Friday, August 26, 2011

Goodbye Dad

Yes we have laid low for a few days and drowned in our sorrows. We can't understand why the canals we're so low with all these tears in the south. Len's funeral was yesterday and it turned into quite a big occasion. Del and his brothers carried Len to the church to the music of "You're my Best Friend" by Don Williams, and were greeted by 180 guest's. Al read the eulogy which she did with style and professionalism, and brother Cliff's children all did a small message for their grandad.. After a couple of hymns we made our way on to the crematorium, where we followed Del and his brother's into REM's "Everybody Hurts". Jay, another grandson, did a reading before we sat and listened to Len's favourite country song "Who Needs Pictures with a Memory like mine" by Brad Paisley. We then walked out to be greeted by the fantastic array of flowers to the music Simply the Best by Tina Turner.The Wake was held at Westgate Pavilion right on the sea front, a favourite spot of Len's. We all sat listening to Len's favourite songs eating his favourite food (including his cakes). On the stage we had transported all his flowers and in the middle was a projector screen showing all the photos of all his friends and family. The sun had been over us all day and in the afternoon we walked down to the waters edge and let of fifty balloons all with messages to Len on them and we watched them go high into the blue sky until they were out of sight, it was lovely!
After we had finished at the pavilion we walked over to The Swan pub to toast one last time for Len, and as we did so, we just watched the most amazing sunset; another fabulous memory.We then got the flowers back to the bungalow and we had a small shower from the sky to water them, and a rainbow appeared.Thanks Dad for a Fantastic Day which everyone enjoyed, it was sad but happy at the same time.
You have been a fabulous mentor for our family and your memories will always live on!!!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Thank you, Thank you, Thank you

Phew! (and a deep breath) what can we say.... Thank you so much for all your lovely comments and condolences, we are truely overwhelmed by the support we have received. Your lovely comments have made us smile and cry, but have also given us great comfort.

Our family has been in very close contact as we all support each other, and we can all still feel Len's presence in the air.
The hardest bit so far has been when the grand children wanted to come down to see how nanny was. Thomas (who you all know is always on Derwent6) came straight into nanny's bungalow and put on Grandad's hat and never let go of it all day. It was great to see the kids understanding the situation and talking about all their lovely memories. When they left, (all five of them), they all shouted, "Goodbye Grandad" together, another lovely moment... We are still crying writing this now...

As you can image there is still a lot of sorting out to do.........Len must be up there laughing his head off.......

Monday, August 15, 2011

R.I.P. Len 1937 - 2011 ( Best Dad in the World)

We slept very well considering and Len had a peaceful night which meant the drugs were working well. In the morning he had gone down hill again and couldn't speak much. We managed to get a few sentences out of him, one saying he was in no pain and another saying not to worry about him. Cliff (Del's Brother) had done a lovely Sunday lunch for all the family and it took the pressure off. We were with him for all of the day and we still played his country music. At 10.30pm he let out a yell and we all gathered round him. He opened his eyes and gave us all a good last look and took his last breath with a smile. It was like he fell asleep and was so peaceful, we will all never forget it. We know how much he loved following this blog and being on Derwent6, so thanks Dad for helping us through life and making everything so much fun. You will be sadly missed, but please keep guiding us.......

Sunday, August 14, 2011

We've taken a dip

Sorry we haven't posted for a few days but things have taken a turn for the worse. Over the last few days we still managed to get out with Len (Del's dad) and we took him back to the Broadstairs folk festival. We managed to have something to eat with Morris dancers in the background and then had a walk round the festival marques with some great music playing all over the town. The following day Len woke up not feeling so good but he never had any pain. He was just so tired and could not stay awake during the day so we never got out for the first time for ages. So we cooked him a nice meal and we had it in the conservatory and he managed to sit up with us and even had a glass of wine. The following morning he dipped again and he couldn't even get out of bed and we ended up calling the doctor. The family got together and we all sat in the bedroom listening to Len's favourite country music and we even had a kebab with him. He just loved listening to us all, smiling with the odd sentence, but couldn't eat anything or drink very well. We were on tender hooks for the rest of the day but he stayed with us all till bed time. We don't think we're going to get much sleep.....

Monday, August 08, 2011

Jam Packed Weekend

Making the most of every minute as usual, we were all up early on Saturday. Everyone knows how much Len is a Charlton FC fan and has been for over fifty years. Steve (one of Del's mates) had managed to get five tickets through his company Axis, and due to the situation they had given us them for free. Len was not going to miss a chance to see his favourite side again, so we bundled in the car and travelled the couple of hours in the car to the ground. We were able to park the car in the players car park and managed to get seats right next to the managers dug out. When they played the Charlton theme tune "When the Red Red Robin comes Bob Bob Bobbing along" tears were in Lens eyes, it was just a fabulous sight. Len even wanted a bet on the scores as he used to do every Saturday, but no one got the scores right as Charlton won 3 - 0.This did wear him out for the rest of the day, but luckily some friends Dave and Lynda had brought a BBQ round and it was ready to eat when we got back.
On Sunday, loads of family and friends travelled down as it was the Margate Carnival, so at midday they all found a perfect spot and set up a marque. The sun came out and they had a great day. Del and Al took the opportunity to go back home to Derwent6 and see how things were. Apart from a few cobwebs things were fine, so we gave her a big spring clean (Del didn't do the brasses though). We were back at Len's at 8.00pm.
So how is he..Well he is a lot weaker and now can't walk very far. He gets tried and falls to sleep at anytime, anywhere. He also finds it difficult to swallow and has a nasty cough. But he is still good fun to be with and wants to get out as much as possible.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

A Len Update

Just a quick update.....Len has now had to reduce his steroids and some of his symptoms have come back, such as loss of balance and tiredness, but has it stopped us going way!!!! He has been taken to a pub lunch every day often with bands playing and he has been to the Margate Turner centre and we went to the Broadstairs Folk Festival yesterday, and met Rob and Polly. We all even got on telly.. we were on South East news today, last night..

Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Time is Precious

As everyone is aware this blog is for friends and family to see what we are up to and perhaps we should call it Len at the moment. But it saves a phone call and keeps people updated, and believe us time is precious.

We have seen some slight changes in Len. He doesn't feel with it all the time and his walking is getting more difficult, but he is still his jolly old self.

We managed to get to Jay's, his Grandson's new house on Sunday, and the weather was fantastic. Jay and Ella had prepared a nice BBQ out in the garden. Len even managed to get up the stairs and have a look around. Del's brother Cliff turned up with all the other grandchildren and we all had some quality time.On Monday Faye turned up with Callum & Kara (another two grandchildren) and we sat by the beach on what felt like the hottest day of the year. It was lovely!!!! Len was feeling tired by the evening when Mark and Stella (Len's Nephew) turned up, putting more smiles on his face. We reminisced over some old photo's.....