Click here for the original Farmer's Wife Magazine, the letter written by Ruth in North Dakota can be found on page 10.
February 1933 introduced some odd and deadly new programs in Nazi Germany. The concentration camp Dachau was opened. Initially Dachau was not a death camp, but instead used to house political opponents, dissidents, alcoholics and prostitutes. This led to an intellectual and political exodus out of Germany, including Albert Einstein who emigrated to the United States.
At the same time Hitler introduced one of his first socialist programs: the People's Car program, or more commonly known as the Volkswagen. Porsche motors was tasked with the chore of designing a family friendly car that was completely subsidized by the German government. The Volkswagen has since become of the most easily recognizable vehicles today.
Meanwhile in America, the Great Depression reached it's highest levels of unemployment, nearly 26% of Americans were out of work. For those who did still manage to hold down a job, the average annual income was around $1,550. In a few months consumer and employment conditions would worsen when severe drought and strong winds devastated middle-American farmers with the Dust Bowl, which resulted in some 2.5 million farmers and their families abandoning their farms in the hopes of finding employment in a city. With these farming and employment conditions, it's no surprise that Ruth in North Dakota admits to not being able to afford a radio or her own books to read.
I have to admit, Ruth's description of winter in North Dakota sounds absolutely miserable. There is a reason I moved from Wisconsin to Colorado and I hear the North Dakota is colder than Wisconsin, like I said, miserable. And not being able to see friends for weeks at a time, I would die! I am every bit a classic extrovert and I need people to survive. North Dakota in winter sounds like the kind of place that Handsomepants would love, he's weird but I still love him. But despite the lonely cold, I can appreciate Ruth's admissions to keep life simple. Sometimes we get too caught up in the business of life, keeping up appearances, and running the kids around that we forget the important things in life: quality time with your self, with your family, and with your friends.
At first glance I thought that the Anne block was more intimidating that it actually was. I think it's because of the slight variations of angles, but I got nervous for absolutely no reason. But because some of the angles are wonky, the pre-cut sizes I list below are over sized. Be sure to trim your seam allowances after ever seam in order to keep your block neat and organized.
It's also very helpful to twirl your seams as you begin piecing the templates together or else you will end up with a ball of seams at the center of the block. The center is going to be quite thick anyway, but twirling will greatly reduce that extra bulk from the seams.
A (8) 2 3/4 x 2 3/4"
B (8) 2 3/4 x 2"
C (8) 1 x 2 1/2"
D (8) 1 1/2 x 1 1/2"