To the Letter by Simon Garfield

In an age like ours, which is not given to letter writing, we forget what an important part it used to play in people’s lives.  – Anatole Broyard


The book, To the Letter, gives a brief overview of the history of written correspondence.  Simon Garfield explains how the development of a postal service, within a nation, was a sign of prosperity and future success.

The book also has samples of letters written by famous individuals and letters written by average people during major historic events.

According to Simon Garfield:

  • There is an intrinsic integrity about letters that is lacking from other forms of written communication.
  • At a time when the decline of letter writing appears to by irreversible, “To the Letter” is a rallying cry to put pen to paper and create a form of expression, emotion, and tactile delight we may clasp to our heart.


Blame Game Solves Nothing

Whenever there is a crisis or a tragedy, the blame game gets started.  The conservatives blame the liberals and the liberals blame the conservatives.  The moderates blame the extremists and the extremists blame the moderates.  The pro-gun-control crowd blame the anti-gun-control crowd and the anti-gun-control crowd blames the pro-gun-control crowd.  The blame game just keeps going around and around.

It’s easier to play the blame game than it is to actually study the problem at an in-depth level.  It’s easier to play the blame game than to admit you may be wrong about a problem or that you really didn’t understand the entire problem.  It’s easier to play the blame game than it is to find actual solutions to the problem.

The blame game is easy to play and it makes people feel like they have all the answers.  The problem is not their fault.

However, that solves nothing.  Getting your hands dirty and working to solve the problem, regardless of who is to blame, is the only way to make things better.

Hardback Books and Paperback Books

I have no preferences between a paperback book or a hardback book.  The paperback version is cheaper, but the hardback is often more durable.

However, I don’t like dust jackets on hardback books.  They tend to slip off the book and they can get wrinkled.  I think dust jackets are annoying.

Does anyone else hate having a dust jacket on a book?

Christmas Themed Alphabet

  • Angles proclaiming
  • Bells ringing
  • Carolers singing
  • Decorations everywhere
  • Elf on a shelf
  • Food
  • Giving
  • Holiday celebrations
  • Icicles real and fake
  • Jesus was born
  • Kids anticipating
  • Lights
  • Manger scenes
  • North Pole
  • Ornaments
  • Parades
  • Quality of gifts are better than quantity of gifts
  • Rudolph
  • Santa
  • Traditions
  • Unwrapping
  • Visiting family
  • Wreaths
  • Xmas
  • Yuletides
  • Zealous people arguing over how to celebrate instead of celebrating

Busy Day for the Thaler Family

Gwen was chosen to represent Ardmore High School at the Limestone County Cookie Bake-Off today.  My mom and I were able to attend the event.  It was a lot of fun watching the kids working hard in the kitchen to get everything ready for the competition.

This quote is on the wall at Clements High School and I think it is something we should all remember.


This evening, I was in a Christmas program at The Brook Church.  Everything went well and the audience seemed to enjoy it.