64 Christmas dinner and opening presents
Gloria (Stafford) Hansen and Harriet (Stafford) Dukelow
December 25, 1934
The day is soon over and quiet has descended on this home. Daddy is going to take H and G on the paper route as it has turned very cold. The snow is drab or gray from the strong wind and it makes me feel, strongly, thanks for this good home. Uncle Paul’s came and brought Byron early this morning but they left right after dinner as they didn’t dare drive in the dark in a blizzard. But I’m so glad they came. It made Christmas more lovely. I had thot I wouldn’t stand it very well with you not home, but your lovely gifts and a letter from you last night made it seem as tho you were here.
Thank you for my lovely bed spread and scarf. The children presented the bed spread first and all waited while I opened it. I hated to open all the pretty packages from New York—I think you wrap them nearly as well as Aunt Evelyn does. I mean I hated to disturb the pretty wrappers.
We ate your candy and peanuts and talked about you and what you were doing etc. Daddy loves his scarf. When I looked at it—he was afraid the card you sent with it would get lost—because he said, “Now what did you do with the card?” So I found it and read it and I shall keep it with the scarf for him. But Kinny dear you sent us too much. The shirt for Daddy is very good quality and will wear a long time. I’ll try to get Daddy to write and thank for his own things. He means Thank you, but you know he hates to write.
Your last type written letters are as good as anybody’s I think. I hope your shorthand will improve. Frances said today, “Anyone doesn’t need to think shorthand is easy—it’s hard as mathematics.” They were both glad to hear about you all.
Tillie was here yesterday. I gave her coffee because it was Christmas Eve. She said last year she was here on Christmas Eve and you camp fire girls were here packing boxes and you sang for her and took her for a ride and home. I remembered it when she began to tell it. She said I should thank you for her hanky—told Harriet that you are a dear friend to have.
Well we had a good dinner today—if I do say it myself—turkey—rutabaga—mashed potatoes—cranberries—fresh rolls I baked yesterday –dressing–Fruit Salad on lettuce—celery–blueberry pie. Who could have better? Paul and Frances always praise my dinners a lot and they did this one. Pennie is growing and very pretty. She liked the doll I dressed for her. Frances said she needed pillow cases.
What do you think Frances brought me? Lovely Alice blue silk crepe for a dress—it’s such heavy pretty material. She said, “Now you make this for yourself.” I said I would, surely, because Kinny didn’t need it anyhow.
The girls will write to you tonight and tell you what they got. They wouldn’t like it if I stole their thunder. Winnie gave me stationary to write to you on. She and Byron will not go back till tomorrow morning.
I might as well tell you I had to sniffle just a little last night at supper time, but Daddy and all of them poked fun at me—altho I think they just did that to hide their own feelings. I’m not telling this to make you feel bad but just to let you know I missed you.
I’ve been so thankful to God so many times over Christmas time, that you are there where everyone is so kind and cares for you—I don’t know why I should deserve such a blessing through you and Uncle ROC’s.
Last Sunday night the worship service went without a hitch. I don’t think Myron and Sidney ever played better. Rev. Robertson reminded us in his message that now as well as at his birth—there is no room for Christ. He said business, pleasures, household cares and most everything are allowed first place in preference to Christ.
Maybe you can send Eleanor Swenson a note for New Year’s. She was at the Service with the rest of the Swenson’s of course.
I got up at 4:30 this morning and got ready for Lutheran Church Julotta. I woke Harriet and she wanted to go too. We got home at 6:45 and then I got to work and fixed the turkey and baked the pies.
Tomorrow I must wash—Daddy says the thermometer is going down-8 below zero now. I will hang the clothes upstairs then.
Now I want to write to Aunt Evelyn and Uncle ROC so this is all for you.
Love from your Mother.
To Kinney Jane, 71 Iris Ave., Floral Park, New York:
Thank you so much for that cute doll carriage, and doll and pillow, mattress and blanket. Mother says you did well to take such nice little stitches. The purses are also just lovely. I got some play money from Marjorie and I put it in there, also some real money of my own. I also liked my good luck penny. Mother gave us 50 cents to put in. We have plenty of the letters to write now. We have been playing with our dolls most of the day.
I went to church with mother this morning at 5 o’clock and came back at 15 to 7 when we came home the downtown Christmas lights were still on and it looked as tho we were coming from evening service about 9 or 10 o’clock. When we got home Gloria woke up and cried because we hadn’t taken her with.
Aunt Frances brought us a tam with a tassel on it and a scarf not a stocking cap but just a plain tam. I got stockings from Nellie and Annie, bloomers from Winnie, scrap book from Bobby Arneson, and the Scrap Book “The Life of Our Lord” from Russell. Well—good nite and love, Your sister Harriet. P.S.—Aunt Esther made and gave both Gloria and me a nice pretty dress which she made herself. She had fagotting on the collar and smocking on the dress. Your sister Harriet Stafford.
First I opens the dolls carriage. Then I finds a blanket what do you think I finds a nice pillow. Thank you for the real nice purse. Last night Mother gave me 50 cents to put in it. I got a nice cap and scarf from Penelope. From Karls I got a dress. Aunt Esther made it. From Nellie I got some stockings. From Winnie I got some blommers. Harriet gave me a doll and a package of gum. Bud gave me a Book of our gang. Mother is going to read “The Life of Our Lord” to us. Lots of Love, Gloria.