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Heartwings Love Notes for a Joyous Life 877 - Hoop Skirts and Test Patterns

Heartwings says, "A long life equals an interesting journey through time."

Recently I was looking at a pretty formal gown in a consignment store and it brought back memories of ones I used to wear back in the days when formal dances were a part of my life. I didn't go to a school that featured proms, however there was an annual series of dances held by a woman who ran a dancing school for grade school boys and girls. These dances were an extension of her classes and held for high school age students in the area.

She had very strict rules for the young ladies who wanted to participate. Gowns had to be of a certain type, and nothing too bare or plunging was permitted. This starchy New England matron who ran the dances was also particular about our weight. My dear mother put me on a diet that summer so I would conform to the ideal held out for those who wished to attend. "I don't want any wallflowers at my dances," she was known to say.

The dress I was looking in the consignment store at was a strapless, full length gown. The skirt was fairly narrow. I smiled to myself, remembering the hoop skirt that went under one of my first full skirted formals. How difficult it was to sit down without the darn thing flying up in the air, taking my skirt with it, revealing my gartered stockings to the world. There were other uncomfortable petticoats, starched and stiff that came later. My mother would laugh and say sometimes one must suffer for beauty. Although she wore a girdle for years and tried to get me to wear one, I refused to.

Along with hoop skirts and starched petticoats, no one born today or even many born a while ago know what a test pattern is, or has seen one. When my parents got our first TV, there were no programs before around 4 o'clock in the afternoon and after around midnight at night. All that was on the screen otherwise was a black and white test pattern from the different TV stations. There were no color TVs. Having lived a long life, I can recall much that no longer exists except in the museum of memory. It's fun to visit there occasionally, though I'd never want to live there all the time.

May your memories of days gone by entertain you.

PS Dear readers, if you have memories to share I'd love to read them. Your letters are precious to me, so do write and tell me about yourself. Your letters make my day.

I love to hear from readers and would be honored if you would comment and let me know any suggestions or thoughts. If a friend sent you this, you can sign up at my web site, www.heartwingslovenotes.com, where more love notes can be found in the archives.

Blessings and Best Regards,
Tasha Halpert
 

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