Grandparent’s House

My parents both worked full-time during my childhood, so I spent a lot of time at Grandma & Grandpa’s house. My home was only a hop, step and a jump from there, so I often saw them and stayed at home every weekend…unless I pretended to feel ill and my Mum sent me up there because Grandma had been a nurse! One weekend though, my Mum put her foot down and wouldn’t let me go…she just sent me to bed! I was always happy with arrangements after that!

We had no bathroom at my home, we used to wash in the kitchen sink and we had a toilet just off the kitchen. We bathed in a zinc bath in the kitchen that was kept in an old pantry until needed! Fortunately, my parents had had the toilet moved from outside in the yard and electricity installed before they moved into the house! My Grandparent’s house had all ‘mod cons’ because it had been built by the Council, so we used to go up there for a ‘luxury’ bath. One of my earliest memories is my Mum sitting on the edge of the bath with me on her lap, drying me in a big, fluffy towel!



Big Ideas Festival 2013

The first challenge was to use one of the printed lists to write down advertising slogans from our childhood and to illustrate them. My childhood started in the 1950s and into the 1960s, but I decided to spend a happy afternoon scouring the web for 1950s ones! I remember all these products and still use some of them today….. NEVER Double Diamond though…even though it did claim to ‘work wonders’! Bruce Forsyth is still going strong with the new ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ competition starting this Saturday evening…one of my favourite shows on TV was ‘Sunday Night at the London Palladium’ presented by a very young-looking Brucie & in black & white!


This is a free 15 day festival run by Big Picture Classes so if you’re interested in scrapbooking, follow the link now and register!



….my beautiful Mum, Annie Howe on the anniversary of her birthday today. There is a date stamp on the back of the photo 7th Jan 1939… she was 18 years old at the time this photo was taken! I love the astrakhan hat and collar she is wearing…still think about her every day!

Annie Howe. 1920 to 2005.


Fathers’ Day


Loving memories of my Dad, Philip Hedley Howe on Fathers’ Day. Taken at his home in Devon a long time before I was a twinkle in his eye!!!!!


60 years ago today…..

60 Years ago today…..this is what I was up to!!


I expect you can guess what the occasion was……or can you?

Well, this is a commemorative photo of all the children who attended a street party in the neighbourhood near my Grandma’s house. The occasion was the Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey, London on the 2nd June 1953. We sat at tables set in a little park in the middle of our estate and had our tea….sandwiches, cakes & jelly with ice cream I think….we played games and were given party hats and balloons. My Grandma is behind the camera man trying to get me to smile…even at 2 years old I didn’t like having my photo taken! My sister should have been on the photo but she can recognise many of her friends but she must have left the party before this was taken….she would have been 9. We both had birthdays in July so were nearly 3 and 10. Apart from that, I can’t remember anything else about the day! My Grandma was looking after me so I expect my parents and Grandpa were at home watching the Coronation on our tiny TV! Imagine how wonderful it must have seemed then!

If you can remember what you were doing on the day, why not reply with a comment or, if you’re too young can you imagine what is was like for the older members of your family and did they share any memories with you?

If you’re wondering which one of the children is me, then here’s a little close up.



Grandma’s buttons…


Do you love looking at and sorting through buttons? I do! The jars of buttons in the photo were part of my Grandma’s stash which I was given after my mum died. There were a lot more but they’ve been re-used over the years and she even gave me a boxful when I was teaching, to help the children sort buttons in set theory!

Grandma made quite a few dresses for me when I was little and I know she used to sew for my mum and herself. The clothing wasn’t discarded or given away when it was finished with but buttons and even sections of beaded material were removed and saved for another creation. I can also remember her unravelling cardigans and jumpers, washing the wool and then I used to hold the wool on my hands while she wound it into balls. Real make do and mend!

One day, when I happened to have my collection of family photos and the buttons out at the same time, I noticed that the buttons I was sorting through looked the same as the ones on the dress she is wearing in the photo. It was really exciting to think that, when the dress was finished with, she had saved the buttons and they had passed on to me. The photo was taken in the 1930s…I think she and Grandpa were on holiday. They are beautiful, cone-shaped, concave buttons and they feel like mother of pearl…wouldn’t it be exciting to make something and use these buttons! I wonder what I should make? Whatever it is, it will be very special and remind me of my Grandma!


Baby me…


Here I am sitting on my Mum’s knee back in Exmouth. The little girl is my elder sister. I love my Mum’s edge to edge jacket and the clever way the stripes have been arranged on her panelled skirt. I expect the gingham dress my sister is wearing is her school uniform.