Letters from Mom – Dealing with David

This letter is nine 1/4 months before I was born.  Dad is away teaching; Mom is raising six kids in a farmhouse. The incident with David, my oldest brother who was ten at the time, illustrates Mom’s refusal to let things “slide” by her.  More letters here.

1-21-57

Dearest,

Monday’s wash is done and the noon news is on so I should have time to dash off a note before the mailman comes.

You are probably wondering about David’s note.  He begged me for a pencil when down at the Gospel Book Store and I refused him, because he has several now, and I had already bought him a new Sugar Creek story.  Mrs. Gage gave him a liquid lead pencil [??]  to try out and he just kept it.  I didn’t know anything about it until somehow it came out on Saturday.  One of the other youngsters mentioned it and he finally admitted that he had one and first told me that he thought she meant for him to keep it.  But after awhile he told me he knew better and had just kept it.  So I asked him to write Mrs. Gage and tell her and send the money for it and also to write you and tell you what he had done.  He really hated to do that.  But after they were in the mail box and he sat on my lap and talked to me about it, he was so happy to have it out in the open and taken care care of.  Several times during the day he told me he was glad about that.  I do believe he gets his love from pencils from you. [not love of, but love from – interesting] It always amazed [him] how many different kinds you kept around and ready for use.  He said he was really tempted to take an eversharp that he saw down there but he didn’t and now is glad that he didn’t.

We have been having a siege of diarrhea [what a colorful phrase!]  around here. Dorothy was seized with it last night just before time for church so we didn’t go. […] Danny took sick with diarrhea during the night and doesn’t feel good now.  Funny how it hits all at once – the stuff just poured out of him for about two hours.  Just kept changing him.  He didn’t complain or cry, but Dorothy was in pain last night. […]

Well, I will close and get my boys down for a nap.  Danny really needs one after last night.  Much love from all of us – pray for us and we have to decide about the Bollman house [a new living situation] right away.

                                All my love,

                                Nellie

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