July 27 1953

Costains in their best clothes!

Mon.  27th July 1953

Dearest Mummy,

Here are the christening pictures, so at last you are up-to-date on how the family is looking! Actually we are not often all so dressed up, but at least it shows we can do it once in a while!! Lindy & I both have our new hats & dresses on- our hats are white & my dress white with red & Lindy’s white with little brightly coloured flowers – she looks so grown up in some of the snaps, but not so much in real life! I was quite surprised that the christening dress still fitted Charlie quite well, but there was no such thing as draping it elegantly for the picture! He kicked & wriggled & stuck his feet out & didn’t approve of skirts at all! He is so different from Lindy in so many ways it is really funny – when he cries he still floods with tears whereas she rarely can squeeze a drop out; he just loves to be kissed & squeezed & cuddled & laughs & chuckles, while Lindy is quite an independent little piece & just likes to cuddle on occasion; at his age Lindy was sitting up by herself, but Charlie has no interest in sitting, he just loves to get on his feet! He is quite steady & needs very little help, but sitting by himself he wobbles around & can’t balance on his little bottom! Do you remember how Lindy used to wake up for her late feed with such a sweet little smile? Well Charlie is so funny – he’s just like his Daddy & has such a struggle to wake up – rubbing his eyes & screwing his face up & blinking for ages! Altogether, it is so amusing to compare them & in looks they vary quite a bit now – Charlie is a real honey-blonde with curly hair & his eyes are a very bright blue – Lindy’s hair is brown & her eyes are quite a different shade of blue – everyone says she is like me & Charlie like Cec- I don’t know, of course! It is sweet to see them together though as they are going to be such friends I think – Charlie loves to watch Lindy & laughs & gurgles at her whereas Lindy is getting fonder & fonder of him & talks to him & wants to hold him & bath him & even feed him! If he cries she runs to him & says “It’s all right Charlie” & of course if either of them really howl the other does too! She gets such a thrill if Charlie uses her things too- no sign of possessiveness at all – if Charlie is in her table or wears overalls of hers or anything she is so tickled & pleased about it! Lindy’s talking is really going on wonderfully we think – she is getting quite good at personal pronouns & says “I’ll get it” & “I’m tired” & “Charlie in his carriage” & also has began to use negative statements & says “That’s not Lindy’s Daddy” when she’s waiting for Cec & a car goes by & “Lindy can’t reach it” etc. which we think is very advanced. She has picked up some funny expressions from Carman- when he’s pleased he sometimes says “Oh, bully, bully!” & Lindy is always saying “Bully, bully says Carman”! One morning after breakfast she got on my knee & bounced & I said “Oh don’t do that – I’m full of breakfast.” so she grinned & said “Mummy full of breakfast – Lindy full of beans!”

I just wrote a note with the other snaps last week, but really I have very little news – it has been so hot that we tried to do as little as possible. It is pleasanter now – has been very damp & humid, but is now warm, but not so roasting hot. We got Lindy one of those plastic paddling pools – just a little one, but she loves it – has only been in it twice as it got a bit rainy for a few days, but I think will soon get very used to it. At present she is chary of lying down & doesn’t even sit much, but loves to stand & pour water on herself from a little pail! She has a little yellow terry cloth bathing suit & I tie her hair back & she looks a pet. We have all this on the front grass as there is no back now of course, so all the passersby enjoy it!

On Sat. Margie & I decided to go over & see Lu & the baby in hospital, so Margie drove me in their new car. She has driven her Dad’s cars for years & Cy was the one who’d never driven before, but they both have licenses now. It seemed very odd & “chuggy” after MacTavish! We had the latter all overhauled last month & various new engine parts & he goes like a dream now. Lu was looking wonderful- her entire labour lasted exactly 2 hours beginning with the water breaking & she had precisely 2 pains! We saw the baby too & I really think it’s not just my newborn babies who look funny!!! He is to be called Peter Alan after his Daddy- Lindy thinks baby brothers are all the go — she was reciting last week “Leslie has a tiny wee baby brother – Nancy has a baby brother – Danny has a baby brother – Lindy has a baby brother, Charlie!”

After I got home on Sat. I was just cooking dinner around 6 when the phone rang & this was a cousin of Cec & Carman’s called Cliff who was driving out to Nova Scotia, and had just got to Ottawa, so of course Cec asked him to come over & with a little judicious stretching (onion soup I had already made – bacon with the liver – a big salad + the veg I’d cooked & cake with the raspberry sherbert) there was enough dinner! He is in the Air Force (a Flying Officer) & is just Carman’s age (21) but he’s already married. You were surprised that Carman had a girlfriend at his age, but he thinks he’s a bit slow as so many of his pals are already married! Anyway Cliff’s wife is called Elsie, & although we all liked Cliff very much, none of us cared for her & I thought she was awful! They were stationed last in Saskatoon so Carman knew them quite well, but Cec hadn’t met Cliff since he was 4! He is quiet & pleasant, but she is loud voiced & has an annoying laugh & seems quite brainless & isn’t even pretty! What got me was that she was so gauche & seemed to have no kind of social sense at all – when I, as hostess, offered to take her upstairs to the bathroom she just said “Oh, I’ll just sit awhile” & then when I said I hoped they hadn’t eaten as dinner was just about ready she said “Oh well, we did eat sometime this afternoon – when was it Cliff?” & I could have kicked her teeth in! Apparently Cliff had dated her in Edmonton & then was posted down to London, Ont. & was lonely & fed up there & after 7 months wrote & asked her to marry him & she went right off & did- poor boy. Cec & I were just saying that she’s not going to be much help to a fellow in the Services with a career to make – Services’ wives always seem to have to fit in well, or else it reflects on him. They were just staying overnight in Ottawa, so we put them up on the sitting room sofa-bed. Cec & Carman were sweet though- Charlie has given us a few disturbed nights lately- more teeth, we think – so they packed me off to bed & washed all the dinner dishes & on Sunday morning Cec got up & got everyone’s breakfasts & brought mine to bed & I just got up to wave the guests farewell! 

Yesterday of course was our 4th wedding anniversary. We had thought we’d go out on Sat. evening & have dinner at the Château Laurier etc. but on considering our finances & the fact that we are going away next month, we decided to postpone the splurge until later, & actually with Cliff & Elsie turning up it was just as well & we really had a lovely day. As I say, Cec brought up my breakfast in bed & he’d decided (for no reason!) that the 4th Anniv. was china & so here on my tray was a lovely card & a beautiful china cup & saucer. It is English china – one of these cups just white with a gold rim outside & inside a lovely spray of yellow roses – the pattern is called “Golden Rose”. My present to Cec was much less enduring – a bottle of Graves! We had a yummy dinner – grilled steak with mushrooms & tomatoes, mashed potatoes, celery & radishes, then fresh blueberry pie with ice cream – & of course the wine! I was talking to Phyl Douglas on the phone in the afternoon & it turned out it was their wedding anniversary too- the 8th! They were going out to dinner, but we said they must come up & have a glass of wine with us before they went – Alec just got back from Europe last Tuesday. After dinner Cec & Carman & I just sat & chatted & then Carman washed up for us & Cec & I strolled down to the corner for cigarettes & seeing the Earle’s light on we phoned when we got home & asked Patsy to come over. Carman was feeling a little lonesome we thought, so Pat helped cheer him up – she is working in a Bank now & is really a cute girl. The Earles just had a big shock a little while ago – their son (22 or 23 I think) finally divulged that he got married last March! Another bit of gossip – remember the Orans who lived on the other side of the Grahams? There was the old lady, her daughter & her granddaughter – another Pat- anyway the Mama – a very bossy woman we think- just got married last week, so I heard Pat telling Mr. Labelle! We’ve seen her dating this old boy, but didn’t know he’d brave all the women!

I mentioned a page or two back that we were going on our holiday next month & I am getting quite excited. Phyl & Alec Douglas & family go on Sat. for 2 weeks to this cottage on Round Lake (up towards Chalk River) & we have it for the last 2 weeks in Aug. It is right on the lake, has a sandy beach & shallow water, a screened porch & all sorts of amenities like milkman calling daily etc. & Phyl & I are going to arrange to share baby equipment – i.e. she takes up playpen, crib etc. & then leaves them & uses mine here & we bring hers back. Lee & Jim & Barry are coming with us, so it won’t be so expensive ( it is $35 a week) & will be fun too-  there are 2 b’rooms with double beds & a couple of camp beds for the children. I was trying to explain to Lindy today about the holiday, but the only thing that registered was that we would “play & get all wet!”

Thank you so much for your long letter posted on the 20th- it arrived on Sat. so was quick. You asked about Boris – he is of Jugoslavian extraction, but came to Canada when he was 8, & you would never know that he hadn’t lived here all his life. His surname is Stoicheff & his home is Toronto- his parents (he is the only son & has 5 sisters) live in a kind of Jugoslavian community there- own church, school etc. & Boris & his sisters are some of the few who have moved out of the close national circle as it were & gone onto Univ. etc. He came to N.R.C. as a Fellow, but is coming on the staff this fall, much to his joy as he likes NRC & the work very much. He got the little silver mug engraved with “Charlie” & it is really sweet – Charlie drank his orange juice out of it today.

Ruth and Peter Haynes’s baby announcement.

About Ruth, Amy just sent a P.C. by sea, but I wrote back A.M. & have since heard from Ruth. She was quite upset as she couldn’t feed the baby, but he is thriving now. She chose a high chair from Harrod’s & should have it now so I hope it’s nice – Amy tells me she is sending Charlie a silver napkin ring- hope he uses it more than I use mine now! I am having Harrods send me a few Viyella rompers etc. & will see what the duty is. We are looking forward to your parcel which hasn’t arrived yet, but we are all enjoying “Mrs. Mike”. Cec has just finished at & I am 1/2 way through – I read a short version in some magazine once, but am enjoying the book very much. We have decided that it will be less confusing for Lindy if we celebrate her birthday at home before we go away, so we are going to have it the weekend after next & by then I hope your parcel will have come. We plan to get her a little tricycle & she will enjoy that at home & it will save taking it up to the cottage. Lindy is getting to know about birthdays now & I told her she was going to have a birthday soon & she is quite tickled & says “Lindy has a birthday – Daddy say “Happy birthday Lindy” – Charlie say “Happy birthday Lindy”!  By the way, we hope Lindy’s shyness is passing- she was quite friendly with Cliff & demanded to “Kiss Clip good- night “!


By the way- we did see the same coloured Coronation film as you & I thought it was absolutely beautiful – the colour was easily the most glorious I’ve seen, & I thought the whole thing was perfectly done- television was lousy compared to it.

Must stop or this will weigh a ton – Charlie’s o’alls (as Lindy calls them) will be lovely I’m sure. Kisses from Lindy & Charlie – Love to A. Moo & A. Trix with lots & lots of love from us all —


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: