23 November 2011


A blog is literally a "web log". That's where we got the term "blog" from. In the paper-only world which we all recall, people wrote diaries or "logs" that they kept in drawers. They were mainly private records - reflecting the progression of a life. Sometimes that's how I feel about this blog. Though it is in the public domain, I sometimes use it like those private diaries of the past - to capture significant moments in my life and the lives of my nearest and dearest. And yesterday certainly was a "significant moment".

On The City Hall stage stood Lord Professor Robert Winston - Chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University - and scientist of international repute - waiting to shake the hands of graduates in the field of Health and Well Being. And one of them was my Shirley - from good Lincolnshire farming stock. She grew up in a home that was rich in kindness and common sense but absent of books. Historically, no one in her family had ever achieved anything of note in the world of academia. There was a sense that school was something you tolerated before real life began.

But yesterday, her academic achievement was recognised - Master of Science in Advanced Professional Development - a hard won victory after six years of intermittent study whilst still working full-time. It culminated in a hefty dissertation in which she reflected on what is known about how young adults with diabetes deal with their condition. This dovetailed with her own experience of supporting young diabetes sufferers in the health centre where she works.

It was great that our hard-working children could be there in the city hall to witness the ceremony. We had a great curry together afterwards in "The House of Spice" and later a get-together with friends and colleagues in "The Three Cranes" public house in the city centre.

As we drove home, Shirley received a text message in which our Frances said how much she had enjoyed the day and how proud she was of her mum. That brought tears to Shirley's eyes and for a minute or two she couldn't speak - I had to wait till we got home to read the message. Days come and days go but some days live forever in your memory. Yesterday was one of those... Now back to the tiles.


  1. As the song says " Some days are diamonds .... "
    Sounds like yours was a sparkler.

  2. Had I been there, I too would have required several Kleenex tissues.

    Making memories. My favorite activity. And to have shared it with the formidable Lord Pudding would have been the cherry on top of the sundae.

    I say again, "Congratulations, Shirley!"

  3. You both must be very proud. It is only a couple of years ago that we were in Sheffield City Hall for our daughter's graduation.

    I must say, Shirley looks very fetching. There's something about a woman in mortar board and gown, but I'd better not go there.

  4. Hi Yorkshire Pudding.
    Thanks for sharing your very special day, as you say a very special day and one that will live in your memory for ever.
    All down to ‘Shirley’s had work, determination and the many sacrifices she and you made.

  5. Well done Shirley. You must proud and pleased YP.

  6. What lovely photos of your family. You must be so proud of Shirley and it is wonderful to see all her hard work and dedication come to fruition.

  7. How lovely....a great achievement and a great photo...well done Mrs YP.

  8. JOHN, HELEN, ROBERT,IAN, MICK, STEVE, JENNY, LIBBY! (Sounds like a bunch of X-Factor contestants!) Thanks for your kind thoughts. I'll tell her when she finally gets out of the bath.

  9. Well done Shirley, now for the Phd!

    From one SHU alumni to another.

    I however, isn't collect my certificate from Groucho Marx as I was a Marxist in those days and could't stand the pomp and elitism of the day.

    However that was before I started to stretch the social inequality in the world by teaching at an elitist private international school...

    Principles and Principals, who needs 'em.

  10. Wonderful Shirley! Well done.


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