On this day in 2004 my lovely Dad died after seventeen days in the hospice, very special days that I was able to spend with him. I’ve posted about him before but never about the days before I was on the scene. The following photos are some of those he sent home to my Mum.
They had been on their way to South Africa but because of U-boat activity, were re-routed to Nova Scotia. By January 1942 they had arrived in South Africa.
Makoalis, Basutoland January 1942
The last one is of Dad with one of his beloved Burmese cats, a favourite of mine.
Although we need to have deliveries in lockdown, we want to cut big supermarkets out as much as possible so when our local Greengrocer, The Grow Box, first expanded their range, then added a butchery department, we decided to give them a go. Wow! We are not disappointed! Easy to get a slot for delivery and a lovely chap at the door with paper bags full of fresh stuff for the next week. Just look – and almost all local, Cornish produce – eggs, milk, sausages, leeks and carrots, broccoli and a courgette. Only the fruit will have traveled far.
We have spent several hours at the allotment today and have nearly cleared the patch outside the fruit cage – very satisfying! Even better, was being brought a beautiful Savoy cabbage by fellow allotmenteers to welcome us into the community – how very lovely and we’ve had some of it tonight with our Cornish sausages.
Yesterday, I made some family fudge from my Granny’s recipe. Today, there was a comment from my cousin in Australia as follows:
“I remember this fudge well! It appears in my mother’s recipe book as ‘Mima’s Fudge’ and was a special treat during my childhood. I now have the urge to make a batch!”
That absolutely delighted me! I will post the recipe soon but be warned, it is very wicked indeed!
On this day in 1939, my Mum and Dad were married.They were to have honeymooned in Paris but given that WWII broke out on September 3rd they had a weekend in Blackpool instead before my Dad went off to the army for five years.
My Mum at her wedding in 1939
My Dad retired early to write and dedicated his first novel to my Mum ( using a nom de plume as advised by the publishers as it was thought that women read more historical romantic fiction and that they like to read books written by women!) The novel is set in Cornwall in the late 1800’s and its background is the tin mining industry that was so important to the Cornish.
Dad’s first novel, published in the US and the UK by Weidenfeld and Nicholson, in paperback by Sphere
Their Golden wedding in 1989 was a great big family reunion in Cornwall as by then my older brother and his wife and two children were living in Munich, Germany, my younger brother and his wife were in Atlanta, Georgia and my sister and her growing family were in Phoenix, Arizona and I was in Yorkshire with my family. The advance for Ellen Bray paid for everyone to come to the two week long party!
It’s our 53rd Wedding Anniversary today! Three years ago, our four kids made this cd for us having trawled all our friends and family for songs that reminded them of us or us of them and they collected two cds worth including songs from the kids themselves and all with such lovely memories and messages. We’ve been playing them all day and throughout our special dinner. The picture is from Cornish Bird in the Sticks and was specially commissioned for my 70th birthday and then added to by Kate, the artist, when LiveWires 5 and 6 arrived together.
We would have loved to have gone to St Ives today as that is where we spent our honeymoon 53 years ago but it is too full of visitors this year so we went on a new walk setting off from Gwennap Church, the graveyard that contains the Martin stone that inspired my Dad to write his best known novel, Jeremy Visick. It was such a lovely, peaceful walk with stile after stile to climb over and a long distance view of the cottage on Sunny Corner where Mum and Dad lived for many years and holding so many lovely memories. Join us on along the way.
Such wind and rain over night and the garden has suffered. The Aliums have blown over across the Daisies and Cosmos creating a rather dramatic purple, white and green picture which I love.The golden roses below which looked fabulous yesterday have lost all their petals.
The self sown Love-in-a-Mist is flowering – such a pretty flower and a lovely delicate palette of colours from blue through to white with all shade of pinks and mauves between.
I spent a happy hour baking over Skype with LiveWire No 2 today, his choice of recipe, Mini Pork Pies, which have turned out really well. We had a couple for supper with veg and they tasted scrummy. I am going to freeze the others for picnics later in the summer when the London contingent of our family are coming to stay nearby so that we can see each other again, first time this year. It will have been over 8 months since we have seen each other in person……It’ll be fun to actually share the pies with J after having baked them with him this afternoon.
This is the first time this year that we have seen the Greenfinch at the feeder.
Our edible garden is blooming . We can’t keep up with it all.
This afternoon I have baked, over Skype, with LiveWire No 3 who is now 9 years old. T chose the recipe and we cooked along together, all sorts of ‘homeschooling’ going on without anyone noticing – reading and maths, chemistry and problem solving! T’s ganache turned out much better than mine! We now have the most delicious Chocolate Mud cake in each of our homes! I’ll decorate the rest of it with Violas tomorrow – and the second layer when friends call by for tea in the garden on Friday. It was a brilliant afternoon that we both enjoyed enormously. It’s my turn to choose the recipe for next week. That one will take some beating!
T’s Chocolate Mud Cake, double layers
Just one layer split for us, the other piece being frozen for another time.
It’s International Nurses’ Day so let’s hear it for Nurses all over the world who do such a remarkable job day after day in ordinary times as well as in extraordinary times.
Last night I sewed the buttons onto my last four scrub caps which will be collected by Cornwall Scrubs for distribution soon. A friend posted two caps for me the other day and yesterday I received a message of thanks from a Nurse on ICU in Doncaster whose Mum has been a very dear friend of mine for many, many years.
Yesterday I posted a photograph of my lovely Mum and one of my cousins who lives in Australia wrote a comment about how alike our Mum and her Dad were at similar ages. I think they looked alike from being very young as the following old photo, taken in about 1920, shows.
Forty two years ago yesterday, September 29th 1977, the older of our baby twins was operated on to save his life. He was 13 days old and the surgeon described his aorta as being as narrow as the inner tube of a biro. That wonderful surgeon, Mr Devereux, saved D’s life. I am reminded of this as a friend mentioned that yesterday was World Heart Day.
That lovely boy, who had to undergo two more heart operations, the second at 6 months and the final one at two and a half, is now the father of twins himself, LiveWires 5 and 6.
The most important thing for us all to learn, in my mind, is to be kind.The following is what I wish for all our LiveWires.
Breakfast for LiveWire 4, designed by herself, Banana and Blueberry Pancake with the biggest strawberry on top, with cream and maple syrup.
Her next design was with glass, choosing the colours and pieces that went together with the piece of brooch that she had brought before their holiday in the Scilly isles. I shall make it for her in the next week or two.
She also chose a piece of sea-glass from all those she had collected on the beaches they visited when on holiday.
What a fabulous collection for me to work with in future pieces. Thank you to the family for collecting so many beautiful bits for me.