Monday, May 10, 2010

The girls play "Japanese," and Martha learns a yoga pose

This is the first letter we've seen from Frances in a good while.  The occasion of the letter seems to be the arrival of a new shipment of brass from Maj. Gillham, but she catches him up on a few other things as well.  The paragraph where she asks Maj. Gillham to send three of everything for Margaret's sake was written on the top part of a page, the rest of which had been torn off.  On the next sheet she explains why, as you will see.

Feb. 9, 1946

Dearest My Own Lovely,

You have been wonderful to all of us.  Every few days we feel like Santa Claus has arrived again!  With each package from you we have Christmas all over again.

The package to the children containing the sake bottle, cups, clogs and tile came.  Also, I discovered the piece from the Jap plane before I threw it out.

My two girls can get into the larger pair of clogs.  Margaret can wear the smalled ones nicely.  The white tabes you sent me Christmas fit my girls and Margaret has a pair from Hawaii that she can't fasten.

Yesterday Margaret and Monty each took a pair of tabes and clogs to school to show their classes.  Each came home feeling most happy and elated over their momentary success at attention!

Today Emily fixed up a box of things to take to show her class.  She took the tabes, clogs, the stamp dolls, the portable pen holder, the brush, a piece of Jap newspaper, the lovely Jap prints you sent at Christmas and some coins.

After school yesterday, the three girls played Japanese.  Cushions on the floor were their chairs.  Emily was the hostess.  Monty and Margaret (the guests) put on the tabes and clogs.  They let Margaret wear Martha's kimono.  As they came in the house, they proceeded in their tabes.  Emily poured each of them a cup of water from the singing sake bottle.  Emily greeted her honorable guests and welcomed them into her most humble abode.  You would have enjoyed it as much as I did!

After they finished their visit, Emily went off to play with a friend.  I let Margaret and Monty wear their Japanese footgear over to Little Five Points and back.  They have thoroughly enjoyed everything you have sent them.

Please, for the sake of unity and harmony around this house, send three of everything.  Margaret nearly dies when she doesn't get something, too.  We try to divide with her, but sometimes there is nothing to give that is equal to our childrens' share. If it means getting less expensive things, OK.  If you can't duplicate the gift, just include something for her.

The rest of the page was just catty house gossip, so I decided to tear it out.

My second load of brass came.  The box was nice, except the top had split.  Nothing was lost.  The outer wrapping and rope held it in place along with nails on top.

What kind of animals are on the collection you sent this time?  I called them cats.  Father said they were dogs.  Monty said they were "just animals."

I was delighted to see pairs of things.  Two pairs of candlesticks, vases and the large vases, too.  The little incense burner is attractive and I just love your favorite piece!

Did you find some of the brass polished or have you been polishing it yourself?  I am going to send you some polish.

The two mirrors, coins, tiny ash tray, bell and bowls arrived in good order.  I was delighted with the brush.  Is the black solid material ink or sealing wax.  I haven't had a brush like that since I took water coloring in college.  We used them to paint with.  Martha's indoor tabes are darling.  We all just laugh when Martha walks across the room in them.  She knows she is the center of attention and enjoys the exhibition.  By the time she is across, her feet are out or sideways.

At the clinic the other day, Martha saw a little girl stand on her head, bent over with her feet still on the ground.  Ever since then Martha has been perfecting her stance.  Every time I change her diaper, she turns over and stands on her head for me.

I am glad you are taking a rest.  I hope you aren't seriously ill.  Is your cold still with you?  Have you had an attack of the arthritis since your cold?  I think it is lovely that you can get to go back to Nikko.  Let me hear all about it.  Did you stay at the inn?  Get the manager to take another picture of you.

I will send you the leave list in the next letter.

The December $100 bond came yesterday.  That leaves only the January and February to come.

All my love to you,

Your own Lovely Dovely,