5 Mothering Sunday (Mother’s Day) Facts

Happy Mothering Sunday (Mother’s Day) to each and every mother, no matter how young or old.

5 Mothering Sunday (Mother’s Day) Facts

(1) Mothering Sunday is a Christian celebration to celebrate ‘Mother Mary’. However, some historians believe it may go even further back to Roman times, when they celebrated the Mother Goddess, Cybele.

(2) In the UK, Mothering Sunday is always on the fourth Sunday of Lent, exactly three weeks before Easter Sunday.

(3) Mothering Sunday in the UK is not the same as the USA’s Mother’s Day, which always falls on the second Sunday of May and is a secular celebration founded by the American Social Activist Anna Jarvis.

mothering sunday constance smith(4) Mothering Sunday was revived in the 20th century by Constance Adelaide Smith who worked at a hospital in Nottingham. She read an article about Anna Jarvis’s American Mother’s Day, and in conjunction with her friend Ellen, she set up a headquarters at 15 Regent Street, Nottingham and made greeting cards for children to give to their mum’s. She wrote articles, plays and a book to campaign for Great Britain to recognise Mothering Sunday. It is thanks to her tenacity that Mothering Sunday is celebrated today.

(5) In the UK, staff from the ‘Big Houses’ were historically given the day off to visit their mother’s church. Fortunately, most people were not so geographically mobile before the twentieth century. Imagine how the roads and the transport system would cope today, with a mass exodus of women, heading towards their mothers’ church.

Being a mother…

Speaking from my own experience I can say that being a mother is extremely hard work, especially in the early years, however, each age brings new challenges.

No matter how hard the work is, when raising a family I guess that most mothers would agree with me, when I say that for every ounce of pain the joy is trebled and what can be more special than a child, no matter how old they are saying “I love you”.

So to all of you amazing women, from one mother to another I wish you a very happy Mothering Sunday (Mother’s Day) 2017.

Mothering Sunday - kl loveley
What will you be doing this Mothering Sunday ? Let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

 

Desert Island Discs

Desert Island Discs Marian KeyesI recently listened to the author Marian Keyes on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs. It was a fascinating and heart felt interview, and the songs that she chose were very moving.

It got me thinking about my own Desert Island Discs, and whilst travelling on the train yesterday I made a list of five songs that move me.

My Desert Island Discs

1) Magic moments by Perry Como

This takes me back to my childhood when my father sang this to me and my younger sister. We played this at his funeral and it still brings tears to my eyes.

2) Band of Gold by Freda Paine

 This was the first single, a boyfriend had ever given to me.

3) Bridge over Troubled Water by Simon and Garfunkel

 This was the first ever album that I purchased.

4) Living Doll by Cliff Richards and the Young Ones

 My daughter asked us to buy this for Comic Relief in 1986, and it still brings back memories of her dancing around to it in the living room.

5) Maggie May by Rod Stewart

 This takes me back to my teenage years.

What would your Desert Island Discs be? Let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

Viceroy’s House – film review

My husband and I enjoy our regular trips to the cinema to watch the latest films. This week we went to watch ‘Viceroy’s House’, which is directed by Gurinder Chadha.

Viceroy’s House story line

British rulers of India. After 300 years, that rule was coming to an end. For 6 months in 1947, Lord Mountbatten, great grandson of Queen Victoria, assumed the post of the last Viceroy,  charged with handing India back to its people.

Mountbatten lived upstairs together with his wife and daughter. Downstairs lived their 500 Hindu, Muslim and Sikh servants.

As the political elite took their seats to wrangle over the birth of independent India, conflict erupted throughout the House and a catastrophic decision was taken with global repercussions.

Source: Pathe International

Gurinder ChadhaThe Director, Gurinder Chadha gave a very good account of the refugee crisis which serves to reinforce the current crisis and highlights the plight of citizens who are caught up in a divide and rule mentality.

The film touches on the difficulties of the leaders of different faiths coming together to agree on the least destructive outcome and yet we are led to believe that Winston Churchill was the secret architect of the havoc, that finally divided India with the subsequent creation of Pakistan. This disturbed me somewhat, so I have decided to read more about the speech that Churchill made on March 6th 1946 as part of a discussion on the topic of Indian independence.

Hugh Bonneville was well cast as Lord Mountbatten, in his role as the last Viceroy of India.  However, I could not keep my mind from wandering back to his role in Downton Abbey. Gillian Anderson got my vote for her strong portrayal of Edwina Mountbatten as a compassionate and outspoken women.

Viceroy's House

Overall an interesting historical drama, that has certainly got me thinking.  However after watching the film, I don’t feel like I have gained an in-depth understanding about the events that took place in 1947, so I will undertake further reading to gain a greater insight into the Independence of India.

Have you been to the cinema to watch Viceroy’s house? Let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

Happy International Woman’s Day – 2017

#BeBoldForChange

Today is International Women’s Day and we celebrate all women. This is a global day to commemorate the struggle for women’s rights and the social, economic, cultural and political achievements already made.

International women's day - KL Loveley

Together we have achieved a great deal, yet we still have a long way to go, especially so for women of some nations.

This year the spotlight on women, is the changing world of work which covers a diverse range of inequalities that still exist.

Let us celebrate all of the strong women of strength and substance. Women from history like ‘Joan of Arc’ and women from the twenty first century like ‘Malala Yousafzai’.

International woman's day - malala yousafzai

How will you be bold?

How will you show a willingness to take risks, be confident and courageous?

Let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

Keeping a journal: A life time of diary writing

It was Christmas 1960, and I was an excited seven-year old girl full of anticipation over what ‘Father Christmas’ would be bringing me..

Little did my family know, that the gift I received that year would bring me a lifetime of joy, and lead me to achieving a life long dream – of becoming a published author. For, on that fateful Christmas morning, I received my very first ‘lock up diary’.

I was full of joy, happiness and excitement at being able to write down the events of my daily life, including the following excerpts:

1st January 1960  

Stayed at my grandmas all day. Had dinner and tea there. Played all day with Marion.

 

2nd January 1960

We went a walk. Then we went to aunty graces. She gave us sixpence. Went to Grandmas.  Uncle matt gave us sixpence.

Diana-for-Girls-Magazine-No-104-13-FebruaryAnd so it goes. Apparently I entered my first poem competition February 1965. It was a snappy poem competition in my favourite comic, ‘Diana’. How about that!

Whilst, these entries may not appear exciting to you – they became juicer during my teenager years, and as an adult they have allowed me to get a glimpse of my former self, written in my own voice with all of the insecurities and the peaks and troughs of the teenage years.

When I look back at the entries in my diary written in my own words it allows me to reflect on my life. There are many important events charted in the diary. For example, the exact date I learned to swim, the first day I went to the Girl Guides, the day I joined the Saint John’s nursing cadets. I have even recorded the grades I received for my school exams.

I progressed to journal writing when my son was born, starting with a short family history and a rudimentary family tree. Originally my intention was to chart the day to day family life and the growth and development of my son. My daughter was born three years later and I continued to document both of my children’s growth and development including their educational attainments and sporting achievements. Alongside this I wrote about our day to day events as a family, the places we visited and a little social history. Apparently I was in the kitchen baking, when the news broke about the assassination of John Lennon, which I have clearly documented outlining my distress.

As well as my own immediate family I have also documented important events from my extended family. In addition, I encouraged both of my parents to write an account of their young lives, which they both kindly agreed to. Therefore amongst the many pages of writing, there is a section written in my mother and fathers voice.

My mother added the following details to my journal:

I remember going from house to house for salvage. My part towards the war effort. We did very little schooling so I wasn’t the brains of Britain. I left school at the age of fourteen, I started work in a factory called Barringers Wallace and Manors, it was a metal factory making tins for the troops and gas mask tins for civilians

My father added the following details to my journal:

I was born in Dewsbury. As far as I can recall there was no electric in those days, just a small gas jet and mantle on the wall. And a small gas ring to cook on plus an oven at the side of the old fireplace if you had anything to burn. The houses were all cold and damp and the toilets 20 – 30 yards down a yard outside in a block of six. No flush toilet, just a cut out round hole in wood. These had to be emptied once a week at night by men called “night soil men” These bad conditions were the reason for fever hospitals to be always full of children. Both me and my sister Barbara were in hospital at the same time with Scarlet fever.

I still find it an interesting read, that gives me an insight into past times. The written word can be a powerful tool. I hope that one day, my grandchildren, and great-grandchildren and all future generations will read through my journals and capture that moment in time, from the voice of their own ancestors.

I find that writing in my journal is therapeutic and helps to clear my mind of any clutter that is building inside of me.

Writing a journal is therapetic - k.l loveley

My advice to anyone who is contemplating writing a journal, is to have no set rules about content or no set times to write. Just go to the journal and treat it like a friend that you are having a conversation with. Write down your thoughts, worries and aspirations alongside the day to day events and the important milestones of your family life.

Most of all enjoy the writing.

Do you write in a journal, let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

Shakespeare quotes from Twelth Night

#ShakespeareSunday

Every Sunday on Twitter, many Shakespeare enthusiasts share their favourite quotes using the hashtag #ShakespeareSunday.

As, I have enjoyed reading and watching Shakespearian plays throughout my life, I aim to participate in this every Sunday. Thus, every week I will feature 5 Shakespeare quotes from a specific play.  This week I have chosen….

Twelfth Night

Be not afraid of greatness.”

 

I say there is no darkness but ignorance.”

 

Love sought is good, but giv’n unsought is better.”

 

If music be the food of love, play on,”

Twelfth Night

What are you favourite quotes from Twelfth Night, let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

World Book Day – My top 10 childhood books

Today is ‘World Book Day’, when lots of children go to school dressed as their favourite character from a book. This got me thinking about my own childhood, and my top 10 childhood books.

My top 10 childhood booksMy top 10 childhood books - milly molly mandy

  • Milly Molly Mandy by Joyce Lankester Brisley
  • Squirrel Nutkins by Beatrix Potter
  • Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
  • Rupert Bear by Mary Tourtel
  • Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
  • Famous Five by Enid Blyton
  • Mallory Towers by Enid Blyton
  • The Secret Seven by Enid Blyton
  • The Fourth Key by Malcom Saville
  • Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

My trip to our village library every Saturday morning was always followed by a visit to the local news agent where I collected my favourite comic.  I progressed from: Bunty and Judy to School Friend and Diane. Later when I felt very grown up I read Jackie and Boyfriend.

What are your favourite children’s books? Let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

‘Alice’ book launch celebration

The ‘Alice’ book launch celebration was held on Saturday 25th February 2017…'Alice' book launch - pile of books

With the exception of celebrity writers, I imagine many authors feel uncomfortable performing in front of crowds, especially as writing can be a solitary pursuit. Perhaps, public appearances, no matter their size, may be challenging to many authors. With this thought in my mind, I was undecided whether or not to hold a book launch event.

However, as the day approached, I began to read stories of other author’s experiences and realized that I could not let such a special occasion go by, without marking the day in my own unique special way.

I was very fortunate to hold my book launch in ‘The Faff Room’, Burnaby House, Mansfield Woodhouse and my thanks go to Amanda Holt for making this possible. In many ways it was appropriate for me to use this location as a setting for the launch, due to the historical fact that when I was a small girl, this building was my Doctors surgery and considering ‘Alice’ charts the decline of a member of the health care profession it helps to reinforce the books content.

Having set up the room with bunting, lights, and strategically stacked copies of my debut novel ‘Alice’, I began to feel less nervous about meeting the public as a first-time author. The refreshments were out and the tea room was ready.

Exactly on cue, at 2pm, my first guests arrived! They had travelled a fair distance by train and I felt humbled to greet them having made such an effort. So thank you to my guests who travelled some distance to attend the event.

Alice book launch - book signing 1

Alice book launch - book signing 2

Hot on the heels of these guests, arrived my school friend Janet and her husband Dereck, bearing a beautiful flower decoration and congratulations card. It was lovely to see a familiar face. Thank you both so much.

Alice book launch - book signing 3

In a flurry of good will and excitement my girlfriends, Karen, Kim, Chris and Elaine arrived with the most amazing display of flowers and cards. Thank you girls, you are super stars.

Alice book launch - book signing 4

Alice book launch - book signing 5

Alice book launch - book signing 6

The room began to fill with lots of family and friends and sat amongst them all like a proud mother hen, was my eighty eight year old mum, beaming with joy.

Alice book launch - book signing 6

My husband mingled with guests, and conversed about his supporting role throughout my journey from writer to published author.  My daughter introduced me to the crowd and there was no stopping me. Although not accustomed to public speaking I found the words came naturally to me, for I was speaking from the heart, especially when I offered appreciation for the support that everyone was giving me.

Alice book launch - book signing 6

I had the opportunity to read excerpts from my novel ‘Alice’ to bring the characters alive. I also had the opportunity to speak individually to my guests which I rather enjoyed. A number of hardback and paperback copies were sold,  each one signed with a personal message.

Alice book launch - book signing 6

My talented nephew, David Oliver has his own photography business, so throughout the event he was taking publicity shots which are featured on this blog post.

And so my dear friends, my ‘Alice’ book launch celebration was a personal success, and I enjoyed it immensely.

Thank you to everyone who helped make the day special.

 

Hidden Figures – film review

This weekend, my husband and I visited our cottage on the water. For those of you in the know, this is our canal boat, which is moored at the wonderful Mercia Marina in South Derbyshire.

Saturday evening we ventured out in search of some light entertainment at the cinema and were both pleasantly surprised as we watched the film, ‘Hidden Figures’. This PG film could well be the inspiration needed for young aspiring mathematicians to push themselves onwards and upwards to enable them to achieve their maximum potential.

hidden figures

In addition, the film portrayed three strong females of courage and substance, who not only battled against the divided gender roles within the exclusively white male enclave of the NASA team, but also were subject to the racially divided attitudes of Virginia USA in 1961.

Janelle Monae, Taraji P Henson and Octavia Spencer, are three female mathematicians who work as “human computers” for NASA in the early years of the space race between America and Russia. Al Harrison, (Kevin Costner) the project leader, recognises the potential of Katherine Johnson (Taraji P Henson) early on in the space programme. Despite the many barriers put in her way, she becomes the brains behind the mathematic equations related to the trajectory, orbital and the final landing. Providing the co-ordinates for a successful mission.

This film opened my eyes about a subject that I am not familiar with. It is an important piece of modern history, not unlike the ‘Imitation Game’, a British film about the mathematician Alan Turing, who cracked the Enigma code. Another great film.

Hidden Figures is an excellent heart-warming film, directed by Theodore Melfi.  Well worth watching.

For me personally, any film that portrays the power and mightiness of women, gets my vote every time.

What kind of films inspire you? Let me know via Twitter or Facebook !

Shakespeare quotes from Hamlet

#ShakespeareSunday

Every Sunday on Twitter, many Shakespeare enthusiasts share their favourite quotes using the hashtag #ShakespeareSunday.

As, I have enjoyed reading and watching Shakespearian plays throughout my life, I aim to participate in this every Sunday. Thus, every week I will feature 5 Shakespeare quotes from a specific play.  This week I have chosen….

Hamlet

“This above all: to thine own self be true.”

Shakespeare quote Hamlet

“If we are true to ourselves, we can not be false to anyone.”

 

“Doubt thou the stars are fire;
Doubt that the sun doth move;
Doubt truth to be a liar;
But never doubt I love.”

 

“Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t.”

 

“The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”

What are you favourite quotes from Hamlet, Let me know via Twitter or Facebook !