Ken and Janice Tate

Dear Friends of the Good Old Days,

We didn't have a lot of money for extras when I was growing up, but my parents always figured out a way to take a family vacation.

Each summer, my dad would borrow a pop-up–style camper from the neighbors and hitch it to our station wagon. My mom would pack our clothes in empty beer cases (the sturdy kind with the flip-tops) and stack them in the camper. Then she would expertly fill our green metal 7Up cooler with a watermelon, several pounds of bologna, ketchup, water and milk for the long trip. (The milk was for us. The water usually ended up in the overheated radiator of our vehicle.) A few loaves of bread and a couple of bags of potato chips rounded out our food supply.

We five kids piled into every nook and cranny of the station wagon (no one ever heard of using seat belts, especially in the back seats), and off we went on our two-week joyride.

We never went to the same place twice. One summer we went "out West," all the way from Ohio to Yellowstone National Park. The next summer we traveled east, ending up in Bar Harbor, Maine. We stayed at rustic (aka cheap) campgrounds, ate a record amount of bologna sandwiches, and always ended up with sunburns. We had run-ins with bears, prairie dogs and wicked hailstorms. My brother got lost in the Badlands of South Dakota (we ultimately found him watching a movie in an air-conditioned theater!), we discovered the Atlantic Ocean was too cold to swim in for any extended period, and we spent precious vacation time in a laundromat after we all got sick for 24 hours. But these are among my most treasured childhood memories.

This issue will conjure up some of the same warm memories for you too, I expect. Scenes of family vacations, picking (and eating!) wild berries, and heading up to the corner store on your bike to select your favorite penny candy will swirl in your mind as you flip the pages, guaranteed. Enjoy the trip!

Mary Beth Weisenburger signature
Mary Beth Weisenburger, Editor

PS. Did you know that Good Old Days magazine also has a Good Old Days email newsletter? It's free and chock-full of stories, trivia, history and more Antiques Q&A. Sign up today by going to

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.

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Good Old Days
The magazine that remembers the best.
Good Old Days magazine is the magazine that remembers the best of times. Feature stories and photos of the good old days of 1930 through 1960 are all contributed by readers. This easy-to-read collection of memories will fascinate the young and the old alike.
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