Happy 94th Birthday Nana
Today my nana had her 94th birthday. Joshua and I made her a chocolate brownie cake and he helped to blow out the candles.
I've only ever known one of my grandparents (the others passed away when I was young or before I was born), but I never really gave it a thought growing up as nana more than made up for it.
When I was little she used to bake these amazing apples pies on a plate. They were thin with sliced apple and the pastry was really good. They tasted delicious hot or cold. I can still taste them when I think of them. When I visited her I would sit on her lap and she would get out an imaginary jar of spiders. One by one, she would bring each spider out of the jar and tell me their name and what they were doing. The spiders had names like Betsy, Alan and Horace. Each had their own personality which nana would just invent on the spot. I really loved that spider game.
Sometimes my sister and I would visit nana where she lives in Liverpool and she would take us on the ferry across the Mersey and then to McDonalds, which was a real treat for us. She always had more unhealthy food in her fridge than we did at home (think cream cakes, pork pies and so on) which seemed really exciting for some reason. I remember once she made boiled salty ribs, cabbage and potatoes, which was actually really delicious. Nana always spread butter on her potatoes and would always load her food with salt.
She would play 'boxes' with my sister and I - a game involving lots of dots on a piece of paper where you take it in turns to draw a line and try to make a box. When you got a box you put your initial inside it. I was 'F' for Fleeps, my sister was 'B' for Baba (as she was the youngest and both our names start with 'F') and nana was 'N' for nana.
Nana had 9 brothers and sisters. She lived though the war, giving birth to her first baby (my aunty) during air raids with no midwife and no pain relief. It's very sobering just to sit and listen to what life was like during the war. There is so much we take for granted now.
Now I'm the one who takes nana out for lunch or coffee, sometimes with the boys (and she buys them at least one chocolate cake each) and sometimes just on our own. She might be 94, but she's still all there. She's great company and she loves shopping!
The boys love her too. It's so amazing to have a great grandmother! They now have their own little games with her like the spider game. Daniel runs up to her and the she will try to grab him from her chair and he will run away. Joshua will do something similar, but sometimes he just sits and reads the paper with her, which mainly involves looking at the pictures. It just makes me smile, not only because it brings back those memories for me, but also because she enriches their lives as well