Brooklyn in Love and at War

History of World War Two Told Through Letters

Posts Tagged ‘Lower East Side

Mommy says we have to be practical not beautiful.

with 3 comments

Sometimes Sylvia wrote to Alex as a wife and sometimes she wrote as a mother. This is a letter from 1945 that Sylvia wrote out in the voice of Adrienne (Cookie). Still, she can’t help adding some of her own adult language. At this point Sylvia was living at 133 Navy Walk in Brooklyn. Alex was stationed abroad on the S.S.Pennsylvania.

Mothers are complicated entities. Sylvia shows how in the span of two pages a mother can be loving, caring, forthright, honest, and pragmatic.

Wed. March 7

Hello daddy –

Here are some more pictures of me – Hope you like them. We took these in that park on the lower east side – near Bubbie’s house where you and Mommy used to take me when I was a baby. When you come home, we’ll all go there together to take pictures.

Yesterday Mommy splurged – she bought me a blackboard and chalk so that I won’t write on the walls – well, I write on the floors instead! Some fun. Today Mommy couldn’t resist 2 ivy plants (75cents + 75 cents) and with all this spending she says we’ll be broke soon. Anyway, we wouldn’t have had enough until the end of the month as I need new shoes (so does Mommy, but she said she’d wait until she had her new suits and then maybe you’d come home with some money.) And I needed some new overalls. Mommy bought me 2 pairs – and they’re so damn big on me – size 6! But Mommy says we have to be practical not beautiful. She says I’ll grow into them. Anyway, daddy, I’m still a well dressed baby, as you can see from the photos. And Mommy doesn’t look so bad either. But whatthehell [sic] do you look like? How about sending us a picture of yourself?

Darling daddy, Mommy can’t write you as she had a bad toothache – but she’ll go to the dentist tomorrow and have it taken care of. That tooth has kept her awake for 2 nights now and she’s acting a little groggy today.

All my love to the grandest dad in the world.



Written by Molly

May 11, 2010 at 12:44 pm


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