Farewell Merville

Farewell Merville, until we meet again. I’ve been avoiding my blog for some weeks now. Not a very sensible thing to do while I continue to gather readers of contemporary clean romance to my side. But I knew my next post would have to acknowledge the death of my wonderful mother, and I’m still not sure how I’m going to manage this in a way that would be of interest to anyone but those who knew her. To any new … Continue reading

Family Memories

Family Memories Family memories can be so varied and come from out in left field, but nevertheless they are all so important to record somewhere. For me that recording is this part of my blog. At any stage of researching family history, a stray memory might trigger a host of further recollections thought buried. That’s what’s happened to me this last week. I’ve just spent some days with my brother and his family in Queensland. I’m not sure what our … Continue reading

Merville’s Life-Cont’d

Soon Came The Next Phase Of Merville’s Life It was now 1945 and Merville and Iris continued happily working in Dunedin’s George Street. Mum thinks the place was called The Red Cafe but wasn’t sure. It was a big restaurant open five days a week. Iris was a cook and Mum the kitchen maid, waitressing if required. “Olive Hicks used to work one day a week in the kitchen so Iris and I became good friends with her. She used … Continue reading

Merville’s Wartime Job

Merville’s Wartime Job In Tobacco Fields My mother Merville, contributed to the war effort in a way that would be frowned upon today, but during World War Two tobacco played such a huge role in providing support to those serving overseas. And to the community at home as well. Merville and Iris began their wartime work when they arrived in Motueka in the spring of 1942. Mum has always recalled the war years as being a very enjoyable time of … Continue reading

Merville’s Story

Continuing Merville’s Story My grandfather James (Chum) Robertson died 30 July 1940. He was only 62. Merville’s words continue – “We went south to the funeral but I don’t remember much about it as I had to go back to Dunedin to my job. That was in the July and about November our mother had the shingles. Ina had her in bed at her home but I left my job and went south to look after her. She came back … Continue reading

Merville Mentioned

Finally Found Merville Mentioned It feels like I have searched forever for some newspaper report with Merville mentioned, but always to no avail. This small French town had yet to appear in any WWI report I’d managed to track down. Have you ever done something that is quite outside your normal actions and wondered why on earth you did? That happened to me last week. I never thought about it being something unusual for me until my husband commented on … Continue reading

Time To Leave The Farm

It Was Soon Time To Leave The Farm Although I’ve always thought my mother’s early life was interesting in comparison to my own, I acknowledge it was also filled with far more work and hardship than I ever faced. But her varied experiences then made her into the strong person I have been so fortunate have as a mother. Even at an early age Mum loved to read, devouring any books she might be able to get her hands on … Continue reading

Farewell Childhood

It Was Soon Time To Farewell Childhood How aware were my family of the devastation of the depression years? I’m sure they suffered along with everyone else. My grandfather’s attempts to get overdrafts from the bank were fruitless, the price of milk and wool plummeted. But I guess there was still much to be grateful for in that a family living on the land was unlikely to starve. Thinking of all Mum has told me about her early childhood years, … Continue reading

Merville’s Teenage Years

Teenage Years In 1920’s Southland As we have the benefit of hindsight, we see the 1920’s were indeed changing times, as this snippet I found suggests. “The 1920’s was a crucial era in the making of ‘modern’ New Zealand. The word itself was widely used at the time, as in this Ladies? Mirror story from 1926: The modern girl has, during the past dozen years, either acquired or increased her regard for:- Drinking and smoking; Paint and powder; Slang; Pastimes … Continue reading

Life On The Farm 1920’s

Life On The Farm During 1920’s The evening meal at Gap Road would always be late, normally about 7pm. My grandmother would prepare something which could be cooking, but not spoiling, while she was out helping with the cows. Granddad would sit and read the newspaper at night or play the Jews harp so the girls could dance. His mother had been a highland dancer and had taught him to dance as well as all the Scottish tunes. “We would … Continue reading