Movie Review: Go For Broke! (1951)

Go For Broke! is a movie about the U.S. 442nd Regimental Combat Team, formed in 1943 by Presidential permission with Japanese-American volunteers. The film stars Van Johnson as Lt. Grayson, the commanding officer of a platoon of Nisei, second-generation Japanese Americans, who have volunteered to fight for the United States.  Grayson is displeased with his assignment because of his distrust and dislike for the men he’s commanding.  The movie follows the unit as they fight through Italy and France.

Van Johnson & Henry Nakamura

I’ve watched Go For Broke! twice now and love it.  The movie was made only eight years after the events it portrays, and a six of the main characters are actual veterans.  The variety of personalities and backgrounds is wonderful and avoids stereotypes very well.  Grayson’s attitude toward the Nisei is gradually transformed by his mens’ competence and integrity.

I give this movie a thumbs up (and say it’s Tiggerty-Boo*).  It is in the public domain and you can find it on Youtube or

(If you want to watch another great Van Johnson war movie, try Thirty Seconds over Tokyo)

*Name that song!

Images from Dave’s World of War Movies

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Filed under Historical, Vintage

1950s Peanut Butter Cookies


Cooking from old recipes is really neat because, for the most part, you get to share an experience from history.  Sadly, I don’t get that experience with this recipe; a peanut sensitivity prevents me.  So if you try these cookies please leave a comment to tell me how they turned out.

Peanut Butter Cookies from Needlework News

2 tablespoons butter

1/2 cup peanut butter

1 cup sugar

1 egg, beaten lightly

1/3 cup milk

2 cups flour

4 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

Cream the butter; add the peanut butter and cream again; gradually beat in the sugar; add the egg, milk, flour sifted with baking powder and salt; mix to a dough.  Knead slightly, roll into thin sheet and cut into rounds or as desired; place on buttered pan, sprinkle with granulated sugar, and bake in quick oven (400 F).

My best guess for the date of this recipe is around 1952, but it doesn’t say exactly.  Happy baking!

Peanut Butter Cookies

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Sundry Wonders Reactivated

Well, after an approximately 3 year hiatus, I’ve decided to start blogging here again.

Lately I have been sucked into the allure of VINTAGE STUFF.  And while I have yet to actually sew or knit a vintage item, I’m full of ideas and plans.  The time period that particularly interests me is World War 2.  It may have have something to do with the BBC show Wartime Farm.

The awesome thing about 1930s-40s style is that (unlike Civil War style) it is not so far out that I wouldn’t wear it for my “normal” wardrobe.

I invite you to come along as I figure out the kinks of blogging and vintage stuff (with some non-vintage stuff too).

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Filed under Life, Vintage

Return of the Chickens

Yeah, I can’t really call them chicks anymore.  It’s kind of sad, but that’s mitigated by the promise of fresh eggs.

Gregory Peck

Also, the extra Buff Orpington chick the hatchery sent along is a cockerel!  His name is Chunky, because he got bigger, faster than the hens.  Now we know why.

They like milk.

They are extremely entertaining to watch.


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Tutorial: How to Thread A Demorest Treadle Machine (Pictures!)

About two months ago, Tracy asked me to do a tutorial on threading a Demorest Treadle sewing machine.  My apologies for taking so long, Tracy.  Click on any of the pictures to see them larger.  Without further ado, the tutorial:

To thread the machine, you put the spool of thread on the machine.  Then you take the thread and place it under the tension plate.  You may have to loosen the tension screw to do this, or press on the thread releaser.

My finger is on the thread releaser.

The round thing is the tension screw.  It regulates the tension of the top thread.  Make sure it’s not too tight.  Press the thread releaser if you need to pull on the thread.

From here we pull the thread left, under the thread guide (not the thing I called the thread guide previously), and through the hole in the needle bar.

It should look like this now:

Thread guide and needle bar.

Okay, pull the thread down and around as shown in the next picture.  The stationary piece is the thread staple; the moving “hook” is the thread controller.

A picture is worth a thousand words.

Next, we hook the thread through the thread guide and thread the needle.  My thread guide is not original, so yours may be different.  place the thread under the presser foot.

Almost done!

Now onto the bobbin.  This is by no means as difficult as it looks.  This assumes you have a threaded bobbin.  Drop the bobbin into the case with the thread sticking out.The bobbin is inside the shuttle.

The bobbin is inside the shuttle.

Pull the thread down and it will automatically slip into place. It helps to keep a finger over the open end of the shuttle while you pull.  You should feel it snap into place.

See where the thread is? It's coming out of the bottom hole.

Place it into the shuttle carrier like this and stick the thread down under the body of the machine.

My shuttle fits a little loosely, but seems to be okay.

Holding the upper thread, turn the hand wheel away from you.  A loop of the lower thread will be pulled up through the hole the needle goes through.  (You can tug on the top thread to aid this process.)  Pull the loop until the cut end of the thread comes out, then put both threads under the presser foot and trailing away from it.

The loop of the bottom thread.

Slide in the front slide plate and you have successfully threaded your sewing machine!

The threaded machine.

I hope this has helped you.  Please do not use any of my pictures without my permission.


Filed under Crafts, Historical, Life, Sewing

Chicklings Update

A 2 week old Black Australorp.

The chicks are growing so quickly, they turned 3 weeks old on the 16th.  My Mom and I took them outside for the first time a week ago.  They loved scratching around in the grass.  They laid down in the sun and stretched out their wings as if to say “Aaaah!”

The first outing.


Me and my sleepy chicken.

I took Chunky Buff out of the box and she settled right down on the grass.  Then she wanted to go back to her friends so I put her back.

These little, feathery fluffballs make me so happy!  No matter what horror stories people may tell you about poo and stink and pecking, chickens are great birds.

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The Chicks Are Here!

They arrived on Friday, as scheduled.  Two extras were added to our order, one of which died, so we have a total of 17 chicks.

They immediately went to scratch in the feed.

We’re using pine shavings for bedding, but for the first 2 days I put paper towels down so they wouldn’t confuse food with bedding.  When we first put them in the brooder we dipped their beaks in the water to teach them to drink.

A Buff Orpington chick taking a nip from the font.

They’re very well handled birds, as you can see.

My sister holding a sleeping chick.

We got one rooster, a Black Australorp.  His name is Gregory Peck.  As of tomorrow, they’ll be officially one week old.  Feathers are coming in one their wings, and just starting on their tails.  They’re so cute!  More pictures will certainly be posted as they grow.


Filed under Life