Hey. I see you too sometimes. I disappear because of evil whiskey rocks. They made me not able of anything. Never accept whiskey rocks. I throw them away soon. You seem like a happy kid. What do you do in the roof? You should come see me with friend Vera sometime.
My dear Miss Cristal,
Suzanne just fell for the glittering opera doll outfit hook, line and sinker! She bought the whole thing and now you are forty-five dollars the richer! Oh darling, it is wonderful to have the shop open again even though no one has come by except Suzanne. Creme DeVecamont is acting like a vagabond and loitering outside the shop windows.
My dear Miss Cristal,
I'm sending along this huge wad of cash from the fashion opening last week, dahling. No one has been to the shop for a little while and there is an Indian banging on a drum outside the dutch door and she refused to cease and desist. The town is in uproar over the new law about seeds and plants and all manner of incredibly boring things.
I love the new shade of blue, dahling!!
My dear Cristal,
Here is some more money, dear. I have bought some new things for myself and here is the money for the Wild West Journalist outfit and the snowy white sweater and hat. Hopefully it is enough. I just made up the prices for myself. And now I'm all out of money again. Oh well. The price one pays for fashion, I suppose!
I am enjoying our new stove very much, thank you! Laura made dinner tonight and it was grand! Laura is actually a very good cook! I have started to make a family cookbook. But I have only gotten so far as breakfast. Has William been helping out lately? Hope so, because you will need a man to help you while Edward is still sick. So I heard from a little birdie that Edward is going to open a General Store, when? Well, have a nice day!
Love, Celine Windmill
What do you think of the little girl Crème? (I hear she is staying at your bed and breakfast.) Right now I am trying to control Juan and Rebecca who are trying to do their chores but Rebecca keeps spilling the groceries and Juan …. Needs help constantly! How is everyone? I am hoping to go shopping for my hope chest platos sometime soon, but we are very busy! Spring at our rancho means hot weather!!! It also means time to get the goat’s wool, dye it, and make lots of weavings for the winter! What flowers do you have in your jardin? Well, I must help Mama with cena!
Sincerely, Francisca Isabel Rosa Montoya
Dear Tia Magdalena,
Ciento for not writing sooner but Francisca and I had to ponder for quite a bit before we chose our Christmas dresses! My healing is going fine but two of my patients (one broke her arm and the other broke his head) I have done the cure for but they still are not yet cured! One of them is very angry and says I am a fake.
About the fashion book - I would like Vestido de Gala de Regencia patterns and some rojo cinta (red ribbon) por favor! Muchas gracias! And you will also find that I have enclosed some money in this correo (letter) for it.
My familia is fine! And whenever anyone receives a letter from you everyone leaves their work and huddles around the letter with excitement! Rebeccacita still loves her weaving, gardening and Llama as much as ever, while Clara continues to keep us up to date on the town since she has a store there. Heather is as kind as an angel while Francisca attends to doing her duties as first priority! Papa and Mama are hardworking as ever, and Juan and Antonio still eat enough food to fill a goat! And how are you? Please tell me all about how you are!
My dear Tia Magdalena,
Ciento for my very late reply - you must think me rude and ungrateful but truly I am very ciento for not writing you a response as soon as your letter fell into my hands. I am muy bueno! And Pimientos is as lively as ever. Si, I have used your remedies constantly and to wonderful effect. This letter may be cut short by the short time until the messenger arrives. It would be very bueno if you could send me a remedy for a lost mind, sore muscles and bruises.
Si, I have been gathering herbs dutifully and I recently helped someone give birth to a sweet little boy called Peder. If you could send a simple but fancy dress pattern to make myself a respectful but fancy dress to wear on fancy occasions.
I must depart though for I fear I will miss the early messenger. Please write!
My dear Tia Magdalena,
Well, I have decided on a new dress. I am going to make Vestido Caminante, if you would be as kind as to send me the patterns back with Josefina when she comes home. That is awful about the girl being turned down with a squash because she had no bordado on her dress!! I am still working on my hope chest but I have gotten some plates and I am about to start working on my tablecloth.
I hope you have a wonderful Navidad! I must make my letter short for Josefina is worried about the weather.
Gracias muchos for your last letter! I have been very busy this Winter, curing very many patients! Just a week ago or so Anders Larson was attacked by a bear! He received several cuts and bruises but nothing fatal. He is now all better and working around the farm as before. How was your Navidad? Juan was the unfortunate one to get coals in his shoes this year. He was very unhappy. I received a new skirt and a candle extinguisher this year, which I have already put to use.
Unfortunately, Padre has been delayed in coming by the snowstorm that passed through a little while ago. We all hope and pray that he will make it here safely.
My dear Tia Magdalena,
I am so ciento that this paper looks like a goat took a bite out of it! Gracias muchos for that Libra de la Moda! (Book of the Fashions.) It filled in a little bit of home that I had left behind! The whole familia enjoys it so much! It is hard to live so far away from the city and my friends, but I am managing.
About the dress, I have decided on Vestido Rojo de Imperia! And the only things I would need are the patterns, lace, y some rojo cinta. I have some money I have been saving that you can use, and gracias muchos!
How is dear Marguerite? I do hope she does not think me too unfashionable. Ah, please tell her hola!
Rebeccacita loves to flip through the book and stare at the pictures for hours! I am more than grateful for the book! And how are you? Please tell me of all the news in Mexico City! I miss you muchos!
Dear Tia Magdalena,
This is very hermosa paper so I am trying very hard to write small. I wanted to thank you so much for the book "La Hormiga Chiquita." I love it! I especially like the pictures of the cat, the mouse, and the blacksmith. The Hormiga Chiquita looks like me!! Which bookstore did you get it at? The one where Francisca got her fashion book?
Gracias, Tia Magdalena!
My dear hermosa Tia Magdalena,
Gracias muchos for all of la hermosa cinta (ribbon) y patterns! I have finished my Restido de Imperia gown and I am in love with how beautiful it looks! I have finished my napkins for my hope chest (I made ten) and am waiting for Mama to tell me what to do next. As to what la familia is doing on el rancho, we just had trading day with a familia, the Larsons. In all we got some bueno ladders, y hay, e fuego wood and other things. Right now Rebeccacita is weaving, Heather is sick, Antonio is being healed by Josefina, Clara is at la Dulceria, Juan is coming back from the fields with the goats, Papa is with el pollos y Mama is making papas pimientos. We are all busy and happy except Heathercita y Antonio.
Por favor, bring compliments to Gloria y Marguerite. And I just have a teeny favor to ask. Por favor send a correo (letter) to Mama convincing her to let me make another vestido (dress) this Summer, instead of waiting a year! Mama says she does not want me to, but oh, how I must catch up with la fashions! If you could do this I would be very grateful!
Did you receive the piano? I hope you did!
Amor, Francisca Montoya
P.S. Does Marguerite have any suitors yet?
Thank you so much for your last letter! I have been so anxious to hear what is happening in la familia, and also which dresses you and Francisca had chosen to make. I understand, however, that it must have been a hard decision to make.
The dress you have chosen is muchos bueno! Everyone here is wearing those striped dresses and you will fit right in with your Vestido de Gala de Regencia.
I went out to buy the patterns today and while I was in the square, I noticed a poor little dove hopping around on his legs holding out a clearly broken wing. Some malo ninos (bad boys) had been throwing rocks at him, and dislodged the little dove's shoulder bone so she could not move her wing. After I purchased the patterns, I brought her home and set her wing. She is happily hopping around the courtyard now. I have named her Palomita in honor of Tomas and 'Tonio's favorite song.
I bought this ribbon and lace from the dress shop here as well - do please enjoy it!
Amor, Tia Magdalena
No, I have not met your cousin Annabelle. Is she very fashionable? You should bring her to meet me someday at the Boutique. A year's visit is very long, don't you think that that is a bit rude for her never to leave? You should ask her to go home for the holidays. It's quite inconsiderate for her to outstay her welcome. You must encourage her to write home. Oh dear, do you feel sick? Yes, you should consult Josefina. What if you catch influenza or the pox again? I shudder to think. And so close to Christmas too - you might miss the festivities altogether and that would be a shame. Right now Suzanne and Cristal are hurrying to put their indoor Christmas decorations up so they will be the first in town and therefore the most fashionable. They are singing Thanksgiving songs (which I have never heard before) to make up for putting up their trees before that holiday is even over properly. My shop is a mess because someone dumped a lot of fabric all over the floor and I have to clean it up but I am far too tired. Next I think I will close the shop, go to Cristal's house and warm up my leftover Le Sonja from the Rose Vine and eat it, then practice cooking eggs for Proper School in Miss Cristal's new fireplace. It is very chilly in town square every day since the first snowfall, and I will enjoy being warm inside. What is the news from Seaside House?
My dear Cristal,
Pierre le Fox just came in and bought these fabrics for cotton dresses for his little sister Vivianna and he wishes for them to be small and plain and insignificant so she can play in the mud and make messes - or something of that manner.
Here are $30 for the fabric. Could you make them, please? I suppose it is a great honor, although I don't know where Pierre managed to get the money!!! Some devious actions, I suppose!
Why indeed, it is troubling at times to endure the "talk of the town" when rumors get the better of people. Poor dear Polly was rather talked of for those rooftop antics, but to talk of it without her present to explain her actions is rather unfair, don't you think? Is it not more right to defend the absent person in a discussion if that person cannot be there to speak up for herself? Samantha had a lovely visit with Pauleen only a few days ago. The dear, (Polly) was rather glad to be listened to kindly, I am told. So perhaps her boredom stems from being ignored most of the time. I am sure that it is not from a condition of madness. Teresa is up in her room, contentedly playing dolls this morning. She is having such fun that I shall likely not see her much today. Samantha has gone out, leaving me here to catch up on things. Suzanne has created a beautiful new restaurant in our hotel that is opening today. I am sure you would find a meal there to be very elegant. As you worry that Felicity needs social interaction, perhaps she and friends could come to the restaurant?
My dad has a motorsikle and he's a big big big baseball fan. I am too. So is Sean. But Sean has a skateboard not a baseball bat. Mommy and me look just alike. She gardens a flower garden. Imagin a million flowers in a garden. You never seen your parents???? Weird! Why not?? Do you have a computer? I made a skirt for school but I had help. It looks like everybody else's.
My dear Miss Cristal,
Lisa bought the Burberry! My my, there was nearly a fight in here over it, you should have seen how quickly Lisa appeared downstairs as soon as a VERY badly dressed Suzanna Wilson expressed an interest in it. It was like a thunderstorm!
So now she has the Burberry coat, scarf, and Sherlock hat, as well as new earrings. Only problem is now darling, that we don't have any more finished clothes to sell! Will you make some more, please?
I do not know what a squee-Ji is? Is it a good short name to have? My short name for you could be Giggly - because you have so many G's in your name. You think? Ji-Li means "lucky" in Chinese. My heart is happy means I am happy - because the heart feels emotions, right? Maybe I am just using the wrong term. How is your hair so red?? Do you put chilly - oops - chili in it? I put nothing in my hair except some coconut oil to keep it shiny.
Yes, we should memorize our poems together. I have never been to your house. I do many jobs at the Bamboo Terrace. I waitress, act host, cook, and clean. There are always good smells here.
Do you have many friends? I have Mei, Vera, and Eli. Sometimes Eli is my friend, and sometimes she is not. I never know which! Do you know Eli? You can feel the spirit of the old year dying away outside. I must hurry, the post girl is coming any minute!
I will see you very shortly, as today is my second Proper School lesson. I now have my finished skirt, and every little last piece of homework done. I do have a sibling, and I do have a tricycle. I hardly use the tricycle, but I see my brother every day. He is a sweet boy who is devoted to me. Where do you ride your tricycle to? What is your favorite activity to do together with your Miss Cristal?
Have you any idea where a person could get a fashionable warm coat and hat in this town? You KNOW how it is. See you soon -
What a pleasure to receive your letter! How entertaining and descriptive you always are. Katherine came calling this morning, and I was in a terrible fright because I could not find my stockings anywhere.
At last, Megan went back to her house so that I could borrow her pair for the encounter! How are you and Annabelle getting along these days? Have you seen Rebecca P. recently? I'm afraid no one here had seen her in a very long while! Oh dear!! Pictures instead of rules shall be a nice refreshment. And, I have not eaten nothing today to answer your question.
Wait what? You're cooking for the pub now? How on earth do you keep up cooking and hostessing at the same time? My whole operation basically depends on my cooks. Some days are so crazy I'd literally have to shut down the restaurant without their help. Could you see if Sean and/or Maggie wanted to help somehow with the business? I can see how things would get noisy being all in one room. We have separate sleeping rooms, but we can always hear what's going on in the kitchen. The sound of banging pots is so familiar now I hardly notice it. It smells pretty good in here usually so that's cool! Do any of your customers ever wander upstairs? No, as far as I recall I didn't run for anything in last year's election. Can't believe it's that time of year again already. I'm about to run around to put up posters early for my Winter special: Tomato Rice Soup. I mean, in less than 2 weeks November's here. WHAT? Haha.
See you soon hopefully! Alex
My dear Miss Cristal,
We made a lot of money today, darling! Who should come walking into the shop (even though I still had up the "closed" sign), but Rebecca Parkington! Here are $200 she gave me for the Train to Oxford dress, the Russian Countess gown, Hawkins' new suit and a floppy black hat. I gave her $5 of my own change. Could you pay me back?
And Francisa is urgently searching the town for Lisa, I don't know why, but she nearly bowled down the dutch door calling for her here.
Yeah, I'm the one with the brown eyes and white hair. Not sure my eyes are very chocolate-y tho. I kind of know how to write letters cuz I write them to Britta.
I work at the Bamboo Terrace. You been there before? I'm about to ask my sis about our parents because I don't know anything about them for the Proper School thing other than they come from Wisconsin. Maybe they made cheese??? What are your parents (or guardians) like?
See you at school -
The dolls of Pleasantville are busy correspondents, who take their many penpals quite seriously and each write to two or three different people to keep up with the latest news and stories from their friends' lives.