Across the Generations.

My beautiful maternal grandmother 1887-1970Agnes Bowyer Griffiths

We need to remember across the generations that there is as much to learn as there is to teach……Gloria Steinem.

My maternal grandmother was an amazing woman as were so many of that generation..…She lived through two world wars, campaigned for women’s rights and rode a bicycle into her eighties. She was one of the kindest people I have had the good fortune to know. Her husband, Henry Christopher Bowyer Griffiths was a violinist and died at a very young age. I can vaguely remember him.

As I grow older I recognise how fortunate I have been to have both my Grandmothers and Grandfathers still living within my memory. So many have not had this privilege and for many they have no photographs of their grandparents. For those of us who have had the good fortune to remember and have photographs…I believe it’s important that we keep their memories alive.


My MotherBeryl, Eileen Griffiths Weight1922-2016.

My Mother served in WW2 as a VAD in the Volunteer Auxiliary Detachment…a voluntary unit of civilians providing nursing care for military personnel During WW1 and WW2. As my Mother would often say (along with many others of her generation)……the war (WW2) Inevitably changed her life beyond recognition and afforded her a freedom that she otherwise would not have had.

My mother was an amazing gardener and seamstress – I believe that it’s true to say that gardening was the love of her life. It was her art form.

Later in her life she became involved with handicapped children (or as we would say today ‘special needs’ children. This was something she loved doing and brought out a whole other side of her.

My Mother gave me the great gift of ‘self discipline’ which I believe gave me the freedom to be a creative. Without it, I might be ‘floating through life.’

My Aunt – Phyllis Morgan….(AKA Peggy Morgan) 1919-2016

Born in 1919 Peggy was a Red Cross nurse in WW2 – a free spirit, creative and a beautiful soul. She was mother to my cousin James (the only other offspring on that side of the family. Sadly James, who was also very creative, died way before his time having lived a wild and in many ways wonderful life:).

Peggy travelled extensively throughout her life. I remember when I was going through her papers after her death finding that in her mid nineties, always full of hope and adventure, she had renewed her ten year passport. Unlike my Grandmother and Mother, Peggy loved the city and spent her life in London enjoying the theatre, art galleries and all the other things that a big city like London offers.

It was when I first saw Peggy’s beautiful and colourful ‘sketch book’ at my Grandmother’s house when I was three years old that I knew I would be an artist. A vivid memory.

My father, James John Daniel Weight…..another lovely human being who left this realm far too early aged 62. 1919 – 1981

My father was a mathematician, engineer, and lover of the countryside and all things Mother Nature.. My Mother and Father met at a chaperoned dance at the Royal Hasler Naval Hospital during WW2. Had it not been for the war they might not have met.

My father never took a camera on his travels, but rather a sketchbook and watercolours. I still have some of those sketchbooks.

Janet Weight (Reed) born in 1946 with her two children Christie Griffiths Reed and Jarrod Scott Reed and husband Bill Reed. This picture was taken at Chrisitie’s graduation from Hamilton College in upstate New York. .

Christie Griffiths Reed – 1975 …….Anyone who knows Christie will know how special she is….

Jarrod Scott Reed – in his long hair days….a wonderful musician and lover of animals.

My Paternal Grandmother – HIldagarten Weight with her lovely husband William Williams.

This Grandmother played a big part in my early days. She had a lovely son, Colin, one year older than me (my uncle)…..and he and I were the best of playmates. This Granny was very creative and made me my first doll’s house and like my Mother was a wonderful gardener…She also taught her dogs to talk:). So much more to write, but needless to say she was fanastic……Oh and she read the tealeaves in my cup….how wonderful is that…..

I have albums of photographs and documents going back many years, but for now these images represent some of the lives of those near and dear to me.

Note that during this small portion of my family history WAR is the common thread throughout. In fact it has only been during the last 76 or so years, until Russia invaded Ukraine….that we have been at peace in Europe… longer.

The shame about iPhones and the millions of pictures we take today relegated to the Cloud is that they get lost in the Cloud!

I would recommend anyone to start thinking about taking and keep photographs that we can pass on through the generations…. because indeed we do have so much to learn form them…..


27 thoughts on “Across the Generations.

    1. janetweightreed10 Post author

      Thank you Don…you are right. I am very proud of those who have gone before me. Each one has given me so much.. I feel so fortunate to have spent years with them….Thank you so much for commenting. Janet

  1. memadtwo

    You are so right about family photos. When my mother died, she left so many, far too many I could not identify because they weren’t labeled. But at least I have them. My photos are mostly stored online–who will take the time to go through them in the future? We would all do well to print and label those that have meaning. (another project for my list…)

    1. janetweightreed10 Post author

      I have put all my family photographs into big albums so that they are easy to pick up. When my children or friends visit, they love looking through them….and indeed so do I…over and over again:). Thank you my friend.

  2. Michelle

    What a lovely idea. I worked through a family tree a few years back, but I love the idea of adding pictures.
    The maternal side of your family has lovely eyes, all the way down.

    1. janetweightreed10 Post author

      Good morning dear Ka…..My Mother made sure that I always had order and routine in my life. This is not to say that I didn’t have fun….in many ways I probably had more freedom and fun than most children today. As long as I said where I was going and who I was with, I could go off on my bicycle into the surrounding countryside for hours at a time…but if I was told to be home by 4 p.m. – then I had to be on time! I knew to be late would a mean a punishment in the form of being grounded for a period of time. There were no mobile phones back then and for many any phone at all…which meant that we had to be responsible. The rules were very simple, but they had to be upheld. Also the schools I went to were the same…very creative in many ways, with strict rules which had to be adhered to. I was expected to be well mannered and kind to others…. Going to bed, getting up, meal times were all quite regimented. To this day the first thing I do in the morning is make my bed. It’s not a chore…it’s simply what I do.:). I think my Mother and Father both knew that ‘self disciple’ equals ‘freedom’……Freedom to explore the things we choose to explore….and I must say I also believe this. Some of the most talented people I know, find it very difficult to be consistent in their habits and life….and there’s no questions this inhibits their creativity. I hope all is well in your world. I think of you often and. hope that your creative juices are continuing to flow. Janet XXX

    1. janetweightreed10 Post author

      Good morning David. Indeed Griffiths is as Welsh as it gets.. I named my daughter Christie Griffiths Reed after my dear Grandmother who I loved and admired a great deal. Hope you enjoy a lovely day. Janet 🙂


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