Jenny Smith

September 22, 2021

A Note of Gratitude

Dear Mr. Pinkwater, 


In the spring of 2020, we were all set to take a Borgel inspired road trip that summer. Alas, we had to cancel that plan and ended up sheltered in our home with two disappointed boys, aged 9 & 11.  They sat wistfully looking at photos of our Neddiad adventure from the previous summer, when we took a cross-country trip by train to Chicago and the Grand Canyon. 


My husband and I knew that we needed to do something. We posed a family challenge to come up with a way to fill our memory books with adventures without leaving home. After brainstorming and lots of discussion, the weekly family theme was born. Each week we take turns drawing a strip of paper out of a bucket that is filled to the brim with every idea we could come up with. We have made some wonderful memories with the likes of Jules Verne, Indiana Jones, pirates, pioneers, magical nannies and more. 


Time flew by and, before we knew it, school reopened and we were back out into the world. Except, none of us was willing to say goodbye to our bucket of themes. We unanimously agreed that the themes are here to stay. We made a few adjustments, like extending them to two weeks so that we can accommodate distractions, like homework, without missing out on doing a fun activity. 


Today, I am writing to you because my 12 year old drew the Pinkwater theme for the next two weeks. It was followed by a deluge of ideas and excitement. Your books are a staple in our household culture. They have inspired vacations and family traditions. This morning as I walked my 10 year old to school, all he could talk about was ideas for the theme ranging from a Noodlekugel inspired tea, recreating the Laurel and Hardy movie festival in The Snarkout Boys and making pizza with Spiegelian blue garlic. 


While the kids were at school, I drew a picture of Henrietta on our chalkboard which displays the current theme. Our theme bookshelf, which rotates in content depending on the current theme, is overflowing with your books. I am excited for two weeks with Henrietta,  Blueberry Park, the blue moose, Fafner, clam chowder with gingerbread & coffee, the Snark Theater, Mr. Plumbean, napoleons, Melvin the shaman, Neddie, doughnuts, hot buttered potatoes, Iggy, Uncle Borgel, Wuggie Norple, the great popsicle, and pizza with spiegelian blue garlic. Thank you for creating such wonderful characters and stories.

Daniel replies:

Obviously, your family gets more fun out of stuff I've written than I had writing it. I am not jealous, that was my intention, or would have been if I had an intention. I do feel I should remark that a Borgel-inspired road trip would have to involve travel in time space and the other, which might be a bit beyond the capacities of the average family, even one that can read, so circumstances may have worked in your favor.