|Stewart, Frances to Stewart, Frances, 1872
|Revisiting Our Forest Home_The immigrant letters of Frances Stewart [J. L. Aoki]
|Douro Township, Newcsatle District, Upper Canada
|Peterborough, Ontario, Canada
|family life, faith
|1872: January 10
To Frances Brown (Fan), [Peterborough, Ontario]
My dearest Fanny
I have often intended to write you and Jessie to thank you for your nice
Christmas presents. Indeed I feel vexed & ashamed at not having done
so much sooner for I have often looked at both the pretty edgings and
your nice box which you sent the chrochet pieces in, all so very neat &
nicely done & I hope to have it all sewn on my new chemises very soon
as I have had one chemise half made for a long time which I must soon
finish as my old ones are going to stripes. They split up the back & sides every time I wear them. So as the days grow longer I hope to be more
alive & get more done if I do not get sick. I am so afraid of getting sick.
This is the time of year I generally get one of my bad colds & I think if
I get one now it would be sad trouble to everybody for all seem to have
plenty to do but we must be thankful that when we hear of so much sickness
& deaths in so many families we are all kept so well in both houses.
I hope it may long continue so & that soon we shall all get more settled.
So in the meantime we must try & trust in God to guide us all in the
right way and leave all our cares in His hands — Psalm xxxvii — 5, and
all will be right. I must now go to tea so goodbye for this time.
Sunday— 14th Jan'y 1872
Do you know, my own dear Fan that I don't think I have written to you
this year! Or since before Christmas! I seem to have just awakened from
a long dream. Everything & every body seems so unsettled and uncomfortable
since Christmas day which could not be called a happy one
though we all seemed merry enough in the evening when the games were
going on. But dear child, tho' we cannot help feeling all this very much
yet we must feel sure that all is guided by a loving Father who knows best
what we require and who will never send us more than He will enable
us to bear if we only "trust in Him" and pray to Him to enable us to bear
all and submit to all in the full assurance that "He holds the Helm" and
guides the storm. And when He sees it right He can say "Peace be still" &
give us peace or else strength to bear it all. Every event of our lives if laid out for us from before we are born till we cease to breath & He knows the end, before we can see the beginning! But we may pray to Him to guide
us and to lead us and show us our way, through the thorns and tangles
that seem so thick & painful but which (when passed) we can look back
upon and trace His goodness and mercy to us. And sometimes He lets
us see why He sent these trials and when they cause us to look into our
own hearts perhaps we may find something wrong which He took this
way of removing.
Well dear Fan I have just been writing the thoughts that often pass
through my mind and they seem often to put every other subject out of
their way but today they came down on this piece of paper & I hope you are not tired of it but being Sunday it seems more suitable than any nonsense
would be. I wonder if you are writing to me today. I hope you are. I
want to know so much about you but some way I have not seen you much
lately & one day that you came up to see me (I believe it was last Sunday)
I was asleep & so missed that pleasure which I was very sorry for.
Sunday evening 8 oclock — Just when I had written so far this morning
they all came home from church and then dinner came and then I
grew lazy & put off finishing this & now they have been trying to sing
but did not get on well. Poor Aunt Bee did her best but Stewart did not
care to sing much & there was no other singers but Harriet & Dunbar ...