Isobel Addison’s diary December 1931

Tuesday, 1st December, 1931

Spent most of the morning cooking, making pastry etc.,  Kate slept till nearly 1 and came down to lunch.  Welwyn called for eggs. After supper Mrs. Wright the vet came to see Croy.  He has been very bad these last days with rheumatism.  Played bridge and came to bed somewhere about 12.

Wednesday, 2nd December, 1931

Mary had breakfast about 8.30 and she went to the cottage.   Stella came down about 11.30 and Kate went back to London with her.  After lunch Mary departed with her belongings as her mother returned this afternoon.  Carrie came in about 3.30 and had tea and Wilfred took her home about 6.45.  Pa wrote and I played patience.

Thursday,  3rd December, 1931

Had a very disturbed night with poor old Croy. He was very sick about 2 and I had to go down and let him out and then clear up the debris!  I let him out again about 6.15, then made myself some tea, filled my hot bottle then read in bed till about 7 when I fell asleep until 8.50!.  Got up and got breakfast and fed hens etc., Pa and Wilfred and I reconnoitred the hen houses to see where we could stop up rat holes.  Pa spent the rest of the day writing and I made a top for my blue woollen dress.  We had no lunch but tea about 3.30.  Kate came home about 8.30 having seen Doctor Gordon about inoculations for her colds.  The two pullets from Hedley Morgan arrived this evening.

Friday, 4th December, 1931

Rather late this morning.  Filled up morning with various odd jobs and cooking dinner.  Mr. Dugdale came down at 2 to work with CA. Gave him some tea and he left at 4.42  CA went to Swindon and returned at 12.15.  Kate and I supped and laughed and played cooncan – went to bed about 2,  had baths, lights out about 2.45 A.M.  I went to see Mrs. Willmott about 10 to 6 but she was out.

Saturday, 5th December, 1931

Got up in quite decent time, a very windy day and about 2 it began to rain and poured hard and blew hard for the rest of the day.  Isobel came home about 2.15. We had lunch and a cup of tea – did a lot of talking and played bridge in the evening.

Sunday, 6th December, 1931

Went to St. Anne’s at 8.  A very lovely day, sunny and spring like.  Pa and Isobel went for a walk taking sandwiches.  Helped Katie with some dyeing and wrote to Michael.   The others came in about 3.30. and we had tea.  Katie gardened most of the day. We played bridge between tea and supper and came to bed in quite good time.

Monday, 7th December, 1931

Kate and Isobel left by the 7.50.  A lovely day, like spring, bright sunshine though there was frost during the night.  I collected the scaly legged hens and shut them up by themselves preparatory to treatment.  Mr. Stevens came and we spent a couple of hours discussing the increase and arrangement of one’s poultry stock.  He left just before one and we had some lunch.  Pa spent most of the afternoon and evening writing – I wrote to Chris for his birthday. After tea I went and saw Mrs. Willmott – came home, had supper and played patience and read.

Tuesday, 8th December, 1931

Pa left about 9.30 for Cambridge to meet Mr. Bigland and see over a farm.  Wilfred and I caught the scaley legged hens and paraffined them.  Welwyn called for eggs.  I had got 28 dozen collected for them, the most I’ve had so far.  Finished my black coat all but the pockets.  Pa got home about 6.30.

Wednesday, 9th December, 1931

Got up at 7.30.  Took tea to CA had my breakfast and took his up to him in bed.  He went to town by the 10.14.  Spent a long time over the hens’ scaly legs.  Wrote a long letter to Michael to Oxford.  I had one from him this morning, he seems to be finding his exam a bit stiff – finished my coat but decided it will need some trimming of sorts so it will have to wait for that.  Pa got home by the 6.27.  We had supper and read and snoozed by the fire.

Thursday, 10th December, 1931

After breakfast and hens etc., Pa and I drove along to Prestwood and sat with the Aunts for a bit.  They were busy making sweets.  We took them the two carpets, also 2 brace of pheasants to dress! Came home  and had a light lunch and wrote some letters and  moved furniture.  Mary has had Katie’s room and now we are making it into Michael’s.  I have put a bed for Kate in my room and shall arrange her things for her.  Made a cottage pie for supper and played cards afterwards.  Mike rang up from Oxford and is coming home tomorrow for the weekend.

Friday, 11th December, 1931

Pa and I started about 9.45 to go to Wendover, picked up Nellie on the way and went to Terrick where we met Mr. Stevens and were shown over Mrs. Harris’s poultry farm – most interesting – got home about one, had lunch and fed hens and filled up their hoppers etc., Came in and finished off Mikey’s room and put all his clothes etc., away.  Got supper cooked and Pa met Mikey at Wycombe and they got here about 8.20.  After supper we had a small game of dummy bridge and Mike came to bed.  He doesn’t seem to have done badly.  He has a nasty cough and I gave him hot lemon in bed.  Pa and I sat by the study fire a bit and came to bed rather late.

Saturday, 12th December, 1931

Rather late this morning.  Finished emptying my cupboard for Kate and got everything in order.  Did flowers etc., light lunch and  Pa, Michael and I went to Labour Party Bazaar at Aylesbury.  Got home about 5.30.  Cooked dinner. Kate and Isobel arrived at 7.50. After dinner played bridge.

Sunday, 13th December, 1931

A very dull day as regards weather.  Mike and I went to St. Anne’s at 8.  Nick came about 11 and spent the day.  I wrote to Mr. Nicholls.  Mike wrote to Mr. Griffiths.  Played bridge in the afternoon and evening.

Monday, 14th December, 1931

Kate and Isobel went by the 7.50.  It seemed very dark getting up.  Daddy and Wilfred and Michael worked nearly all day dislodging rats and their nests from the hen houses.  They killed 16 in all and lost only 3.   I spent a good deal of time cooking and made a brawn of the remains of the pheasants!  The three Aunts came to supper.  After they left Daddy and Mike and I had a short game of dummy bridge.

Tuesday, 15th December, 1931

Got up in fairly good time. Rather a grey day.  It seems a long time since we had sunshine but I suppose it isn’t so very long.  Had lunch early and Pa went to town by the 1.50.  Michael went over to the Willmotts for a few minutes while I fed the hens, then we packed his bag and I made sandwiches for him and got tea and we had a nice sit down by the fire for ¾ of an hour before he left.  Wilfred drove him to Reading for the 6 p.m. train.  I spent a lazy evening and felt rather lonely – I had suggested going to Mrs. Willmott’s but she  had other people with her.  Pa got home at 11.30  very late to bed.

Wednesday, 16th December, 1931

Got up late.  After breakfast and hen feeding etc., Pa and I farmed (?) round the garden with Mason discussing flowers , beds etc.,  Got lunch ready.  After that I wrote to Mike, Chris and S.P.B.A.  Made list of people for Christmas cards etc.,  Telephoned to Isobel about 4. Welwyn called for eggs.  Sent 28 dozen.

Thursday, 17th December, 1931

Got up about 7.30  Nice day, frosty morning.  Pa and I drove to Reading to do some shopping and had lunch there and got home about 4.  Quite a successful expedition. Had tea and a snoozle.  Sewed the trimming on my coat. Came to  bed in better time than usual!

Friday, 18th December, 1931

Pa and I went to Missenden this morning to have a haircut.  After lunch I wrote several letters and finished putting the trimming on my coat, a beastly job.   Kate came home about 7.30 and we had dinner – she and Pa played chess and I did 30 or 35 of my Christmas cards and letters.   It has been a lovely day, bright sun and white frost, this morning early it looked as though it had been snowing – everything was pure white and the rising sun at 7.30 to 8 was deep red – very lovely.

Saturday, l9th December, 1931

Another frosty sunny day, very cold.  Spent rather a long time with the hens and cooked dinner and did a good bit to Isobel’s room.  Pa came home at 1.15. After dinner and hen feeding walked round the garden to discuss flower beds.  Hemmed the lace all round my black frock. Kate and Isobel played chess.  I wrote to Willie Buchanan re moving in various Indian things – darned Pa’s socks, had supper and continued darning – came to bed in decent time.

Sunday, 20th December, 1931

No church, got up at 8.20.  Kate and Isobel went for a walk with Ashcroft and Gilbert Walker.  Pa and I did a lot of writing and I sent off heaps of my Christmas letters.  The others came home to high tea about 5.  Gilbert left about 8  We had coffee and tea about 9.30 and Edward left by the 10.14.  I finished darning Pa’s socks. Kate had a sprained wrist and we fomented it etc.,

Monday, 28th December, 1931

Girls left Tintagel at 3 and Chris and Brigit soon after.

Tuesday, 29th December, 1931

Daddy,Mike and I trained to Okehampton where P………met us.

Wednesday, 30th December, 1931

Left Moreton at 8.30 a.m.  Breakfast at Hundon. Arrived home from Moreton with Chris and Brigit in his new Buick.

Thursday, 31st December, 1931

We ushered in the New Year with grapefruit soon after midnight.  Came to bed about 2.30 a.m.  Breakfast at  9.30.  Went to see Mrs. Willmott .  Bitterly cold but thawed after breakfast and quite mild by night.  Chris and Mike and I went to visit Aunts and had tea with them.  After supper played bridge.  Mary came – all very late to bed again.