My mother’s name was Olive. My father used to call her Ollie - my eldest niece thought her name was Holly!
Olive was born in 1904 in Hampshire. This photograph was taken before the outbreak of the First World War.
She and my father married in 1927. They had three children, of whom I am the youngest and the only one still living. The three children presented them with eight grandchildren and, by the time my mother died in 2001, thirteen years after my father, there were thirteen great-grandchildren.
Olive was good with children – calm and kind and fun. Children relaxed on her lap or in her arms. She taught us card games and dots and boxes, shove ha’penny and Ludo, Scrabble and Monopoly. She and my father encouraged us to be observant and to look beyond the obvious. She was an accomplished needlewoman and had a sweet, true singing voice. I remember growing up and singing with her in the kitchen.
I think about her on most days but particularly on this day, my birthday. I was a late and unplanned addition to the family and Olive always said, ‘Children bring their own love’. I learnt a lot from her. I miss her.