10 Things Our Grandmas Got Right.

Whether yours is still with us, or has passed away, your grandma lives on in you, whether you like it or not.

My sister has my Nanna, Myrtle Murphy’s physical features. I inherited her fondness for beer and a small punt at the track. My son has inherited her love and passion for Rugby League (GO THE EELS) and my other son has inherited her love of gossip and drama.

Myrtle Murphy (real name) was a woman with an opinion and she did not mind sharing it. Only her and her God knew that she was up the duff on her wedding day. And didn’t she love her God, right up until the end on her long life.

She made fantastic roasts and gave me a shiny 50-cent piece each time I visited her.

This was her Mother In Law.


Emily Elizabeth Murphy lived until the age of 101. She too would frequent the track often; have a beer or two like any good Irish Catholic woman would have done.

On the other side was the kind, sweet and gentle Marion Frater. She was a farmer’s wife, a woman of terrific breeding ability and a great cook. She married Donald, who back in the day was a Communist. And just to keep things fair, she was also fond of a punt and frosty ale.

Do you sense a theme here?

I quite often think of them all and take bits and carry around bits and pieces of them everyday. I would have to say that Marion was my favourite (Sorry Myrtle! Forgive me…) because she was everything a grandma needed to me.

She was patient and kind, could whip up a sponge cake like it was nobodies business and always had a jug of cold Tang in the fridge.

Grandma’s lived in a different world to the one we are existing with, and I think that is where they had an advantage, in a way.

10 Things Our Grandmas Got Right.

  1. Full Fat. None of this low fat, no fat, half fat stuff that we can choose from. It was butter and it was milk. Less choice means less stress.
  2. They used Oil Of Ulan on their skin and washed it with soap. Again, less choice, less stress.
  3. They did not have access to the media like we do, therefore were not exposed to a lot of images for them to compare themselves too. They were described as plain, beautiful or handsome. And that was that.
  4. Clothes were made of natural fibers, worn and mended as needed. They were not interested in collecting a wardrobe and dressing for impressing.
  5. They did not seek answers or blame people. They lived in a time of war and where grateful what they had, and if they were not, they just got on with the job.
  6. No escalators, elevators and very average public transport back in the day. And it was the reason that they got away will hooking into things Full Fat.
  7. Were organized. Well you had to be! No iPhones to whip out to text someone that you will be running late. You made plans and stuck with them. You were not contactable all of the time. This brings about a sense of calm, of predictability.
  8. Grandma’s were well read and informed correctly when it came to the media. Straight shooting reporting came from the papers and the radio. The facts were delivered straight, with no bias.
  9. Cooked food! Real food! A diet of meat and three veg most nights, perhaps a porridge to start the day and a sandwich in between. They ate fish and desserts where more often or not based around seasonal fruit. And guess what! Very little food allergies existed and a very low rate of obesity.
  10. No G-strings. I swear these scraps of fabric make people cranky! I mean, who likes walking around with a string up your clacker…..

I think it is safe to say that there are benefits to living in an era where things were done more simply. Coffee came from a jar. Soup came from boiling up a chicken carcass and entertainment meant socializing, talking and more importantly perhaps, listening. And indulging meant having two after dinner mints at a dinner party.

Although we cannot turn back the clock, and I think there are few of us that want to as they faced many battles in their own way, it might be good to look at our lives on occasion and think… What would Grandma Do?

 What was your Grandma like?