SEPTEMBER 7, 1940
HYDE PARK, Friday—We had a picnic lunch yesterday for the second group of boys from the Woodstock, N. Y., National Youth Administration Project. These boys are learning quarrying, masonry work, stone carving and even the making of their own tools. I did not have a great deal to show them, but out on my porch, they looked with a great deal of interest at the big stone fireplace which I have for broiling.
After a swim and lunch and a visit to the pewter shop, where they were interested in the making of salad bowls and pewter articles, I took them over to see the new library. They were much interested in the stone used in that building. The ship models and the other collections, which can be seen at present, though they are not as yet arranged, seemed to interest them also. They have a great appreciation for anything which is handmade and seemed a group of young people with keen and varied interests.
I hope they enjoyed my lunch as much as I did the one they gave us the day that Mrs. Henry Morgenthau, Jr., and I visited them.
I induced Mrs. Morgenthau to drive up from Fishkill to be with us today and we talked over various plans, for she and I are to meet in New York City today. It is most satisfactory to do anything with her, for she has such a quick grasp of any situation and an esthetic and cultured appreciation of many things which is not given to us all.
There was some little accumulation of mail and a number of things to be gone over and arranged. Christmas shopping must begin and I am glad to say I went over all my lists yesterday and am able to start with a very well planned list of what must be bought in the course of the next few weeks.
You will probably say that it is early to be planning Christmas shopping, but I am rather horrified at not having more laid aside and marked for this busiest of seasons. From now on it is going to be busier and busier, and we have learned that preparation well in advance makes it possible to enjoy the Christmas spirit.
I write you little about the war because it seems to me that you must feel as I do, that it is hard to free your mind of the news which comes over the radio and which screams at you on the front page of every paper. The horror grows worse and the feeling that you never know quite what is happening, or may happen, is very hard to bear. The weight of suffering in the world is so great one can not be happy these days, but at least I think, it is incumbent upon all of us to be grateful for our lot and show it by as much cheerfulness and willingness to give to others, as we possibly can.