Sunday, 2 February 2014

Family ties and not always by blood

Yesterday was one of those gorgeous kiwi summer days, the sort that you set up outside with a good book.  This was my plan initially, but I swanned off to a "man shop" with TOF and then to a garden centre where we purchased more beetroot and lettuce plants.  While TOF toiled in the garden I enjoyed the sunshine in the garden with a delightful series of visitors.

My first guest to share my garden swing was my lovely cousin Annette.  My dads mum Ada, and Annettes mum Raes mum Grace, were sisters, making us two second cousins.  Keep up peeps, our Nanas were sisters!!  They grew up over Thames way which is such a coincident as the book I have just finished reading was from this area.  More on that later.

This photo was taken in 1901, my Nana is sitting on her mothers lap.  She was 9 months old and her mother was still dressed in her mourning clothes as her husband, (nanas dad) had not long passed away.  The thing I love best about this photo is I can see family resemblances in the faces of these people, and I also like the fact that back in 1901 this family stayed together in what would have only been a very difficult time.  Imagine being widowed with a family of six children still to provide for.  No social welfare in those days, but obviously close family ties and support made sure they stayed together.  Would that happen these days?  The family support that is.  Back then people just got on with it all, sure there would have been family disputes but blood was always thicker than water and there was a respect for each other that I am not always convinced lives on today in our time.  I know for me I will always love all members of my family but from time to time I am pushed to the very limit just to like them.

Anyway, the book!!!  OMG what a book.

This book is the first published book by Murray Annals who is my nieces father in law.  I have met him on several occasions and found him to be a lovely man, a true gentleman with old school values and sense of family.  My sister Helen had got a copy via the family network that is not working for me at the moment and said I must get a copy and read it.  So I contacted the author via face book and next thing my signed copy arrived in the post.  Like on Friday.  I delved into the first couple of chapters that evening and was instantly taken on this journey around the Thames and Coromandel.  I gave into my heavy eye lids with the intended plan to rejoin the pages of this beautifully written book on Saturday.  Well I did late last night where I read into the wee hours of the morning.  I love a book that has me totally "there".  Maybe because the places were familiar to me and my family history, but mainly because this author is obviously a very gifted writer!  Well I finished the last couple of chapters this morning and cannot wait for the next book that Murray writes.

Other visitors to join me in the garden were my dear friend Leonie and her daughter, my god daughter Sydel.  They were en route to Whangamata again!  I consider these two "my family", they are not of blood but of good times and life long friendship which to me is just as good if not better than blood ties. Leonie and I have a bond that is stronger than blood, she is like a sister, but a friend as well.  In saying that, my sister at the beach has always been a sister and friend rolled into one, and I will always count my lucky stars for having her in my life.  My own sons are brothers but very good mates, and that is what I think family should be.  Not always possible but if you have it , hang on tight and never let anything or anyone take it away from you.

Such deep shit for a Sunday!!

Meanwhile back in my garden, family friends turned up and friends of my youngest son.  What a lovely way to spend a summers day, sharing our home with family and friends.

I picked this small basket of dried Lavender heads yesterday that I intend to make into little sachets made form scraps of old sheets to go in our cars so they smell all lovely jubbly and keep us calm while we drive.

Well friends, I must disappear outside to help TOF in the garden, we have a pruning job to do, and I need to hang some washing out in the gift from mother nature, "The Sunshine".


Sue W @ Living the Good Life said...

And us! we came too! lmao! :D haha. Was a good day all round yesterday ♥

Connie said...

Oh Sue. How sweet. Such a lovely portrait. I can actually see the resemblance! I love old photos. They make the past so very real. I can't even imagine taking care of six children by myself. Yikes! I visited New Zealand once on vacation. It does seem like everybody there knows everybody else. That is just so great!

Angels have Red Hair said...

I love old photos too … we've got a very old album in my family and one of the subjects looks EXACTLY like my brother. So alike that it's freaky. We don't know who he is … but he was DEFINITELY family ;0)

Sandra said...

The family resemblance's are bizarre! my Aunt is the double of my Great Grandmother who died young, my Great Grandfather kept all 4 daughters which was unusual back then, he was a quiet determined man - I'm glad you had an amazing day with friends and family, enjoy the sunshine and have a good one today (I've done it again! it's probably night time for you now!) x x x

Vix said...

I can totally see the resemblance. A beautiful photo and what a courageous and strong woman she must have been! xxx

pastcaring said...

What a gorgeous old photo. And how wonderful to be surrounded by great friends and family. Families are complicated, aren't they? If we're lucky, we get on and are friends as well, but it's not a given. xxx

Men Trend said...

Really great! Love it!