Wednesday, November 8, 2023

William Bird 1859-1911, Rescuer of The Whitwick Colliery Disaster

One of my Bird Family ancestors, William Bird, was one of the rescuers to one of the "most terrible disasters known in the history of coal-mining in Leicestershire." - The Guardian, 1898

William Bird
b. Abt.1859 d. April 1911

married for ten years on December 24th, 1892 to 

Eliza Tindell (Stepmother)
b. October 1862 d. December 6th, 1902
(3rd  great-grandparents)

Places lived:
Lount, Leicestershire, England
Thringstone, Leicestershire, England
Swannington, Leicestershire, England 
Ashby de la Zouch, Leicestershire, England 

On the morning of April 19th, 1898, a fire broke out at the Whitwick Colliery, near Ashby-de-la-Zouch.

"Leicestershire’s worst mining disaster occurred in No.5 pit at Whitwick Colliery. This was a dry dusty pit that had been worked for sixty years. The disaster was the result of a “gob” fire during the night shift. Forty-two men were underground, including a boy of thirteen. Many were related to each other or close neighbours. Most of the miners were trapped at workings beyond the fire. There were only seven survivors. The victims died of suffocation as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning. Attempts were made to recover the bodies but twelve remain underground. The tragedy left twenty-seven widows and eighty-four children under the age of thirteen." - Whitwick Historical Group

Photos from The Record Office for Leicestershire, Leicester & Rutland

The Guardian, London, Greater London, England, Wed, Apr 20, 1898, Page 8

My ancestor, William Bird, photographed in 1898 along with the other rescuers who were given a medal and certificate for their bravery. Source

This year was the 125th anniversary of the Whitwick Colliery Disaster. Memorials have been placed to commemorate the lives lost that day as well as several news articles. The legacy of my 3rd great-grandfather lives on. 

Kiki Nakita

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Thursday, January 19, 2023

Hello Blog, Are You Still There?

Good afternoon my dears.

It has been awhile since I updated my blog with life updates. Since I last blogged, our family grew...

We welcomed our daughter, Alli, in the Fall of 2022, after a successful IVF frozen embryo transfer.

For many years, it was just the two of us. I started this blog in college, back before social media took off. I have family and friends across the world and this was my little corner of the world to keep memories and share life updates. Time has flown by, as we have now been together for almost thirteen years and married for almost ten years

One of my favorite things about blogging was getting to peek into the lives of different people. People who mostly live across the Unites States, some my age, some my parents age, but all with one thing in common ~ our love for record keeping family moments and memories

When our son, Drew, was born, in the Spring of 2022 (during lockdown) I continued sharing updates as well as making some family home videos. Then the news about Joshua Duggar, from the infamous 19 Kids and Counting show came out. I followed the trial religiously and kept up with two of my favorite Duggar discussion groups. It opened my eyes to being more cautious about sharing the lives of my children. I turned my Facebook posts about my children to friends only, and my Instagram to private. I am still trying to find a balance between sharing life updates and keeping my children safe. 

This year, my goals are to get our home projects completed, to get my USB (external hard drive) of photos from 2022 organized, my 2022 family yearbook completed, to transfer more of my childhood family home movies, and last but not least, to update and hang our family tree up. What are some of your goals for this year? 

Until next time, 

Kiki Nakita 

You can follow me on FacebookInstagramPinterestYouTube, or Bloglovin'

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Old Places And Pictures

Today I'm joining the hodgepodge

1. How would you define 'old'? At what age is someone old? 

If a building is placed on the National Trust or English Heritage registry, then I consider it old.

Growing up I thought turning 40, or 50 was old. Now maybe 70, or 80. I remember my Granny Veronika saying: "I didn't feel old turning 50, but I feel old now my son is turning 50."

2. A place you've been that's old? Tell us something about your visit there. 

One of my favorite old places, Stoneleigh Abbey, is nestled in the heart-of-England, in the idyllic village I grew up in. The oldest part of the building (to the left) was built in 1154. The palatial part of the building (to the right) was built between 1714-1726, for Lord Leigh, the Lord Mayor of London. Some it's most famous guests include Queen Victoria in 1858, and my favorite author, Jane Austen. 

The River Sowe 

The orangery (tea room) has a lot of memories. Growing up we used to come have tea here, oftentimes during springtime and summertime when the gardens were in bloom, in our floral dresses and sunhats. 

An English country garden with an abundance of lupins. 

3. Something you miss about the 'good old days'? When were they anyway? 

I was blessed to grow up in the 1980's and 1990's. My family was always travelling and sightseeing, so I grew up with an interest in family history, architecture, design, preservation, etc. Most of my family has since passed away, and I miss them so much. 

My sister and me, circa 1998. 

If I could go back, I would've taken a lot more pictures of myself at 16/17. I was so fresh and pure.

I'm sure I'll look back at this moment, being a mama, as the 'good old days', someday too. 

4. In what way are you a 'chip off the old block'? Or if you'd rather, in what way is your child a 'chip off the old block'? 

I'm thankful to have my Mum's traits of enjoying the simple life; fresh flowers on the table, day-trips, and a good tearoom. She also shared the importance of manners; making the time to send holiday cards, handwritten thank you notes, and birthday cards. 

5. Old fashioned, Old Testament, old timer, same old same old, old glory, good old boy, old wives tale...choose an 'old' phrase that relates to something in your life or the wider world currently and explain. 

Old fashioned. Even though I'm 35, I've always gotten along well with those older than me. My Granny Veronika, Nana Mabel, Mum Julie. I even follow a lot of older bloggers and vloggers; who are settled in life, and appreciate the importance of preserving moments and memories. 

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

During my sons naptime, I decorated our kitchen and breakfast room for fall. 

I filmed a video showing how I made the floral arrangements, and a tour of our kitchen and breakfast room. Whenever I decorate for fall, I always get in the mood to bring out the recipe books and bake. How about you?

Have a blessed day, 

Kiki Nakita 

You can follow me on FacebookInstagramPinterestYouTube, or Bloglovin'

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

1990's and 2000's Memories Of Trips To France

Today, I'm joining the hodgepodge.  

 1. Tell us about one small blessing you have counted in the past week? 

Counted my blessing in finding out about MOMS Club international, and joined our local chapter. First mommy/son date is for Mexican food later this week. 

2. Bastille Day is celebrated on July 14th...have you ever been to France? Any desire to visit there, and if so what would site or city would you most want to see? (pretend for a minute international travel isn't an issue) 

Bastille Day would've been my maternal Grandad, Michael's eighty-seventh birthday. He grew up in an idyllic village called Ashby-de-la-Zouch, in the Heart-of-England. He was a highly skilled detonator in the diamond mines of South Africa during the 1960's and 1970's, which is where my mum, Julie Ann, was born and spent her early childhood before the family moved to Lusaka, Zambia. He and my Nana Mabel went home to the Heart-of-England to retire and they passed away within five months of each other. 

My Grandad, Michael, and his little sister, Wendy

Growing up between the ages of eight to nineteen in England, there were lot's of family vacations, or holidays as we would say, to France. Here's some memorable ones:

1997 - When I was around eleven years old we went to Brittany, in the NW region of France. And yes, I still wore jelly sandals, hairbands, white under shirts under my summer dresses, and no makeup. 

1999 - When I was around thirteen years old we went to Disneyland, Paris. We stayed at a Western style hotel. We also stayed in Paris for a few days afterwards and saw the tunnel where Diana, Princess of Wales had her fatal car accident. I remember the deafening silence and reverence from everyone on the coach bus. 

2001 - When I was around fifteen years old I went to spend Christmas in with my paternal Granny, Auntie Di and and her family in Worth am Rhein, Germany. They live close to the Black Forest (where my Granny and Dad are now resting), but that Christmas we went to Strasbourg, France and it was the most beautiful European city at Christmastime. I remember going on a river cruise and to a authentic French restaurant, where I had the most delicious chicken in white wine sauce. Many years in college I'd visit my Granny a week before Christmas to help her decorate and we'd always drive over to the local French villages to visit the market. 

Last but not least...

2002 - When I was around sixteen years old, my high school art class did a trip to Paris. We had a full itinerary, which I will have to rummage out of my memorabilia box. I have maybe 3+/- pictures from that whole trip. One of the last trips with my disposable camera before getting a digital camera that summer. 

3. A food associated with France that you love? 

Bread: Pain au chocolate, croissant, baguette. So yummy and in France they (used to) have no preservatives so they'd have to eat the bread within a day or two, so it didn't become stale. 

4. Something you recently purchased where a coupon was involved? Do you regularly shop with coupons? 

Will shop with coupons if I have them, but don't go out of my way couponing. Can't remember the last time I used one. 

5. You have to give something away this week...what will it be? 

Have a few boxes of baby stuff - clothes and bottles, I'm hoping to give away to a mom in FB mom group. 

6. Insert your own random thought here.

Since I last updated my blog, my son, Drew, turned one years old. We love and adore him so much, and hopefully one day when he's a little older we'll travel to France and make more memories.

Au Revoir,

Kiki Nakita 

You can follow me on FacebookInstagramPinterestYouTube, or Bloglovin'

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