Tuesday, December 2, 2008

JM Antiques and Toys

Every time I drive down Fremont and pass this cool little storefront, I try to catch a glimpse of what's inside. I like to imagine that it contains all the toys from my childhood: Kiddles, a Spirograph, a Mrs. Beasley Doll (without the glasses missing,) a pristine version of the Mystery Date Game, a real EZ Bake Oven (made back when they really could burn little fingers and create gooey little cakes,) Tinkertoys, Shrinkydinks -- and all the other old school/ lead paint/choking hazards of my youth. I'm looking forward to exploring this store. Who knows what I might have forgotten? Or, more likely, who knows what I might discover?

Now, if you could reclaim any wonderful old toy, what would it be?

18 comments:

Keith said...

Wow, you caused a lot of flashbacks with one post! I actually had the spirograph and tinkertoys. What toys would I reclaim? Super Balls or Water Rockets.

Tanya said...

Oh my gosh, I can't believe you haven't been inside. This is my kind of place!
I used to have a Mrs. Beasley too and I had the real EZ Bake. I remember making all these little crackers and cheese (from cheese stix) and popping them in the oven for my family, I thought I was so gourmet! I was totally disappointed when I bought one for Ashlyn years ago and it only had this thin slot that you slide the pan in, I was like "wth"? I could never get into baking with it so Ashlyn doesn't have great memories of the ez bake like we do.
Do you remember the magic window with beach sand in it that you shake? I was just thinking of that yesterday when I was looking at the grey sky, it looked like a Magic Window. Ah, you shouldn't have got me started on nostalgia!

Halcyon said...

I want Dancerella! I think I got this doll when I was 5 or so... it was the only thing I wanted. I talked about it for at least a month leading up to the holidays. My mom still laughs about how sick she was of hearing about Dancerella.

Of course after all the build-up, I was disappointed with her. She never really danced like she did on the commercials. But she was pretty.

http://www.feelingretro.com/toys/Girl-Toys/dancerella.php

Halcyon said...

PS: I also had an easybake. My sister and I used to cook jiffy cakes in it. They never really got fully cooked, but they were pretty good.

Jutilda said...

Mine would have to be CHATTY CATHY. Mine was the original and you pulled a string and she had several phrases. Mattel sold zillions of them. When she quit working, I cried and Mom said she'd buy me another one. I still remember sobbing "But I don't waaaaant another one." I wonder what happened to her. I had the original BARBIE in 1959 too. It is my understanding they were originally made for Japanese men to admire and then Mattel bought them for girls. I love old toys.

Tanya said...

Remember the Chrissy doll that you could pull on her ponytail to give her long hair (there was a button for her belly button you pressed) and then give her a hair cut by winding up the knob on her back?

Ew, creepy what Barbie was originally invented for!

Yakpate said...

I didn't have an EZ-Bake, but I was very good at making mud pies. Did anyone else do that? Maybe this is a Southern thing, but we used mud like clay to mold little cakes and patties, and used pebbles to simulate raisins and nuts. We even sneaked forks from the kitchen to make the same borders we saw our mamas make on pie crusts! (And would have been punished for putting utensils into the dirt if caught!)

My most cherished childhood toy (Oh, the symbolism!) was a Tiny Tears doll. Instead of glamorous blonde hair she had short dark curls, appealing to my nascent feminism, and would cry real tears when filled with water. Maybe one of her clones is waiting to be rescued at JM Antiques and Toys!

Tanya said...

OH we did mud pies too as kids. We had a whole bakery set up!

Dixie Jane said...

Christmas was usually a lean time when I was growing up. But we always hung our socks on the door knobs and awakened with them full. I listened all night for the sound of reindeer hooves on the roof. My all time favorite toy was a doll in a red trunk with clothes. And then there was the baby doll in a pink blanket. Yes, Yak, I played with mud also. I could do creative things with a big box, turn it into a house, etc. Paper dolls were a favorite. I usually made my own, naked. And a wardrobe to make Vera Wang jealous. We moved a lot and I spent a lot of time with little pots and pans playing with the chinaberries from the tree I climbed to retrieve them. How have you avoided going into that store? So nice to step back in time. Thanks for letting us see the storefront.

Tash said...

I love the old building - it looks in good shape too. Laurie, what a thought/memory provoking post - you are amazing. I wish I still had my blue rubber bunny and the Meccano set with a real motor that the boy next door got & that his dad & my dad fooled around with for hours.

Ken Mac said...

so when are you going in? We want a report!

Petrea said...

That building's a beauty! I miss my stuffed polar bear. I was imaginative in naming my toys. His name was Poli.

shanna said...

Mine would be my fully articulated string puppet, Jambo the Jiver. He came with a record that I played on my record player and I could make him dance to the music!!!

I still have my miniature Singer sewing machine. It is a very small duplicate of the real thing and is made of all metal parts. You turn the wheel on the right, by hand, and it sews. It stiill works!

Mister Earl said...

I sold my Lionel Train for $50. In 1982, it would have taken $2,500 to replace what I had. I don't know what it would be today. I also still have my Mickey Mouse marionette. I sold a Pez dispenser I had since childhood on Ebay for $950. I loved my trains, and metal tractors - no plastic toys back then. I also made mud pies! We liked to shoot little white beans through pea shooters. One time one of the older kids made a bow out of a coat hanger and thread and shot wooden matches as arrows. When the matches hit the cement just right, they'd make a bang like a cap. And speaking of caps, I had lots of toy guns. My favorite was the one that had bullets that you could load into the barrel. You put a little round cap into each barrel so it would bang when you pulled the trigger.

USelaine said...

I think my favorite was Lego. My mother's second cousin was Danish, and sent supplies of it to us before it was widely available in the US, if I recall correctly. I never did go for the infant dolls, but at least they didn't give me nightmares like those Trolls (also from Denmark, also later popular here).

Laurie said...

Hi kids,

What a cool trek down memory lane with all y'all! And just in time for Christmas. You know, I think I have more memories of playing with my daughter's toys in the last few years than of the toys in my own childhood. I wonder if she's going to longingly think of her Fisher Price Little People the way I remember my Kiddles. (I particularly loved the ones that came in little perfume bottles with hair that smelled like different flowers. My husband actually bought me one on Ebay a few years ago and it still smelled great! Well, I thought it did... he said it smelled "like an old doll I got on Ebay." Ha!)

I just loved all of your descriptions, everyone. Thanks for sharing. Til tomorrow...

Wayne said...

First off, I'm surprised Tinker Toys were still around when you were a kid Laurie. We had Spirograph and Etch-A-Sketch (which is still around I think). I've never heard of Shrinkydinks. The less said about that the better.

One of my brother's still has the Lionel train set but I haven't seen it for years and years. I recall the engine weighed about 10 lbs. We had slot cars too but they are long gone. Oddly, one of the best presents our parents bought for us was a ping pong table because it gave us a surface to run the trains and slot cars as well as play ping pong.

Thanks for the trip down memory lane LA.

Marina said...

Hi. I just found your article about this and I was wondering if you had been inside yet. I have never seen it open, but I have always been intrigued by it.