticks in a large pile):  What are they up to now?
Me:  Looks like they’re about to re-enact the Spanish Inquisition.
Nephew in Law:  Sweet!

My sisters are going through a stack of my father’s clothes and trying to find takers.

Oldest sister:  Will your boys wear Dad’s old bow ties?
Brother #2 (firmly):  No, they believe that wearing a bow tie is a public admission that you no longer get an erection.

Someone has in fact set the pile of sticks on fire.

Sister in Law:  Is Brian out there?
Me:  Yes.
Sister in Law:  Thank God.  He’s the only one who’s sober.
Me (flagging down a passing nephew):  There seem to be two superficial flesh wounds on my husband’s forehead.  Dare I ask why?
Nephew:  The head came off the axe.
Me (to Sister in Law):  This is why I have him insured.

Brother #3 –  normally an abstemious man – has been inveigled into drinking toast after toast to my father in Crown Royal.  He wobbles into the kitchen and sits down next to my oldest sister, puts  his head on her shoulder, and begins patting her knee.

Sister:  Knock it off.  We’re not Southern.

Vintage Magazines - Collier's

From 1915.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Nu, look!

A shout-out to the lovely Michelle from OCS Design, who not only laughs at all of my stories but also gave the blog a nice new header.


Friday, April 26, 2013

Quote of the Day

We are but warriors for the working-day;
Our gayness and our gilt are all besmirch'd
With rainy marching in the painful field;
There's not a piece of feather in our host --
Good argument, I hope, we will not fly --
And time hath worn us into slovenry.
But, by the mass, our hearts are in the trim. ~ Wm. Shakespeare.

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Crochet - Even More Potholders

A collection of two dozen more vintage potholder patterns.  I wonder if anyone has ever calculated how many crocheted potholders were produced between 1925 and, say 1987?

Patterns are available free from Purple Kitty.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Water, Water, Everwhere

I will be spending part of my weekend in scenic LaSalle County.  Now, where did I put those hip waders?

Thursday, April 18, 2013


Monday, April 15, 2013

Vintage Advertising- Ide Collars

Copyright-free, from Dover.  I think that's an engagement ring he's slipping onto her finger.

Sunday, April 14, 2013


FOR DYSENTERY. -- Dissolve as much table salt in  pure vinegar as will ferment and work clear.  when the foam is discharged cork it up in a bottle, and put it away for use.  A large spoonful of this in a gill of boiling water is efficacious in cases of dysentery and cholic.

CURE FOR CHILLS. -- The plant, commonly called hoarhoand, is said to afford a certain cure.  Boil it in water, and drink freely of the tea.

GARGLE FOR SORE THROAT, DIPTHERIA, OR SCARLET FEVER. -- Mix in a common size cup of fresh milk two teaspoonfuls of pulverized charcoal and ten drops of spirits of turpentine.  Soften the charcoal with a few drops of milk before putting into the cup.  Gargle frequently, according to the violence of the symptoms.

TO RELIEVE ASTHMA. -- Take the leaves of the stramonium (or Jamestown weed,) dried in the shade, saturated with a pretty strong solution of salt petre, and smoke it so as to inhale the fumes.  It may strangle at first if taken too freely, but it will loosen the phlegm in the lungs.  The leaves should be gathered before frost.

SIMPLE CURE FOR CROUP. -- If a child is taken with croup apply cold water suddenly and freely to the neck and chest with a sponge or towel.  The breathing will instantly be relieved, then wipe it dry, cover it up warm, and soon a quiet slumber will relieve the parent's anxiety.

CURE FOR CAMP ITCH. -- Take iodide of potassium, sixty grains, lard, two ounces, mix well, and after washing the body well with warm soap suds rub the ointment over the person three times a week.  In seven or eight days the acarus or itch insect will be destroyed.  In this recipe the horrible effects of the old sulphur ointment are obviated.

The Confederate Receipt Book, 1863. I am wondering (based on the reference to sulphur) if camp itch is a polite euphemism for lice.

Saturday, April 13, 2013


Friday, April 12, 2013

A Voice Crying In The Wilderness

I would like to reassure everyone that my six-day absence from the blogosphere was not occasioned by a prolonged post-parental-funeral funk but rather the inability of our new Internet provider* to find its hip pockets with both hands, a guide dog, and a pair of Sherpas.

(*T6 Broadband, if anyone cares).