The Gallery – A family story

Great Granddad and Grandma White are celebrating a wedding anniversary here, I think. I don’t remember if I attended; I don’t even know how old I was or whether I was even born but I do know just seeing his smile takes me back to the little house where they used to live and of our visits on a Saturday afternoon.
I don’t have many memories but the ones I do have are very fond ones and make me wish I could travel back in time and watch my younger self having fun at Great Granddad’s house.

Grandma White died before Granddad and I was very young when it happened but I remember visiting their house before she died and always made a beeline for the child sized chair that stood at the side of the coal fire. I loved that little chair, it felt like it had been made especially for me and I seem to remember arguing with my cousin over who was going to get to sit there first.
I think it had a wicker seat but I might be making that up. I’m going to have to talk to my dad about it now so I can refresh my memory!

There was a table and chairs in the middle of the room and sometimes the adults would sit round it and play cards. I’m sure they played for coppers but somewhere deep in one of my memories I seem to recall matchsticks being used as well.
I think there was also a sofa against one wall and Granddad would sit there while Grandma would make the tea. I don’t think he was a very talkative man and I don’t recall him talking to me much but that could just be another of those missing/distorted memories you have from being so young.

I don’t remember any other part of the house, just that one room. I think the other room was for best and we probably weren’t allowed in there.
We spent most of our time in the back garden if I remember right. There was a wall at the bottom and we’d lean on it, watching some kids ride round on a small motorbike. We would watch with pure longing in our eyes and wished our parents had a field and enough money to buy us one!

I might have been very young and my memories might not be exact but one thing’s for sure, those special people made a lasting impression on me, so much so that I still feel grief at their deaths and wish I could have known them longer.

I do know they loved me; as a small child, I knew that for sure.


  1. saveeverystep

    8th February 2012 at 9:28 am

    When you lose someone it's often too late, their stories are gone. Memories become such precious little heirlooms. I lost my mum and became passionate about preserving our family memories (for my own kids really – when they grow up and take an interest). It eventually led to the creation of, a place to lay out family stories in chronological order. It may be useful for someone, so hope it's ok to share. free to use.

    1. Shell Louise

      8th February 2012 at 10:18 am

      It's totally fine to share 🙂 I came across your blog the other day and plan to take part in some linkys as soon as time allows.
      I've just subscribed to your posts so I don't forget (my memory is terrible!) to link up 🙂

  2. Alice Treherne

    8th February 2012 at 10:29 am

    It's funny all the little details we remember isn't it? Lovely post.

  3. The Paw Relations

    8th February 2012 at 12:36 pm

    Such a beautiful post. I was never lucky enough to know my great grandparents as they died before I was born.

    Herding Cats

  4. Erica Price

    8th February 2012 at 1:17 pm

    Would love to have met and remembered my great grandparents. I did meet my great grandmother apparently, but there's no picture and I would have been tiny. My son has been lucky enough to meet & have pictures of himself with 5 of his great grandparents (no mean feat for any family, but especially so as I wasn't a spring chicken when I had him). Sadly all but 2 are now dead, but I think he will have some memory of them.

    1. Shell Louise

      9th February 2012 at 9:47 pm

      Wow, that's wonderful that he met so many great grandparents 🙂
      My kids only have 1 great grandmother left, they didn't get to meet any of the others.

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂 xx

  5. Vanessa (Housewives Inc)

    8th February 2012 at 1:56 pm

    Anyone who has known their great-grandparents is truly blessed. I'm sad that my kids will never know their great-grandparents (3 are dead and 1 lives in another country too many miles away) 🙁
    By the way: you've been tagged! If you'd like to play along then please see my post at: cheers, x

    1. Shell Louise

      9th February 2012 at 9:50 pm

      I'm hopefully going to get my post up tomorrow. Thanks for tagging me 🙂

  6. Emily (@amummytoo)

    8th February 2012 at 2:59 pm

    Wow – how wonderful to know your great grandparents. Jessica and Joel have met theirs and this has reminded me I must take lots of photos of them all together.

    1. Shell Louise

      9th February 2012 at 9:52 pm

      Oh definately, loads of photos are a must 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by xx

  7. helloitsgemma

    8th February 2012 at 8:58 pm

    wonderful. there is something magical about child size chairs. we had one and it was wicker – loved it.

    1. Shell Louise

      9th February 2012 at 9:59 pm

      I wish we still had it. It would have been lovely to pass onto my kids.

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

  8. Funky Wellies

    9th February 2012 at 9:03 am

    Lovely story and the photo is very sweet!

  9. multiplemummy

    9th February 2012 at 2:31 pm

    How lovely that you have memories so far back and of your Great Grandparents. I wonder who has that chair now? It would be the sort of thing I would have loved. We also played cards for coppers. All part of the fun as a family. x

    1. Shell Louise

      9th February 2012 at 10:05 pm

      I never thought to ask if any of my family kept the chair when my great granddad died.
      I'll have to ask because I'd love to see it again 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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