Tag Archives: Family Friday

Ooh, I wonder what that might mean….

Trying to find the whys and wherefores as well as the whereabouts of family from years gone by sometimes means delving through old documents.

It often brings up weird and wonderful words or phrases…..unheard- unknown- unseen.

One of my ‘groups’ posted this (very safe) link to a Wiki on Family Search

A Glossary of Genealogical Terms

It’s full of definitions of words and terms that may be useful for some of you

For instance :-

If you’ve an interest in Irish documents you could turn your research around if you discovered the word Acotholicus (Latin for “non Catholic, Protestant”) somewhere.
It could indicate a mixed marriage which could mean researching another church or parish. Even another townland.

So….

Even if you’re not on the hunt for an elusive ancestor or (like me) are just weirdly interested in things, it’s a fun informative read.
Worthy of half an hour or even several hours.
Well I think it is 😊

Sharing is caring…

Talking to my sister the other day she mentioned how touched she was by some of the recollections of our late sister that friends had shared with her.
It reminded me of how I felt when someone ( a stranger) had shared some information with me – information that helped to unravel a ‘mystery’ concerning one of my grandfathers.

The man seated is my maternal grandfather – Isaac John Joseph Thompson, my mother’s father.  A few years ago I posted this photograph (and his name) on a military forum in the hope of getting it dated – to my surprise I learned a whole lot more than the date.

Yes, we knew he served in the RAMC (Royal Army Medical Corp) and we knew he was a regular and had ‘fought’ in both WW! and WW2 – Mum had told us he was a hero, ‘mentioned in dispatches’ but that was it.

Well, from that photograph, I was given the approx year it was taken and his rank.  Also from looking at the medal ribbons on Grandad’s uniform this person was able to determine his ‘mention’ and  (through contacts he had) then went on to supply me with information on which conflict he was in at the time.

This is when my jaw dropped – after giving me the date of the award, the forum member told me “he earned his mention for gallantry in the Mediterranean Expeditionary Force (MEF)”  When I looked it up I discovered the MEF is another term for The Gallipoli Camapign!

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gallipoli_campaign

Even though I was not born here in Australia (am a long time naturalised Australian) it brought a smile to my face when I realised he took part in and performed an act of bravery in a campaign that is dear to the heart of most Australians.

Anzac Day – National day of remembrance and first landing of the Anzacs at Gallipoli – is this coming Sunday 25 April.
source https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anzac_Day

Are there any unknowns in your family’s past
that have become known through research?

Family Friday…..

It’s certainly been a strange week or two, on top of loads of other happenings our internet has been what you might call ‘touchy’ so I’m saying thank goodness for post scheduling because without it Sunday and Wednesday’s would still be sitting there

Anyway there were days of forgettable weather…those middle of last month warm days a sweet memory now, daylight is fading and lights are needed from about 8pm, some nights were dominated by a very large shiny bright full moon that lit up the house so much it had you thinking a light had been left on. Middle of the nights punctuated by a symphony of weird and wonderful sounds from one side of the bed accompanied by cries of ‘oh oh bl**dy cramp’ as I leapt out of bed holding my leg in agony. My friend Mr Insomnia came visiting for a while but I seem to have shown him the door, which is good because there’s nothing worse than trying to relax and let your mind go blank hoping that sleep will come back.

At one stage I was beginning to think I was falling apart – what with the non sleeping issue, the night cramps and the funny turns. well not turns as such but wavy things in front of my eyes. The first time I thought – well I didn’t know what to think – my sight was sort of distorted, clear in all but one area, with a strange cloudy shape with jagged edges there. No pain of any sort, just this vision thing that lasted about 20 mins… thinking ‘might have to see the Dr in the morning’ later I remembered something I’d read years ago (when I got full blown migraines) about no pain migraines. Looked them up and yes, very similar so not life threatening and ‘oh well if that’s what it is I’ll put it down to experience’. When I saw the GP last week and mentioned there had been several episodes over a couple of weeks he wasn’t concerned at all – linked them to the stress of my sister’s illness and her death.

She arrived back in England last week and her funeral was this past Monday. This might sound ‘wrong/insensitive’ to some but my other sister mentioned that Patsy and the funeral director had been good friends for many years so he ‘reported’ he’d been there at Heathrow in good time for the meet and greet and made sure she was comfortable in his limo for the drive back home. A lovely lighthearted touch that was appreciated by the family

A sign of the ‘strange times’ is watching a funeral service being streamed into your living room. It felt very cold impersonal – ‘short and sweet’ and so very sad for those few allowed to be there, masked and sitting so far away from each other. Covid restrictions meant there was no gathering afterwards. That will come whenever it’s possible and she will be toasted and talked about for many an hour, day, years to come:)

But enough of the moaning and groaning- the whinging and whining.
It hasn’t al been gloom and doom ……I found Minnie
Remember Minnie?

I thought she was lost but now she’s found
and she wasn’t really lost at all.

And that’s a tale for another day 😊

Did he think I wouldn’t notice….

I’m thinking back to the days during our long long months of lockdown and restrictions last year.
The Golfer would often go out (on his own as was allowed) into the big wide world….and more often than not would come home with things we really didn’t need.
Not just little taster packets but big boxes.
It got so that every time I came in through the back door I would see something different lurking out in the laundry.

All these months later he’s still at it
They sit there staring me in the face……taunting me
so I asked The Golfer (without actually naming anything in particular) to remove some of the things on the freezer.
I even took a photo to explain what I meant.

Ok, I’ll rearrange things out there, he said.


Are you able to spot the difference?
I love him for doing as I asked and had a bit of a giggle when I saw what he’d done….

Lets just say that removing last years sticky calendars and rearranging fridge magnets wasn’t
exactly what I’d had in mind.
Hint Hint -— Big Brown Box Begone.
(because it’s full of sweet delectable treats stuff I shouldn’t eat)

Fun Friday – the day you forget the worries of the week
I really think we all deserve a smile at the moment.
😊😊😊😊😊

How can Peggy be short for Margaret….

Often the names of our ancestors recorded on census returns or other papers never seem to line up with their given names. I’ve been struggling to find the ‘real’ name of an ancestor recorded on documents as Minnie.
Is she Mary or Martha?
There were oodles of females named as Mary and also Martha in this family.
And to complicate matters I can’t find documents with either name for the time period I’m looking at so I can pinpoint which name she was given.

In another line I’ve got a Kathleen known as Kitty and a Mary known as May.
John was Jack and Charles was Chuck, oh and James was Jim

Nicknames- the bane of a genealogist’s life

If you’ve ever wondered how they came about you might be interested
in these (safe) links.
They are all similar but fun to read and could supply the answer
As to why your Aunt Margaret was often called Daisy

https://www.buzzfeed.com/katangus/how-is-polly-short-for-mary

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/24761/origins-10-nicknames

https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en/Traditional_Nicknames_in_Old_Documents_-_A_Wiki_List

https://usefulenglish.ru/vocabulary/womens-names.

https://www.behindthename.com/glossary/view/diminutive

https://cafemom.com/parenting/172329-30_nicknames_that_make_better

Fun Friday – the day you forget the worries of the week
I think we all deserve a smile at the moment 😊

Lifelong Friends

You know how sometimes you meet someone and ‘click’
Both of you are comfortable with each other
Pick up on things straight away each time you meet
no matter how long you’ve been apart

I’ll tell you about two such people I know who were like this
Over the years in previous posts I’ve talked a lot about my Aunty Pam
who sadly developed Alzheimer’s and after leading us a merry dance in many ways, moved into a nursing home before dying in 2011…..my reflections in the link

She was married to my mother’s brother 
She was raised in India and thats where she met Uncle John
He was serving there as an officer in one of the Gurkha Regiments
So due to life’s circumstances there was a slight difference in what would have in those days been called ‘class’
BUT
She and Mum got on like a house on fire 
from the moment they met
which would have been in the late 1940s when troops and families 
returned to England after war ended and Independence was declared in India

A Pam had lived a sheltered life
from a respected family she had wanted for nothing
and Mum – well Mum knew about the world
and how to raise a family on almost nothing
so Mum taught A Pam an awful lot about running a home 
and A Pam taught Mum
Well I don’t know what – ‘cept how to be a lady I suppose lol

Here they are together (1953)
Mum (Alice) on the left – A Pam on the right
along with my Dad and my Grandad (Mum and Uncle John’s father)
In front of our little post war prefab in Cosham
A Pam and Uncle John left England the next year to settle in Australia

Here they are again in 1997 when A Pam was visiting England
They had only seen each other a few times in all those years
but it seems from what I heard they laughed and giggled like couple of schoolgirls all that afternoon

Mum died well before A Pam was diagnosed (My reflections in the link) but in later years each time I used to visit her (A Pam)In the nursing home she would often call me Alice and ask if I’d like a glass of wine.
Always the hostess, right to the end – sadly for me, but not for her lifetime friend

When this pandemic is over I think we’ll realise
it was the ones who would just occasionally ring or text, always asking how ‘you’ are
rather than the longtime ‘friends’ who were persistently at our ear all the time
(moaning and groaning)
who will be our new version of lifelong friends.

It was a cold and frosty morn….

This is ‘our big girl’ – born in Norwich (Norfolk England) early February 1963
a bitter day in the middle of what has been called The Big Freeze of 1963. 

And this is ‘our little girl’ who came along later the next year whilst we were living in Singapore.  The hot humid climate suited us all much better lol 

Anyway Our Big Girl won’t be happy if she found out I told you how old she was – but what her birthdate also means is that that like most babies born at that time (and previously) in England she was born at home.

Yes, after The Golfer rang her from the phone box at the corner of the street a midwife (very precariously because of the icy roads) came round on her bicycle and delivered our big girl right there in the comfort of our bedroom..

We laugh about it now, but because the bedroom wasn’t exactly the warmest room in the house (slight understatement) she slept in a huge drawer taken from the bottom of a big wardrobe similar to this one.


It was laid on a couple of chairs beside our bed, with the high sides protecting her, she was cosy and warm and out of any draughts – and there certainly were plenty of those in that old house.

How we survived that winter is still a mystery to me. Snow on the ground…two little ones……tiny coal fires (definitely no central heating). The house In Clarence Road was up behind the station, The Golfer was stationed at Coltishall so needed the car, which meant for me it was a walk into town for groceries and back up the hill with a pram loaded with babes and food. Certainly no taxis for us in those days!

Recently I’ve been rewatching the BBC series Call the Midwife – and even though the series was set in a place very different (both in location as well as the mix of people) to where we lived, it certainly brought back some memories of the system used ….like weighing newborns this way ….in a nappy on a hanging scale


I know it was a huge hit in UK as well as here (shown on ABC) and I believe it’s shown on PBS in the USA.  Does anyone else keep watching it?









I thought I still had a copy of Jennifer Worth’s book Call the Midwife (first book in her memoir trilogy) on the shelf but it’s nowhere to be found. Shame as I was going to reread it, probably moved it on in one of my ‘clearing out frenzies’.

I’m not sure about you but I find it hard to know whether to read a book first and then see what is offered as an adaptation on the screen (tv or cinema) or do it the other way round. See the adaptation and then read to find out what the original ‘idea’ was all about.  Often description in books never seems to get onto the screen and yet sometimes the visuals can turn out much better than the written word.

There are good points whichever way – how do others feel, which way do you prefer?