Good Old Days Newsletter

In the Good Old Days Antiques Corner This Week in History
In the Good Old Days

Trivia Question

What central figure at the end of World War II celebrated a birthday on V-E Day?

The Card Drawer

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Elena Schweitzer/Shutterstock

At the small elementary school I attended, our homeroom teachers doubled as our art teachers whenever the need arose. The highlight of our artistic year was the preparation for Mother's Day. The teachers brought out stacks of colored construction paper, tin cans full of round-edged scissors, boxes of now-stubby crayons and vats of Elmer's Glue; then we third-graders set about making the most beautiful cards for our hard-working moms at home.

At least I thought they were beautiful at the time.

I took great care cutting and gluing, and printing my words of love and devotion to my wonderful mom. I remember proudly presenting the card to her early on the Sunday morning of Mother's Day, on a tray containing somewhat-burnt toast, runny eggs, soggy cereal and lukewarm coffee that my brothers and I had prepared for the occasion. My mom dutifully "oohed" and "aahed" over the work of art and even reluctantly gagged down some of the food while we beamed at the foot of her bed.

Many years later I was going through a bureau drawer in the corner of my parents' living room looking for some old photos. What I found instead was a stack of those cards I had handcrafted for my mom and dad when I was young. In fact, cards from each of us five children were gathered and tied with ribbon, safely kept in the bureau drawer like valuable treasures.

I pulled out a few samples of my cards, and mom and I giggled over the childish prose and the crude artwork. "These are so bad," I remarked with a grimace.

"I still think they are beautiful," said my mom.

Happy Mother's Day to all of you moms out there!

'Til next time,

Mary Beth Weisenburger,
Good Old Days® magazine

PS. Do you recall giving a special handmade gift or card that you made in grade school to your mom or dad? What was it? Did your parent save it? Send a brief response to me at and it could appear in a future newsletter or in Good Old Days magazine! Here is one email responses from the March 25, 2015, newsletter question: Did you ever experience a very public recipe flop back when you were a novice cook? Were you able to make the best of it?

Linda G. shared: "My flop was shared within my whole family. I was the youngest grandchild and had lots of relatives who loved to rib me about my baking attempt and failure for years! I think only my sister might remember now if I jogged her memory, and I'm not about to do that anymore. Anyway, I got home from school before my older sister and my mom. I had never baked on my own, but being in fourth or fifth grade, I figured I was perfectly capable of doing so. Well, maybe not so much! I got all of the ingredients assembled for brownies from scratch, my mom's recipe. I knew to read and recheck the ingredients as I put them in, but nothing accounts for just simply misreading an amount -- 1/3 cup of Crisco or 1 1/3 cups? I baked and baked those brownies, but I could not get the toothpick to come out clean (I also didn't know at that age that you can't test brownies for being done with a toothpick). Finally, I couldn't get the toothpick through my brownies and pulled them out of the oven. When mom came home, she smelled overdone brownies, but upon picking up the 8 x 8-inch pan, you could hear liquid sloshing in the bottom of it! Mom tried to cut them, but that didn't work. She ended up throwing the whole pan of brownies out to the squirrels and throwing the liquid Crisco away. I think my most vivid memory of this is the wonderful smell of those brownies cooking, and the fact that it took the squirrels a month to eat that block of overdone brownies!"

Mary Beth Weisenburger has been with Annie's since April 2011. She has 25 years of experience in the marketing, advertising and publishing fields. In addition to her job as editor of Good Old Days, she has been writing a family humor column for over a decade. She and her husband, two college-age kids, two dogs and various other critters live on five acres in the country, where she enjoys reading on the back porch, refinishing furniture, feeding the birds and digging in the dirt of her perennial gardens.

Fill out the easy feedback form and let me know your thoughts, questions and ideas.

Trivia Answer

President Harry S. Truman celebrated his 61st birthday on that historic day -- May 8, 1945. He would later remark that V-E Day had made it the "happiest of birthdays."

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