My Aunt Biss, the fourth child and the only girl, lost her mother when she was 14. She is 15 now and living with Aunt Anne, helping with her children, Don and Gwen, and going to school in St. Pete. She expresses herself very freely which gives us an idea of what this teenager was thinking about.
2101 3rd Ave. N.
It is 2:55 Wednesday afternoon in the Study Hall of the St. Pete High School. I have written a letter to Dick and to Dan in this period. I’ll finish this letter in seventh period this afternoon and I’ll also write one to Edna Traphagen. I enjoy your letters very much and enjoyed the pictures you draw of the family. I didn’t misunderstand about that Florida trip at all so I am sorry if I gave you that impression. I haven’t read any books at all since I came down here. We don’t run on any sort of schedule and all. Sometimes we eat out and sometimes at home – sometimes we go to bed early and sometimes late (early- 7-9, late – 8-10).
Thank you for sending that leaf and those articles from the paper. I found the leaf very pretty and colorful. Has David had any colds lately? Ask him to answer my letter and he can send it in one of your letters to me. We have had to have the fireplace going because there is no heating system in the house and it is about 40°. Aunt Anne made a mistake last night and said 40° below and told me I ought to write home and say that, as long as I said 300 miles that time in Ced’s letter.
I am very sorry about Cousin Charlie for I liked him immensely. If you don’t mind I would rather not write to Mrs. Burnham for I have no writing paper and no extra stamps. Perhaps when they come south they will write to me or look me up. If you don’t mind you may answer her questions concerning me. I didn’t write immediately this time so I find myself rather mixed up but I think I am straightened out now.
I couldn’t tell you how I spend my leisure time, in fact, I don’t think I have any. We go to town almost every night and I drive the car quite often. The library is on the other side of town and I haven’t been in it yet.
My clothes are O.K. I haven’t made any friends yet. I’ll tell you how I spend my five dollars in a separate piece of paper.
P.S. You write just as faithfully as I do.
2101 3rd Ave. N.
(Read this yourself first and then to the family.)
That letter has made me homesick for you so you have to come down at Christmas, especially since you have a new front tire and feel safer.
I haven’t written to the Page’s because I forgot the name of their street. I think I asked you in one of the letters but I’m not sure. Perhaps I mentioned it to someone else in the family.
I feel very much ashamed of myself for not writing to the family especially when you reproved me. I shall remember and make it a point to write to them the next time Aunt Anne writes, for I haven’t a cent and I’m using my last stamp for you.
I admit frankly I’m at my wits end trying to figure out how I can answer Dick Garitty’s letter which came tonight. I would rather not have you write and go to bed for you need every sleeping moment you can get.
Will you go in and see Mary tonight and ask her if I may borrow one of the French books – a story – not less than 50 pages? If I may, please send it as soon as is possible for I am supposed to have it by the end of next week.
I have been all right most of the time and never too sick to stay home from school, although I wanted to. You have to make up the time you missed so that is why I went regardless of how I felt.
We go out to supper every night now or have been for these last four nights. Tell Dave I haven’t heard from him yet in case he doesn’t know it I actually look meet for once. I promise I’ll try to look very trim all the Christmas vacation if you and Erwin come down. I will, to some extent anyway, of course. My nails are almost fully grown – once in a while I forget.
The holidays are very hard on many of us, whether we are close to our family or quite distant. Biss is really missing her family and longs to be near at least one family member. For me, there was a six year period that I just couldn’t involve myself emotionally in the holidays. I had lost my 2nd husband in April and my Dad in December of the same year. I then moved to CA to care for my Mom until she passed away in December, a year later. Having lost both my parent’s in December, a year apart, after loosing my husband, I was an empty shell for quite a few years. I can feel her pain.