1890 Soap Ad “What a Cake of Soap Will Do”

October 5, 2012

I came across a post the other day of a book of old soap ads for Ivory soap.  Oh my word some of these are hilarious.  I posted some of my favorites, but you can see them all here: “What a Cake of Soap Will Do.”  I think I love the old ads so much because they just show a completely different mentality of how people were targeted in advertizements, but at the same time many of the techniques are the same as in ads today (just less wordy ha!)

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Vintage Soap Ads

September 1, 2012

Some of you know I make and sell handmade soap.  Don’t get me started about store bought soap! (Unless you have a good half hour to spare).  I fought joining Pinterest for a long time (I know you’re wondering where the heck those two idea connect! Bear with me.) Well I finally gave into Pinterest.  I discovered (for me) it was a good way to book mark webpages I wanted to come back to.  In the process I’ve started pinning my soaps and others as well.  And today I came across a pin from another person for a couple vintage soap ads from the 1940s.  You have to read these!  They’re too fun not to share.

Vintage Ad 1: http://file.vintageadbrowser.com/l-27s6sk8u4j6d4r.jpg (Not sure who to give the credit to as this is the only link I have to them).

Vintage Ad 2: http://file.vintageadbrowser.com/3i3dzoa1ynpmhk.jpg


Ads from 1982

April 12, 2012

I spent Easter at my parents. After dinner I was sitting in the living room with my mom and I notice this little magazine on the floor.  The back side was up and it caught my attention for two reasons. First, it was yellow with age.  Second, the ad on the back paged seemed really out of date.  I had to investigate.  Turns out it was a  magazine from 1982!  The R & R Mixer ’82: Your Guide To the Latest Party Drinks and Snacks.

Magazine Cover.

I asked my mom about it and she said it was some magazine they got in Germany (when they were first stationed there, that note, they’ve kept for over thirty years!).  It got filed away somewhere long ago.  Recently my mom has been on a cleaning kick going through old files and boxes of stuff.  I promptly confiscated the magazine.  The R&R Mixer ’82 was published and circulated to the America Forces stationed in Europe.  Their editorial and administrative offices were located at 17 Bismarchkstrasse in Heidelberg, West Germany. (I love that little detail!  In 1982 Germany was still divided!).  It was a private firm that wasn’t connected with NATO.

The magazine contains articles and recipes on making drinks.  The first page opens with “…the R&R Mixer, a magic elixir your guide to notions and party potions…”  to be followed up a couple pages later with “…Wine, Wine–how divine; Champagne, Champagne–creme de la creme…”  They might be cheesy but they make me laugh!  The whole magazine is full of titles like these.

But that’s not the best part!  Nope, the best part are the advertizements in the magazine!  Oh my word.  I was cracking up at some of them and they all brought back memories!  So without further ado here are my top three favorite ads.

Third Place goes to…Dual-Standard Trinitron Sony TV. This amazing TV allowed us to watch TV not only in America, but in Europe!  A compatible TV!  Technology was progressing!

"With just one set, you can enjoy both America and Europe!"

Second Place goes to… Toshiba’s 50/60Hz microprocessor-controlled microwave oven!  Which also “plugs in on both sides of the Atlantic.”  You might have to have lived in Europe (as an American with your American appliances) to really get a chuckle out of this.  But, I remember having to buy “new” appliances because we couldn’t use the ones we’d bought in America in Europe.  And just a side note, that microwave looks like it should be in a museum!  And yet I remember using one just like it. (That makes me feel really old!)

"Computer-style programmable operation lets the Toshiba ER-789BT handle everything from defrosting to keeping food warm automatically."

and First Place: The Quintet – JVC’s new portable component system.  Now come on, raise your hand if you remember carrying your boombox around with you.  Heck I remember when I got a walkman and thought it was the greatest invention ever!  How the times have changed!

"Five great performers that play perfectly together. Now you can enjoy true high fidelity both at home and on the road."

I hope you’ve enjoyed these ads as much as I have.  They gave me a good laugh and brought me down memory lane.


Can ‘Casablanca’ Make Me Buy a Blu-Ray Player?

April 3, 2012

So the 70th Anniversary Limited Collector’s Edition Blu-ray/DVD Combo of the movie “Casablanca” came out last week. In honor of that, I decided to post a few of the old movie posters of this classic.

The first time I became aware of this film was when I was eight or nine. On a Saturday afternoon, my father sat watching “Casablanca” on television. As I walked through the family room, there must have been a love scene on or something, because I started pretending to play the violin. My father took umbrage and told me to hush because it was a good movie. Then I was told to sit down and watch. So I did. And I don’t remember a single thing about the movie except that I watched it with my dad.

Fast forward about 25 years. I love old movies. I always have. So I have no idea why I hadn’t already seen “Casablanca” when I became an adult. Maybe I hesitated because it wasn’t a musical. I don’t know. But I finally sat down and watched it one evening. I was riveted to the screen. When it was over, I remember saying aloud with some bemusement, “That was a good movie.”

The well-drawn characters. The suspense. The romance. The bittersweet ending, which paradoxically was emotionally satisfying. “Casablanca” won three Academy Awards in 1943 including the one for Best Picture. There’s a reason why. Check it out for yourself if you haven’t already.

I only own the film on VHS. I’d like a new copy, but do I have to buy a Blu-ray player?

The fabulous Claude Rains as Capt. Louis Renault with Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine.


Europe is Old…

January 26, 2012

…and I say that with the utmost respect!

My sister is doing a year of service work in Europe this year, so for Christmas, instead of flying her home, my parents decided we’d go out there to see her. We took on quite an ambitious itinerary for a ten day trip. It was dubbed the “Christmas Mart Vacation.” Our travel corresponded with the schedules of the different Christmas Marts.

Marienplatz and all the booths of the Christmas Mart.

We started off in Munich, Germany. Munich, the third largest city in Germany, is the capital city of Bavaria and is located on the River Isar north of the Bavarian Alps. The year 1158 is the earliest date the city is mentioned in a document and hence assumed to be its founding date. 1158—That’s still over 300 years before America is discovered! At the center of the city is the Marienplatz—a large open square named after the Mariensäuke, a Marian column in its center—with the Old and New Town Hall. This is the location of the Kris Kringle Mart. I love Munich’s Mart, for the German food (I ate my way from booth to booth pretty much), the hand-made German crafts (most especially their straw ornaments a traditional German ornament you’ll find on most of the trees in all the German churches), and for its atmosphere of good cheer.

From there we moved on to Salzburg, Austria. I’ve been to Salzburg before, but it was in the summer and when I was younger, so I didn’t have many memories of it. The markets were neat. They didn’t have the atmosphere of the German marts, but it was still fun to walk around them and there was a stall that made the most amazing linzer pretzel cookies. HUGE! DELICIOUS! COOKIES! I really liked walking around the town and just soaking in the history. It’s so amazing when you walk through a graveyard and the dates on the headstones go back to the 10th century or even earlier.

In Salzburg...with my dad being silly. The water/fountain in the back ground was a watering and bathing place for horses in eariler centuries.

Life size mascot...I had to get my picture with Ljubljana's Dragon.

Third on the whirlwind vacation was Ljubljana, Slovenia. This was my first time visiting Slovenia, and I’d like to go back in the summer and just spend a whole week or two exploring the country. There was a charm about Ljubljana (the capital) that I wasn’t expecting for a large city. Their Christmas Market was quite extensive and very different from Germany, but unique, with its own personality. We took a walking tour of the old city, which I’d highly recommend it. Ljubjana’s city symbol is the Dragon, which symbolizes power, courage, and greatness. It’s depicted on the top of the tower of the Ljubljana Castle, on the coat of arms and on the Ljubljanaica crossing Dragon Bridge.

To split up the very, very, very long drive from Slovenia to Belgium, we stopped in Rothenburg, Germany for a night. I love this medieval town, and since I have a post about it planned for the near future, I’ll hold off on mentioning any more at the moment.

The next day was a seven hour drive to Bruges, Belgium for two nights. Bruges was fun to just walk around and soak in all the medieval architecture. One of my favorite spots had to be the Church of Our Lady. I have to say it was impressive! The church dates mainly from the 13th, 14th, and 15th centuries. Its tower is 401.2 feet high making it the tallest structure in the city and the second tallest brickwork tower in the world.

Finally, we ended up in Brussels, Belgium on our last day. Chocolate! Really, really good chocolate! Brussels started as a 10th-century fortress town that was founded by a descendant of Charlemagne and grew into a metropolis of more than one million inhabitants. It’s a bustling city. And really does feel like a city compared to the smaller and quainter Bruges. We had about half a day in Brussels that we spent walking around and just taking in the city square and walking the very expansive Christmas markets.

It was a treat to spend ten days exploring all the “old” of Europe. One of these days I’m going to write a novel set in Europe! I want to take some of this history and make it part of one of my stories. I do love Europe!

Read the rest of this entry »


Army Football

November 16, 2011

With Veteran’s Day this past Friday and it being football season I figured I could get away with this post! Anyone who knows me knows I’m a diehard Army Football fan (and an Army Brat). My father went to West Point and every year we attend at least one home game for a day of tailgating, cheering, and lots of fun.

Army football has a wonderful history—a winning history up until recently! That’s something they can’t seem to do these days: win! Not that that’ll ever make me root for any other team. I will root for them through the good and bad (I just with they’d get out of this bad slump…tens years of it has been hard to endure!) Okay, back on track. This past weekend I attended the Army-Rutgers game at Yankee Stadium. That was an experience. I can’t say a baseball field is the best place to play a football game, but it was something I’ve wanted to do for awhile now, and I had a good time (even if Army tore my heart out, oh it was a painful loss!)

Army football began in 1890 when Navy challenged the cadets to a game. This was a relatively new sport, but a historic rivalry began with this first game. Navy defeated Army at West Point that year, but the following year Army avenged its loss, defeating Navy at Annapolis. The Army-Navy game is now played on neutral territory every December in Philadelphia. There’s always been a certain energy about these games, and if you’ve never watched one I recommend you catch this year’s game!

Army plays its home games at Miche Stadium at West Point, a beautiful stadium that overlooks the campus and Hudson river beyond. Unlike other colleges the cadets’ attendance is mandatory at football games and the Corps stands for the duration of the game. At home games, one of the four regiments marches onto the field in formation before the team takes the field. (I didn’t catch this on video this weekend, but in the video below you can see some of the cadets on the field waiting to welcome the Army team to the field after they’ve broken formation.)

Yankee Stadium Video as the cadets take the field:

Back to Yankee Stadium… The University of Notre Dame and Army have a football rivalry that dates back to 1913. They played their first game at Yankee Stadium, where Army was trounced but redeemed themselves the following year. Last year the teams resumed their rivalry in the new Yankee Stadium for their 50th game against each other. Yes, Army lost, but still the history of the two teams being renewed and seeing the game played at Yankee Stadium was neat!

Notre Dame contracted with Explore Media to produce the following video, which I really like. (Though it’s in favor of Notre Dame, it’s well done and gives a great overview of the history between these two teams).

Notre Dame-Army Rivalry

Army football isn’t just football. It’s a history filled with great legends, glorious moments, agonizing moments, but most of all it instills a pride in you. It is just a game, and at the end of the day (or in the cadets’ case at graduation) reality awaits—a life that involves service to our country. Thank a veteran. It doesn’t just have to be on Veteran’s day.

I leave you with these parting words from the Army Fight song!

On, brave old Army team!
On to the fray.
Fight on to victory
For that’s the fearless Army way.


What is it?

October 26, 2011

Let’s play a game!  I’m going to show you some images and I want you to tell me what you think it is! (A little hint, they’re all from the early 1800s!)

IMAGE 1:

IMAGE 2:

IMAGE 3: