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Saturday, August 10, 2013

A Tablet and a Pencil



School days, school days


Dear old Golden Rule days
'Reading and 'riting and 'rithmetic
Taught to the tune of the hick'ry stick
You were my queen in calico
I was your bashful, barefoot beau
And you wrote on my slate, "I Love You So"
When we were a couple o' kids

                                (Song was written in 1907)

   Ah, it is time for the kiddies to return to school. I know that because of all of the ads that tell about the great "must have" cloths, gadgets, and school supplies. We went into Target and encountered Moms with big carts full of stuff and checking the lists. ("No, you don't need that, it's not on the list." was overheard several times.) On the other hand, Mothers that were buying items for their college bound kids seem to be buying out the household and linen departments. 
  Yes, this happens every year. And every year Mr. Bruce and I say the same thing, "When we went to school we had a new yellow pencil and a Big Chief Tablet." Remember those? 
  Just for the fun of it, I looked up "Big Chief Tablet" in a Bing.com search. Wow, look at that number of results! I was really surprised. Try it yourself, I'll wait.  
  Now that you are back, isn't that something? I went straight to eBay thinking I might buy one for just for the fun of it. Figured maybe pay $5. Wrong, the old tablets are real collectors items. It looks like someone has the trademark, otherwise I'd borrow a picture to paste here. 
  This led to reading stories on numerous blogs about the first day of school. Seems we all have our memories to share. There are some funny stories online.
   As you know Mr. Bruce drove a big yellow school bus for 10 years. That was his post-retirement job. He said sometimes little ones would get on the bus with their backpacks so full that he worried about them. We didn't have any problems carrying our school supplies in the good old days; a tablet, couple of pencils, and a box of Crayola Crayons. Yes, real Crayolas, I don't think there was another brand. 
   Speaking of childhood memories, I have another one. My Mother made my dresses and many of them were made out of printed feed sacks. Back in the day, feed and flour came in cotton sacks that were printed. Women would buy the same print pattern of sacks until they had enough yardage to make a dress, an apron, or men's boxer shorts. (I know this because for years my Mom ironed Daddy's shorts and I'd see them folded on the ironing board.)
   My daughter-in-law sells vintage sewing patterns in her Etsy shop. The shop is called Memory Made Mercantile. Please click here for the children's patterns. The little girl dress patterns are some of the best selling ones. Ever so often I will see one there and think, "I had that dress made out of a feed sack."
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