31 Acacia Avenue.
Oct. 21st 1952
Cec is back at the Lab. this evening & left strict instructions for me to go to bed early, & as I was late last night I will be good & do as he says! However, I thought if I began a letter to you it would be a step in the right direction & I would be encouraged to get on & finish it tomorrow!
Lindy & I had ourselves such a time today! We went to town on the streetcar!! It was the first time she’d been on one of course, & the first time I’d had her in town by myself, so it was quite an adventure, but we both enjoyed it & now I have done it once I won’t be scared of doing it again. Actually, now that she will stand up & walk a little it isn’t as much effort as when she had to be carried all the time. I was glad it was a success as I had such a frustrating time on Sat. I left Linda with Cec & drove down to Frieman’s & parked the car there – I wanted to get 1. leggings for Lindy 2. cheap cotton material for a cover for the daybed we got when we got the sofa & chair & 3. meat from Alberts & tomatoes from the Market. I thought I would be able to do the whole lot in an hour easily & be back home, but I couldn’t get a thing! Lindy is wearing the white corduroy coat from her Granny C. most of the time now- I have moved the buttons over & shortened it & she looks a pet in it with her pink bonnet, but of course her little legs are bare, so I saw other babies wearing white fleece lined leggings, with straps under the shoes & thought I would get her some. Well, I tried Frieman’s, Caplan’s, Laroque’s & another shop I don’t know the name of, & either they had none or they were the wrong size. I was so disgusted, as it has become really cold & I wanted to get something warm for the little thing, but I had to leave it. The material was the other thing I wanted to get while I still have Lee’s machine – the daybed is a funny affair – just a metal frame with springs – normally it just looks so-
Actually, end on it is like this- these two things are kind of flaps which will raise up and make it a double bed size if you want. There is no mattress proper- just a kapok pad which folded in two makes the seat part or opened right out will cover the whole bed when it is extended. Not very comfy for 2, but reasonable for 1, & could be used in an emergency. Anyway, the thing is covered with a grubby, torn black patterned cotton not worth keeping, so I wanted something gay, but cheap to take its place. Could I get it? Not a thing under 79¢ yd. mostly & a few I saw at 65¢ yd. were either pale colours or something unsuitable. I ended up by getting home at 2:45 with only meat and tomatoes, having had no lunch, to find Cec trying to cope with Linda who had refused both her bottle & bed! In addition he was supposed to pick up Pete & Lu & Leslie at 3.0 to take them to Pete’s new Lab.’s Open Day, so he was in a tizzy too!
Today went much better. Lindy & I went down Green St. & got the tram at the bottom after a short wait – she just stood beside me as good as gold & watched the “cars” & “doggies”! She was very quiet & wide-eyed & amazed in the tram to begin with & gazed at everyone, but by the end of the ride was chanting “car-car-car” & having a good time. Quite a lot of the people were smiling at her etc. so of course I was a very proud Mama! We got off on Sparks Street & just crossed the road to Zellers & with no trouble at all I got her white leggings to fit & the girl helped me put them on her right away. They have a zipper on the side of each leg & come up to her armpits so should last her till it gets really cold anyway & then we will get her a little snowsuit. Then we went across the road again to Bryson Graham’s & I went up to their material department to the furnishings. Their cheapest cotton was 65¢ yd. & very gaudy colours so I said no & was coming away when I saw in the dress materials, print cotton reduced to 50¢ yd. & such pretty colours & patterns. I chose a nice gay little red & blue pattern & felt v. pleased with myself, so Lindy & I thought we had done pretty well & came home v. satisfied! We both slept all afternoon to recover!!
It is now Friday, 24th & my how the time flies! I got your 2 A.M.’s (No.s 1 & 2) yesterday – thank you so much for them & I was so glad to know that you had at last got some mail from me. When you were worried & kept writing & writing that no letters had come, I knew I had written quite a few & that they must turn up eventually. That reminds me, a letter arrived for you from your dumb bank in St. V. the other day (statement I suppose) so I will enclose it in one I am going to send via sea with Ruth’s letter & also patterns of my various purchases of materials, so that you can see what they are like. Also, a pattern for our sitting room curtains! Yes, I had a fat letter from Dottie last week with various patterns & we chose one & I wrote back at once & asked her to get it. We are a little bit disappointed because we asked for a gay floral-type material with a cream ground & Dottie tells us that the good heavy materials are mostly plain or self-patterned or at most 2 colours, so we have had to end in getting a cheaper material (7/11 yd.) and will have to line them. Dottie sent 4 patterns- 1. Heavy thick linen, (we liked the material) but it was a dull muddy background & it had a pattern of herbaceous border type flowers, but also dull & muddy looking- the whole very conventional & rather country Vicarage-ish!! 2. A pinky-puce flowered material with green leaves, on a gray & white background – Dottie was keen on this, but not us – we wanted cream not white & don’t care for the pucey-pink 3. kind of conventional squared pattern on cream with bright pinks, blues, greens, browns – neither of us liked it & 4. the one we chose- a cream ground with bricky red flowers, (chrysanthemums?) green leaves & a few blue flowers – As far as we can tell from the pattern it looks nice – the red & blue go with the Indian rug & the green with the end wall, which I think is pretty good & later on we plan to get the puce sofa & arm chair covered – they definitely aren’t in our colour scheme & we only bought them because they were a bargain in spite of the colour! They are good & solid & v. comfy too.
So now I am longing for the material to come & to get the curtains made & up! Lee has been in Toronto for 2 weeks so I have been having a fine time with her machine. Lindy’s curtains are made & up and she highly approves – I have made the valance affair (partly pleated) for “your” bed & a daytime cushion cover for the pillow – turned 2 of Cec’s shirt collars & mended a couple & I hope to get the other coverlet made this weekend before I have to give the machine back.
We are onto another project too, which I know you will have a fit about!! We are having a Hallowe’en Party here! It isn’t our party – it is Cec’s Lab. & this is how it happened. We had talked vaguely of a party for ages you know, but decided we couldn’t afford it, so a little while ago at the Lab. they were discussing how good the Douglases (Phyl & Alec) were about entertaining for the Lab.- the party before Keith & Ruth’s wedding etc.- & the suggestion was made that it would be nice to give them a party. Where to have it was the next thing & Cec offered our house & we decided to make it a Hallowe’en party on the lines of the one we had in Cambridge, with apples on strings & digging up the body etc. Everyone was most enthusiastic and there will be 22 I think! They are collecting so much from each person (except Alec & Phyl) & will provide liquor to make the punch & will give me money for food etc. & buy Alec & Phyl a little present. I have decided to feed them buffet style:- boned stuffed chicken, cold ham, scalloped potatoes, mushroom & cheese slices, stuffed tomatoes (for salad) & orange creams – practically all things I can do ahead of time & all the girls are offering to help both before & after with clearing up, so it shouldn’t be too much! Boris & Paul came to dinner the day after Thanksgiving & we made ourselves a committee & planned it & I think it should be fun.
I went down to see Phyl & the baby last week & she is looking fine & he is a dear little fellow – lots of dark hair & sleeping when I saw him – very good Phyl says. Nothing like the personality that tiny Linda was though!!
On Friday we went to Dr. & Mrs. Herzberg’s for the evening to meet a Swiss Prof. who was visiting. It was v. pleasant & I was tickled to bits as Mrs. H. asked me to “pour” at coffee time! My matronly figure probably got me the honour!! Dr. & Mrs. H. are coming to the He’en Party- Dr. H. wrote & put off a lecture he was to give at a Univ. in Montreal!!
On Mon. evening our “lodger” Dan came in & we discussed breakfasts etc.- he will have what Cec has (not 2 eggs – we have changed & he has flakes & one egg or bacon!) (Lindy has an egg now too, of course) He is to pay $10 a month for breakfast & “icebox privileges” – the latter being the right to have an apple, or sandwich or a cup of tea etc. before he goes to bed if he wants to! He will pay for any weekend meals as he has them, & I’ve told him he can use the washing machine – he’ll iron his own things he says! He is a nice boy – but very young- (he’s 26 but seems less)- he talks of his fiancé, Arabella!, like a schoolboy & makes me laugh. He seems quite lonely & very anxious to please & says he will help around the house etc. so that is nice. Altogether he will pay $45 a month, so that will be a big help- we have to get coke & winter oil etc. for the car with his first cheque! He stayed till after 2 a.m. talking- needless to say I was in bed long before he left! He will probably be moving in tomorrow, as the room is ready (his bed all made!) & he is so fed up with his other place.
On Wed. I had Linda to Dr. Whillans for her check up & she is fine. You asked sometime ago about diphtheria inoculations – don’t you remember she had them long ago? There were 3 in 1, diphtheria, typhoid & I think wh. cough and she went & had 2 shots when she was about 5 or 6 mths. old. She is now both a little taller & heavier than average- 22 lbs. & 29 5/8 inches & he was very pleased with her, but golly she was not pleased with him. We went at 5 o’clock & he was so nice this time- we were the last ones & he just sat & chatted & answered my questions (no more sterilizing or boiling milk!) & I like him v. much, but Linda got herself in an absolute frenzy. Just being laid down to get measured, she sobbed & cried & got herself in such a state that she choked & sicked up a bit. We had to just hold her down to be sounded & even when she sat on my knee & he & I talked, she howled & clung to me- also drenched a pretty turquoise maternity dress Phyl has lent me! By the time I got her dressed & out to the car I was exhausted & she perked up & was as cheery as a lark! When we got home she laughed & romped with Cec & was so happy & I lay back & collapsed!! Yesterday she slept from 1- 4:30 though, so she must have tired herself a bit! In the evening (Wed.) Cec & I wrote the invitations to the party & put great red seals on & made them look very chic, & yesterday Lindy & I took Margie & Danny shopping to the Dominion (Tommy is at school in the morning). In the evening June & George came to dinner – June has a full-time job at the Dept. of Mines now & says it is far better to be too busy than not have enough to do! Also she thinks a lot of the English people you meet over here are queer & that it must be v. annoying for Canadians to hear them criticizing, so we feel that she is improving and getting quite mellow! Cec & George went to a lecture, so she & I washed up & had a good gossip, so I quite enjoyed it!
This is all about our doings, but it has brought you up-to-date with us, so next week I will try & catch up on answering your letters. Lindy sends a big, big hug & kiss- love to A. Muriel & thank her for her letter – I’m glad she liked the bag.
Going to have tea now – nothing to eat though! Go to the Dr. on Monday! I feel fine & don’t think I have gained much.
Lots & lots of love from Cyn.
P.S. Lovely weather again after a really cold spell- no leaves left on the trees & it looks so strange & bare at the back.