Among my favorite thrift finds are old entertaining and decorating books that I find and garage sales. You never know what you might turn up -- a Technicolor cookbook filled with improbable concoctions of gelatin and food coloring or tawny toned meats accessorized with pineapple rings or wrinkly tomatoes.
When I dug this "Hits from Heloise 1966 Diary Appointment Calendar" book out of a box with my cousins, I am most certain I discovered the pre-cursor to what Martha Stewart has become today. (Note the lovely ball fringe on the cover of this "Deluxe Library Edition.")
Inside the front cover Heloise Cruze is described as a "petite five-two, hundred-twelve, blue eyed kind of hurricane from Texas [who] measures 34-27-34."
The description of Heloise's mission to take drudgery out of house work continues:
"The naturally attractive and vivacious Heloise loves color. She finds release from her work in painting, and her closet-full of muumuus covers the spectrum. Heloise works the way she talks -- fast and often, also plays an electric organ."
I guess when she wasn't pumping away at the keyboard, she was busy rolling out bon mots of the household kind to sprinkle into a calendar that notes her celebrated hints throughout:
January 5: "Keep dustpan waxed. Dirt will slide off it much more easily than an unwaxed one."
April 4: "Don't forget that the idea of making smashed cheese sandwiches, wrapped in foil and ironing them, with an electric iron is fabulous."
July 8 "Don't keep your husband in hot water all the time because this will not make him tender."
And then here's the general tip for August that I will never forget, and may just try:
"When preparing hamburger meat, shape it to look like a weiner. Then cook it the same way as ordinary hamburgers and serve on hot dog rolls."
Always frugal, always fabulous, and whipping out my electric iron to prep for lunchtime,
The Elegant Thrifter