Tag: mother-in-law’s house

The Daily Toast: a new daily feature (until I run out)

While tidying up my office bookshelves today–four boxes of books going out!–I came across an amusing volume from the collection of my wife’s grandparents (the house has been in the family since 1939). Toasts for the Times in Pictures and Rhymes, by John William Sargent, illustrated by Nella Fontaine Binckley, is exactly what it sounds …

Continue reading

I finish a play…and sing of Saskatchewan

As I’ve mentioned, I’ve been writing a play, tentatively titled The Piano Bench: A Love Story with Evening and Ghosts. Today I finished the draft script, which I’ll be passing on the fine folks at Regina Lyric Musical Theatre, which I hope will be staging the play (with me directing it) this fall. Since it’s …

Continue reading

Retro Sunday: The Gallant Fishers

One thing we have lots of in this old house is pottery, possibly because my grandmother-in-law, Anne Owen (Nancy) Goodfellow, was from Stoke-on-Trent in England, a city in Staffordshire that is also known as The Potteries. This week’s Retro Sunday items are two ceramic jugs I’ve noticed for years but never looked at in detail. …

Continue reading

Retro Sunday: Ads from the 1930 Child’s Own Annual

As promised, some of the interesting (and, to modern eyes, occasionally odd/bewildering) ads from the 1930 (my best guess) Child’s Own Annual. What strikes me most is that, though the annual was clearly intended to be read by children, the ads are very clearly intended only for grown-ups: there’s very little here that’s going to …

Continue reading

Retro Sunday: Ads from a 1930 children’s annual

A project I’ve had in the back of my mind for years is a book called Things I Found in My Mother-in-Law’s House, built around the many interesting mid-century knick-knacks, oddments, thingamobs and whatchamallits in this house where my wife’s family has lived since 1939 and which is now my home. I did do a …

Continue reading

Things I Found in My Mother-in-Law’s House (but I actually put there myself): The Army Song Book

OK, this is a rather odd entry in this series because, although it dates from 1941 (pretty much the same time as the paperbacks I blogged about previously), this book was not actually found in my mother-in-law’s house: it was actually found in my mother’s house, because it belonged to my father, James Willett (whose …

Continue reading

Things I Found in my Mother-in-Law’s House: 1930s paperbacks

From the bookshelves in what is now my office, here are two examples of some of the earliest mass-market paperback books, 1940 printings of The Good Earth and Gulliver’s Travels in Pocket Book format. Cover art has come a long way since then, hasn’t it?

Things I Found in My Mother-in-Law’s House: The 1912 Postcard

It’s been a while since I did this, but I’d like to resume occasionally posting “Things I Found in My Mother-in-Law’s House,” which I STILL hope to turn into a book at some point. Mostly I’ll post things I can scan. Like this 1912 postcard, which was sent to Sam Goodfellow a few days after …

Continue reading

The First World War Memoirs of Sampson J. Goodfellow: Part 1

Tomorrow is Remembrance Day, the 90th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice that ended the First World War, and in honour of that, I’m going to start doing something I’ve wanted to do for a long time: posting the First World War memoirs of my grandfather-in-law Sampson John Goodfellow.I’ll post a few pages almost …

Continue reading

Things I Found in my Mother-in-Law’s House: The Medicine Cabinet

Notes for today’s CBC radio spot… *** It’s a bit of a cliché: the guest who can’t resist poking through his host’s medicine cabinet, just to see what’s in there. Well, Ed Willett isn’t a guest in his own home but he sometimes feels like it, because it’s full of odds and ends that have …

Continue reading

Things I Found in my Mother-in-Law’s House: Vices

Notes for this week’s CBC column (which you can listen to here): Ed Willett has been exploring the recesses of the house that has been in his wife’s family for 70 years…and this week has uncovered shocking news: people in the past used to smoke cigarettes. Also, they were known to drink alcohol on occasion. …

Continue reading

Another "Things I Found in my Mother-in-Law’s House" online

You can listen to this week’s “Things I Found in my Mother-in-Law’s House” online here.