Note: Actual contents may vary. . . (and may include leftovers, which are still delicious and satisfying so stop turning up your nose.)

I know, I know . . . I gave an "up next" at the end of Wednesday's post, and if anyone actually read to the end, they will be expecting something that resembles the teaser.

So I'm going to include the info I promised, but like life, some days my posts want to go somewhere different from where I originally intended.

Next week I'm going to kick off

"Small Works' Week of Itty Blog Bits".

There's a lot going on in Hinckleyville right now -- some major painting projects and house re-arranging, plus someone's got to take care of the stitching that's supposed to be taking place in the studio.

But luckily, Dear Reader, I have all kinds of delightful tidbits that haven't found their way into my regular posts but that would be just perfect for an itty bitty blog snack.

So instead of 3 posts, I'm going to post one delicious little tidbit every day of the week!

I hope that you'll enjoy the new format and that I'll get some work done for a change. (We'll probably both be glad for me to take a blabbing breather -- let's be honest because we're friends.)

Now I'm going to save my promised "vintage find" for Monday's post, and turn my attention instead to one of my favorite topics,
Nancy Drew.

Again, you ask???

Yes, again . . . because it's such a fitting end to my two weeks of book babble! And because I got the swellest present ever from my good friend (the exquisite embroiderer) Flannery yesterday.

She stopped by the studio to stitch a little, have show and tell, take me to lunch and deliver surprise gifts.

(Don't ask me what I did to deserve such a slice of heaven --
it was just a good Thursday, despite my undeserving nature.)

One of the gifts was a set of Nancy Drew postcards.

30 of them!

Each a different cover!

A few were the newer covers,

which was fun since I don't own many of those at all. Most of my books are the 1950's - 1960's editions.

But the most delightful surprise was that many of them were pictures of the old original editions.

I own only a few of those, and only one has the illustrated dustjacket (sort of) intact. So I've never seen the original covers.

It was a timely gift since I've been cruising around the web just this week and managed to locate 3 1960's copies of titles I haven't read. (They're just waiting in a shopping cart for me to hit "order", which I fully intend to do!)

I've been on a Nancy Drew hiatus for several months now,
but feel that I'm ready for a booster shot.

And surely I would be remiss to let my reading recommendation posts pass by without giving a plug for everybody's favorite amateur sleuth!

What was I thinking?

So if you've read it already, I'll see you on Monday . . .
but if you haven't, I hope you'll enjoy this reprise of
"The many reasons I've never quit reading Nancy":

I have at times, I must admit
(and who hasn't),
daydreamed of being Nancy Drew.

That's what I do when I get a little too stressed -- I don't know why reading Nancy Drew books is comforting to me, but I have loved them ever since I started borrowing them (as many as I could without being a pest) from my neighbor Ann's older sister (sorry -- seems some of mine still say Marybeth on the inside cover . . . would you like them back?)

That must have been sometime in the early 1970's. I read as many as my neighbors owned, then I bought as many as I could earn the money for myself. In the 1990's, I read my complete collection (it is quite large -- stolen or purchased as a child, and collected as an adult) to my two younger daughters, who loved them as well.

Last year I re-read them all (getting ready for a wedding and art shows definitely calls for Nancy!) and now I'm skulking around used-book websites trying to buy some new anti-stress tonic in the form of previously un-read Nancy Drew.

I have some from the original series, the 1930's editions.

I love these best because the descriptions of the clothing, the social life, and the manners exhibited are just a marvelous study in a bygone era. Wonderful college weekends at Emerson, debutante balls, amateur theatric productions . . .

And 1930's Nancy was truly blazing a trail -- a respected amateur sleuth traveling the countryside in her convertible when all the other girls her age were getting married to their high school sweethearts.

1950's Nancy Drews are the next best thing -- still quaint but peppered with all kinds of 1950's "hip" language and even more girl-power.

Nancy strings Ned Nickerson along with ease and charm; he is always waiting in the wings to save the day. He respects Nancy even though he secretly wishes she would settle down and marry him, I'm sure. Athletic George and pleasingly plump Bess are a wonderful foil for Nancy's intelligence and thirst for adventure. One sometimes wonders what George and Bess would do if they weren't gallivanting around the globe with their friend.

In the 1970's they rewrote the original stories and updated them -- tragic but some of them are still acceptable.

Nancy's hair got longer and was no longer described as "titian," I guess because 1970's girls wouldn't have the slightest idea what "titian" was. Bess was still overweight, but the 1970's books were more likely to make her feel bad about it -- the "pleasingly" was dropped from the "plump".

Now that I've thought about it a little, here are my reasons Nancy Drew relieves stress:

1) Things always turn out in the end. There is no mystery too great, no situation too dire, no villain too sinister for Nancy's remarkable pluck and insatiable curiosity to overcome. Even when death and destruction seem imminent, rescue is sure and just a page away.

2) Nancy has an unlimited supply of resources. Her charge accounts are never-ending, her convertible is always the latest model, full of gas and ready to road-trip, her friends are bountiful and devoted.

3) In addition to being smart and brave, Nancy is fantastically beautiful. And worst of all, she's the kind of beautiful person you just can't hate because she's so gosh-darn nice.

4) Having Carson Drew for a father is like having a get-out-of-jail-free card at her immediate disposal no matter where she goes. Just mention the name Carson Drew and watch the doors open.

5) The police are always willing to drop whatever else they are working on and spring to Nancy's aid in any way she may request (this is because of her amazing reputation as a successful amateur sleuth, which they have tremendous respect for).

6) Athletic George (with her short haircut!) and pleasingly-plump Bess both not only have favorite boyfriends, but are also always able to find dates wherever the girls go. Of course Nancy gets first-pick of the boys, but everyone has a happy and willing dance partner. And Nancy never worries about offending Ned because she knows he will forever wait for her.

7) Handsome boys always come in threes.

8) Although Nancy's mother died tragically when Nancy was 3, kindly Hannah Gruen is everything a girl could ask for in a mother hen. She is just as comfortable fighting off an intruder with a lamp or her handbag as she is baking a scratch lemon meringue pie on a moment's notice for Nancy and her friends. Every home should come equipped with a Hannah Gruen.

9) Nancy is truly at home in the world. She'll travel anywhere, talk to anyone, try anything, and everywhere she goes there is a new friend and a new adventure waiting to greet her.

So I guess it's no wonder I still love to read Nancy Drew.
And even imagine I am Nancy, sometimes . . .

Now if I could just get a piece
of Hannah Gruen's
lemon-meringue pie . . .

See you Monday!


Jake and Chelsea said...

i was just packing up my nancy drew stationary today! how fortuitous that you should be writing about our favorite hero at the same time! i was always jealous that hannah looked more like george and me more like nancy, since i always wanted to be george. george is so sporty, yes decidedly feminine, and i always thought she was prettier than nancy.

i also finally wrote a blog. you can check it out!

Allie said...

I adore Nancy Drew. From the time I first discovered her, at age 7, up til now. I can't get enough. I had no idea they changed the stories! I guess I have to go on a quest to get the originals.
Every year at Christmas, I would get 6 new Nancy's. I would have them read by evening, and would spend the next year re-reading all of them.

VO said...

I wanted to be Nancy Drew as a child. I had a friend named Nancy and I wanted that name so badly. I never, ever wanted to be Barbie, not ever.

I swear I think I'm a resourceful woman because of Nancy Drew.

Daryl said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you! For a wonderful blast back to my childhood! I read every Nancy Drew I could get my hands on, and I dreamed of being Nancy Drew too! I was soooo disappointed my daughter didn't show any interest in her. Now, when I need to de-stress, I read the Janet Evanovich "Stephanie Plum" novels. Stephanie is just a 20 something version of Nancy Drew, and really hilarious!

luanne said...

maybe i mentioned before that i only read a few nancy drews when i was young... then i began having terrible nightmares, driving my parents crazy every night, and so the "scary" nancy drews were banished from my reading list. nancy was replaced by the less adventurous cherry ames (student nurse) series, which i loved.

so i'm thinking maybe i should try reading the nancy drews again. we do have a barky dog to protect me now, and you make her sound even better than i remember!

april said...

grace has been reading (and loving) the nancy drew book since your last nancy drew post. i'll get on board one of these days as i love mysteries too.

Blog Widget by LinkWithin