Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Workaday Wednesday - What is a Worker? ,

I came across this quotation recently on Pinterest, and thought it  was worth considering in relation to our own families.  With thanks to www.ponderabout.com 




Do these descriptions strike a chord with the lives of your ancestors?  


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"Working Lives"  - photographs from the collection of my local heritage group 
in the Scottish Borders  - Auld Earlston 

 
Textile workers at Simpson & Fairbairn Mill, Earlston



Hay making above Earlston

World War Two Nurses  - On Parade.

 *****************

Workaday Wednesday is one of many daily prompts  from Geneabloggers encouraging bloggers to record their family and local history.

Saturday, 30 April 2016

Sepia Saturday - In the Frame

Sepia Saturday give bloggers an opportunity to share their family history and memories  through photographs.





I featured this photograph a few years ago, but it is so apt for this week's prompt, I just had to show it again - we have the road and we have a picture frame!


Here is the "headless" lady walking  with this picture frame to the auction house across the road.  

It made us laugh when we saw this sight on holiday in Munich, Germany and,  unusually so, I  had the camera at the ready. 


Click HERE to see what other Sepia Saturday blogger have in the frame. 
   
Copyright © 2016 · Susan Donaldson.  All Rights Reserved

Friday, 29 April 2016

A-Z: I Remember...Zoo at Blackpool

I REMEMBER......
MEMORIES OF MY CHILDHOOD 


 Z is for the ZOO at Blackpool.

I grew up in Blackpool,  the seaside resor with its famous Tower.in north west England,  This was the entertainment complex of its day, with its Tower Ballroom (where my parents met),  circus ring, aquarium and zoo. We used to go there about once a year. as a treat. 


The zoo would now shock!  But in the 1950's it was deemed acceptable.  You walked into a large tiled hall, with windows one side and two sides tall, narrow cages for the animals, which included the big cats, bears and monkeys - no room whatsoever to roam exercise or be stimulated

I was surprised to read that it was not until 1973 that it was closed down.   A new zoo opened on the edge of the town in an extensive area that once was the old airport during the war - and where in the 1950's as children we went to fly  our kites.   


Blackpool Tower from the North Pier

But the memory of the old Blackpool Zoo reminded me of a poem which we read at school " Albert and the Lion" by Mariot Edgar  which opens with the verses: 

There's a famous seaside place called Blackpool 
That's noted for fresh air and fun
And Mr & Mrs Ramsbottom
Went there with young Albert their son. 

A grand little lad was young Albert
All dressed in his best, quite a swell
With a stick with an 'orse's ''ead 'andle
The finest that Woolworth's could sell.  

The next 16 entertaining verses tell of a visit to the Zoo with disastrous consequences as young Albert encounters the lion.   

The most famous  recording of the poem, told in a broad Lancashire accent  is by music hall entertainer Stanley Holloway (he also played Eliza's  father in the classic film "My Fair lady").  


************ 
This A-Z challenge has been a very stimulating blog prompt to follow and great fun. It has been amazing to read how different bloggers have interpreted each letter.  

Thank you to everyone who has taken he time to comment and share their own reminiscences,   amidst their own busy schedule.  I have very much  much appreciated these, and I am  delighted  to have discovered new (to me) family history bloggers. 

One  thing is certain - we have all approached the challenge with ZEAL and ZEST.   We have  ZOOMED in  on our chosen theme, ZIPPED  through the letters, at times been ZANY,   but we have   now  reached  this ZENITH 

THE END 

*********

In Case You Missed

A-Z Challenge 2016 Theme Revealed:      I Remember......Memories of Childhood

C - Clothes + Church, Chores, Christmas, Crafts & Cars   
D - Dolls + Dogs & Desserts     
E - Events + Eating Out & Easter    
F - Food + Fads & Fashion and Freedom
G - Grandparents + Games   
H - Hairstyles + Hobbies, Houses & Halloween 
I - Inspiring Teachers 
J -Journeys & Joining 
K - Kitchens & Knitting   
L - Libraries     
M - Music + Movies     
N - Needles  + Nativity and Names   
O - Occupations  
P - Poulton - My Ancestral Home + Poems, Pets, Penfriends, Politics and Protests 
Q - The Queen's Coronation  
R  - Radio + Religion, Remembrance and Russia 
S - Speccy Four Eyes + School, Sports, Sundays, Student Days and the Space Race    
T - Toys + Treats, TV, Theatre and Technology   
U - Uniforms     
V - Village Life + Vacations and Values 
W - Wars and Weddings
X - XRays, Xylophone and Xmas
Y - Youth Culture  

Thursday, 28 April 2016

A-Z: I Remember....Youth Culture



 I REMEMBER......
MEMORIES OF MY CHILDHOOD

I have to admit that YOUTH CULTURE largely passed me by and my memories are slight.

I remember the advent of rock & roll and remember all the fuss about  some girls at my school skipping lessons to go and see Elvis Presley's film "Blue Moon".  Cliff Richards and the Shadows were all the rage and I quite liked some of their songs, without getting over enthusiastic.   

Frank Ifield, Pat Boone, Perry Como, Val Doonican and the New Seekers  come to mind, along with Alma Cogan, Dusty Springfield, Sandy Shaw, Lulu and Cilla Black.  We were regualr watchers in those days of TV's annual  Eurovision Song Contest.

When I met my husband, and we had evenings in listening to record (and smooching!), Jim Reeves was the favourite.  

My tastes were more easy listening, musicals and popular classics than pop.  So in this respect I was not a typical teenager.   I was into my 20's before I got my first transistor radio.  I am hopeless in TV quiz programmes where the topic is Pop Music - I haven't a clue! 

On  other hand I was very keen to learn to jive!  

Fashion was another matterI followed the  50's trend for full skirts, waspie belt and a pony tail.  The 60'sand early 70's  of course meant mini-skirts, shift dresses and peter pan collars, with fur hats popular for winter  after the release of the film "Dr. Zhivago".  So I will end with a fashion show from my YOUTHFUL days! 



I loved wearing pinafore dresses and had several  in my wardrobe - slimming and versatile worn with jumpers or blouses.  Inverary Castle, Argyll in the background. 

  A miniskirt, peter pan collar with a rather jazzy coat in  horizontal stripes.



The Dr. Zhivago hat with big pom pom ties saw me through many winters - here with my daughter taken on her  birthday in snowy January.  

And finally have a laugh at this!  
My first professional job was at the Scottish Community Education Centre, a new organization where I set up the reference library. We held an official opening with a wine and  cheese party, and as the girls on the staff we obviously chose to forego our work garb for these typically late 1960's outfits of frills & miniskirts.  


*************

ONTO Z FOR THE ZOO AT BLACKPOOL  


In Case You Missed:
A-Z Challenge 2016 Theme Revealed:      I Remember......Memories of Childhood

C - Clothes + Church, Chores, Christmas, Crafts & Cars   
D - Dolls + Dogs & Desserts     
E - Events + Eating Out & Easter    
F - Food + Fads & Fashion and Freedom
G - Grandparents + Games   
H - Hairstyles + Hobbies, Houses & Halloween 
I - Inspiring Teachers 
J -Journeys & Joining 
K - Kitchens & Knitting   
L - Libraries     
M - Music + Movies     
N - Needles  + Nativity and Names   
O - Occupations  
P - Poulton - My Ancestral Home + Poems, Pets, Penfriends, Politics and Protests 
Q - The Queen's Coronation  
R  - Radio + Religion, Remembrance and Russia 
S - Speccy Four Eyes + School, Sports, Sundays, Student Days and the Space Race    
T - Toys + Treats, TV, Theatre and Technology   
U - Uniforms     
V - Village Life + Vacations and Values  
******

A-Z: I Remember.......X



 I REMEMBER......
MEMORIES OF MY CHILDHOOD 

X the challenging Letter!  

I was an unadventurous child, unlike my brother, so never needed an emergency  rush to A & E and an X RAY for a broker limb - just  as well as I had a horror of hospitals as a child. 

I would love to have played the XYLOPHONE, but it was 30 years before I came close to fulfilling this ambition.    I bought my 5 year old daughter a little Glockenspiel, enjoyed teaching her first steps in music and  having  a play myself.  

Glockenspiel.jpg
*  The Glockenspiel (German "glock = bell)  has metal bars, whereas the Xylophone (Greek xylos = wood) has wooden bars.  
  
One XMAS we taped ourselves playing and singing Christmas carols for my parents.  I came across this tape years later after the death of my parents, so it was moving to hear again.
  
In my own childhood, our Christmas's were very traditional - we did not have stockings but a pillow case at the end of our beds.  

One apocryphal anecdote was regaled every year  - my mother and and aunt woke up early one Christmas morning - it was still dark (their house didn't have electricity anyway), and decided to investigate their stockings. One present they were convinced was a box of chocolates, so they opened it and bit into one - it turned out to be a box of dominoes! 
  

My mother (right) and aunt (left) 
**************
ONTO  Y  for YOUTH CULTURE
 
In Case You Missed


A-Z Challenge 2016 Theme Revealed:      I Remember......Memories of Childhood

C - Clothes + Church, Chores, Christmas, Crafts & Cars   
D - Dolls + Dogs & Desserts     
E - Events + Eating Out & Easter    
F - Food + Fads & Fashion and Freedom
G - Grandparents + Games   
H - Hairstyles + Hobbies, Houses & Halloween 
I - Inspiring Teachers 
J -Journeys & Joining 
K - Kitchens & Knitting   
L - Libraries     
M - Music + Movies     
N - Needles  + Nativity and Names   
O - Occupations  
P - Poulton - My Ancestral Home + Poems, Pets, Penfriends, Politics and Protests 
Q - The Queen's Coronation  
R  - Radio + Religion, Remembrance and Russia 
S - Speccy Four Eyes + School, Sports, Sundays, Student Days and the Space Race    
T - Toys + Treats, TV, Theatre and Technology   
U - Uniforms     
V - Village Life + Vacations and Values 
W - Wars and Weddings

Copyright © 2016 - Susan Donaldson.  All Rights Reserved

*****

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

A-Z: I Remember....War and Weddings


I REMEMBER......
MEMORIES OF MY CHILDHOOD 


No - I cannot remember the WAR, but it was a feature of my childhood.  

My father often recounted his wartime memories to anyone prepared to listen.    I must admit we often thought "Oh, no - not the war again, Dad" and teased him about being in the Intelligence service.

So we were often regaled with his (no doubt sanitized) tales of being in London during  the blitz, his training in codes and cyphers, his attachment to the USA Army, landing at Omaha beach just after D. Day, marching through Normandy to Versailles and Paris, on through  Luxembourg, the bitter winter of 1944 with a meal of five boiled sweets and into Germany where he marked VE Day. 

It was only much later that I came to realise what a defining period it was in his life, and I persuaded him to write down his memories, which I made into a narrative, together with photographs and wartime letters between my parents   I am now very proud to have these. 
 
                                                            ************

WEDDINGS did not feature much in my childhood, and only once was I a bridesmaid.  Here I am the shivering little bridesmaid  at the wedding of my uncle Charles Weston and his bride Vera in December 1946.  The dresses were apparently a dusky pink colour  and my mother  used to relate what a difficult time she had hunting for matching shoes in post-war austerity Britain.




My mother is the elegant woman standing behind me, with
my father on her right.

For my uncle it was a happy day,  as only  a year earlier he had returned from time as a Japanese prisoner of war, labouring on the infamous Bridge over the River Kwai. 

More W's 
  • What are your memories of the WEATHER - summer and winter.? 
  • Were you aware of the WORLD around you? 
                                       ONTO X


In Case You Missed

A-Z Challenge 2016 Theme Revealed:      I Remember......Memories of Childhood

C - Clothes + Church, Chores, Christmas, Crafts & Cars  
D - Dolls + Dogs & Desserts   
E - Events + Eating Out & Easter    
F - Food + Fads & Fashion and Freedom
G - Grandparents + Games 
H - Hairstyles + Hobbies, Houses & Halloween 
I - Inspiring Teachers 
J -Journeys & Joining 
K - Kitchens & Knitting   
L - Libraries     
M - Music + Movies     
N - Needles  + Nativity and Names 
O - Occupations
P - Poulton - My Ancestral Home + Poems, Pets, Penfriends, Politics and Protests 
Q - The Queen's Coronation  
R  - Radio + Religion, Remembrance and Russia 
S - Speccy Four Eyes + School, Sports, Sundays, Student Days and the Space RAce    
T - Toys + Treats, TV, Theatre and Technology  
U - Uniforms   
V - Village Life + Vacations and Values 


Copyright © 2016 - Susan Donaldson.  All Rights Reserved

******