September 11, 1944
First, I would like to introduce you to my family and give you a picture of my home. There are only four of us, my gifted, exacting father, my sweet, ever-busy mother, my impish, nature-loving sister and myself. During the summer we all worked harder than ever for before the war we had a man to do most of the heavy work and the chores which consist of taking care of the animals. we have quite a menagerie: goats, a dog, chickens, some geese, ducks, pigeons, and a horse. The house is an old rambling one, parts of which are about a century and a half old. we live on a farm, which must be quite evident by now, about four miles from town in the beautiful quiet of the country. No barking dogs, except our own, no honking horns, no crying children disturb our peace. All is quiet.
What I like to do best after a day of weeding, sawing, haying and harvesting is to rest. Not by punching a bag as one of our helpers did but by drawing or reading. I suppose drawing is one of my hobbies although I can think up much more beautiful pictures than draw them.
Of all things I like such simple ones as lying in bed at night and listening to the cold wind moan and whistle past my windows, the quiet sifting of the snow as it softly nestles into place on my window sill, the silent, subdued appearance of the world when I awake while the snow is still falling, a springtime twilight symphony, the rain in my face, a lovely melody, a thunderstorm, a gold and amethyst sunset, the feel of a fresh morning breeze, dust drifting in the sun shimmering like particles of gold, the clean smell of newly laundered sheets, the beauty and the heavy fragrance of the wisteria in full bloom and fresh black bread with butter.
Those things I like and these I dislike: getting up from a warm bed into the icy cold of the room, the prickle of hay down my back, so-called modern art, jazz and swing, the more complex parts of grammar, remembering dates, washing pots and pans, and oatmeal for breakfast. I dislike it just as much when I don’t know how to stop writing, so if you don’t mind, I’ll end right here.