It was a very big rime frost this morning. When I got up at 7.15 everywhere was like a Xmas Card, roofs and fences and fields all lay sparkling in the sunshine before 8. o’clock and the shadows of our houses reached half across Ashley’s field. The rime went very quickly also the sunshine and I thought it would rain, but a bitter east wind sprang up which did not dry as much as one would have thought. I washed the “woollies” I had left from wash-day and it took them until dark to get dry in spite of the wind. Father went to allotment and chopped down elder-bush which was in the way of ploughing, also burned the dry grass round plot instead of mowing it. He put paraffin on to light it and singed his eyebrows and also his hair one side. Rene’s cold a little better to-day I think. Little “bookie” came to-day, said his feet were so bad last week or he would have come in spite of snow. I am so sorry for him. He never had chilblains until the last year or two.
Had a letter from Frank Adams this morning. He is in R.A.s [Royal Artillery] now, also George, they are together and are gunners. At present stationed in out-of-way place where they can’t buy stamps. It is near Melton Mowbray. Asked after “Lady Sybil” [rabbit] and said his Lady Sybil is expecting a baby in June. He sounded very pleased too. So are we, it will, I think, complete the happiness of their very happy marriage. I must write to both of them and wish them joy. He writes so nicely and says he will never forget Chapel and always sounds so genuine. Jean will be thrilled when she knows. She is in bed, seems to have got over her nervousness tho’ it is a very blustery night. Fire puffs smoke into room now and then, and it is bitterly cold. Father is on watch until 2 a.m. Shall be pleased when it is 2 as I don’t think I shall be very warm until he comes to bed in spite of H.W. bots [hot-water bottles] and plenty of blankets. Must try to make a flannel shirt for Father tomorrow. Have got 4 yds. wht. flannel from Keightley’s at 4/4 yd and 2½ cou[pons] yd. It is all wool. I thought perhaps if I did not make sure of it now, I might not get any next winter and Father’s undershirts won’t last more than the summer, or would be too thin if they did. Snowdrops are out and the primroses are growing every day in spite of weather. Maisie Stow had stocks and w[all] flowers yesterday, she did not get them last autumn as the weather was so wet.
“Lady Sybil” was a rabbit named after soldier Frank Adams’ wife.
‘Keightleys’ was a popular clothing store in Skegness.
Maisie Stow was the wife of Jack, son of Stores owner George Stow. They lived in a bungalow ‘The Rosary’ on Sandy Lane, nearer to the village centre than ‘The Delves’ (see Village Map).
Have you read an introduction to May Hill & family (includes photographs) and explored ‘The Casualties Were Small’?