January 28, 1943. Anna writes from home. As much as letters from home are valued by the troops, letters from family in the service are valued on the home front. The news that Dad will be assigned as a clerk is welcomed at home, “We are all so glad that you are sending more letters to us. It makes Mama feel better, and for a few days after that. Then she expects other letters and looks forward to them. Mama is so happy that you are not going to be a gunner or bombardier, and in fact we all are.”
With the family having both of their boys in the Army, the baby continues to provide a much needed “little ray of sunshine”. “Mama and Papa take consolation in Theresa Marie. It’s a good thing she happened to come by here. She cuddles right up to you and looks with those big shiny eyes of hers and when she smiles that toothless smile your heart just goes all out for her.”
On a personal level, it seems I have my aunt Anna to thank for this project. She suggests, “Why don’t you send back all of you letters like Stanley does? I will save them for you and they will be sort of a souvenir to keep when you come back home after the war. I think that would be the best thing to do. However, that’s up to your to do whatever you may want to do with your letters.”
Anna continues to provide sisterly advice regarding women, “Girls are all around, but the best ones I think are the ones that you pick around your own home town. You know them better and you know who they are and who their parents are”.
The issue of wartime rationing also comes up, “You mentioned that you have eaten coconuts. If it’s not too much trouble will you send us two or three of them? We would certainly appreciate them. You can’t even find any around here in the stores. In fact, there isn’t much of anything in the stores now. I went to the store around 5 o’clock once and had to go to three stores to get some bread. That’s how plentiful things are around home. You remember how bad things were when you were home, and now it’s worse. I think pretty soon we will carry ration books to the store for everything we buy.”
As for the local Albany weather, Anna reports that it is currently snowing out and that this year seems to be one of the snowiest she can remember. She reports that there has also been some freezing rain and ice. She notes, ”We will all be glad when the spring comes.” She closes that “Theresa Marie sends you more kisses. You must have a bag full of them by now. By the time you come home on furlough, you will have a couple trunks full of them.”