Many of the pictures that were sent home from the front were intended to give an impression of normality. Even though some of these pictures may have been "faked", the distractions and leisure activities on display were actually an indispensable part of the soldiers' every day life.

The time spent out of the line at least offered the opportunity for the frontline soldier to enjoy some “quality time” with music and wine or beer. Tobacco was also central to the lives of most European soldiers. Pipes or cigarettes offered a pleasure that could be enjoyed in almost any circumstance.