Scared the baby half to death

Ft. Lewis, Wash.
A May 1, 1942


Got your letter and your picture just a few moments ago. You don’t know how I’ve been on pins and needles to hear from you and to get that picture. I don’t really know how to describe the sensation I felt when I opened the folder and saw you in your little blue gown. It seemed to be you standing there in person. Darling, I love it.

As soon as I can get away, I’ll have my picture taken especially for you, as the one I had taken last as a civilian is in the possession of my folks, and I tried to get it from them a couple of weeks ago with no success. So I’ll have one taken as soon as possible. The last picture I had taken was the best ever taken of me, and that scared the baby half to death. The picture I really want most to pose for is our wedding picture.

Just as I thought, your letter came to Ft. Lewis and then went back to Salem to come up with the troop today. It’s years since I saw you anyway, and waiting for over a week for a letter is pretty hard for a fellow in my condition to take. A letter from you is worth waiting for, though.

We didn’t have a bad trip up. It rained, or rather just drizzled all the way, but the worst part of it was thinking that each mile took me farther from you. I don’t want to make you feel conceited, but being away from you is very much against my grain.

Darling, I want to put in my share towards our silverware, but I’m not sure how to do it. Should I send you the money to get another piece or so, or should I send it to the jewelry store? Please let me know in your next letter.

Getting back to your picture. I carry it in the same pocket as I have your blue handkerchief. Right now, however, I have it before me. The folder fits my pocket perfectly. What kind of perfume did you say it was that you were wearing that night? The night of the Chemeketan party. You said that you hadn’t been able to get it there, and I thought that perhaps I could get some if I ever got into Tacoma.

Sweetheart, I have to close now. Write me soon again. You know that you’re always in my thoughts. I’m hoping that perhaps there will be a letter from you tomorrow. Give my best regards to all the J’s. I’ll call you as soon as I can after payday, which should be Monday.

Goodnight, darling.

With all my love,

P.S.—Of course I’ll let you know if we move unless it is too sudden, which I don’t think will happen if + when we do move.

Ed. Note—This letter has a bit of shorthand hidden inside the envelope flap. @HeatherJoyLove and her mother, Tammy Miller, have been kind enough to translate it thusly:

Sweet Dreams Darling, You know I love you and I have thought of you ever so often.  The sooner I get to see you again the happier I will be.  Love Forever, Jim


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