"How much a stranger is my friend, to me. The more familiar I profess to be, the more bewildered I become." March 11, 1932

Grandma may have written this as I can’t easily identify it and she sometimes puts her words in quotation marks, too.

October 6, 1931

Dear diary, guess I’ll have to start a fire to get something to put in you. Nothing exciting happening more, I guess.

I remember this feeling, too. You’re sixteen and you want stories to tell!

I also sense some disappointment here. I think maybe grandma was feeling low since the excitement of the essay contest had died down. She may have wanted it to lead somewhere more, like to a journalism job.

It can be tough when something awesome happens and then a few weeks later it’s life as usual, especially if that life involves a lot of farm chores.

October 5, 1931

I do not write in my diary every day. I’ve found I can pick out the most important dates if I sum up a week at a time.

Grandma’s confession! I assumed she was being diligent about daily entries up to this point.

When I started a diary at nine, I thought that it was a rule to write every day and I felt guilty if I didn’t, as though the pages would be disappointed somehow. It took me years to get comfortable with writing when I felt like it. I wonder if anyone feels that way about their tumblr? Like if it becomes a task at some point, rather than a fun thing.

This also goes to show that diaries that are too designed - like for a four-line entry every day rather than a blank page - are not a good match for most.

My silver cup is this month’s bright star. And my telegram from Hazel. “And I shall see the stars.” - Memoranda, end of September, 1931

I love the opportunity for reflection that comes at the end of a month in this diary. Here grandma is looking back on the silver cup she was awarded for writing the winning “Know Nebraska Contest” essay given by W.B. Zimmerman. I haven’t found the essay, but I do have the cup.

Here is a photo of the cup and more about the sweet congratulatory telegram she got from Hazel.

I am wondering what my last column shall have for this day. Will I know myself in 1935? - September 30, 1931

This is awesome. Grandma is referring to the way the diary pages are designed. Each page has an entry for that day in the years 1931 - 1935. Here is her first… She was dedicated, for the whole diary is full of entries from all five years.

I love that longing to know oneself that is especially true when you’re sixteen.