happy birthday to you

September 23, 2013 at 10:01 pm 16 comments

When twilight drops her curtain down and pins it with a star,
remember that you have a friend though she may wander far.
– L M Montgomery25-6-12 - Euan and Granny reading 4B
We’re remembering Nan fondly today on what would have been her 96th birthday. She celebrated more birthdays than anyone else I know but what’s so inspiring about Nan’s long life was that she was born a triplet at a time when multiple births were rarely heard of. Nan’s mother already had 8 living children when she found herself pregnant for the 11th time.  Her husband was away fighting in the first World War and a telegram was sent following the birth informing him ‘baby here.  triplets.  2 girls, 1 boy’.  I imagine even on war rations he might have been offered a stiff drink to wet the babies heads and recover from the shock!1-6-13 - baby triplets_nan, ethel, freddie 4B
Since becoming a mum myself I’ve often wondered how Nan’s mum coped with having so many children.  When I asked Nan if it was a hard life she simply said ”yes I suppose it was but I don’t think we noticed, it was a lot of fun with so many of us and we were never bored.   We all helped out so even my Mum would probably have said she had it easier than girls today who have to leave their children to go out to work”1-6-13 - baby triplets with mum and matron 4B
Nan’s stories about growing up in the Forest of Dean were captivating.  As one of 14 children she was used to sleeping 6 to a bed; ”you usually woke up with a foot in your face but it was always nice and warm and you never got lonely”.  When visitors came to stay Nan and her twin sister Ethel slept in the bathtub (Freddy sadly died of pneumonia aged 2).  As young girls they scrumped apples from the local orchard and collected them in their knickers.  Nan used to cry laughing at her own memory of the day her knicker elastic snapped and all her apples tumbled out.Garry christening + mum's parents 4B
Nan loved being involved in the lives of all 5 of her grandchildren.  She was 53 when her first grandchild was born (pictured here in 1978 at my brother’s Christening) and 94 when Euan, her youngest great grandchild, was born.  She always lit up when anyone came to visit but especially in the last couple of years when Euan or his cousin Zac climbed up onto her knee.Jim, Zac and Granny 4B
How glad we all are to have photos and videos like these to remind us of Nan’s special sparkle and wit and gorgeous Forest accent. 

Entry filed under: home life.

making savoury love heart scones wordless wednesday

16 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Denise  |  September 23, 2013 at 10:19 pm

    Wonderful, have a lump in my throat xxxx oh and a tear in my eye xx

  • 2. Nic@nipitinthebud  |  September 23, 2013 at 10:35 pm

    ah Denise, I’d managed to keep my lump down and tears in until you said that! Feeling touched that you felt the sparkle too x

  • 3. whirlingstone  |  September 24, 2013 at 8:59 am

    Well that made me well up! Amazing memories, well done for being the keeper of them. Thanks for sharing x x

  • 4. rainbow soul  |  September 24, 2013 at 9:10 am

    Thank you for sharing the stories of a beautiful life with us Xxx

  • 5. Everlovin' Dad  |  September 24, 2013 at 9:47 am

    Good one Nic. Well presented……………with love.

  • 6. Maureen  |  September 24, 2013 at 8:23 pm

    wonderful Nic, what a lovely tribute to an amazing person

  • 7. Jas  |  September 24, 2013 at 8:25 pm

    Beautiful post.
    How lovely to have a video of Winnie and Euan together! X

  • 8. Jimmy Hayward  |  September 24, 2013 at 9:23 pm

    Lovely tribute sis! Great memories and watery eyes;-)

  • 9. anitanee  |  September 24, 2013 at 9:31 pm

    So beautiful Nic, thank you for sharing your Nan’s story and your memories x

  • 10. nic@nipitinthebud  |  September 24, 2013 at 9:37 pm

    El – what a lovely description ”memory keeper” is :o) i often find hearing someone’s voice is more emotional than seeing photos.

    Anna – my pleasure to share my beautiful Nan with you x

    Dad – thanks lovely

    Maureen – amazing is always my first choice of word when I think about Nan. Hope someone says the same about me when reach old age (well before then would be nice too!)

    Jas – it’s very special having video clips. What I’ve only just remembered having watched it again just now is that I wasn’t actually there that day, it’s G filming and I was full of cold at home. It was 23rd Dec and we were travelling to G’s folks the next day for Christmas. I didn’t want Nan to miss out on a visit just because I was ill so sent G and Euan off and G came back with this video clip. How funny that I chose this one yesterday as it felt like it was my memory even though it wasn’t!

  • 11. ediblethings  |  September 25, 2013 at 11:11 pm

    Hi Nic, that church where your Nan is pictured with your brother looks remarkably like my Mum’s church in Brockworth. I doubt it is though, but so funny that your memory post jolted a memory in me, and in a similar part of the world

  • 12. nic@nipitinthebud  |  September 26, 2013 at 12:09 pm

    Jimmy – here’s a tissue mate x

    Anita – always means alot get writing compliments from you :o)

    Mel – similar neck of the woods! It’s Emmanuel Church in Leckhampton – was built as a school originally.

  • 13. me and mine {September family portrait} | Nip it in the bud  |  September 30, 2013 at 10:00 pm

    […] college reunion in Lancaster.  And last week two birthdays; E’s cousin Zac’s 2nd and remembering Nan on what would have been her 90th birthday. Zac’s celebrations saw little party goers transformed into animals (miraculously so in 2 […]

  • […] edible plants. I felt a little wistful for my lost allotment love and found myself thinking of my Nan momentarily. Just as quickly I was pulled back into the present by E calling ”Mum, come and […]

  • 15. a porcelain wedding anniversary | Nip it in the bud  |  September 4, 2016 at 9:40 pm

    […] died in 2013 when E was 15 months old – she would have been 99 this month.  I love how she is still very real to E through the stories we share when he looks at […]

  • 16. a (would have been) 100th birthday | Nip it in the bud  |  September 23, 2017 at 6:23 am

    […] wrote a little bit of Nan’s life story in a post to mark her 96th birthday, the first birthday we had without her.  She was born a triplet and one of 14 children so […]


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Welcome to my once-about-gardening-and-cooking blog that is now mostly about our life in Gloucester with a boy, a baby and 3 cats.

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