April birthdays

April is the month when we have lots of birthdays to celebrate from the England branch of my tree.

Henry Lewis England (my grandfather) had three daughters – two had birthdays in April – my mother Phyllis and her sister Margaret. Sadly the sisters have now passed away.

I also have my birthday in April and so does my cousin Leigh, the son of Margaret.

Rae, who lives in Melbourne often visited in April, to meet us all as well. She also has an April birthday. Rae’s grandmother was Gladys, the sister of Henry Lewis England. I have just had morning tea with Raelene while she was visiting Hobart this week.

So we have two siblings and three cousins as April babes, but when I checked my database there was actually over 220 April birthdays.

Sue Leigh Raelene Bronwyn Philip at beach


Three birthday girls
Phyllis, Sue and Margaret lunching at Lachlan

Readers: Do you have one special  month where many birthdays are celebrated?

Siblings in colour

I decided to divide my photos into colour and black and white for these couple of posts about siblings.

My dad is an only child so I have no coloured photos from his side of the family.

This first photo shows three sets of siblings:

  • Myself and my brother on the left
  • My mother Phyllis and her sister Margaret in the middle
  • Margaret’s children Bronwyn and Leigh on the right
3 sets of siblings

I have no children but my brother is married with two children named Georgia and Alexander. Georgia is now married with a child of her own so this photo is when my niece and nephew were a bit younger. Alexander lives in Melbourne and works for the Australian Ballet Company.

In 2011, I took my brother and the two children to America for a holiday visiting Grand Canyon, Disneyland, Legoland and other places around California. Unfortunately we were in San Diego getting ready to visit Sea World when we found out about the twin towers being hit by planes.

Georgia and Alexander

Both of my first cousins Bronwyn and Leigh also married.

Bronwyn and her husband Allan Ryan had three children. Unfortunately Bronwyn passed away at the young age of 62 in 2013. The photo below is of her three children: Kelli who has three franchises with the food company LivEat in Tasmania, Shannon who worked in Western Australia but moved to Queensland and Kaide who owns a tool company in Hobart. All three of these have married and have their own children who will appear in the cousins post later in the month.

Kelli Kaide Shannon

Leigh and his wife Susan Lacey have two children: Chantel, who is married with three children, lives in Melbourne and works for Spotlight Retail Group as Head of Design and Innovation and Shaun, born with cerebral palsy but is now living in a community home where he enjoys drama and photography.


Chantel Shaun

Readers: What is the largest number of siblings you have in your immediate family?

In mine it is the Ryan children with 3 but I could include the England family as my mother and her sister actually had another sister who died when she was 10 years old, only a month after my mother was born.

Holidays with friends

As mentioned in yesterdays post about camping holidays, my brother or I would often take a school friend with us on our longer holidays here in Tasmania.

We would go to unusual places, sometimes do things our friends might not have done before and when tired from a long day of physical activities, we would play board games on the picnic table.

Go fishing at Devonport with Robin


Robin is wondering where we are


Steven beating us at Stockmarket while camping at Coles Bay

But the biggest holiday we went on was our family, Margaret (mum’s sister) and her family when we took off around Australia for three months in 1965.

Margaret and Norm PHILLIPS with their children Bronwyn and Leigh getting ready to travel around Australia

Our family used a converted Kombi van, side awning and tent, while Margaret’s husband Norman pulled a caravan behind their car. We went over on the boat to Melbourne, up the east coast to Cairns, then across outback Queensland to the junction of the Barkly and Stuart Highways in Northern Territory, north to Darwin, then back south to Alice Springs.

The Mob at the entrance to Lone Pine Sanctuary Brisbane

It was here where the families parted as Marg’s family put their car and caravan on the Ghan to head back to Marree and onward to Melbourne. Our family went to Uluru then back to Alice and the Ghan to Marree where we then spent more time around South Australia before heading back to Melbourne and the boat trip home to Tasmania.

Map of the complete trip Around Australia 1965 11000 miles

Readers: Did you ever go on holidays with other family members or school friends? What was your most memorable holiday?