November 5th. Guy Fawkes Day. What funny things stay in our minds. Now almost the only Guy F. day I remember particularly, is the one when we lived at Lab[urnum] Cott[age] and autumn-cleaned kitchen. I remember it was a wet day. I whitewashed ceiling or was it still boards and did I wash them? I think, in fact I’m sure, I papered it and Father painted it red. That must be almost 20 years ago and the same paint is still on tho’ I remember we were told we had to paint it inside every 5 years. Well, Goslings never painted it all the 17 years they were there and the same wallpaper is still on sit[ting] room wall that I put on unless it has fallen off now the house is empty. I do remember Amy came on day when we were at Sunny Side on G.F. day and I always used to think I was late if I hadn’t aut-cleaned by then. I haven’t started yet this year but it doesn’t seem so urgent when we have no seaside visitors, and flies are barely gone now as the weather has been so open. Caught mouse No. 2 in trap last night.
I rose at 7 this morning. Father went on watch at 6 am, he brought me a cup of tea and bre. and butt. Perhaps the thought of the fire already made tempted me and I had slept well all night. Am afraid Jean is in for a cold, hope it isn’t the flu’ which is very prevalent at Sk[egness]. Miss Baker called yesterday to tell Rene the time of parade to Church on Sunday. She had a linen tea-cloth in her hand, said she got it at Hall’s, don’t know price, 1 cou. It was not large, about what we used to give 1/0 for but looked as if it would wash thin. They are 4/3 to 8/6 now. I used to give 10D or 1/0 for what I did not get with Watson’s soap coupons and they were linen of a good average quality. Have no coup. to spare for any just now. The last I bought is not very big but good and I gave 1/6 for it at Stow’s but that is a long time since. I have spent most of my coups early this time on 1 pr. stk [stockings] 1 pair shoes and 2 nightdresses. As I had bought no stks for year, no shoes for over 2 years and no nt-drs since the war started I was hardly extravagant. Things wear out eventually however well you treat them. I got a “Mend and Make do” book Govt. issue 3 from Sk. but found very few new ideas. At my time of life one has found out and tried a good many things if money has never been very plentiful. Well it all comes in useful now. It is pretty hard going for people who have always been able to buy new when old things looked shabby and who have never remade and adapted things. One of the things was how to lengthen jumper that had run up too short, as they will in spite of careful washing, in time. I smiled when I put on mine this morning and noticed in the mirror that it was lengthened with a piece of corded velvet to match colour, and not lately either.
Rene and T[om] brought my groceries down last night. She had got me 1lb Tickler’s cherry Jam. I had some once from Cook’s at Grimsby. It was lovely, but was never able to get any more. Tried to make some once but it was not a success. Had some visitors in who had lived in Belgium (it was 1939) and I asked her if she had made any (she had her home made jam with her). She said not in Eng. and she thought she bought a special kind of cherry for it in Belgium.
Goslings, mentioned here, were almost certainly ‘Jonty’ and his wife Mary (see photograph 14 Mar 1943), on the assumption that ‘Laburnum Cottage’ had been an alternative name for ‘Keal Cottage’ (see Village Map). Jonty, who outlived his wife, was believed to have died during the first half of 1943. Two sons, Syd and Ernest, and their families, lived in the village but neither of their homes was likely to have been known as ‘Laburnum Cottage’.
Soap coupons were those issued by Watsons, the manufacturers.
Ticklers’ jam – a popular brand since World War I.
Have you read an introduction to May Hill & family (includes photographs) and explored ‘The Casualties Were Small’?