Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Since Valentines day is coming soon, it got me thinking about
when I was a young girl in Scotland...
Really they were fun....

We would send cards anonymously to those we fancied... we would write sayings all over the
inside like....... I wish I were a china cup,from which you sip your tea
Every time you would take a sip, it would mean a kiss for me

I love you, I love you Almighty Almighty,
I wish your pyjamas were next to my nightie,
Dont be mistaken and dont be mislead,
I mean on the clothes line, not in the bed

and how about this one

Walnuts grow in Canada ,apples grow there too,but it takes a place like Glesga ,tae grow a nut like you... :)

Not only did we write on the inside, but we also did the outside of the envelope for
the Postman... sayings as such as this...

Postie, postie do your stuff, take this to the one I love...

Postie, postie don't be slow, be like Elvis, go man go !!

Postie postie do your duty, take this to my blue eyed beauty

Postie, postie do not tarry, take this to the one I'll marry

Postie, postie do not hide, Throw that  Davie in the Clyde...( whatever the guys name was )

And on the flap part of the envelope, we would write SWALK ( sealed with a loving kiss )

They don't do that here in Canada...

I really look back with fondness at my growing up years, and I find
myself reminiscing, and sometimes wishing I could re live them again....

Saturday, January 25, 2014

When my parents broke up... I was around 5 years old.
I don't remember seeing my mum after that, although I have a photo
that was taken in Greenock... I'll have to find it.. so I know I did.  I think she came by
to see me before she left for either England or South Africa..

I also have one of my dad and I the same day

My mother was beautiful....
I've been told that I look like her, although I really think my sister does.
My dad died in 1988, and it was after that time I decided to try and find my mum.
All I had was my birth certificate, so I knew her full name.
I found the name of the local newspaper in Dundee , and wrote to them.
I sent an address that my grandparents stayed at etc... I
wanted to give as much info as possible...which wasn't a lot.
A couple of months went by, and to be quite honest, I figured that it wasn't
going to happen, so didn't think about it anymore.
One Sunday while getting the family ready for church, the phone rang...
On the other end was someone who lives in Ontario, Canada... and
he asked me if I was Nora... I said I was... he then proceeded
to tell me that he was my Mum's cousin, and that he just got back from
a holiday in Scotland.... he hadn't even took his coat off yet.
He told me that he picked up the newspaper and started reading it,
and then something popped out at him.... he started reading
what I had wrote to the paper.
What makes this so interesting is... it took months for them to put
it in... why not before ?
And.... he was the only person in the family that saw it????
He just happened to be there on holiday at that time.
He then asked a family member where my mum was... an aunt that my
mum was close to had just passed away, and they went through her things and
found an address in South Africa.
And as soon as he got back, he called directory, got my number and
phoned me.... I was shocked to say the least.
I then called 411 to see if I could get a phone number...which I did.
I wanted to call, but honestly, I was scared..
What if she has another family, other children, what if she
wants nothing to do with me...what if..........
I decided not to call, and went to get ready... when I hear my husband on the phone..
I heard him mention my mum's name, and my heart started racing.
I started waving my hands at him, telling him no, no, but he just smiled..
My sister Anne was the one who answered the phone, it was in the wee hours of
the morning, she asked who was calling...he just told her Ken from Canada.
A very sleepy voice then came on the phone, and Ken asked if her name
was Patricia McCulloch ( her maiden name )
She said yes... he then asked her if she had a daughter called Nora..
My mum hesitated ( I'm sure stunned ) and she also said yes.
Ken then said ..Well then, Hi... I'm her husband Ken...
That's my Ken... hehe
He put me on the phone ...
I wont get into the whole conversation...
I'm thankful that I found my mum..... because I did this I have found
my family on that side...thankful doesn't quite cut it...more
than thankful.
I found out I had 3 other sisters and 1 other brother... instead
of being the oldest of 3... I am the oldest of 7...I love it.
I have more to add... but I'll do that later...
Thankful for family  x

Friday, January 24, 2014

The Book of Me..... Written by You.... Prompt 22

This week's prompt is - Daily Routine(s)

Do you have a daily routine?
Did your parents? Grandparents?
Why did they (or you ) have this routine?
Where did this routine take place?
Structure - Is this important to you? or your family?
What a hard prompt... hoping that I have something to write about.. I'm not
really sure what to write, but here goes :)
I don't actually know about my Grandparents daily routine.
I guess one routine my Gran had was going to church... she went
every Sunday, and if there was something going on mid week,
she went to that also... She attended The Elim church in Greenock.
My Grandmother Catherine Greves ( Newman )
This is the Elim Church..
My Gran was my dad's step mum, but the only mum he knew... she was lovely.
I don't know about my Grandad or about my other Grandparents
My dad and I lived with my Gran and Grandad after he and my mum broke up, we
moved from Dundee to Greenock, so because of this, I was close to my gran.
I always felt her love, and I'm sure because of her , that's the reason going to
church is important also to me... could that be considered a routine ?
Because I also didn't grow up with my mum, I also don't know any routine's of her.
Because I'm not exactly sure about what I'm supposed to write about, I'm
just going to write what comes first in my mind.
This is my step mum Bridget Keyes ( Newman ).. she was
called Bridie..
As far as routine's go.. before she went to bed, or went out somewhere, she had
something that she did routinely.
She had to go to the stove and turn the knobs to make sure they were all off.
she didn't do it once, she did it a few times.
I think she was afraid that if she didn't check, she would have forgotten
to turn one or more of them off..
I also kind of have a routine like her.. only mine is before I go to bed,
I make sure the phone is on the charger, and check both doors to make sure they are
locked... :) I don't go to bed, till I have done this..
Is structure important to me?  
It sure is... we all need structure in our lives.
It tells a lot about " US "
It tells our " Life Story ".. we are always updating our story
with our life experiences.
That is why I do this blog... I want my posterity to get
a sense of " me " my life, our family... their family..

Sunday, January 19, 2014

I want to talk about something that is so
close to my heart. When my father was born
his twin died... about 1 week later his mother died.
He talked to me sometimes about his mother.. but of
course I did'nt really pay attention.. sad really.

Since working on my family tree, I have become
interested in this grandmother I never knew.
I always wanted to see a picture of her, but always
came to a dead end.. I kind of gave up... although deep
down always hoped.

My father's sister just passed away not long ago,
she was in her 90's... she was the last of this generation.
It was sad for me
Anyway...  I recieved
a package... it was from my cousin's wife.
My aunt who died was his mother.
When I opened it up there were old pictures
in it... and in amongst those pictures was this
picture you see up top.
It is my Father's mother... I cried.
I dont know why I feel such a closeness to her.
My one cousin resembles her quite a bit.
I wanted to include this in my Family History... I am thankful
for families... for my family... for this grandmother
who even though I never met her... I love ...

Friday, January 17, 2014

The Book of Me.... Written by You.... Prompt 21

This week's prompt is Hobbies...

Childhood hobbies & collections
  • Did you share a "passion" with a family member or friend?
  • Tell us about it - How, why, where
  • Do you still have any old hobbies - the ones that have been with you since childhood?
  • Do you still have those childhood collections?

  • To be honest, I don't remember having really any hobbies... playing that
    a hobby ??  hehe
    I do remember that even then I used to like making lists of things... for example..
    I would write down girls names or boys names that I liked.. I would write down
    things I wanted to accomplish... that kind of thing... and yes I am still like that today.
    I usually write a list of the chores I want to get done, or a menu list ... you get
    the picture.. :)

    Something that I remember doing / collecting was Scraps or Motters... these are the same thing, just different name for them.

    I'm not sure , but I think it was just something we did in Scotland,
    We had Cherubs,
    We would try to collect the whole set.. from the big ones to the small ones.
    They were kept in a book, and each set were kept between the pages of the book.
    We would swap them with our friends... the ones you wanted to swap, you would keep
    above the pages, so your friends would know, that's the ones you had
    2 or 3 of, and were willing to swap.

    There were the baby ones like these, but my favourite were the glittery ones,
    or the bride and groom ones.
    I don't have these childhood collections now... but I really wish I did.
    Thinking about this has brought back some happy memories... of friends,
    of fun, and of good times......

    Friday, January 10, 2014

    The Book of Me...... Written by You... Prompt 20

    This week's prompt is  - The feeling of home

    Home means different things to different people, so this week we are going to explore what it means to us
    • What does it feel like?
    • How do you recognise it?
    • What makes it home - people, place, time

    The feeling of home... what does it feel like ?  It feels warm, cosy, it has the feel of belonging..  Have you ever been away, and when you come back, you can almost feel your body sigh, because you're back where you belong.
    Home is where I start and end my day , its where I feel comfort, where I feel safe.
    I have often been told that my home feels comfortable, and that makes me happy, because that is how I want someone to feel when they are here.

    How do I recognise it ?
    Its a feeling.. isn't it ?  The " knowing " you're there.. I also recognise it by the sights and sounds... as soon as I get to my neighborhood, I know I'm " almost there "..
    As we drive up our street, and turn the corner, we push the garage door opener and drive in.
    We get out, get out our house key and open the door... there is my kitchen, that I love so much. I can hear my son in his room, where he spends most of his time.

    What makes it home ..... my husband , my son and I... our students... our family when they come over... the children I take care of ( its a home away from home for them ).  Love also makes it home... togetherness. ...  me cooking in the kitchen, preparing dinner... my husband relaxing on the couch watching TV... so many things make it home..
    Home is where my heart is... my family

    I also want to mention another home for me.... Scotland... its the land of my birth

    Even though where I live now is Home for me... its where my family are...
    Scotland still runs through my veins , and will also still be Home
    I also have family there
    My heart will always be in 2 places... maybe that is hard for you to understand
    but... it makes perfect sense to me

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

    Sports Day

    When I was young and at school, I can remember how excited we were about Sports Day..
    If I remember right, I think parents would be there too, to cheer us on.
    I wish my memory was a lot better though.
    I remember being at a park which was near my house on Kelburn, but I also don't remember the name of the park.
    I can also only remember a few of the games that we played...

    There was the egg and spoon race...  running holding the egg on the spoon, and hoping that it didn't
    fall off....

    Then there was the 3 legged race. Usually it was a tie that was tied around you and your partners ankle. You needed to get into a good system with this... after all , you didn't want to fall and let your partner down.. you start off slowly, but after a couple of steps, you had to be fast to make that finish line...

    And then there was the sack race... usually an old potato sack that you stepped into,
    and jumped your way to the finish.
    The chances of falling were high.. your heart racing when from the corner of your eye
    you could see someone catching up...
    Oh yes... sports day was FUN !!!
    I wish I could remember the other games we played, but really it doesn't matter..
    I CAN remember the excitement of everyone there, and just the joy of
    the day.. ahhhh , those were the days  x x
    Thanks to my friend Karen...she told me another couple of games
    There is the skipping race... I cant believe I didn't remember this one, as I loved skipping..
    and also the wheelbarrow race... fun, fun times
    I know I sound like my dad, but... these really were the good ol' days
    P.S.   The name of the park that we went to for sports day is  Parklea playing fields
    ....Thank you Vivian :)

    Saturday, January 4, 2014

    The Book of Me.... Written by You... Prompt 19

    This week's prompt is... Who Do You Miss....

    Having just gone through the Festive season our thoughts turn to those not with us. 
    • Whether that is people who live elsewhere and that we will not see over the festive season
    • People that have passed away.
    • Who do y0u miss?
    • Why do you miss them?
      • Them as an individual
      • Something specific to them
    I have to narrow this down, because I miss so many people ...I don't live near home , and by home I mean Scotland..... here goes....
        I miss my dad... for so many reasons, but most of all, because I miss his voice.. I miss being able to talk to him, to ask advice... I miss his hugs, his sense of humour, and the way he called me " pet " or " hen "
        You know what bothers me,,,, I have a hard time remembering what his voice sounds like... I never wanted to forget, but I kinda / sorta have...

        I miss my brother Andrew...
        I am the oldest of seven, but I only grew up with my brother Andrew... we fought sometimes, and argued sometimes, but we basically got on most of the time....  I also miss his voice, and his joking... a short time before he died, he called me just to say "I love you ".. I miss him so much
        This prompt came at just the right time... you see, I have been in contact with some friends from way, way back, but just recently, we are all in contact with some other friends... in fact the one ( Jim ) , has just made a page on
        Facebook, that we are all on.  Right now we all talk about the past, and we are
        putting pictures up, but I think it will also be a safe place where we can
        talk about our lives now... we can share our accomplishments, talk about our grandchildren etc...
        In no particular order... here they are
        There is Rosina
        Rosina and I left Scotland and worked in England... we had such fun times then... I love that we can just be ourselves.. she is someone I trust
        This is Lisa... She also went to England, and Agnes did too ..
        This is Agnes.... I always felt safe because Lisa and Agnes came to England  as well... if I had something worrying me, I could go to them
        Here is Stacy ( she's with her husband in the pic )
        I have found that even though we don't talk for a long time... when we do... we can always start where we left off....
        This is Ken ( he is with his wife Sandra in this pic )
        He is funny, he's a good listener he's kind, and I love the banter between him and Tom and Jim
        This is Tom....
        and this is Jim
        Even though they are all different... I am happy for the bond I have with each of them.... I am hoping that having this wee group again will be a time of healing, a time to reflect on the various paths we have all gone... but yet... even in our busy lives, we can still try to be there for each other...we all live in different parts of the world, but we have the one thing that bonds us... I hope that friendship is what will keep us together
        There is also Jean... I don't have a photo to put on right now.. I miss her also
        Last , but not daughter Robin...
        its a sad story ... one that I am not ready to write about on here...yet..
        I do miss her though
        I am sure you are wondering how I narrowed this down... believe me ..I did
        I have so many more names I would have liked to write down
        Writing this has conjured up a load of feelings..
        Some are sadness, happiness, worry, contentment... have I said happiness ?  hehe.. I have tears in my eyes at the moment...something I have done a lot of the last few days...but I am thankful for being able to do these prompts from week to week... I am hoping that some day, my posterity will look at this blog ( or book, if I can ever get it done ) and see that I am a person with feelings,  I am real... I am ME. I would have loved to have something of my own ancestors to read, to make them come alive for me... and isn't that what its all about...
        I have a lot of people that I miss..... I can only hope to have made such an impression, that some would miss me too  x x