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BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭
edited March 2020 in Cancer Coffee Break

Hi All.

I thought I would start a discussion about childhood memories. Whether it's to do with the games you played or the treats you can no longer get, or whatever happy memories you may have.

Every Sunday my dad and I would take a walk to a very well known street in Manchester that had lots of pet shops. I used to love going in them and seeing the vast array of pets. You could buy monkeys in those days, and the spider monkey's used to fascinate me!

I always had a picnic bar on the way home and even today, having one of those brings back memories of my dad and I. A very precious one, as he died when I was only 13.

In the summer he would buy me a love heart ice cream on the way home. This was chocolate covered vanilla ice cream in a heart shape that had raspberry jam running through it. Does anyone else remember these?

Mint Cracknel bar was another confectionery I loved. It was shards of brittle mint covered in milk chocolate. I have never met anyone who has ever heard of it, never mind had one. I really wish they would bring that back.

Sweets were a real treat when I was a child. They were not something you had all the time, unlike today where most people get them whenever.

I used to get black jacks and fruit salads with my pocket money. I could get 8 for a penny, if my memory serves me right. I still have a weakness for them even today, although they seemed so much bigger when I was a child.

Let us know all your fond memories from the past.

Love Julie x



  • jacksprat_x1jacksprat_x1 Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    Hi Julie,

    I remember going to a little sweet shop, which was actually a front room in a terrace house near my grandparents house. We spent a lot of time at my grandparents house as it was opposite our school and my brothers and I used to go there after school and Nana used to say what would you like? And both my brothers used to say in unison “two buns and a cuppa tea Nana please”. It still makes me smile! She taught me to make fudge, toffee, honeycomb and pink and white coconut ice. You see where my sweet tooth came from. She was a darling. I always thought the wagon wheels that we bought at the sweet shop were massive! Probably because we were smaller! Do you remember Spangles! I loved the Old English ones!

    Hope you ok Julie.

    Take care.

    love Jackie xx 🙋‍♀️

  • jacksprat_x1jacksprat_x1 Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭


    Your trips to the pet shop sounded fantastic. I bet they were lovely times with your Dad. Do sorry he passed when you were so young.

    I loved fruit salad and black Jacks. I don’t remember mimt cracknells or the love heart lollies. I do remember slipping the saucy love heart sweets to the boys I fancied! Haha.

    lv Jackie xx🙋‍♀️

  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭

    Ha ha Jackie, I had forgotten about love heart sweets. I never really liked them that much. I always liked chewy sweets. I do remember spangles. I loved the red ones.

    Do you remember cough candy? It was a bit like Scottish tablet in texture, if you have ever had that. I loved it.

    Cabana's is another chocolate bar I wish they would bring back. They were like a bounty, but it had a layer of caramel and pieces of cherries. No one I know has ever heard of that one either!

    Not feeling too bad, just a bit sore. Can't wait for tomorrow when I get my drain and dressings removed. I'm hoping I can wear a bra then and my comfy prosthetic, as I hate being so lopsided.

    When do you get your scan results?

    Waiting for any results is always the worst. I will be glad when I have seen my consultant next Thursday. I am trying to prepare for the worst just incase.

    Hope your having a lovely peaceful day.

    Lots of love, hugs and kisses. Julie 🤗🤗🤗😘

  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,435 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Brightstar @jacksprat_x1

    This is a great chat Julie, how brilliant!

    Yes, yes, yes, and yes! Mint Cracknel, Spangles, Old English flavour, Black jacks, and fruit salads, cough candy...all of these were some of my favourites! I had such a sweet tooth. The list is endless of the ones I used to love. I love visiting the old english sweet shops, seeing then in jars. Although, you can't ask for a 1/4 lb of something now of course, all 100 gr etc. or a pennyworth of something. Haha!

    Ice breaker mint choc too and they have brought back The Old Jamaican choc, limited , rum and raisin I loved it!! Licorice toffo's, my poor teeth. I now have loads of fillings..not good.

    I remember the heart ice cream, I wasn't a fan of love hearts either, but I did love sherbert pips and refreshers!

    Nowadays lots of these are still available from online places etc. But I think the price mark up because they are retro makes them extortionate! lol! Probably just as well!

    Carrying on the chat about Cornwall from the art chat, I have many memories of holidays down there. We stayed in lots of places, caravans. Some memories are good some not! I remember the smell of the clay sand at Penzanze, it was horrid, and I made such a fuss, but on the same day I saw baby swans for the first time, which I loved. I fell in love with the blue and white china, mum and dad got us a mug each with our names on. When mum died, we found loads of it in her house, which I now have!

    We used to stay in a caravan park, all 8 of us! Things like toilets, tv we had to go up to the big house to use. No entertainment back then, just a tv in a big room! There was a tuck shop though, yum, I found the jelly snakes in there, haha. I learned how to play Patience/Solitaire on one of those holidays, and still have that pack of cards from then.

    We would travel through the night to get there, leaving after school, getting bathed and in pj's then packed into the boot of the car like sardines, lying down, to go to sleep! All the luggage was tied to the top of the car with those elastic things you use on bikes etc! Nowadays it would probably take half the time with the motorways now.

    We didn't live near the sea, so day trips etc is how we would get to go, driving to Brighton, or Eastbourne, and having a race with my brothers and sisters who could get to say 'I see the sea' first! Driving over the hill near Brighton, and catching a glimpse of the sea! But I wasn't very good on the beach, haha. Too pebbly there! We had relatives at West Wittering near Chichester, now that is a beach! Very sandy and loads of it! Great, until it gets in your sandwiches, and still being made to eat them! Yuk! Hahaha.

    Anyway, enough of that for now, sausage and mash is calling!!

    Chat later,

    Lou xx

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,273 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Brightstar @Sunshinedaff @jacksprat_x1 @Blanka_C

    Haha, what a great thread Julie. You have certainly set memories off in my head.

    My Mum and Dad owned a bakery and confectioners and they made their own sweets and chocolates. They used to make wedding cakes to order and people often wanted very intricate and elegant designs. I used to smile because everyone used to congratulate my Mum on the designs, but my Dad did all the intricate stuff. He was a Marine Engineer by trade and he was very patient and precise. Easter was wonderful. The window display included a huge Donald Duck which nodded its head and held a tray upon which they placed home made chocolate eggs and sweets. People used to ask for their child's name to be written in icing on the eggs.

    Here is Ron's poem :


    Mothers say the funniest things, I know my Mother did

    She said so many funny things when I was just a kid

    Don't cross your eyes, they'll stay that way, a funny face -'Oh no'

    Eat all your crusts for curly hair, as off to school I'd go

    She'd tell me not to interrupt 'cos that was very rude

    And ask if I could leave the table after eating food

    Don't climb up trees, its dangerous, as anyone can see

    If you should fall and break your leg, don't come running to me

    A scarf one day I could not find, she said 'Oh blooming heck'

    If I should come and find it, I'll wrap it round your neck

    Don't go near the water's edge, or you will surely drown

    I still remember all these things, they really made me frown

    But I know she loved me very much and never let me down

    And now I've children of my own, I'm starting out to see

    I'm saying all the same old things, my Mother said to me

    Rob xx

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 149 ✭✭✭


    Hi again Rob, this time I found the excellent poem which does trigger off many memories! One of my Mum’s regular sayings was at the meal table when she wanted me to fold my elbows into my sides like chicken wings - “Henny Penny Michele”. Recently I told my grandchildren about this and they thought it was hilarious!

    Your parents’ shop sounds wonderful! What talented and hard working people they must have been. I love the smell of local bakery shops if you can find them these days and real confectioners are a delight! My mother-in-law had a sweet shop next to her husband’s barber shop in a mining village in South Yorkshire. I used to stay and look after her when she was poorly before she passed away and would go shopping locally - everyone remembered her from the sweet shop and had little stories to tell and because of that I was welcome (even though I am a southerner!).

    Best wishes


  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭

    Hi All

    What a lovely poem Rob, and so true!

    How lucky were you as a child. You must have had ample access to cakes and sweets.

    I have lovely memories of Wales as a child. Most of my aunties ended up there for some reason.

    One of my aunties ran a small guest house in Llandudno and we would spend half of the 6 weeks holiday there.

    I particularly remember a large boating lake, near the sea front. Me and my cousin would set sail our miniature yachts and see whose came back round first. We used to set off for there every morning. It was always the highlight of our day.

    I loved taking the train up to the Great Orme, where I could guarantee it was always very windy. Seeing the sheep's nestled into the side of it used to melt my heart, but I was always worried they were fall off the edge! We used to always walk down, which seemed to take hours!

    There was a wonderful very posh tea shop that we used to go to on a Saturday. I had never seen such lovely posh looking gateaux's in the window, and I always had a piece of the chocolate one. 😋😋

    I used to love mingleing with the other guests back at the guest house, and hated it when the holiday's came to an end.

    Sadly my auntie only had the guest house for 2 summers, as she succumbed to womb cancer. She was only 51 when she died. She was a lovely bubbly woman who previously had ran pubs for years. She also had a very famous son called John Thaw who played Inspector Morse etc, sadly I never got to meet him, as he had stayed with his father, along with his brother, when my auntie and uncle split up.

    I was still very proud of him though and loved everything he acted in. His mother was very proud of him too and it was such a shame she didn't get to spend more time with him. A lot of things have been written about John's childhood, a lot that are not true. I do know my auntie loved her boys and paid the price greatly for splitting up from their father. There are 2 sides to every story and sadly she never really got the chance to tell her side. But she was a wonderful auntie and everyone who knew her, loved her.

    Just going to watch a film. We have stocked up on lots of naughty things to chew. Jelly babies, wine gums, milk bottles and some black jacks and fruit salads. Talking about them the other day made me wants some. Sainsburys do a really good collection of the old style sweets, so I shall pig out now! 🐷🐷😂

    Chat again soon

    Love Julie 🤗 😘

  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,435 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Good morning everyone 😊

    Wow Julie! What a story, I think the whole nation loved John Thaw, he was such a brilliant actor. I fell in love with him as Regan in The Sweeny, I loved that programme! But then he went on to do other great things too. It must have been strange seeing this person who you were related to, but had no connection with in your life. I can understand how it happens though. I don't have many cousins, and the ones I do have I have rarely seen. One set I last saw when I was about 6! My dad's sister and family emigrated to Canada and we never saw them since. Saw my aunt and uncle though visiting my Grandma in the 80's.

    When I began to research our family tree, I was desperately trying to trace them all. I knew they were still in Canada, so I began to google them every way I could. Lo and behold I found them! I found a newspaper article from a little town in Canada about a fundraising event. There was a picture and a name attached. I looked at it and thought could that be my cousin? The person who took the photo had a different name though which threw me. So I trawled facebook for her, found her, and the same person was with her. I sat on that info for a long time, not knowing whether to send a message or not. Then I had a message from someone who had seen my tree, and linked me to their own tree. She had info on my aunt and uncle! That was a major breakthrough in my search.

    I mustered up the courage to send a message to this lady on FB, saying who I was and why I was messaging her. She replied, I had hit the jackpot! She was married to my cousin!! I was so excited, but it has been short-lived as although she said my cousin would contact me, he never has. I never heard back from my aunt, who now is very elderly. I might try again.

    My cousins on my mum's side we actually have seen recently, last year, before that was at mum's funeral, and before that 40+ years ago. We got on really well, we all went to visit them and they came down to us too, and I hope to meet up with them again.

    Sorry folks, I have been rambling!! This childhood memories thread is bringing all sorts of stuff out the woodwork!! Hahaha! 😀

    That poem is great, and very true, don't we all see ourselves saying and doing many of the things our parents did. Although some of them I deliberately avoid doing! haha.

    Rob how wonderful to grow up with a bakery and confectioners shop! That sounds right up my street! You never fancied doing it yourself then? Except eating the lovely things! Did that make you popular at school, having access to delicious treats?

    Lou xx

  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭

    Hi Lou. Tracing my family tree is something I would like to do. I have been going on about it for years. Why is it we put all these things off, that we want to do!

    All my uncles and aunties on both sides are dead. It's such a shame, as there are so many questions that I wish I could had asked them when I was younger.

    Glad that you have had some success with yours though. Wouldn't it be nice if you could go to Canada and meet some of your relatives!

    I am addicted to the program 'Who do you think you are' in fact I watched an old version at the weekend about Lulu. I had seen it before, but had forgotten a lot of it. My husband doesn't get it, as he says you don't even know these people, so why are you so interested in their family tree. I just get engrossed in their story and it fascinate me what they manage to uncover. Barbara Windsors was one I particularly enjoyed, and that one moved me to tears.

    I have a couple of photos of my cousin John. One when he was a boy. You can tell it is him, he never changed that much, and one when he visited his mother. It's a lovely photo of them both together. I will try and find them and put them on this link.

    He always maintained he never saw his mother after she left his father, but he did see her a few times, especially when he started out as an actor. My aunty ran a pub near Granada Studios and he would pop in to see her from time to time. He was only just starting as an actor in the those days. Another time he turned up in a Rolls Royce at my grans and took her for a spin in it. That experience kept my gran going for years! I bet all the neighbours curtains were twitching that day! 😂 😂 😂

    He looked very much like his mother and his daughter Abigail who is an actress, looks so much like my aunty.

    I read the biography book by Sheila Hancock called 'The two of us'. There is a group family picture in there, which my mum is in. She would have loved to have seen that, but sadly had died before that book came out. Sheila does try to correct some of the stories regarding my auntie, and show her in a different light. It is a very moving book. If you like biographies, I do recommend that one. It will be bring a lump to your throat though. It is a beautiful love story.

    Must dash, chat soon.

    Julie xx

  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,435 ✭✭✭✭✭


    Hi Julie, after I read your post I did look John up. I saw his wife had written about your aunt, his mother. Yes, I expect it would be a good read but very emotional!

    I started researching our family tree after my mum died 6yrs ago. Oh how I wished I had started while there were still people alive who would have stories and information!!

    It has been a real detective search for me. I do love it though. My mum used to swear we were related to Lord Nelson on her side. My aunt who us her elder sister still maintains we are! Apparently she has the proof! But I haven't seen it! On part of our tree I have been able to trace back to 1470! Funnily enough, many of them come from near to where I am now, even though later generations were from much further away.

    I wish that TV programme would choose regular people, like me( !) to research! Haha. But I guess no-one would want to watch! Hahaha 😂. Can't imagine why!!


    Lou xx

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 149 ✭✭✭

    Fascinating stuff! Everyone admired and respected John Thaw, such a terrific actor. I have Sheila Hancock’s biography upstairs and this has inspired me to read it again.

    Family trees are addictive I think. Amazing that you got back to 1470 Lou! I have done my Dad’s line, as various cousins have done the other parts of the family, and got back to 1777. There were various stories which came down through the family but I haven’t been able to tie them in with the real people and sometimes the research poses more questions than answers it seems! I also wish that I had started when older members of the family were alive and could answer questions. Also that I had asked more about their lives so that I could get it written down on paper.

    Have a good day.

    Michele xx

  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,435 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Good morning 😊

    Michele, yes it does become almost like real detective work lol! Any little snippet of information I can find I don't let go of and have spent hours upon hours searching, following any trail til I get a definitive yes or no answer.

    It is this time of year I usually do it, I guess winter months when it is horrid outside. I started by joining one search site without paying at first. I did as much as I could that way. I then found other sites that let you access other types of information also freely. I collated it all together on one site.

    I still need to travel to places to get specific info, but haven't had a chance yet.

    It is very exciting when I stumble across information that has been so hard to find.

    I know how you feel, there are so few of my relatives alive who will have family history. I wish I had pestered my mum and grandparents a lot more!

    I have found a lot of sadness too. Some of my relatives ended up in the workhouse and poorhouse, yet others of their own family in the same generation did well.

    Michele, I hope you are continuing to improve and feel much better very soon.

    Have a good day,

    Lou xx

  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭


    Hi Lou. Well I am very impressed that you have been able to go so far back with your family tree. How interesting and intriguing.

    I would love someone to do mine for me. You can pay people to do it for you, but I would imagine it would cost an arm and a leg.

    I mentioned it once to my mum when she was alive. She said ' don't you dare, leave the past where it belongs' There are obviously skeletons in the cupboard that she didn't want me uncovering. 🤣🤣 Although I have found out a couple of things since she died!

    I know an uncle started to investigate on my mother's side, but could not get very far. Perhaps that's something else I should start doing. Although I think I would become very addicted to it!

    Writing an horror story is something else I have been wanting to do.I won a competition many years ago for a short horror story I did. Everyones that read it at the time, said I should make a career out of it. I even had some friends who didn't believe I had written it! What a cheek!🤣🤣

    My English teacher once said, that he would look forward to reading one of my books one day! I loved writing stories at school. Trouble was, I Just could not stop and what was supposed to be a 2 page essay, could turn out to be 5 or 6 pages.

    Well Just going to have a hot milk, then bed for me.

    Chat soon.


  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,435 ✭✭✭✭✭


    Morning Julie!

    Are you sure we are not twins??? !!! 😂😂😂.

    You and I are so similar, you could be writing about me! It is so funny to see.(Except horror stories, not my thing).

    I can help you do your tree, it is very addictive though! Haha, as long as you don't mind the hours you will spend doing it. Unless you can be very disciplined! 😄

    Lovely morning isn't it, so far! Beautiful sun.

    Hope you have a better day.

    Chat soon,


    Lou xx

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,273 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Brightstar @Sunshinedaff @NanaBubbles @jacksprat_x1

    Good evening dear friends

    What amazing stories you have.

    I loved John Thaw Julie, particularly in Inspector Morse and I had an old Jag quite similar to the one he drove in the programme.

    My Dad was brought up by two maiden Aunts. He was a Marine Engineer in the North East but he lost his job along with many others during the Great Depression in 1930. There is a great song ‘Big River’ written and sung by Jimmy Nail which remembers that period. My Aunts owned the Bakery/Confectionary I have mentioned before and they sent him on a bakery course in Leeds, hence his new trade. I have a photograph of the shop taken in 1914. My Dad is the boy with the bike.

    Rob x

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,273 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 2020

    Here it is.

  • jacksprat_x1jacksprat_x1 Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    @RobertA @Sunshinedaff @Brightstar @NanaBubbles @Lesley

    Hi Dear Friends,

    I have really enjoyed reading all your stories. Your relation Julie, John Thaw. He was a household name and much loved by the British Public. A very interesting story. I can imagine you and Lou tracking down relatives together in far of lands! I find it so interesting too. When I was first married I found a cottage on a bank overlooking an old forge and wanted to buy it. My then husbands uncle was Chief Architect of Ipswich Council and he offered to give his opinion on it. Run a mile he said, it’s slipping down the bank! I was devastated, was so drawn to it! Instead, guided by him we bought a modern house on an estate, couldn’t settle in it so moved to another cottage (but didn’t ask him this time🤫)! It’s still there! Years later my Mum gave me a copy of my family tree that she had just been given and it turned out my maternal Grandfathers family, owned and ran the Forge and my family had lived there as far back as the late sixteen hundreds! I obviously wanted to go home! I love driving that way 40 miles away and always have a strong desire to go and look round! At least I know why now!

    Dear Lesley I often think of you and hope that your treatment is going well as hard as it is. I love your funny posts. Take care.

    Hi Michelle, I am sorry that you have been confined upstairs and hope that you are feeling well enough soon to get downstairs. I have found all the chat about art, crafts and poetry very entertaining. I don’t write stories or poetry but would love to so I may try to write some short stories for my grandchildren see how they are received!

    Dear Julie, I am so sorry to hear that you have been having a horrible time following your operation. You are doing so well keeping upbeat in your posts on here. I am wishing you a speedy recovery from the operation. Keep your chin up. 😘

    Hi Rob, I hope you are feeling better with your cold. I’ve had mine 6 weeks or so now! Chest infection gone only to be replaced with kidney infection! Here we go again haha! It will pass! So interesting to hear of your Dad in the depression. I remember my Nan telling me about it and how Grandad went to the Dock every day and those days she saw from the kitchen sink, him walking up the long road home early meaning there was no work that day. They had small children and she said she would cry and pull herself together before he got in. Terrible wasn’t it? My grandad always grew fruit and veg. I remember him saying he wasn’t growing flowers you can’t eat them!

    Hi Lou, what a lovely day it’s been. I saw Little Women today with my dear friend Teresa. She said it was very good to be completely lost in it. She was widowed 3 years ago and her last link with her lovely husband was her lovely cat, unfortunately he, the cat was very ill and she nursed him very well for 3 long months. She feels completely alone, she doesn’t have children or any family now. She is going to need lots of love and caring. Life is not fair sometimes.

    I hope my timing is not bad for anyone but I wanted to share that a year after my operation, my recent colonoscopy, lump removal and scan results came back. Lump was benign, no C in the bowel seen and a second clear scan after 6 months of Chemo. Bloods fine. Long may it stay that way! I am planning to celebrate with the family when it has sunk in. 🙏🥂

    You have got me through the darkest time of my life all, thank you and much love. Keep up the good work! 🥰love to you all Jackie xxxx🙋‍♀️

  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭

    @RobertA @Sunshinedaff @jacksprat_x1 @NanaBubbles

    Hi Jackie. What an amazing story about the cottage you were drawn too. It actually gave me goosebumps! That could almost be one of my stories!🤣

    I am so glad your scans etc are all clear. That must be a weight off your mind. I think you deserve a nice bottle of champagne to celebrate! Shame you don't live nearer, Lou and I could help you drink it! 🤣

    I have my results today, dreading going really, but let's hope it's good news. 🤞

    Hi Rob & Michelle I hope both of you feel better soon. Sending you both massive hugs.🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗

    Would love to see your dad on the bike, and the shop Rob but there's nothing there.🤔

    I will try and look for my photo's next week. They are all in a suitcase.

    Hi Lou. I might Just take up your offer of helping me with my family tree. Mind you, if I uncover some dark skeletons, my mum might just come back and haunt you!🤣🤣

    Hope you all have a peaceful day.

    Love Julie x

  • jacksprat_x1jacksprat_x1 Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    Hi Julie,

    Thank you very much for your good wishes. I wish you all the same news!

    Thinking of you today Julie. Hope your appointment has some good news for you.

    Hi Rob, Hope you are enjoying a fine spring like day and are feeling a bit brighter. I could not see photo of your Dad. Maybe you could send it again, I would love to see it.

    Hope you have a good day.

    Lv Jackie 🙋‍♀️ xx

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,273 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @Brightstar @jacksprat_x1 @NanaBubbles @Lesley @Sunshinedaff

    Hi Julie. You are very much in my thoughts today and I am looking forward to hearing some good news about your results. I do hope that you will get down to writing that horror story. Your posts are fascinating and I will buy it. Perhaps you could write about a mad rabbit which goes around knocking penguins about. 😉

    Hi Jackie. I love reading your stories too, and I smiled when you told the story of your brothers asking for “two buns and a cuppa tea”. When I first came to Jersey, there was a posh tearoom called Birds. I actually asked for a bun and a cuppa and the lady pretended not to know what I meant. Eventually she said. “Oh, you mean you want a roll.” Oh yes,I said, “may I have a rrroolll and a cuppa please.” Having a roll meant something entirely different where I came from. 🤣 Sorry about your kidney infection, but thrilled to hear your good news. It has really made my day. 🍾🥳. xx

    Haha Michele. That is so funny. “Henny Penny Michele”. It makes me think of the Birdie Song. I wonder where your Mum got that from! I hope that you are feeling better and tackling the stairs now.

    Hi Lou, you always have so much going on. Yes, my family history has a lot of sadness, poverty and loss too, and I don’t go too far back. Mary’s Mum was brought up by the Nuns in Galway and by all accounts it was not a happy experience and she rarely spoke of it. However, Mary went onto a site called ‘Irish Roots’ and after a number of false alarms, we traced her Mum to a little island off the Galway coast. Being an island, they all know everything and the Catholic church was a great source of information too. We were treated with such warmth and kindness and we are still in regular touch with Mary’s cousins who still live there.

    Dear Lesley, it is always special to hear from you, you are so funny and warm. 😘

    Here we go. This is my Dad circa 1915.

    Rob x

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 149 ✭✭✭

    Good morning all

    What a beautiful bright and sunny day, even if it’s a bit cold it brightens the spirits! I am finally beginning to feel a bit better after this flipping pneumonia but energy still lacking. It’s lovely to be able to chat here as you can feel very isolated when not well enough to go out.

    Jackie - so pleased for you about your results - what a relief!! Many congratulations and hope you have a good celebration with your family who must also be very relieved.

    What an amazing story about The Forge! You definitely experienced some ESP there which I firmly believe in. Little Women was one of my favourite books as a child although I always found it sad.

    Julie - I hope your results are good and definitely fingers crossed for you.

    Rob - I do hope you are beginning to feel better. There are some awful bugs around which just seem to go on and on! Several people in our village have been struggling since before Christmas and hope you won’t be similar. Horrible!

    Just waiting now to see whether the Oncologists will let me have my next immunotherapy infusion on 14th after this pneumonia. Hey ho! The the joys of life!

    Love to you all


  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,435 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Good afternoon friends, 😃

    I cannot keep up with this thread, there are always lovely stories to read! It is very uplifting each day!

    Julie, haha, don't worry about those potential skeletons, lol, I found some in mine! I realised when I was younger I did use to ask my mum about our family, and relatives etc, but she would never ever talk about it. At the time I thought it was something to do with the war, and my little fanciful head imagined someone had been very important during the war, secrets and all that!! 😂 Hahaha, how wrong was I! After mum died and I began searching, google revealed some things, then I found some paperwork confirming what I had found! Then the wardrobe door opened and the skeletons came tumbling out, my sister and I have laughed about it mostly because of all the secrecy that surrounded it all! Plus, anything we uncover, you know my lips would be sealed!! 😂. Thinking of you this afternoon at your appointment, chat to you later. ☺️

    Jackie, how wonderful to hear your good news. That is truly wonderful, I am so very pleased for you. This is now the start of a new chapter for you, enjoy your celebrations with the family.💐🎉 🤗☺️Although it is not good to hear you have developed a kidney infection, that is painful and uncomfortable. I hope it clears up very soon. I was fascinated to read about the cottage you found. How strange that your ancestors did in fact live there at one time. It reminds me of a book I read last year by Kate Morton, The Clockmaker's Daughter which was set within an old house by a river. Brilliant!I still have not been able to see Little Women, it is one of my favourite stories, was the film a good version? As good as the June Allyson one?

    Rob, I love that photo, it has so much history in it, incredible!😀I love looking at old photos, I have so many now I find them fascinating to look at, discovering more about the people/places within them.

    Michele, I am glad you are beginning to improve, once something like that hits you it does take a long time to come out of it, but hopefully now each day you will see a difference. I agree, this beautiful sunshine is so welcome I am typing this with the sun streaming in through the window, it feels lovely and warm inside! 😁.

    It is great to chat isn't it, having our own little coffee mornings, and afternoon tea sessions, even wine in the evening ones!😋

    I hope you all are having a good afternoon, chat later,

    Lou xx

  • jacksprat_x1jacksprat_x1 Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭

    @RobertA @Sunshinedaff @Brightstar @NanaBubbles @Lesley

    Good afternoon All,

    Thank you all for your congratulations. It’s lovely to have had your support. 💖

    Lou, Michelle and Julie, Do you know, I think there’s lots of material for a short story about the adventures and skeletons in the closet of a group of friends! Haha. Would be a best seller!

    Rob I love the photograph of your Dad looking very smart with his bike outside the shop. The shop looks wonderful! I love the Wedding Cake in the window! Talking of cakes, I’ve never heard of a cake being called a roll, but I have heard of a bun in the oven! 😂

    How wonderful Mary found family information and keeps in contact with family from Ireland. I would imagine being brought up with Nuns could be a very upsetting experience, unless it was with Jenny Agutter and Trixie in Call the Midwife! 🙏

    Going back to the blacksmiths, I showed my 3 brothers and said to them there is something in this you know, they are all very good at Metalwork, Fabrication, Welding and they all work in engineering as did my Uncles. If something breaks they mend it or fabricate a new part. I’m afraid it didn’t pass to us girls haha, but we all love to pat a horse! 😆

    Lesley glad you got in touch again, hope you are progressing well with your treatments.

    Michelle, So glad you are feeling a little bit better and hope you can start your treatment again soon. it is lovely to feel the sunshine through the windows. All the bulbs are coming through.

    Take care dear friends.

    Love Jackie 🙋‍♀️ Xxx

  • jacksprat_x1jacksprat_x1 Posts: 322 ✭✭✭✭


    O Lou I forgot to say, The article you found about LBC was really good to read! Thanks for the link.

    I had never seen little women and don’t think I ever finished the book! I really enjoyed this new film version tho, was happy and sad. I cried!

    Hope you and the family are all doing ok.

    I’m seeing my Boss next Monday about a possible phased return to work. Feel a bit unsure but going to have that chat!

    I helped Amber get Teddy and Ivy ready this morning as Daddy was away working and there was a little problem to solve. Amber took Ivy to the childminder before work and I took Teddy to school, was fun. Turn the clock back this time last year. What a difference a year can make hey?

    Have a lovely afternoon.

    Catch up soon.

    love Jackie xxx 🙋‍♀️

  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭

    Hi everyone. What a fantastic photo Rob. I am quite envious that you have a photograph that old.

    I had one of my mum when she was s baby and she had clogs on. I tried to find it last year, but drew a blank and it really upset me. I am going to assign a day next week to have another good look and see what I can find.

    Hopefully I will be able to post some on this site ,for you all to see.

    I have made a note of that book Lou, the clockmaker's daughter. I shall see if I can order it from the library.

    Just finished a Lee Child book called The Visitor, bit of a slow burner, but was really good. I think I have read virtually all of his now.

    Chris Carter is another good author, but don't read any of his, if you live alone!

    The first book I ever read of his was called The Caller.I had to wake John up to escort me to the bathroom, as I was so scared! I kid you not,so be warned!

    Have a lovely evening everyone. I am treating myself to a very large Tia Maria.

    If you have read the what made you smile link, you will all know why.

    Peace and love, Julie xx

  • SunshinedaffSunshinedaff Posts: 1,435 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Good morning!😁

    I shall look that author up Julie, I haven't heard of him/her. I like the Kate Morton books, they are always mysterious. I have just finished a Lee Child book too, haven't read The Visitor yet, now reading a Robert Galbraith novel, my first.

    Jackie, I am wanting to see Emma the new film coming out next week, I love Jane Austen, and I think this will be a good adaptation.

    That is a big step, going to chat with your boss, from what I have read of others returning to work is to take it very slowly. Yes, what a difference a year makes! I expect Teddy and Ivy were excited to have you with them in the morning, haha! I can just imagine it!

    We still have lots going on as before, taking each day as it comes. There is a lot of pressure on us all, it is very tough to be honest but each day we move forward a little bit more overall. Next week we are in Exeter for a uni interview. The uni have been great in accommodating the needs we have in actually getting through the day. In three weeks I will be in Cornwall visiting Falmouth Uni for an interview. Looking forward to visiting Cornwall again though.

    Hope you have a good day,

    Lou xx

  • RobertARobertA Posts: 1,273 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Hi Jackie. Wow, yes, a year can really make a big difference and you have really been through a lot. I can understand your being unsure about going back to work and it will be a challenge. Good luck. 🤗

    Hi Lou. I bet your family history is fascinating - perhaps you are royalty! I hope that you are all coping well and enjoying your trips round the Universities.

    Rob x

  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭

    @jacksprat_x1 @Sunshinedaff @RobertA @NanaBubbles

    Hi my lovely friends. Yet another beautiful day again. Alas, I am stuck in again,as still in a lot of discomfort and no way can I wear a bra. Plus don't really feel up to going out at the moment.

    It got me thinking while looking out the window, how sad we don't see children playing anymore.

    When I was a child practically every Street you passed would have some activity going on at a weekend.

    There would be children playing skipping games, boy's playing football, girls playing 2 ball, rounders and cricket. What really sticks out in my mind, is the sound of the children's laughter etc.

    2 ball was a favourite of mine. All very simple. It was just juggling 2 balls against a wall, while singing one of the many songs that were around in those days.

    My favourite one was, "When Suzie was a baby" It starts off as a baby and basically goes through all the stages of her life. You would have to perform certain actions, while still playing with the balls. This would require you using one hand to control the balls. Does anyone else remember this?

    Another game was elastics. You would join up lots of elastic bands until you had a very long line of them. Then you fastened the ends together. This game required minimum of 3 people. 2 would have the elastics around their ankles ,so basically it was forming a very large rectangle. The 3rd person would jump in the middle and you would cross the elastics over and create patterns Just by using your legs. A bit like cats cradle that you do with your hands, if you remember doing that! Then, eventually you would do a leap to free the elastics from you. Each time those elastics would go up a little higher on the 2 people who had them round their ankles.

    I also remember wearing a pair of my mum's tights on my head and pretending I had long hair! 🤣 The legs represented 2 pigtails in my mind! I was 23 at the time.🤣 I think I was about 5 really. ☺️

    My mum always had my hair cut really short, which I absolutely hated. She thought it would stop me getting nits. It didn't! 🤣 I can still remember the smell of the lotion that she put on my hair to get rid of them. Can't remember the name, but it was thick bright yellow. I remember screaming, as she was putting the nit combe through my hair. A gentle touch, she did not have!

    I remember for my 9th birthday getting spiragraph and an hammock. Oh how I loved that hammock!

    My dad attached it between 2 trees in the garden and I would lie in it swinging away, making songs up for hours on end.

    I wonder if the children of today would be so easily amused!

    Would love to hear about your childhood games etc

    Love Julie x

  • NanaBubblesNanaBubbles Posts: 149 ✭✭✭

    @Brightstar @Sunshinedaff @Robandabb @jacksprat_x1

    Hi everyone, as you say Julie another beautiful day but sorry that you have so much discomfort and are stuck in - me too as still getting very breathless. We have snowdrops, hellebores and daffodils in flower in the garden and I am hoping to go out to do a bit of a snowdrop walk at one of our local National Trust gardens before they all disappear for another year!

    Jackie - very best of luck re going back to work. It is a big step to take!

    Rob that photo is terrific! I think it would be hung on the wall if it were mine! What an amazing and beautiful shop. I hope you are feeling better now.

    Julie - I remember all those games that you mention! We also used to play dibs or five stones quite a lot and I bought my granddaughter a set and taught her to play but in today’s world I think it is a bit tame. Elastics was a favourite and I can remember practising with the elastic put round the legs of chairs which was really not the best! At junior school we used to play various chasing games with one person who was ‘It’. My favourite was ‘Feet off Ground’ as there was fencing that you could climb onto and an enormous tree trunk laid on its side which about 5 kids could climb onto. I’m sure Health and Safety would not approve! We used to have a very long skipping rope that belonged to the school so that you could get 3 or 4 skipping together and we had various songs to sing too.

    I have just finished reading The Clockmaker’s Daughter and thoroughly enjoyed it. Last summer we went to visit Kelmscott Manor which is not too far from us and is situated on the bank of the Thames and the home of William Morris and his Arts & Crafts friends. Reading the book I kept thinking that it was the house described in the book and based on some of the people too - in the back acknowledgments etc it does say that some inspiration came from Kelmscott.

    Well, lovely people, have a great weekend.

    Love, Michele x

  • BrightstarBrightstar Posts: 259 ✭✭✭


    Hi Michelle. The snowdrop walk sounds a lovely idea. I hope you get to do it soon.

    Don't recall the 'feet off ground' game. I do remember one where you formed a circle and someone would be in the middle. We would then chant a song called ' the farmers in his den ' Do you remember that one?

    I have ordered' The clockmakers daughter ' from my local library. I shall look forward to reading that one.

    Hope your breathlessness eases soon, that must be so tirering.

    Enjoy the rest of your day.

    Julie 🤗🤗😘

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