Memory Book is a monthly slot where I write down some memories for my children, there’s a theme each month, and a linky, more info here. But if you want to choose your own theme, or do an old prompt that’s fine, the idea is just to set aside a time each month to write something down. When I’ve collected a few I am going to turn them into a book. In fact I just won a Blurb photobook, so I’m thinking about experimenting with that?
Some weeks I spend hours writing, sometimes I only have minutes, but having a regular slot means something always gets committed to the memory bank. I’m only on number 5 but I’m finding the ideas are coming thicker, and faster. Today I have 20 minutes before I have a work call, so here goes.
Dear L and G
You’re at the age where you are starting to want to collect things, Moshi Monsters, Lego mini figures, expensive tiny plastic trophies that come in shiny packaging, but pack huge cultural collateral when it comes to the playground.
I remember my Back to the Future sticker album, the football stickers I joined in with collecting only because everyone else in the playground did. I wasn’t even that interested in football, but it seemed to be a good leveller.
Then it was frogs, I had a huge collection of plastic frogs, and pigs for a bit. They were really vile ornaments. Then I found an old printers block full of little squares and over the years filled it with special bits and pieces. In Year 9 I had to do a presentation in front of the class, so I did it on my bedroom, I brought in all the things I had collected, from a tiny silver button with a swallow on, that had once belonged to a British Rail conductor, to the tiny sweet and medicine tins I’d found at antique fairs. The whole class was fascinated. Perhaps this is where you both get your love of collecting little things.
Nowadays I am much more wary of small things, a feng shui expert said hoarding small things can suggest you don’t believe you are worthy of bigger things, small things certainly take up a lot of your time and energy as you get older, especially when you have children.
Nowadays my hobby is writing. Writing this blog, writing articles and even writing stories when I get the time. Writing leaves memories, clears my head, but doesn’t leave me cluttered by physical stuff.
What about the rest of the family? My Grandad was an amazing tomato grower and gardener, I wrote all about that in The Majestic Bee Matador. His Dad, Your great great Grandad kept chickens. Grandad A has an amazing stamp collection, cooks, birdwatches and bakes bread. Grandma J can paint icons. There’s an artistic gene in Daddy’s side of the family. Gran loved to sew and made rag dolls and clothes. We both loved to crochet but have bags full of unfinished projects. The people who aced knitting in this family are my Auntie C, my Grandma, my Gran and Daddy’s Grandma. Our house is full of Great Grandma J’s knitted blankets. I wish I could teach you but I need to reteach myself first.
My Gran E knitted my teddy bears’ coat, I will never forget it arriving from Edinburgh in a parcel, my Mum sewed some pyjamas for him that birthday too, and Grandma knitted cardigans for us, for our dolls, for my first day at secondary school. And she baked, Victoria sponges, cherry cupcakes, although I’m not sure she would have called that a hobby like I call baking a hobby now. It was her job. Her treacle toffee was a treat.
Daddy and I have hobbies that became work though. Daddy likes video games, I like writing. I also like making films, that was an old job, teaching film, that became a hobby when I stopped teaching.
So hobbies and collections are such important things. I can’t wait to find out what your hobbies will be, and where they will take you.
Feel free to share your memories in the comments or to link up a post, happy memory capturing! Next month’s theme is Christmas, Thursday 27th December.