Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Sister's & Mum

Jo & me then
Having emigrated in 1970 with a young family I didn't understand looking back in hindsight, the enormous change that would be in front of us, especially when it came to leaving family and friends behind.

My sister Jo (Josephine) had moved with her husband to London to start a business Mum going later to live with them. We had a small family just me and my sister, almost 5 years apart in age. We were close at times during our younger lives, me being the oldest, responsible for taking Jo to the library or the odd shopping for errands. My job was to get across the road safely at the Belisha Beacons and get us both home in one piece.
However I did let Mum down once by leaving my sister at the park! I had to run all the way back to find her, luckily she was train spotting and wasn't too worried about my absence.

Mum encouraged us in our hobbies keeping a ready supply of pencils crayons and paints with any scraps of paper she could lay her hands on, and a real delight, let us have coloured plasticine to make pretend cakes. She encouraged us to make plaster of Paris plaques which when dry we could paint with pictures ready to hang proudly on any wall available.

Occasionally, one of our special treats, usually on a Sunday, Mum would give us the left over bits of pastry, we rolled it out so many time it became a disgusting grayish colour, she wouldn't blink an eye would put strawberry jam on and cook it!

All this would play a big part in our adulthood.

The three thousand mile distance between us, didn't make too much difference to me at the time we corresponded spasmodically, a few quick visits across the pond, both of us getting on with our lives and bringing up kids, the time really flashed by.

Then  after a trip back in 2009 due to the death of our father I spent 7 incredible weeks alone with my sister. I think we never stopped talking except to sleep or eat. The most cathartic and pleasurable thing that could have happened to two sisters. Best of all we have found that we have so much in common and have become not only sisters but best friends.

Jo & me now
Last year she stayed with us for a month, poor John thought he would have gone nuts but, to our surprise we turned out to be like the three stooges having many laughs, and good times together.

Mum had been what they called “in service” for an old established family and worked her way up to cook where she had the best of ingredients to work with. Good Old Mrs Beaton and her famous cook book still tucked away in a cupboard, she was Mothers mentor along with the Daily Telegraph Tome 'Everything Within'. “that is all you need” she said! I guess that's how mothers were back then.

Both of us now understand her influence. she gave us the fun and the joy of cooking, baking and good food  luckily we were able to follow in her footsteps, in a small way.
And now, not too late, we both understand exactly what she was all about.

Thanks Mum!


  1. What we all learned from our mothers! So many wonderful memories and lots to be thankful for.
    I am not sure how I ended up here, but I've enjoyed the visit. I am also retired and love the freedom and "slowness" it provides.
    Have fun on your new adventure of blogging.

  2. Hi Ellen,

    That was a lovely surprise to receive your comment, it's good to know there
    is somebody out there, Learning to use my I Pad , incredible little thing
    glad you found us. Babs Then and Now