19th November /13
My very dear Juliet,
Many very happy returns of your birthday, I do hope you will have a nice one, though it is a pity some of your friends are imprisoned in the sick room. How very foolish of those two girls to go wondering about with spots on & say nothing, no wonder Miss Lacey was angry; probably every girl who has not already had chicken-pox will have it now, so it is a good thing you had it in the summer.
I am sending you a tie for your birthday present, & the safety-pin brooch is Father’s present; I hope you will have several nice presents. Ethel made a cake yesterday which we are sending to Sydenham as a joint birthday one for you & Jack, as you are going there Saturday, you will be able to partake of it.
I managed to get a bit of a chill or something last week & on Thursday stopped in bed all day & have been in my room ever since till this afternoon. Father got Dr Leslie to see me on Monday as I was not getting on very fast, but he found there was not much the matter, though I had been wise to stop in bed while my temperature was a little up; he is sending me a tonic & will come again on Saturday & I hope by that time he will let me go out.
I expect you got my post-card with the list of French books, let me know if any of them will be any use & if so, the particular poem or play you are to read, then I could send you the proper volume.
Ethel dreamt the other day that no one had remembered her birthday in any way, & she was feeling very cross! I hope it won’t come true.
Cyril & Mela seem to have had a nice week end at Walton, you may probably see Mela next Sunday at Sydenham. Dolly’s ship has passed Melbourne, she ought to be at Sydney tomorrow & home on the 26th, it seems only the other day that she started.
With much love dear, & all good wishes
Your loving mother
Eugénie N Sladden