As I mentioned previously, from time to time I will share tidbits from "The American Woman's Cookbook" (1942 edition) with you.
From page 80:
ORDER OF SERVICE:
In many houses the hostess is served first. This is a relic of the old custom of taking it for granted that the giver of the feast prove the absence of poison by first tasting of the food or drinking of the beverage! Some hostesses too justify this custom by maintaining that, when complicated foods are served, the hostess indicates to her guests the methods by which they can most conveniently serve themselves.
However, the custom of serving the honor guest first is growing, and many hostesses now insist on giving the chief guest this additional compliment.
The former custom of serving all the ladies first and the gentlemen afterward is no longer in vogue, for this method consumed too much time and delayed the service. Now guests are served in the order in which they are seated, usually beginning with the honor guest or the hostess and proceeding to the right.
Hmmm, usually at our house we just tell everyone to dig in!
We stayed overnight at The Sister and Brother-in-Law's house, which worked out well because 1) Tulsa had a blizzard and driving conditions were treacherous and 2) we were present for all the activities with the nieces. Such as:
Putting out reindeer food in the blizzard on Christmas Eve. Baby L enjoyed this.
Big Sister A enjoyed it too.
Tracking Santa via Uncle Steve's phone:
Uncle Steve found Santa's "Naughty or Nice List" on the internet! Reading your name on the "Nice List" = priceless!
Taking a photo with your "Elf on a Shelf" also = priceless. Billy and Wayne borrowed Barbie's car for this photo op!
Meeting Mommy and Daddy's elves, Harry and Jewel. Also, priceless.Christmas morning excitement began with the stockings!
And ended with Uncle Steve putting together the big Princess Castle.
Remember that blizzard I mentioned earlier? Christmas morn we slowly and cautiously made our way home on the snow covered streets. An unexpected gift on the drive home was seeing an eagle in flight near the river.
At home, The Husband had to get out the old shovel...
Because our car would not make it up our snow covered, sloped drive.
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good afternoon nap!
I hope your Christmas was filled with fun and your families are all safe...
I am drawn to old cookbooks at estate sales, flea markets and antique shops. I just can't help myself.
It's not recipes I enjoy so much, it's all the other informaton included in the books that fascinates me. Information on how to set-up and manage your household, table settings and service, daily menus, as well as party or holiday menus.
And my favorite bits of advice are how to be a good hostess in this new "servantless" era in which we find ourselves.
From time to time I will share tidbits from "The American Woman's Cookbook" (1942 edition) with you. The purpose of this is:
to provide a peek into a style of life that is now long gone (at our house anyway)
give us an opportunity to learn something new (old, I should say) about dining customs
perhaps inspire us to do things differently in our own home on occasion
Following text found on page 79:
Styles of Service
There are three styles of service:
RUSSIAN: In this style of service all the food is served from the kitchen, by attendants. The host and hostess take no part in the service. No food is put on the table except the decorating dishes of nuts, candy and fruits. The food may be placed in individual portions before the guest, or may be separated into portions and arranged on serving dishes for each guest to help himself.
ENGLISH OR FAMILY TYPE: In this service all the food is served at the table by the host, hostess, or both.
COMBINATION OR MIXED SERVICE: In this service the main course is usually served at the table, while the soup, salad and dessert are served from the kitchen. Sometimes, the salad is served from a large salad bowl, and the hostess serves the dessert at table.
No one disputes that on-line shopping is frequently less expensive and much less stressful than patronizing local shops. But the point of the article is, it is not fair to shop owners for consumers to use their services, only to order the product on-line to save a few bucks. In these situations, a lot of times the small local shops close due to lack of business. The author encouraged consumers to think of the long term implications of losing the small, local shops.
Another very important point is the loss of local sales tax revenue. Just look at the cutbacks the City of Tulsa has experienced in 2009 due to diminished sales tax revenue. Friday's Tulsa World article discussing the lay off up to 120 firemen and possibly closing existing fire stations in early 2010 was disturbing. Think about public safety. Who will fight our fires? Who will be first responders to accidents and illnesses?
The Fire Department will not be the only department experiencing an impact. The Police Department will suffer cutbacks also, due to diminished local sales tax revenue. Think about public safety. Who will chase the bad guys? Who will patrol our streets?
I'm an on-line shopper, make no mistake about it. But, I intend to think twice about shopping on-line until Tulsa's budget crisis is resolved.
I helped my sister (the homeroom mom) with the "Winter Party" Wednesday for the 6 year old niece's first grade class.
A room full of first graders certainly has a lot of energy.
The kids all had fun. They started off by painting salt dough ornaments to take home and ended up frosting their own sugar cookie for consumption in the classroom, along with grapes and apples
Stockings and gift bags were also bestowed and the kids were happy to get purple glue sticks, crayons, pencils, etc.
Good memories for the kids were made today!
P.S. More fun for me on Thursday...I think I'm going to the 4 year old niece's "Winter Luncheon."
P.S.S. I realize this blog has been focused on recipes, parties and kids in the last few weeks. Not that there's anything wrong with that! However, I will try to provide some different topics in the next few days...
I took my Mom to lunch at Nelson's Ranch House. We both had chicken fried steak, with great side dishes. Mmmmm good! And, of course, we both ordered a piece of pie. She took home coconut cream pie and I took home chocolate pie. Again, mmmmm good!
This evening, Mom and I went to Miller Swim School to help my sister with her daughters before and after their lessons. Those girls have learned so much and are going to be great swimmers. Good for them!
I hope to finish the Christmas cards on Tuesday. Fingers crossed, people!
Love is going to Chuck E. Cheese at 10am on Saturday morning for the baby niece's 4th birthday party.
When my sister told me she had scheduled the party at CEC, I moaned. Approximately 20 years ago we went there with friends and their young children one Friday evening and I had a mini nervous breakdown. At least, I have always sworn it was a mini nervous breakdown!
My sister told me to "buck up" and get myself to CEC Saturday morning like a big girl. I did. It wasn't bad at 10am. It was fairly calm.
Here's how I found Baby L when I arrived.
Baby L and Big Sister A even sat quietly in this thing-a-majig for a few minutes.
Here's Baby L and one of her little friends in a car ride.
Baby L with her Princess cake.
Look at that face. I couldn't have missed the party. Even Uncle Steve made a brief appearance!
I am now the proud owner of "The Betty Crocker Guide to Easy Ironing", which is a 33 page booklet that answers all of our ironing questions.
Two pages are devoted to dampening. Remember when your mother or grandmother dampened clothes before ironing them? My mom used an oversize glass Pepsi bottle with a nozzle. Once the clothes were dampened, she would roll them tightly and place them in a plastic bag until she ironed them later in the day.
I wish I had that old Pepsi bottle...
I don't know when this booklet was published, but there are instructions on how to hang laundry on an outside clothes line to dry and minimize wrinkles. Which would then minimize ironing. I'm guessing clothes dryers were not common when this booklet was published.
Instructions are included on how best to iron blankets, brassieres, foundation garments, nightgowns, pajamas, sheets, underwear, towels, veils, plus many, many other items. (As a matter of note, I do not believe I have EVER ironed any of the aforementioned items in my lifetime.)
So far, my favorite piece of advice from the booklet is this:
"Choose a cheerful spot for your weekly ironing--but don't feel you must stick to it. It's where you want to iron, not where you think you should iron, that counts." (italics theirs)
So, good readers, I have the answers to your ironing questions. Not only about how to iron a variety of items, but the ironing accessories you require to do a great job.
Send me your burning questions on ironing and I will be happy to provide Betty Crocker's answers to you!
P.S. There does not seem to be a section devoted to dry cleaners? What???
P.S.S. Do you think Martha Stewart collects these types of old booklets?
I just finished the official "after action review" of our Christmas open house.
For those of you who haven't spent recent time in Corporate America, an "after action review" is the analysis of an event to determine what went well and what did not go well. The goal is to document the review findings so the next time the event occurs, any problems are not repeated and all successes are repeated or improved upon.
Obviously, Corporate America still influences me.
So, my party book now contains all the notes on the guest list, food, beverages, glass rentals, household preparation/help and party set-up.
For the 2010 party, all I have to do is open the book!
I grew up with my grandmother and mother watching As The World Turns. I must confess, I have watched it off and on for all of my 50 years.
This is a tragedy* for ATWT fans, just like it was for Guiding Lightfans when that show ended this year.
Whatever will we do without ATWT? Where I could occasionally be tempted into watching the show, I certainly will not be tempted to watch any game shows, reality shows or talk shows that may be scheduled to replace it.
*Tragedy might be too strong a word to describe this situation. However, it will be like losing really good neighbors when the show is gone.
The plumber completed installation of our new tankless hot water heater. It will be more energy efficient and we will qualify for a tax credit this year, plus we will never run out of hot water!
The plumber helped The Husband remove the old, dead refrigerator from the basement that has been taking up space for over a year. YIPPEEEEEEEE!!! The Husband just made arrangements for the City of Tulsa to pick it up next week and take it away.