About Me

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I'm Carole, living in London, happily married and mum to two amazing boys.I was diagnosed with Stage 3 Rectal Cancer in April 2010. Surgery took place in November 2010 and I now have a permanent colostomy...Spinal mets were then diagnosed in October 2011...In January 2012 I was told of further spread to the hip area (multiple lesions)..My life expectancy is now 6-9 months. Walk alongside me on the last part of my experience with this..

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Things that matter over the years......

Something Dj said this morning got me thinking about those little things that matter - things that you find yourself keeping for years and years - not because they're valuable but purely for emotional or sentimental reasons.

I've got lots of little bits and pieces from both boys - things like 1st Easter cards made at school, notes from teachers, reports, cards.
Both boys got me a small gift when they went away on their school journeys in Year 6 - James' gift was a small china little Teddy, Dj's was a small soft rabbit - they sit on my shelf in my room and I could not part with them.

As a parent you sometimes find yourself keeping things safe for them as well - and this was how the conversation started this morning....... Dj asked how 'Charlie' got to be so battered....So, who is Charlie?

This is Charlie

His full name is Charlie Bear - original eh...:-) - and he's now 29 years and 5 months old, he lives in my bedroom but belongs to James.
Charlie Bear was his first bear - he got him for his 1st birthday and they went everywhere together - until James' life moved on and there was no longer any space for Charlie...... Having said that he's never ever wanted to part with him permanently - hence the reason he lives in my bedroom.
He's lived an interesting life, has been involved in drawing on walls, messing up the toy box, tipping drinks over, drawing on freshly painted walls with my make-up, spraying perfume into the bathroom until you literally could not breath, making sink bubbles with the most expensive bathsoak......you name it Charlie was there in the frame, always involved and always looking so innocent.......

If I had a pound for each time I'd heard the phrase 'But it wasn't me mummy, it was Charlie' I'd just be so rich now :-)

Dj has a dog called 'Chad'

He's had him since he was a year old - therefore he's now 10 years and almost 2 months old...(those who know the story of when Chad got lost at Gatwick airport will also know that the age of 'this' dog is not quite right however sticking to the story and therefore Chad is just over 10 years old now) :-)
Again, he's been everywhere with Dj - wherever Dj has slept Chad has slept too - Algeria, Tunisia, Malta, Nan and Grandad's, Lou's, Sarah's (when she lived in the UK), Dorset to name a few....
Chad doesn't seem to have been involved in as many naughty episodes as Charlie but that's just because Dj didn't seem to realise he could blame him (in other words James, you were more cunning- lol)

So, what's the point of this post then?
Just thoughts really - I was thinking what do I have left from my childhood, which item did I keep with me for all these years since childhood - which item would I leave behind that was 'mine' and 'special' and the answer was nothing....

I never had a toy that I was seriously attached to, I didn't like dolls or traditional girls toys, things I had in my teens (LP's* etc) got 'lost' along the way as I moved from place to place...one thing I lost that really did matter and still bothers me today was a voice recording of James when he was about 3 or 4 years old. I kept it in the same place always and then one day it just wasn't there.
When I tell you I turned the house upside down looking for this, it is NO exaggeration...I never did find it though. Even now, talking about it I have the desire to go and search again (it wasn't even in this place when it got lost)...mad eh :-)

I know that Charlie and Chad will be with the boys respectively when I'm not able to look after them any more - but if I'd had a soft spot for a doll I have no idea what would have happened to that afterwards - neither of my boys are going to need a doll in their lives so maybe it's a good job I didn't like traditional girls toys :-)

And to answer the original question 'How did Charlie get to be so battered?'....love, Charlie was so loved he was squashed, sat on, slept on, hauled around, thrown on and off the beds, target practice for J when he was being a secret agent, taught to swim in the bath, dressed in a cape and flung from the window (yes, he was magical and he could fly), he was told the deepest secrets, read the most interesting books, took part in every aspect of a small boys life..... You name it and he's probably experienced it along the years.
Charlie ended up looking like this because he was so loved - which is exactly why I don't get him all fixed up. He's supposed to look like this now :-)

And I strongly suspect that Chad will look pretty much the same in another 20 years time....

So, what do you have from your childhood and why do you keep it? Who will have it after you?
OR what are you storing for your children from their childhood?

* LP's for those of you too young to remember - Long Playing records were Albums recorded onto vinyl instead of today's CD's or MP3, iPods etc....


  1. Like James, I still have my bear - although he's currently at my mother's waiting to have the worn out felt on his paws replaced. Mind you, as he's 50 years and 6 months old now (he was my christening present from my uncle), it's no wonder his felt has become a bit thin.

    Who will have him after me? Good question. James or Djamel, possibly. (Is it fair to break it to them on your blog??) x

  2. A lovely post Carole. Thank you.
    I have nothing from my childhood as we lost everything in '55 floods. We were short on family traditions. I always wanted it to be different in my own family. I have given my girls all my jewelry to enjoy now as well as returning all 'treasures' kept for them. I wanted them to enjoy these memories as I have had many moves and carried personal items with me for years. Now they are going home where they belong. Ready for their children.

  3. Hi Carole ,
    I gave my grandaughter a raggy doll that I made for her mum before she was born and gave my sons daughter his first Teddy which i had kept.I have a file for each of our children that contains their cards,some paintings nd schoolwork and a newspaper of the day they were born.Forthe grandchildren i have a box each with a christmas bauble bought each year and a book each bought from Past Times telling the grandparents stories.As you can tell I am very sentimental !!!

  4. I had a gollywog and loved him dearly, then one day, mum told me to take all my old toys to the local hospital, I was so upset to loose my toys, but they went to a good cause. I remember your Bay City Roller posters all over our bedroom wall, Woody, ahh....I wonder where your tartan scarf and trousers went?

  5. Love this post!!!!! So many good times me and Charlie had, only thing I wished was he was a bit better behaved when he was younger, I'm sure mum used to think it was me doing all those naughty things, glad to see she has now accepted that it was Charlie, lol

    Still love ya Charlie xxx

  6. hi its leanne, i had a bear i dressed up in my school uniform called school ted, but i loved this huge pink rabbit called bugs bunny and when i say huge he was twice my size, the day my dad put it in the loft i cried. he got forgotten about up there and 20 years later my mum called saying she was sending some bits to the charity shop. Anyway on my way to work one day on the bus i saw him in the shop window and rang my mum straight away to find out it was him :(

    james loves charlie, he also told me he once put ribena in the iron!!! lol xxx

  7. Lou - how lovely that you've still got him after all this time....as for *who* will have him, I'm staying out of that one - let them fight it out amongst themselves I say :-)

    Chez - sad that you lost everything in the floods :-(.... but lovely that you've developed your own traditions for your children.
    I think you're right about the jewelry too, nice for them to have it and enjoy it now.

    Awww Rose, have you got a picture of Raggy doll? I bet she was lovely. I love your idea of the Christmas baubles - it will be so nice to have something to keep like that from your childhood and will always remind them of you. I bet they also do this for their children when they grow up.

  8. Hi Sis,
    I remember your Golly - he was attached to you at the hip at one point LOL...but by the time you gave him away you had definitely outgrown him I think? ....And the kids at the hospital did love the toy donations.

    When I think of you and toys I always remember you with a cowboy hat on and a gun in your hand - around the age of 3 years old I think.
    I have a picture somewhere which I might post at some point...:-)

  9. James,

    Yes Charlie's only problem was the 'behaving' bit really...not Men behaving badly but Small boys and Bears behaving badly :-)....

    But never really *that* 'badly'...Welllll, apart from the eye-liner drawings all along the newly painted hallway and down the stairs into the bathroom and back out the other side!

    Charlie was so lovely though that we had to forgive him eh? LOL....
    Glad you liked it :-)

    Leanne - I can't believe that you didn't go into the charity shop and buy him back again :-)
    What happened to School Ted?

    James is definitely misleading you when he told you it was Charlie who put the Ribena into the iron...

  10. Loretta and Tony x28 October 2010 at 23:24

    can i just add that i was the one who took the rabbit to the charity shop tee hee hee(mum did tell me too tho) and im pretty sure school ted is in the loft @ mums x

    I had a giant bear called Wendy and sold him at a carboot for £2 when i was about 10 and it was such a sad moment but i now have a hot water bottle/teddy called grilla had him at least 13 years and he still sits on the bed :)

    Tony has a lion called Henry and he is in bits and has been all over the world but now happily sits on the shelf in our spare room.

  11. Loretta...
    WHY was your giant bear called Wendy? LOLOL..

    I feel that Leanne might be looking for revenge on you for the Rabbit admission above