26th MAY 1912

100 years ago today a baby girl was born in Bolton.
The daughter of an Irish Tailor and a local lass, the manageress of the tripe shop.

Eventually this bonny wee girl would become the big sister to a long line of siblings the second youngest of whom, Patricia would eventually become the Mother of a Kaftan wearing Hippy, who would eventually become the Grandmother of two boys with horrific south London accents who generally wear her daughter, often known as Nora, sometimes known as Jane to a frazzle.
Auntie Thora and Uncle Jimmy married late in life after the war and never had children of their own, but they had us.
And more importantly we had them.

Two of the most wonderful and generous people with the largest hearts.
We spent every holiday with them when we were growing up.

I can remember Mum saving coupons from the back of cereal packets when we were young so we could get cheap rail tickets to Manchester where we would be met by Auntie Thora and bundled on to the local train home.
We would leave the suitcases at the butchers and walk up through the field to the little white cottage up on high at the top of the village.
I'm not really sure why we left the suitcases at the butchers, except they were too heavy to carry all that way. Though I suspect its because with out my Aunt's patronage the Butcher would not have had a fancy foreign holiday every year.
Lets just say we ate a lot of meat when we stayed there.
The first time I took the Hippy to visit we arrived later that expected at 2.30 to a cold roast beef lunch, then at 5.30 we were served roast Lamb for our dinner.
This was a huge concession to the fact we had arrived late as dinner was always at 5 pm!
I'm not sure the Hippy ever recovered. 
One morning he had to send me down to breakfast with out him to explain that no really he didn't want another huge cooked breakfast, really a cup of tea would be enough.
Auntie Thora's reply to that was "Humf, I bet if I asked him he would eat it!"

The amount you loved her was in direct proportion to the amount of her food you ate.
Every part of my life is filled with memories of Thora and Jimmy.
I think of them every day.
Even though they are both long gone now I always think of this as a very special family day.
Love Nora xx


  1. Love this! thank you for sharing.

    I remember my first visit to my husband's family in the Midwest US. Big meat eaters they were, every meal had meat. Me being a West Coast girl, meat was only occasional fare. After a few days of being there, I finally took my husband aside and said, "I'm sorry dear and I mean no offense to your Mom, but I have to draw the line at the Ham Loaf!"

  2. That's so beautiful Jane. Thank you so much for sharing this. Treasured memories are a composite of who we are and once again I'm reminded of what a good egg you are :) Kx

  3. What lovely memories to share. Thank you.

  4. This is a wonderful story. thank you for sharing from me too, what wonderful memories of love you have.

  5. What a lovely read, Luxx

  6. I love the top photo - the old one. It's so poignant.

    Sweet family story - it's lovely to have such good memories.

  7. Great memories Jane. Just spent a super restorative weekend with Sam's gran (and boy, did we need it) just pottering and enjoying the sun and doing not much at all - I just hope he looks back on time spent with her as fondly. Love the photos too

  8. What terrific memories, love those photos.

  9. wonderful post and it mirrors how I feel about both my nanna's.....

  10. Aw this is lovely ... I had an Aunty and Uncle like that, they had no children either, we were lucky to have them ... people like this are very special ... I know I've commented late on this post, but just been having a nosy through it!Have a lovely week, Claire xxx

  11. Oh what fabulous, fabulous memories....... a wonderful post. What fun you must've had on those holidays.
    I have similar memories of holidays at my Auntie Margaret and Uncle Colin's farm. We went rabbiting, collecting eggs, watching baby turkeys hatch, helping milk the cows and separate the milk and cream. We loved those holidays.......
    Your post has bought back some great memories, thankyou,

    Claire :}


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