If you’re up there somewhere…

The highlight of the Mothership Reunion was seeing her try to use an eyelash curler.

My sister and I gave her a mini makeover – I was on hair, Rhi on makeup. In hindsight it might have been a bit insulting: Yo Mum! Haven’t seen you in a year, what the hell are you wearing?! Let us spruce you up! But she really loved getting pampered after a few weeks of Cruise Casual.


Except for the eyelash curler. I could have watched her snapping it at her face all day. What is this contraption? Like this? Ow! Crikey! Ow! 

Turns out she didn’t need the curlers – she has disgustingly long, lush lashes. I’ve not inherited them nor had I noticed hers before. That made me feel a little sad. You don’t get these details over Skype or email.

The last day of the Reunion happened to be ten years since Poppy – Mum’s dad, our grandfather, obv. – passed away. He was in our thoughts and conversations all weekend. As Rhi dusted Mum’s nose with powder I saw the family resemblance alive in their dark eyes and big laughs and my heart just cracked.

I miss him as fiercely as I did a decade ago. Not only for his intelligence and warped humour, but because I like the way he did things. He made it feel okay to carry a little spark inside you; to want to make things and go places. And I miss the way he made my grandmother smile.

I wish I’d been able to know him when I was a adult. He got ill as I finished high school. How would we have got along? Would he have come to Scotland for a visit? Would he and Gareth have bonded over their love of motorbikes?

I can’t remember where I was going with this; I’ve wandered off again. In summary: it was bloody brilliant to finally hang out with my mum and sister at the same time. And I need a visit back home to Oz soon. Least of all to make sure Mum’s following our beauty advice!

22 thoughts on “If you’re up there somewhere…

  1. Sometimes, I think our journey in life is to take the loving memories of those close to our heart and learn to treat ourselves with the same level of caring and love….

    Then their memories are not in vain………

    That’s how I try to carry on my grandma’s memory…….The women I admire most in the whole world!


  2. I was inspired by my Nana ponc ( she lived in Ponciau North Wales) she was the strongest woman I have ever know and died 29years ago this Halloween when I was 11.
    She is still in my heart and sits on my shoulder ever day, I still miss her and wish too I’d have known her as an adult.
    She was the first business woman I ever knew and was truly ahead of her times. She played a huge part in making me who I am today.

  3. Oz visit in conjunction with Blissdom trip in March? Why, that’s a fabulous idea, Shauna, what a clever girl you are!!!

    I’m so glad you had a good visit and I can’t even imagine my mum with an eyelash curler. (ER visit for sure.)

    Miss you xxxooo

  4. What a beautifull blogpost! There are a handfull of people in this world who touched our heart for a lifetime. It doesn’t matter if they are still alive or not. They are with you. All the time and it is so good, to remember these little things, that made them who they was and who they ever will be for you (wow – I’m really in trouble with my english – hope you get it!). These days are really hard for me ’cause I’ve lost my best friend seven years ago. Yes, I’m sad about it but there are these little moments when I’m really with him. Then it is, like he had never gone, like he touched me for one moment…

    xx Sandy

  5. Yes, do come soon. You have a whole branch of the Up and Running family to meet over here too 🙂

  6. =) Lovely. It is a special feeling to see someone who’s no longer alive shining out from a different family member. Glad you got your family fix.

    And such a lovely shot of the bouganvillea! Where the heck did you get that, living (now) in the Frozen North? Makes me think of my days in San Diego. Is that a plant that abounds in Sunny Oz? xo

      • ah, lovely. Thanks for letting me know. It’s so interesting to me, tho’ predictable, that so many plant species native to a mediterranean climate do SO WELL in that climate, even if they are displaced from their original location by half a globe. A grad school roommate of mine visited me in San Diego (he’s from Geneva), and he said San Diego was so much like Spain, he was freaking out. Mediterranean, baby! Thanks for the flash from my ecological past. *sigh* =)

        • That is really interesting 🙂 I felt the same when I saw “Aussie” eucalyptus trees in California! The world suddenly shrank.

  7. Love reading about your lovely Mum and miss mine still, just as you miss your Grandpa. But, for the really big news….did you read this on Hungry Girl’s newsletter?

    … Nestlé has placed GPS chips in the wrappers of candy bars sold in the UK and Ireland; once a winning wrapper is opened, a team from Nestlé will TRACK DOWN THE WINNER. A little cool, a little creepy! ***

    I know your chocolate of choice is Green & Black, but you might have to indulge in some Nestle’s at a chance to win…..whatever.

  8. I lost my dad three years ago and this really touched a cord with me. Keep going strong and remember it’s always OK to take a few minutes out of your day to just focus on the impact the people who have left us have made on our lives.

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