Tucked in my trundle

August 20th, 1931

Among Forty-Three Kisses
and Sixty-Seven Hugs.
But not Down and Out.
Thurs. 9 P.M. Aug. 20.

My Dollings!

My Heart is
Not Broken,
You have remembered me via Air Mail – Believe It or Not, I heard from you at 10 A.M. this Auntie Meriden.

Now I am tucked in my little trundle and all the other little Bears are also in hibernation.  Not Believe It Or.  (I have to sit up to keep the lamp company or it will go out.)

It was cloudy & cool today, rain Tues. night, and I have been actually getting fat since hot weather.  No one eats creme but me and I eat it on creamcheese all the time.  So no skeletons will haunt your house when I rattle home.

Yesterday Loyall and I painted most of the kitchen floor and I washed & boiled a big wash.  Today I ironed it all and painted the rest of the kitchen and the hall floor.  Besides I had two callers and cleaned and mopped the front room and got the usual three meals.

Rev. Wroten (husband of Audrey Iams, organist in M.E. church, Green, when Lloydine was there) who is now and was in 1905 – Methodist preacher in Green, called.  Mother could not remember him altho he calls three times a year, until she talked awhile and he told her his name, etc.  Then she was very glad to see him.  He came to ask if the Ladies Aid, 20 women, of Green could call on Mother’s birthday Sept. 14, and if I could stay till then.  I could not think it best for Mother so I am asking them not to come but send birthday cards if they wish.  I know Dr. Morton will tell them she has trouble with her heart and anything exciting is to be avoided.

As it happens there are five or six neighbors here who have planned to come over and Mrs. Chaffee is going to make a big cake with candles and cook the coffee and have charge.  It will be only chosen friends and Mother will like that much better.

You poor little lonesomes will be orphans cheerfully awhile longer, I know, when you think how Mother wants me to stay here as long as I possibly can be spared.  I really can‘t set a date but know now I can‘t leave on the 26th as I had hoped.  I may not get home until College opens but will come as soon as I can get away from here without too much shock to Mother (She had hoped I could stay always.)  I am now counting on about the 3d to leave here, but as I say, it may be later.  It won’t be sooner.  She often thinks I am her youngest sister (Aunt Emma)  She is wonderfully pleased with the painted floors.  The kitchen is oak (orange yellow) as it was before.  I shall give it another coat tomorrow.  We could walk on all of it tonight, and did.  I had to dry it daytimes because Mother walks at night and could not keep off of it without we watched carefully.  It dried in 4 1/2 hours.  It is 11 x 15 1/2 and took 1 1/3 qts. of paint as the boards are worn hollow.  My brush is 30 years old and the handle is so split by nails it was hard to hold together (but I would have used a rag if necessary!)  John used it last week in tar for roofing the hog-shed and I have no turpentine but used gasoline and kerosene to clean it somewhat.  (You have no idea of what life is, my birdies, till you’ve lived it on a farm!)  (And a 3 inch brush!)

Bow Wow.  Our dog Spot is the happiest dog and I wish you had him.  I had a notion to take him along (to get rid of him); but I guess he would not be happy there, and Grandma likes him here.  I have an old (15 or more yrs) Granny Cat who won’t come in but meets me for food twice daily and lives in the orchard.  She is stiff and creaky of joint but really pretty of face.  My personal bodyguard.  Then Mother has the young Mother Cat who can open screen doors herself, and Two White Kittens.   They all romp all over the house and the kittens sleep in the open windows or in a wash boiler in the hall.  They are as alike as two peas and 1/3 grown.  Play with a broom or spools or a piece of corn cob, by the hour.  Play hide and seek together and scrap in fun.  Mother calls them her “Playthings.”

Loyall has a pet rabbit that drinks milk and sits in the West window and EATS what he gives it in the woodshed between “sits”.  I feed Spot two quarts of sour milk daily and scraps.  I feed something all day long and I am ready to go to bed when I get a chance.  I sleep soundly until 5:30 or 6:00 too.  Thank goodness I don’t have to feed the chickens nor John’s piglets, hoglets, and other creatures of the barnyard, cow-yard, calves, horses, ad lib.

Our callers at sundown tonight were:  Mrs. Chaffee, daughter Marion Davis, two granddaughters, Diane and ?, and sister-in-law Laura Chaffee as chauffer.  We had a lovely visit, Marian especially asking to see Lloydine’s “Baby Book” which Mrs. C. had seen (when threshers were here.)  Marian was a Dietician & College graduate before she married and at Mayo’s a year.  Her hubby is a civil engineer employed by the State of Kansas.  Mrs. C. sent Mother a box of cling peaches yesterday, ripe and sweet, to eat.  She likes them.  Marian & Laura thot the “Book” wonderful.

Tuesday I attended the “Farm Bureau” which is extention study sponsored by Kansas State College at Manhattan, and supported by taxation, for farm woman & others all over the State.  It is a fine idea and carried on remarkably well by groups of women in each township (or two.)  The College supplies lessons and literature for every member each meeting and the programs are stipulated in detail.  They meet in members homes.  We studied foot comfort – Shoes and Hosiery, and learned everything a college could tell about selecting shoes, exercising the foot, how to walk, diseases, etc. etc. and kinds of hosiery – size, etc.  Then we had a lesson in Gesso (chess-o – German).  We each were given a picture, some celotex (or some wall board) and the proper kind of mucilage.  We mounted the picture leaving a narrow edge.  We applied floor wax to picture & rubbed to a soft finish.  The instructor gave the recipe for gesso and we copied it.  Then she mixed it as per recipe.  With kitchen knives we spread half the frame roughly.  With nut picks we designed.  Then finished the frame.  I used a toothpick, I had an etching of a church.  After half an hour we mixed shellac and bronze pwd. for gold, and blue pwd. also.  Applied as we wished with small brushes.  I put blue in hollows and gold in high spots.  I gave mine to Mother and she likes it and put it on the front room wall.  The etching is rough so pretty nice.  The gesso was whiting and turpentine and varnish I believe and cost 35 cents for about 15 pictures.  The wall board was 45 cents for a half a sq. yd. about.

It was great fun.  Talking to the women while they did it, especially.  Mrs. Dexter and Frances & Helen took me home in their Pontiac Six and Leonard Chaffee came for me in his Ford coupe.  Chaffees have a big car also but I don’t know what kind.

Now you see what makes my letters long.
Save the pictures:  My Dollings!

(Stick figures and x’s in a “Ham-Bones” expression and ‘explanation’ – simple graphic image).

Choke the veteran and comb the bushes for other victims.  If you can’t sell we will move in and keep two college girl room mates – one with a car.  I would just as soon if we can.  That is if we can raise the furniture.  Or if we can get along awhile longer just keep on trying to sell and someone will be buying before long I am sure.  It has been a bad time of year to show the place.  When College starts is better.  I am not surprised that market is slow now.  I would like to hug you both for writing so nicely to me, after 12 long days wait.  I know I am sometimes slow too but I try nobly to write often, don’t I?  I am very well & hope you are better.

Lovingly and Devotedly – Mama Scud.  xx oo

P.S.  Don’t fail to tell me what I asked about my package gift, gifts.  If you haven’t already.  I owe a letter.

Next HNB Letter – August 22, 1931.

[1931.08.20 / day – HNB to GDM & LDM in San Diego, California.]

Road is torn up

August 12th, 1931

Green, Thursd. the 12th?

Dear Lloydine,

Will scratch a note as Loyall is going to Green and the mail does not come past here as the road is torn up for a few days.

Do write & tell me if part of the Birthday gifts were from Grandma* so I can acknowledge them if they were.  She said hers would be a couple days late & there has not been any other pkg.

I & we are very well.  Grandma not so well mentally as a week ago.  It worries her herself very much as she says she always was so smart and could answer anything.

The weather is around 75 degrees this week.  It was 54 degrees at 6:30 A.M. Tuesday.  I put on more clothes.  It is wonderful to work and sleep.  I am already getting fat again (?).

Ludwig’s Ida Lund & Lorraine were over all yesterday P.M. and 15 mo. old boy baby.  There are 6 children now (Maxine & L. in High School at Green) The other 3 boys in Pleasant Hill**  L. remembers you she said.  She is 14.

Tomorrow I am going out for the first time.  To a neighborhood party at Osborne’s Springs near May Day*** for Curtis Lund who teaches in Minnesota Univ.  He is home for 10 days after Summer school (Frank’s boy)  It is a picnic.

Must close.  Love.
Your doting Mama Rosy.

P.S.  Send piece quilt scraps if you can.  Mother has not quite enough.  Send to me not her.  You needn’t write her if you haven’t unless you send it to me to read first.  Send pieces quick as she is sure I can get some more and the house is bare.

Next HNB Letter – August 20, 1931.

Note: *Hemme’s birthday was on August 5th, the implication (or fear) is that her mother may have sent her present to San Diego “automatically”.  ** Pleasant Hill is a nearby ‘community’ and school where Hemme taught when she was about nineteen.  ***May Day is another community and school where HNB taught, when she was 15 or 16 years old.

[1931.08.12 / Thursday – HNB to LDM in San Diego, California.]