Wednesday, October 5, 2011

"Are you sitting comfortably? Then I'll begin."

Those words have always been with me. Funny how a quote or a saying can stick in your mind forever. Listen With Mother was a BBC radio program for children which ran between 1950 and 1982.  It was a fifteen minute slot every weekday afternoon at 1:45 PM consisting of stories, songs and nursery rhymes.  At its peak - probably before television - it had an audience of over a million listeners. Ah, the great old days of real radio - how wonderful they were. One cuddled up with mother or grandmother, listening to presenters speaking perfect Queen's English, soaking in simple songs and rhymes which have stayed with one throughout life.

When readying for a lengthy trip away from home, I always find nostalgia enveloping me at every turn. I get a feeling that I must look at everything close up, imprint it on my mind in order to have total recall of the contents of the cottage and the garden to accompany me on my journey.  Although I love to travel, home will always be the safest and most-loved place.  I always say a prayer that I will return to sit again in a much-loved corner.........sit comfortably and then begin to tell the travel tale to someone ready to listen.

These next couple of weeks will be hectic, lots to get done before leaving for California to hook up with Paula, then onward to New Zealand and Australia for our expedition.  The house, the garden need attention, organizing things so DH can manage without me - he always does just fine - packing, and a dozen other things required to get shipshape before leaving.

Always, at the back of my mind will be home.  I'm going to miss birthday celebrations, Halloween, the turning and falling of the leaves, the drastic garden changes once the nights turn cold......but I just know I'll be back sitting comfortably in a favorite spot, ready to begin.

If you're British, do you recall that sweet program? I'd love to know.

It aired right before Woman's Hour, which I also recall listening to with my grandmother who cared for me when my mother was at work. The exquisite theme music, which became synonymous with the Listen With Mother program, was the Berceuse from Gabriel Faure's Dolly Suite for piano duet, Opus 56.

The places we've been.............and the memories we hold close.


  1. What wonderful memories Mary. You are going to have the most fabulous time on your next adventure! I look forward to hearing about it when you return.

  2. Mary, I feel just the same way about "coming home"! Love the Idea of "Listen with Mother". We need something like that today! Just 15 minutes of mommy & me time could make such a difference for kids!

  3. Such a sweet post, Mary. You put into words how I often feel on readying for a long trip - home is such an anchor, such a draw. We are lucky women.

  4. What a lovely post Mary! You have a wonderful holiday and enjoy every minute of it. Can't wait to hear about your adventures. I too love to come home from a trip and get reaquainted with my home! Enjoy!

  5. Listen with Mother was part of my childrens' day when they were tiny...lovely storeis and simple songs. Do you remember Childrens hour also?

  6. Love this post Mary. Our local librarian, Miss Bass, read every Saturday morning, on the radio. It was always a favorite time of the weekend, while I was growing up. I can hear her voice, even now, over 60 years later.

    Enjoy your trip! It sounds wonderful.

  7. Trips are so much fun but I am always anxious to get home once I board that return flight!! I know you are going to have a wonderful time!


  8. I just returned home ( only to head to Vermont for the weekend) and I know just what you mean. I adore California and it was wonderful to see my son, but home is truly where the heart is. Enjoy your preparations as you get ready for your journey dear friend. I will take in some extra Vermont? NH foliage just for you :)

    And yes, I have many quotes that bring me back to other times too!

  9. I love your thoughts here. There are times I just walk through the house to observe and move things around a bit.

  10. What a lovely memory, Mary. I know what you mean - leaving home, even for an exciting adventure, is hard. But everything will be waiting for you when you get back.


  11. Found you via Marilyn (Delights of the Heart).
    Yes, I do remember Listen with Mother very well. I was born in England and lived there until I was almost 18. I am humming the opening tune as I type.
    I don't think many young children have the attention span to sit quietly and LISTEN to a radio program these days.
    Television has spoiled them for that, which is sad, don't you think?

  12. What lovely memories you have to share!


I would enjoy reading your comment - thanks so much for stopping by.