Friday, September 30, 2011

Another Show!

 Guess who just landed the part of Gideon Pontipee! The youngest and shortest redhead of the Seven Pontipee Brothers.

This show is going to be a HOOT!


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Pyrex (1) Hipsters (0)

On our Denton trip I picked up a few pieces of Pyrex. I was so disappointed at some of the antique stores we went in, they were those places that have all kinds of everything, and nothing at the same time. Patricia had scouted out the "Desert Dawn" 8 inch round a few weeks ago.
At first I passed on it as it had a $15 price tag, but after all our shopping I decided to give it another try. I went in and as I was checking out the lady said "OH I love this stuff!"  and I said "Really? Whats your favorite piece?" and she said "I just love my two-quart casseroles"  and I said "I love my 404's and cake pans!" and she paused a minuet and said - "Tell ya what, your a good kid, I can tell- you can have it for $10." SOLD!

*  *  *
During our walk around the square, we stopped into a "Hipster" run antique store, (and you know my encounters/ feelings for hipsters) After searching and searching, it looked like the oldest thing in the shop was from 1989. Then in the back of the store about 10 feet from where I was standing, My Pyrex senses started tingling.
I saw the very top of this Butterprint Cinderella its a (number)  I dug it out from where it was and saw it had no price tag. CRAP I thought, these hipsters (whom I loathe the idea of) are going to take me to the bank on this... So I go up to the counter and the girl behind the register puts down her mandolin and cat and says "Can I help you?" I said "yes, could you tell me how much this bowl is?" *she looks it over* "Wow this old, like REALLY old I don't think I've ever seen one like this before... *Aw Crap, I think* she then says "Well its really grungy, and I don't think thats coming off... how about $10?"  SOLD!
Well when I got home that night, I let it soak in hot bubbly water and used one of those magic cleaning eraser sponges and it cleaned right up and looks brand new!

We couldn't help but smile, we got a $35 bowl for $10 because of that girls unwillingness to give it a good scrub! 

I think we're going to keep Oranges in it... take THAT Hipsters!


Monday, September 26, 2011

SUPRISE Weekend In Denton!

Well Readers,
Saturday was Patricia's Birthday, and she had to stay down at school and was sad. Well for about a month now friends Jenny, Emily and myself have been planning a surprise trip to see her on her Birthday!
(Friend Emily waiting outside of Patricia's dorm to Surprise her with me!)
I wish I could have filmed when Patricia came out of the door! She was so happy to see us, and we'd all kept our visit a secret so she was TOTALLY surprised! After we pried her from our necks, we whisked her away to the Denton Square for some antique/thrift shopping.
(Friends Emily, Patricia, & Jenny!)
Denton is a College town, and the square has lots of neat little shops and antique places, we wandered them all! Stopping for a picture here and there...
It was lots of fun and we picked up some Pyrex! (That I will share Wednesday) After our walk we asked Pat where she wanted to go for her Birthday dinner, and she said Hooters... So we picked up friend Logan from T.W.U.  and headed out to eat!
(Logan & Emily)
(Me & Pat)
(Emily & Jenny fighting about their hooters in Hooters...)
After dinner we all headed back to Patricia's dorm to watch a movie, we picked "Drop Dead Gorgeous"  and that set us up for the rest of the evenings events. If your familiar with the movie, you will know its a Mock-umentary  set in a small town in Minnesota, it has a great cast of stars, and they all speak with heavy Midwest accents.  Well after watching the movie, WE all started talking with heavy Midwest accents and decided to hit the Denton Square again! 
(The Court house in the Square all lit up around 8:00 P.M.)
We first went to "Denton Square Donuts" 
(Us making squares)
These donuts are like no other!  They are square and you can get anything on them from plain chocolate frosting, to fruit loops, to bacon! we ordered in our accents and then the games began, lucky for us "Church Basement Ladies"  was set in Minnesota so we answered every question they through out like natives!
A quick walk around the Square then we stopped for old fashioned ice cream.
( Happy Birthday Patricia )

It was at the Ice cream parlor that a group of people heard us talking in out thick accents and asked "Are you guys from Minnesota?" to which we all replied (even thicker) "Oh Yah, GO BADGERS!!!" and they totally bought the act and thought we were serious! Having enjoyed our frozen treats, friend Logan suggested we go over to the Texas Women's University campus and he could give us a late night ghost tour! (He is part of the historical society at the university)  So away we went...
He took us all over campus showing us all kinds of sights and telling us all kinds of tales.
 (Tour Guide Logan)
This building particularly sent chills up my spine, when it was being constructed in 1934 one of the workers died on site. Rather than file and accidental death report and holding up construction, the Foreman filed a Missing Persons report and hid the mans remains IN THE PILLARS OF THE COLONNADE. Logan is leaning against the pillar that structural X-rays taken in 2007 revealed a Femur and full left arm/hand from the elbow down. There are four 20 foot pillars on the colonnade... all of which have, shall we say - spare parts in them.

Spooky, spooky, spooky after our tour we stayed a little while longer with Logan and then finally had to call it a night as Emily and myself had to make the hour and a half drive back to Wichita Falls. It was a wonderful and Patricia was so happy we all came to see her! I owe a HUGE thanks to Friends Jenny and Emily for helping me pull the surprise off, I don't think we could have possibly done it any better!


Friday, September 23, 2011

Cooking Up Fun!

(Friends Lara, Spencer & Patricia over for Sunday Lunch!)

Well Readers, 
I'm currently stuck in that dreadful time between shows where one show is closing (killing your weekend as you have to be there to store props)  and not quite ready to begin work on the next set... It also keeps me away from my beloved Casablanca... So here are some photo's of the food I've been cooking up in the Kitchen. 
I put together an old recipe of my Great Grandmother Jordan's for (what we call now) Monkey Bread , I was worried for a while because I didnt know if i was following the instructions correctly but it turned out great!
I hate to show you the product with out lending the recipe, but that brings me to something the members of the Casablanca have been thinking about. We've been thinking about putting together a cook book of "Kitchen Favorites" straight from the Casablanca, everything of course being cooked, tested, and rated by our members for the official stamp of approval. 

I know in this day and age of "Google"  you can pretty much get any recipes for you name it, but this book would be a little more personal and FULL of good food (lots of what you see in our pictures!) All of the entries being easy, good home cooking featuring (my personal favorites) Put it in the oven and walk away meals. At this time we have no idea how much it would cost to get everything made up and printed, but would any of you out there in Blog land be interested in purchasing a copy of the final product? 

Like I said, we are just toying with the idea and gathering this and that, but feedback is nice!

So, what are your thoughts?!


Wednesday, September 21, 2011


Okay so I know I'm a little late to this party, but Patricia has gotten almost all the Casablanca members hooked on Mad Men! She's been watching the season via Netflix and I've been buying the DVD's. Well a few night ago Patricia sent me a picture from the set of Joan's apartment asking "Don't we have that?"
"Have what?" I texed back... Then I saw it!
I proceeded to hop around with glee, as we don in fact have the very same Atomic TV Antenna!
I purchased this antenna for $12 in at my favorite Junk store in Kansas, BEFORE it (and Mad Men) ever made a debut on AMC! My Mother made such a big deal out of my paying twelve WHOLE dollars for it at the time, but seeing as they are going from anywhere of $19 - $200 on the big auction site, I think, know I got mine for  a steal!

Don't cha just love it when that happens?!


Monday, September 19, 2011

The King & I

To say this show didn't sneak up and catch me off guard would be a falsehood...
(The King of Siam's study, circa 1863)
The Kings study is a massive 2 story set that about 98% of the show takes place in, the Golden guilt door is the highlight (on loan and costing $1,600), as are the windows that have lights behind them that change colors, friend Joe found the gong and built the stand.The chest you see in the left of the picture I made from two other pieces of furniture and the Scenic Artist Chris painted.
It took massive amounts of work from everyone to get this set done, it took the collaboration of Mr. Jackson, Mr. Sanders, and Myself to arrive at the finished product.  For this show I mostly did props and paint effects, one of the many things I pulled out of storage was this trunk.
I pulled this trunk out of a dumpster during the lake Diversions "Clean up days" is was in really bad shape, so I fixed it up and painted it black. Later the neighbor lady comes over (I thought to ask for it back) and tells me that her husbands Great Great grandparents brought this trunk over to America with them when they came in 1850!
 (Hannah & Chelsey)
Because the stage is black, I repainted the trunk with a period color scheme and it looks great!
 (Friend Peyton helping out)
For the side stages of the "Palace"  I used a marbling paint effect with a white base coat, gold veining and soft pink undertones. It took a few tries but the finished result looks like marble from the audience.
On either side of the steps in the Kings study we placed these cast iron urns with simulated flames in them, Joe Painted them to match the colors of the painted carvings on the Door piece.
(Looks like a real flame doesn't it!)
The most tedious part of the props in this show, was getting everything perfect for the "Small House of Uncle Thomas" Ballet  I wish I could record it and show it... but ours is pretty close to this one here in the one the 1956 movie -

 One of the best props I made for this scene was the Sun that I cut out of wood.
We also have a  real Victorian doll we use as the baby "George" that I will have to add a picture of later.
I made period looking parchment paper by tea staining regular printer paper...

I can honestly say for the last month everyone at the theatre has been working night and day to make sure this show lived up to its elaborate roots. The costume dept resembled a sweat shop, but they came in on time and everything looks beautiful.
("Getting to know you, getting to know all about you")
I love how imperial and ancient the Study turned out, we used all kinds of lighting and paint and special effects to make it appear as another way of life in another time.  The local paper just raved about the whole production having this to say about the sets- 

"The grandeur, the glittery dance numbers, the smoke and mirrors? The historic theater loves the showmanship, and so Rodgers and Hammerstein's indelible classic, "The King and I," which opened Thursday night, is a perfect fit..."

"The musical gets its due, thanks to an incredible set designed by Mickey Jordan: a towering, gilded, elaborately carved doorway draped on one side with lush fabrics that sets the stage..."

"In Act 2, when Tuptim presents a play, her version of Harriet Beecher Stowe's "Uncle Tom's Cabin."It is the most artistic scene in the musical, complete with involved ballet choreography by Stephanie Sanders, along with masks, fabrics meant to represent waves, and snowflakes tied to the end of sticks to represent snow."


There is no way I can take all the credit for the set, I didn't design all of this one, I just set dressed and did the props but everyones efforts came together beautifully! This is the Wichita Theatre's first production of "The King & I" and with kind words like that, its enough to make you want to dance!

Undoubtedly my favorite scene in the stage play or movie - (I'm a sucker for dancing) Chalk another Production to success!

I have yet to get a picture of the Set team, but I owe a HUGE thanks to My Co-Captians Joe and Mary, along with Terrace, Katie, Ryan,  Lynn, Bryson, Chris and everyone else who came up and helped get this beast finished! These projects always seem so much easier than they are when I type them up for the blog!

*As Always if you've found these sets by a Google search looking for ideas for your production, I ask that you Please email me before using anything you see here. -Thanks*


Friday, September 16, 2011

Business As Usual...

(Friends Mary & Terrace. Photo courtesy of friend Lynn Marshall.)


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Drop Me A Card!

Well Readers,
This weekend while clearing out and making room for the cabinet I decided to go through all our old postcards (as the bowl was overflowing) I decided to keep some of the neat old ones and the ones from all our friends addressed "Care of the Casablanca". While sorting through them I discovered this postcard in the stack in the bowl at the Casablanca. It was sent by a friend to my Great Great Grandmother Mangrum.
"-This was the ship I come over on, sure was nice and big Nancy & Al met me in Harbor France, I am going to Holland May 3, Love McKinnins."
April 10 1956 -
"Here I am  in Germany a long ways from Kemp Blvd! I had a wonderful trip slept good every night. this is alright to visit Germany is clean, very few of the people speak English. It snowed Sunday we went to church and drove around in the afternoon There is so much to see, most of the people walk old women a cane, all have a bag or satchel they don't put anything in sacks, the stores are small. Write me a line all are fine."

* * *
I have always loved things from old luxury liners, if you'll remember I even had Parties  for some of them. When I read on the postcard that the ship was the S.S. United States I got REALLY excited because i could have sworn that was the ship Lucy and Ricky Ricardo sail to Europe on in 1956...
(The Ship the Ricardos sailed on was the S.S. Constitution - Rats!)
*  *  *
So I did a little history on the S.S. United States-

Turns out the S.S. United States designed by William Francis Gibbs was the fastest ship of her time, in 1952, on her maiden voyage (July 4th 1952) as the new flagship of the United States Lines, the United States captured the Blue Riband with the fastest eastbound and westbound transatlantic crossings on record. The entry of the United States marked the first time a U.S.-flagged ship held the Blue Riband, surpassing European speed records.

(Click to enlarge pictures)
 The interior of the ship was of the finest ever presented on an American Line, truly the flag ship of the United States.
It was The way to go to Europe form America, so many famous names and faces made her passenger list over the years - John Wayne, Judy Garland, Marlon Brando, Walt Disney, Jackie Gleason, Harry Trueman, Bob Hope just to name a few!

*  *  *
But just like most of the grand dames of yesteryear, The S.S. United States was dry docked in Philadelphia in 1996, in 2007 there was rumor of the ship being sold for scrap.  By 2010 there was a group formed to save, revivie, and preserve this piece of American history as a hotel. As of Aug 5 2011 plans were still alive and provable for the ship.
Its so cool that I've been passed down this postcard and little piece of history! The other fascinating thing I realized while wrapping up this post is the date, April 10th 1956 - just under three months before the sinking of the Italian ship Andrea Doria, on July 25th 1956 and the overall decline of the "Trans-Atlantic Luxury Liner age".