Betty's Attic
Shop Betty’s for nostalgic collectibles. Betty's Attic offers baby boomer toys, dolls, puzzles and games plus classic television, movie and radio memorabilia… Recycle
Friday, December 29, 2017

I've been blogging for quite a few years and I'd like to thank you, gentle readers, for following along.

It's time for Betty's Attic to move out of the blogging arena. (At least I don't need boxes, tape, trucks, and movers! If I had to move my real attic, I'd be in serious trouble!)

Today marks the last of my blog entries, but don't worry, I'll still have plenty to do.

I'll be on sharing on Facebook, tweeting on Twitter, pinning things to Pinterest, and  posting on Google+.

So just pop on over to your favorite social media site to find out what's new (and old) in The Attic!

Happy New Year. And thanks for the memories!

Posted by: Betty | 8:00 AM | permalink
Friday, December 22, 2017

The tree is decorated, the lights are up, the gifts are wrapped, the stockings are stuffed, and the grocery shopping is done. I only have a few little chores to do before I settle in with friends and family to celebrate the holiday.

I hope you've had as much fun as I had finding retro gifts for the special people in your life. There's nothing like giving a memory for Christmas!

As we prepare to close the office for the weekend, I just wanted to take a moment to wish you all a warm, happy and safe holiday from all of us here at Betty's Attic.

Happy Holidays!

Posted by: Betty | 8:00 AM | permalink
Friday, December 15, 2017
I think rushing around at the last minute is as much a Christmas tradition as soothing cups of eggnog and roaring fires. At least it is around our house.

My mom and I used to live for the rush. We'd jump into the cold car, crank up the heater, blast Christmas carols on the radio, and embark on a last minute adventure to find that "just right" gift for anyone we hadn't crossed off the list yet.

When I'd get a little frazzled, Mom would tell me, "Patience, little one, patience." I'd sigh heavily - mostly for effect - but I knew she was right. And my theatrical sigh was as calming as letting out a deep breath.

Looking back, I see my mom was a lot smarter than any of us gave her credit for.

At my age, the crush of the rush is harder to shrug off with a weighty sigh, but I've managed to kept the tradition alive with my kids. We just do our "rushing" online these days. Even if you're late out of the starting gate, the magic of the Internet makes it easy to get that "just right" gift delivered just in time for Christmas. Which is even better than endless cute kitty least in December!

Posted by: Betty | 8:00 AM | permalink
Friday, December 8, 2017
Mom's rickety game table stands at the center of some of my favorite holiday memories. While the adults were busy with dinner, all the kids would set it up, lay out all the games we could find, and dust off the folding chairs so everything would be ready dinner was over. All of us played games after dinner - young and old.

Grandpa was the King of Charades. It didn't matter who he partnered with - his team almost always won. My sister was the best of the board gamers (except Monopoly - that was my territory!) and my cousin beat us all at any kind of card game. Mom loved word games and Dad liked puzzle games. It seems everyone was a champion at something.

We still have holiday game night. Believe it or not, everyone still plays. Even the kids put down their devices to join the games. We gather around Mom's old table to watch, play, and cheer. Tradition is important, but here's the main reason Game Night is so much fun: it brings everyone together for fun and a little competition. And every now and then, we're lucky enough to witness a new gaming champion emerge.

Posted by: Betty | 8:00 AM | permalink
Friday, December 1, 2017
If you have to ask, you'll never know... 

Louis Armstrong said those famous words when he was asked to define the rhythmic character of swing music.

It was a pretty good answer.

Swing jazz was (only slightly) before my time. My parents loved it. But I was into rock & roll. My parents didn't get it. To them it was a cacophony of meaningless noise. A lot of people felt the same way about the jazz music of the time.

Since my parents wouldn't let me play "that noise" on their hi-fi, I'd shut my bedroom door, drag out my suitcase record player, and disappear into the wonderful world of electric guitars, double drummers, and fantastical lyrics. "Turn it down!" was my parents' battle cry. Finally, they gave up on the "volume wars" and got me some headphones for Christmas. Smart.

Now my kids listen to music I don't understand. And I don't ask them about it. There's no point. Thanks to Louis, I already get it: I'll never know. That's okay. They don't know why I love Bowie, the Beatles, Elvis, or KISS - and they never will.

Giving fun t-shirts for stocking stuffers is one of our Christmas traditions, so the kids and I have a deal: we don't worry understanding each other's music - we just give each other the music tees each of us will love. There will be one difference this Christmas: now that they're getting older, they're starting to play their music "too loud!" like I did. So this will be the year my kids find brand new sets of headphones under the tree.

Posted by: Betty | 8:00 AM | permalink
Friday, November 24, 2017
We have a lot of holiday traditions in my family - things we do as a family every year and, well, Christmas just wouldn't be Christmas without them. One of my favorites is the ornament exchange. Since I can remember we've been buying special ornaments for each other. Sometimes to commemorate a birth or a graduation, or any of the year's momentous events. Mostly they're just for fun.

There are three things I like about giving ornaments as gifts:
  1. They're small. They make perfect stocking stuffers. Or just for laughs, you can wrap a tiny ornament in a giant box with lots of filling. (This works especially well on the little ones.) 
  2. They're Reusable. Every year, you get to decorate your tree with memorable moments from the years before. And with each new ornament exchanged, you're making more memories for next year's tree.  
  3. They're perfect for collectors. You probably won't be surprised to learn I'm not the only collector in my family. Do you know someone who's mad about Mickey or bonkers for Betty Boop? Ornaments are the answer - you'll never have to worry about finding the perfect gift again.
They don't have to wait for Christmas to come out, either. Some ornaments are what my mom calls "evergreen" - meaning they can move from tree to car to home or office all year long. (I have several hanging in my office right now - they'll be headed home for the holidays soon.)

What I love the most is unpacking all those precious ornaments every year. I pour a cup of hot chocolate and sit down to carefully unbox and unwrap them. As I hang each one on the tree - finding just the right spot - I get to relive the bright moments of Christmases past. Which is what makes this tiny tradition not just perfect, but priceless.

Posted by: Betty | 8:00 AM | permalink
Friday, November 17, 2017
Mrs. Beasley was one of my favorite dolls. I loved Family Affair and Buffy's frumpy little doll, so when I got one for Christmas, I was over the moon! I still have the original up in the attic somewhere, but I couldn't resist picking up a new one for my granddaughter. (And an extra for me.)

My brother got Lincoln Logs that year. He was mighty annoyed when he discovered that I was better at building than he was. His log cabins were always missing something - like windows and doors. Or they leaned this way or that and finally fell over from his constant fiddling.

Once he discovered action figures like Stretch Armstrong, his Lincoln Logs lay forgotten (which meant - by default - they became my toy!). We used to grab poor Stretch by his arms and legs and pull and pull and pull until the doll was as long as the kitchen table. It was one of his all-time favorite toys, so imagine my delight when I found out I could get him a new one this year.

Toy makers are going back to the pre-video game era this year. You can pick up lots of retro toys you remember from childhood and make new Christmas memories with toys from yesteryear.

Posted by: Betty | 8:00 AM | permalink

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