It Was a Very Good Year – 1975 – 1981

On July 13, 2012, my two daughters surprised me with a big box of wrapped gifts, informing me it was exactly 80 days until my 80th birthday and I would be able to unwrap one gift a day.  The gift items would commemorate a year in my life in some way.  This is what I received this week.

1975 – A collage of pictures from an old area amusement park, Fantasy Farms, including vintage tickets.  One sunny afternoon, my mother and I took my five-year-old daughter to the park.  My mother had just made herself a dress of denim with red bandana trim and also made one for my daughter.  I thought it was a cute idea but my daughter was indignant – not only that she went to an amusement park dressed like her grandma, but that all the other girls were wearing shorts and tee-shirts, not a pretty dress.  My oldest daughter made up the collage that includes bits from a home movie I took that day and some photo-booth antics of my daughter.  She also did a classic 1970s design on the back.



1976 – An RC soft drink bottle commemorating the Bicentennial 1776-1976.  This is even more special because it pictures and lists the Presidents who came from Ohio.


1977– A vintage Atlas Strong Shoulder Mason jar and zinc lid with a 1977 Ohio State Fair blue ribbon and entry tag.  This is amazing for me to receive because I remember so well seeing this woman’s food entries at the Ohio State Fair for many years – most of them with blue ribbons.  The jar dates between 1896-1902.  Somehow, the jar, ribbon and entry tag wound up in a Cincinnati antique store where my oldest daughter found it.


1978 – A 1978 Hallmark Date Book with calendar, gift guide and wedding anniversary gift list.  Also, a First Day of Issue for  the 13-cent square dance stamp, dated April 26, 1978.  This is important to me because I had just graduated from square dance class in March of 1978 and continued to square and round dance for over 15 years.

1979 – The 1979 Royal Copenhagen Christmas plate – Choosing the Christmas Tree.   I’ve always loved Christmas and this plate will be a nice addition to my decorations this year.


1980 – 1980 issue of Quilt World Omnibook.  I hadn’t begun quilting yet in 1980 and I love seeing the patterns, stories and pictures from this era.

1981 – 1981 catalog – Gifts from Top Value Stamps.  These were the stamps our neighborhood store handled and it was like a wonderful bonus to collect the stamps each week and finally have enough to exchange for something nice.  I found a couple of items in this catalog that the girls remembered having in our 1981 kitchen.

All of my posts on this wonderful celebration are listed in Family – My 80th Birthday in my index on the right hand side of the page.

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Lillian Applegate Westfelt was a mother of 4, grandmother of 6, and great-grandmother of 3. She was an 86-year-old widow living in a nice little bungalow with her oldest daughter and a beagle-dachsund named Addie. She passed away in November, 2018.

15 thoughts on “It Was a Very Good Year – 1975 – 1981”

  1. Wow, some amazing finds. Those girls must have combed the local antique stores for months! I love the idea that you have the jar and remember the lady who had an entry in it. Maybe that very one!

  2. I am loving seeing this incredible series of gifts! So clever and so much thought has gone into obtaining them all. The mixture of the personal (that wonderful memory board from the amusement park) and the social/commercial (that bottle is amazing) is the best sort of history.

  3. This was a very thoughtful gift from your family. I have no doubt it will provide many good memories for you over the coming years. Happy 80th birthday!

    1. Thank you for visiting my blog and for introducing me to yours. I went in and read a couple of posts – and immediately subscribed. So funny. Lillian

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