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February 14, 2018 / philosophermouseofthehedge

For Olde Tyme’s Take

Such a fate

Give and take

Love and hate

Chance of date.

Worth it, Mate?

Valentine Snake.1870's. "Vinegar valentine" (USPD., artist life/

Earlier Me, too Movement? Some things are as old as dirt. A different approach from the 1870’s with a “Vinegar Valentine” designed to be folded in half, addressed and sent to discourage attention from an unwanted suitor.(USPD/

Valentine handmade by Esther Howland/

Before Hallmark was crafted with care by hand with bits of cloth, lace, gold braid, ribbons, doilies, sequins or paste jewels, and small pictures painted or pasted.  My very proper grandmother used to make cards like this with me. This vintage Valentine handmade by Esther Howland has managed to survive time passing. Mask and a telescope? Need to check the symbolic meaning of those – everything then was said even if not spoken. (USPD/

Valentine postcard of vintage couple cuddling on bench under trellis with roses. Nat.Lib of Norway/USPD.pubdate, artist life/

“He’d better be thinking about putting a ring on this!” Vintage Valentine postcard. Staged selfies predate Facebook. (USPD/

Valentine postcard of couple walking in front of seashore backdrop. .Nat.Lib of Norway (, artist life/

“Put your little foot. Put your little foot. Put your little foot right there,” She sells by the sea shore. And he looks like he’s happily ready to start the dance.(Vintage Valentine postcard in front of photographer’s backdrop/USPD/

Valentine couple on bench. Woman in fancy hat giving the cold shoulder to the man. 1925. Nat.Lib.of Norway/USPD, artist life,

“What no chocolate? No giant stuffed teddy bear? How can I possibly face my friends and their bragging about their Valentines’ haul?”(USPD/

Cloth and lace vintage Valentine made by Esther Howland, 1870's (Inside- You say my heart, is cold, my dear, to you; Ah! canst thou such a thought impart To one who loves so true. (USPD. pub.dat, artist life/

Then he hands her a special cloth and lace Valentine made by Esther Howland (1870’s) with his message inside: “You say my heart, is cold, my dear, to you; Ah! canst thou such a thought impart To one who loves so true.” (USPD/

Happy Valentine vintage couple. 1925. Lib. of Norway/, artist life/

Ah, message received. “I never doubted you, dear.” (USPD/

Valentine couple standing. Nast.Lib.of Norway (USPD., artist life/

The rock may be fake. Your hat forgotten . But our love will never be either. Forever Valentines.(USPD/

Valentine postcard. Couple in vintage car.Nat.Lib.of Norway (USPD artist life, pub,date/

My dad’s first car was similar to this. Not new and completely out of style by the time he bought it, but what do you expect from a guy who washed dishes and tossed newspapers to help pay for college? Mom said the darn thing would have some part fall off constantly and she’d have to leap out, grab it, and run to pitch the part onto the floorboard before hopping back in. Maybe that’s true love. (USPD/

Sometimes the heart sees what is invisible to the eye.

(H. Jackson Brown, Jr. 1940 -. Author of Life’s Little Instruction Book)

Dance on with heart light.

Philo, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

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  1. easyweimaraner / Feb 14 2018 6:35 am

    maybe the masks are a symbol for carnival what sometimes is around valentines day? have a great one full of love …


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 7:18 am

      With the dates being so close, I was wondering about that, too. Neatly cutting out all those little pictures with tiny sharp scissors…Aaarrrgh – some craft stores have similar stickers now – lots easier I would imagine.
      Hope you have a tailwaggin’ Valentines Day!


  2. shoreacres / Feb 14 2018 7:03 am

    I have three of those fancy valentines framed and hanging on my wall — they belonged to my grandmother, who from all indications had suitors galore before she settled on grandpa. I’ve got a few of the funnier postcards, too — just risqué enough to be surprising. That came to Grandma?!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 7:15 am

      What a sweetheart of a treasure! It is funny if you are lucky enough to have momentous of earlier eras that while we may think that society was so proper and sheltered….Guess they just were reserved enough not to Facebook and Twitter it all in public? Deep waters run deep – and a bit of mystery is attractive?
      Thanks for adding to the Valentine basket. (Wonder if schools still have art projects for kids to decorate Valentine shoe boxes/paper bags for Valentines? All that smeared glue and fading red stuff. Fun should be a requirement!)


      • shoreacres / Feb 14 2018 7:17 am

        Do not, under any circumstances, click on links to stories about what is and isn’t acceptable in the classroom these days. I made the mistake once, yesterday, and I’m ignoring the rest of the stupidity. 🙂


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 7:33 am

          Public schools have a whole different function now. Don’t want to stand anywhere near them.
          There was the year school principal handed out instructions on exactly how many cookies per child (2), the exact size (pattern included) and decorations instructions (colors for icing/sprinkles and how many/types of sprinkles) “because some rooms had parents that were active and interested in their kids and made things too special or fancy which made the other kids feel sad their homeroom moms/parents didn’t do the same…” The previous year many parents got so annoyed that the memo that was sent home said only 2 cookies – no additional candy or Valentines treats….so a good number of parents made cookies 6 inches across….but only 2 each.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Carrie Rubin / Feb 14 2018 7:15 am

    I’m not much for Valentines Day, but those cards would get even me. They’re lovely.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 7:40 am

      Old things become archeology/anthropology at some point. Amazing these survived – but then they are cloth and materials that were more basic materials. Stuff before mass produce/plastic seem more fascinating. People took time to make things specifically designed for one person – that was part of the gift…more meaningful than trinket from drug store or Target (and less expensive). Valentines, like Christmas and Halloween has become a massive contest and marketing campaign, so mostly passing here, too.
      Thanks for the heartfelt comment

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Kate Crimmins / Feb 14 2018 8:06 am

    Reminded me of the valentine boxes we made as kids. It was such a special day back then.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 8:44 am

      Glitter! We got to use glitter. It was fun. Everyone of all ages could use a return simple (not expensive or regimented) fun. How can you grow up to be normal if you’ve never had to deal with glue dripping and running everywhere and fading red construction paper? Thanks for adding a valentine to this basket. Hope your Valentines is sweet

      Liked by 1 person

      • Kate Crimmins / Feb 14 2018 8:46 am

        One year the teacher gave each of us a small Hershey kiss. Not sure they are allowed to do that anymore with allergies and all.


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 9:01 am

          That would have been super cool back then. With all the allergies/special diets it must be very hard to treat kids now

          Liked by 1 person

          • Kate Crimmins / Feb 14 2018 10:50 am

            A teacher told me it’s illegal in our state. Or perhaps against school policy.


  5. Anne Mehrling / Feb 14 2018 9:29 am

    That was fun. Happy Valentine’s Day!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 4:17 pm

      These are so lovely. Affection captured and lasting for longer than they could have ever imagined. Smiles, indeed. Hope your Valentines Days was delightful, too!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. belocchio / Feb 14 2018 10:31 am

    I’m in heaven. I love these out outrageously romantic, over the top, absolutely delightful old cards and photographs. Happy Valentine’s day Janet. XXX Virginia


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 4:15 pm

      Such expressive faces in those photos – affection captured forever. They do make you smile. Thanks for partying along. Hope your Valentines Day was sweet!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. pegoleg / Feb 14 2018 11:04 am

    Thanks for sharing – I love the old valentines. I have a display of German cut-out valentines in a shadow box in the front of my office right now so everyone can enjoy them.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 14 2018 4:12 pm

      Each of these old Valentines are tiny works of art. So glad you are taking care of some. How can you not smile when seeing them any day of the year? Thanks for showing some love!


  8. angelswhisper2011 / Feb 15 2018 1:55 am

    WOW! These Valentine cards are so beautiful, Philmouse, Granny says that even the men looked more handsome…MOL 😀 We like the handcrafted by your grandmother very much ❤ Heart shaped Pawkisses for a Happy Valentine's Day to all of you ❤ ❤ ❤


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 15 2018 8:57 am

      Such elegance. Sigh. (Oh, sorry. These two old Valentines were made by a real artist – my Grandmother was patient and had these tiny sharp scissors when she taught me, but mine had glue in the wrong spots. Still, she always said “It’s the thought that counts – and that you sat down, took time, and made something just for them. That’s the real gift.” I think this year maybe I’ll get back to that for all holidays.) Cheery paw waves! Hope your Valentines was very sweet.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Ally Bean / Feb 15 2018 8:42 am

    Those cards are from another time altogether. They give me pause, trying to decide if I like them or think they’re creepy weird. Still, it’s cool that you can find them online to share with us here.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 15 2018 8:53 am

      These cards are certainly a window into the past, how people lived, and what they thought important. I always wonder how they managed with all these complicated clothes – especially in heat and humidity. The washing and ironing must have been constant and difficult. Wonder if future generations will muse over any digital selfies that survive. Thanks for strolling along.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. LordBeariOfBow / Feb 15 2018 2:12 pm

    Valentines day as it should be, sad that it’s gone forever 😥


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 16 2018 6:41 am

      The original concept has gotten lost. Things are in too much of a rush. People are centered more on totaling gift amount spent. Valentines used to be mainly for adults and couples – not Facebook.
      Elegance seems to be out of style.
      But odd there are so many “Take your photo in vintage clothing” places around. Maybe there’s some genetic longing. We can hope for the idea to return…but maybe not the piles of laundry they must have had?
      Thanks for going through this scrap book

      Liked by 1 person

  11. shoreacres / Feb 15 2018 3:55 pm

    Say — on another topic… Have you seen Bob lately? Just wondering.


  12. Littlesundog / Feb 16 2018 7:56 am

    What a fun post… sorry I’m late arriving. Loved the video – is that polka dancing? Two men that I ever dance with could whirl my clumsy feet around the dance floor making it all seem like a dream. Maybe that was all in my head… after all, I did have a few drinks those nights.

    On a sweeter note, my Grandma Scott always created her own Valentines cards to us kids. I still have a couple of them. Red felt, paper doilies, ribbon and ric-rac, and cut outs from old cards. She always came up with great party favors for each place setting at the table too. Because of a rift in our family, we were only allowed to see Grandma and Grandpa a couple of times a year. Grandma always managed to make it special, as if we were a royal family arriving to visit. Oh, how I miss her, especially on Valentines.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 16 2018 10:04 am

      Being the youngest in the entire family, I only knew one grandmother/grandparent. All those old fashion out of date customs were so fascinating even then. (We never through out remnants of fabrics or stuff – old Christmas cards could be cut out and used to decorate next year’s packages which for a while were as elegant as these Valentines) Oh, that feeling of being “royal” – mine had one set of gorgeous bath towels – so unlike the durable ones in our house- that had “Princess” on the tiny label – it was reserved for special guests…and while years old, almost new. That was the one thing I wanted (and the greedy ones fighting over the jewelry didn’t care. I still have the wash cloth.
      I remember seeing the “Put your little foot” dance from the time I was very small when I’d accompany my parents to Shell’s company weekly square dances. Dad could “call” square dance. It’s a little like modern Texas two step and regional Vet. hall dances. One of the first dances kids learned as it was so easy (and kids were allowed on the floor, too).
      This time of year we’re all running late – between the flu, colds, and just darn lack of motivation from the cold and wet.Hope you’re bouncing back and able to get out.No matter who that groundhog said, early plants are greening up (Honestly, that poor groundhog. He was shaking so badly I think he was saying, “Just ell me what your want to hear and I’ll say it.” He looks so cold and terrified…he should move south to more congenial life HAHA. Hope your Valentines was warm and cool!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Littlesundog / Feb 16 2018 11:21 am

        I still have a few of my other Grandma’s kitchen towels and a few mixing bowls. Oh the memories these items hold. Those are the real treasures. It’s been too cold to work in the woods which is where I want to be. Too dry also. We’ve been under a burn ban for weeks now. I am so ready to be out and about!!

        Liked by 1 person

        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Feb 19 2018 10:56 am

          The mixing bowls I saved were china, white in inside and a set of 3 – each color a difference size. The scratched up large green, and the medium red are in the cabinet.
          Oh, that song and dance got me thinking – where did it come from? German/Sweden/Poland/Scotland/Ireland. It’s a old time folk dance here and settlers/pioneers from any of those places could have brought it. Apparently it was a huge popular dance in mid to late 1800’s. Some trace it back to Warsaw, Poland (and there are similarities with the hand positions/couple and steps) but the Swedish seem to have the oldest, most complicated, and most varieties of it. There are several versions of the words.

          This is the one little kids were taught as they watched and learned the steps (which could get very fancy with skilled couples)
          Put your lit-tle foot, put your lit-tle foot, Put your lit-tle foot right there.
          Put your lit-tle foot, put your lit-tle foot, Put your lit-tle foot right there.
          Walk and walk and walk and walk and
          Walk and walk and walk and walk and turn.

          Here’s another version which I remember hearing.
          Put your lit-tle foot, put your lit-tle foot, Your lit-tle foot right_ there.
          Put your lit-tle foot,put your lit-tle foot, Your lit-tle foot right_there.
          Take a step to the right,
          take a step_ to the left,
          Take a step_ to the_rear,
          but for-ev – er stay near.
          Put your little foot, put your little foot,Your little foot right there.
          Put your little foot, put your little foot,Your little foot right there.
          Take a step to the right, take a step to the left,
          Take a step to the rear, but forever stay near.

          Put your arm around, put your arm around,
          Your arm around my waist.
          Hold your arm around, hold your arm around,
          Your arm around my waist.
          While the moon’s shining bright, and the music’s just right,
          And you’re holding me tight, we will dance through the night.

          Put your little foot, put your little foot,Your little foot with mine.
          With you little foot, with your little foot,Your little foot keep time.
          Charming tender melody, in my heart a memory
          It is there you’ll always be, a little part of me.
          (It’s like summer here today with a brisk SE wind – with 3 days of storms and heavy rains due tomorrow…ugh. Oh, well, being stuck inside means maybe I’ll get a post done – but while it’s sunny, so not inside. Hasta later)

          Liked by 1 person

  13. RKLikesReeses / Feb 17 2018 2:49 pm

    Oh, those fabulous cardse!!
    Do kids use those little paper doilies & construction paper anymore, to make them? Guessing not.
    Thank you for this LOVEly post!! ❤️


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