Friday, 8 October 2010

Unravelling the Past I

When my Dad's sister died back in July, I don't think we were prepared for the emotional rollercoaster about to hit us.  We were still grieving for the loss of Dad.  And then to lose our aunty Janet as well just seemed so cruel.  Janet had never married or left home and as we were her only family, everything was left to me, my brother and sister.

The past weeks have been spent sorting through everything.  It's been some journey.  Not only were were sorting out all Janet's things but found ourselves unravelling the lives of our grandparents.
Dad's Baptism Certificate 1941
[click on photos to enlarge]

 It was so strange.  Almost like they had also just died.  We were always close to my Dad's family.  Just the way it was.  Our grandparents were so beloved.  So loving.  We were there only grandchildren.  Some of this process has been quite comforting in light of Dad's death.  It has been a real insight to the kind of people my grandparents were when they were younger.  The kind of parents they were to Dad and Jan.  Their love story.  Their devotion to each other.  Their lives during WWII.
Inoculation papers, a letter from my Grandad's best friend Reg who was fighting in France in WWII. The card with the baby on it was bought after my grandmother lost a baby in September 1942.

These are so beautiful.  It's a collection of WWII postcards.

Couldn't believe it when I found these.  Reciepts for my grandmother's engagement and wedding rings from 1939/1940.
Telegrams sent to my grandparents for their wedding

Reciept for their wedding cake and catering

And piles of photos.  I've never seen so many photos.
These are only scratching the surface of what we found!

These photos are mainly of my Dad from when he was a baby in my grandmother's arms with my grandad proudly looking on to Dad as a teenager.

We know all this due to the fact that they kept so much.  Its not even like they were hoarders.  Everything looks like it was kept for real sentimental reasons.  Carefully preserved to tell a story.  WWII ration books; my Dad's 1st birthday cards; beautiful WWII post-cards; reciepts for my grandmother's engagement and wedding rings; reciept for their wedding cake; my granddad's driving licences dating right back to 1931 and oh so much more all kept to reveal so much of who they were long ago.
At the moment, I'm sorting everything out into some kind of order.  We decided to create a big "Rooney Family" scrapbook to preserve these precious items and to tell "the story".  I think I may have to actually make the scrapbook as I'm having problems finding the kind of one that I want and need for such a big project.

Next, I need to sort through all my grandmother's sewing tins... buttons galore, scissors, thimbles, crochet hooks, fabrics... and on.

In the meantime,  I'm completely enthralled in the discovery of my family's history.

1 comment:

Lucie said...

What a family treasure Di! You must find it really captivating to go through all this...