JULY 5, 1944
HYDE PARK, Tuesday—I am beginning to understand the problems of the farmer and the home gardener better than ever before. My eldest grandson is helping on our farm. He is fourteen years old, and I am sorry to say it takes a little while to really break in anyone to be much help. But he is doing his best.
We have a little family vegetable garden near the cottage which the children and our guests work in, and I am always conscious that it is the best possible exercise, though I never have time to do enough. So I don't feel that I have made much contribution to the destruction of weeds. However, the children brought in a large number of radishes for lunch yesterday. Bringing radishes in for lunch was one of my most constant achievements when I was a child and had a garden of my own.
We all had a picnic lunch on the lawn at the cottage yesterday, and then last evening we had some guests at dinner.
I am beginning to realize that an old house can take up a great deal of time if one just goes through the accumulation of the years. First, there are books; next, things which have been kept for sentimental reasons, and which are not wanted by the present generation, and yet no one knows what to do with them; lastly, innumerable photographs of people hard to remember or identify. I don't know what people do when they don't have a "library" to absorb anything of a historical nature. I imagine they do what I do with the things that the library will not take off our hands. I give them to the waste paper campaign or burn them up when I can find no use for them in any scrap drive.
At a meeting not long ago, I met Mrs. Robert Weeks Kelley who at the request of the Navy League of the United States, organized its national women's council about two and a half years ago. She began with five women, and now there are over 84 state and local councils throughout the country, and many more councils are in the process of formation. Ever since 1902 when Navy League was formed at the request of the Naval Order of the United States, and with the endorsement of President Theodore Roosevelt, it has been known as the civilian branch of the United States Navy. The purpose of this national women's council, however, is to do things which contribute to the comfort of the officers and enlisted men of the Navy. They carry on in various places, canteens, consultant bureaus, education departments, midshipmen's recreation centers and training schools, recruitment centers for WAVES, SPARS and Marines. (By the way, did you see that the lady Marines have filled their quota?)
The list of activities is really too long to enumerate all of them, but this civilian branch of the Navy works in cooperation with the Navy Relief Society and the Red Cross. This arm of the Navy League pretty well covers whatever can be done to make the Navy men feel that they are a much cherished branch of our armed forces.