4/2/15

AtoZ Letter B...1950's Bathing Beauty Bombs

I have my Mother and her snap shot camera to thank for this photo of her two bathing beauties and their brother.  The trademark border design of Fox Photo Co. puts this Family Jewel Photo and the rest of Mother's 1950's Collection right in the Retro Era of our lives.

Of course we didn't know we were living in what would become this Retro Rage some 60 years later.  No, we were just having a day at the lake during the hot summer of 1955.

Neither did we think of ourselves as bathing beauties, but as I look at my sister in her cute pigtails, full bangs, dry bathing suit and posed smile...'me thinks I was set up'!

Yep, set up to look like a drowned rat! 

Which I very nearly was...drowned...that is!  I couldn't swim, but brother was a fish and took great delight in luring me out in the knee deep water...deep for me as you can tell by the long legs.  He would leap out of the water like a flying fish and drag me to the fathomless bottom and hold me there until one of our parents noticed my kicking legs and precious air bubbles floating out to sea. 

It does look like the ocean, huh?   It sure did to me, a non-swimmer.  Which brings us to the real 'Bathing Beauties'...friends of my mother.  One with the latest look in swim suits and bathing caps, and the other probably a non-swimmer looking like...well not like a drowned rat.

Through most of the 1950's women's bosom and derriere were pretty much completely covered with the swim suit creating a shapely figure.  There was under-wiring, built in bras and panty girdles to make a gal more or less than she really was.  You will notice those fashion attributes did not make it to the kids swim wear line...unless they looked like my model sister who did not get in water any deeper than her ankle. 

The 'Bathing Cap' modeled by mother's friend was touted as the 'Magic Inner Rim Cap' which guaranteed a water tight fit and a permanent red line around your head.   Kind of explains the hairline showing and ears out on this lady. 

My mother must have had her Magic Cap pulled down over her ears.  How else can I explain her not coming to my rescue?

I read where Bloomingdale's in June 1957 advertized these Caps for $1.25 and Jantzen advertised the Caprice Swimsuit for $22. 

Today they are part of the Retro Rage Collectibles.  Makes me wonder what my 1962 Swimsuit would go for these days.

Yes, I finally learned to swim and got a swimsuit that definitely created MORE than what I had for a shapely figure.  Fashion wise, it was still in the late 50's  with an addition of what we called 'Boy Legs'...a band around the suit that kept it from riding up one's skinny no butt behind, and preserved one's sense of modesty in the front.

That was especially important to me as I not only learned to swim, but became a pretty good water skier who could not keep my skis together when being pulled up and out of the water. 

I loved that swimsuit with it's elastic straps, revealing back and 'More' on top and 'Modest' on bottom.  That is until the 'More' floated out to sea and the 'Modest' fell to my knees in the splitting of the 'More and Modest' from a fall off the ski's.
 I was a Bathing Beauty Bomb in my Birthday Suit!

4/1/15

AtoZ Letter A~All A's and One A-

They say everything you need to know you learned in Kindergarten, but back in 1953 there was no Kindergarten, no Pre-Schools and no Nursery Schools.

As strange as it may seem to today's Pre-School/Kindergarten generation, school in the 1950's started with...of all things...grade #1.

 As the first and oldest child,  my 'Pre-School Prep' for grade #1 was done at home with the ABC's and Counting learned the old fashion way....I was Number 1, brother was Number 2 and baby sister was Number 3.  'A' was for Apple, 'B' was for Brother and 'S' was for Sue and Share.  I preferred the first 'S' word and resented the 'B' word for ruining my only child status and cutting in on half the apple.  From that day forward, I never was any good at fractions.

With the basic ABC's and Counting 1-100...that might be stretching it a bit...and having blown out 6 candles on your last birthday you were pre-school prepped for the First Grade.  Oh, and there was the 'Shot Record'.  You had to have your Small Pox Vaccination.  The one that left a big scab...then a quarter size scar...mine ended up as dime size on my shoulder even though they poked my upper arm. Some kids had to wear a plastic cup over their scab...I didn't...maybe that's why it ended up on my shoulder.  Who knew that cup kept the scab from traveling.

I soon learned there was more to the Letter A than Apple.  Imagine my confusion when the teacher insisted that 'Counting' started with the letter 'A'...Arithmetic.  I could hardly wait to get home and educate my Mother.  It took the first six weeks just getting used to associating 1-2-3-4-5 as Arithmetic, that the word Grade was really numbers 1-2-3 and so on, and the word First and number 1 was best.  Then we got The REPORT CARD.  Guess what GRADE I got for Arithmetic...Apples.  So much for the letter A not being called counting and the word grade not being a number.  I was not used to being anything but #1, and First Grade was a bust.

To further confuse a home school prepped first grader...some A's on the report card were fractioned.  There it was an A- in Writing.  Even my counting enlightened mother could not explain what part of A was missing.  So, with the first 6 weeks of learning higher math and writing words that started and ended with A...and other letters...under my belt, I concluded the 'writing A-' had to have been about the Apple and note...
der techur
this A-1 bite is 4 U
I was hugre.
Sue P
 
Now that I look back on the writing of that note,  I am amazed at how ahead of my time I was and why the teacher gave me an A- in writing....
She had not heard of Texting!

3/30/15

AtoZ Letter 'A' Photo Review and Reveal


True to this Blog Title...CollectInTexas Gal...I have a Collection of AtoZ  Themes.  Three from previous AtoZ Challenges and this year, 2015, makes four.  As you may have noticed, I am somewhat of an 'Over Organizer'...eye roll...go ahead and eye roll, too!  Most of the time, the 'OverDoSue' trait serves me well, and I think the 'Challenge' is one of those times.

Letter 'A' in my first AtoZ 2012 Challenge...AtoZ Family Tree...featured my Great Great Grandmother Julia Ann Akin.  Akin was her maiden name which I would never have known had it not been for this photo.  It was the only  named photo in an 'Album' from the late 1890's that I inherited from my Great Grandmother.  Many of the photos in that Album were the focus of the 2012 AtoZ Challenge. 

After much photo detective work and research into the name on the back of this photo, I was able to determine the identity of this woman.  She was Julia Ann Akin's sister, Palmyra, which made her my Great Great Aunt.  Her story, how she came to be in the Album, and how she got from Tennessee to Texas...Palmyra~Bride of the Desert.

You can browse all of the 2012 AtoZ Family Tree Post via the TAB under the Header.

The A Frame~AtoZ Letter A was the introduction to The Lone Star Quilting Guild and it's members.  Rather than explain the preface for this theme here and now, you may read the introduction/reveal...AtoZ 2013~Inspired by Texas Pioneer Quilters.

The 2013 Challenge was truly a challenge for me in writing fiction based on my own quilting experiences and family history.  It is my favorite challenge theme...so far.

This year's theme may take over as my Favorite...or...I may have to have Two Favorites!


Can you have Three Favorites?   It's my party, so I guess I can! 

The 2014 Letter 'A' was a fictional trip back in time to one of the most historical and tragic events of the 1900's.  Alfred and April's Brush With Disaster starts off the challenge based on my collection of vintage photographs.

Again, you may read about how this Theme developed in the introduction/reveal post...Why Genealogy and Old Photos for 2014 AtoZ Challenge.

And, finally, we are to this year's Theme for the 2015 Challenge.  Growing Up in the 1950's and 1960's theme is inspired by a collection of photos taken mostly by my Mother during the two decades.  Some I had seen over the years of putting together scrapbooks, but many were discovered in a shoebox in the top of my Mother's closet.  These photos, along with my own collection of photos and scrapbooks from the 1960's make up this year's A~Z posts.

will give you a feel for what is to come in this years theme.
As for this years Letter 'A'...my First Grade photo and report card will  tell ALL!!
...Please come back on April 1st for...
All A's and One A-

3/28/15

Hoop Shooters Since 1941

Today starts the 'Elite Eight' Bracket of 2015's March Madness.  It's a big Hoopla!  Of course you know that without being a College Basketball Fan as it takes up a good part of the evening TV viewing time the last couple of weeks in March and into April.  This year I noticed that Northern Iowa made it to the Sweet Sixteen Bracket before losing out to Louisville.  I mention this in particular as it reminded me of another Iowa Basketball Team...my Mother's High School Team.

The team photo is from the collection of Mother's BFF, Phyllis, with whom I visited last month.  Phyllis shared the photo and their 'Basketball Story' with me and now seems like a good time to share with my Family Readers and my Blog Readers.
Thelma and Phyllis finished Country School with the eighth grade.  In order to further their education they moved to town and enrolled in Exira High School.  Neither one had ever seen a basketball game and new nothing about the skills or rules.

Phyllis remembered their first year in 1941, trying out for the team:  "All the town girls had been playing since 3rd grade, so we had to 'bluff' our way through...pretend we knew how to play...it was hilarious...very hard to complete.  During the summer, Thelma went to her Aunts in DesMoines, and when she got back she had grown 4 inches.  Until then we were the same height...then the Coach paid attention to her and gave her one on one training as a guard.  She was the tallest one on the team.   Thelma loved basketball."

Like Mother...Like Daughter...20 years later!
 
Like Grandmother/Great Grandmother...Like Grandsons and Great Grandsons...68 years later.
Thanks Mother...Hoops are in our Genes!
 
In Loving Memory
My Brother Stacy...Go Duke!
My Mother Thelma...Exira Spartans 1941-43

3/26/15

AJ Lauer Introduces Sue and Dolly

Have you noticed the Owl Be Watchin' Badge on my Sidebar?
Do you know what a Minion is?
I didn't the first year I participated in the AtoZ April Challenge!
I do know now! 
 I am one...with 'One Goggled Eye' on the AtoZ Challenge during the month of April.
 AJ Lauer, Team Leader and Co-Host for the Challenge, begins the introduction
of her team of wHooligans...with Me.
 
Would you like to know my answer to this question asked by Barbara in Caneyhead?
Have you ever been to Texas and if so, what part?
Really, have I ever been to Texas!
Read my answer on AJ's Blog post

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