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  • Writer's pictureAnna | Not Needing New

Are you From a Big Family?

Have a quick look through this list.

If you recognise any of the following as behaviours demonstrated by you, your siblings, or your parents, then you probably can declare yourself as 'from a big family' - I’m not talking about your 3 sisters, or your 1 brother and two sisters - I mean a REALLY BIG FAMILY!

If you recognise any of the following madness, contact me immediately and we can form a self-help group:

1) You had to lick your Mars bars along the whole length before you could eat them. Just to stop 9 other people from asking for a bite.

2) In the Everest-esque pile of coats in your hall there was a bag of shame. It contained a million odd socks. These were to be used as mittens, recorder cases, or purses. 3) You didn't have chairs around the table. There were benches.

4)) Your family car was a minibus.

5) You didn't have a dining room. And the idea that any house could have carpet under an eating surface was, frankly, laughable.

6) You had more than one washing machine.

7) The milkman left an entire crate full on a Saturday morning.

8) Sometimes your dinner was porridge. You knew which bowl was yours from your initial dribbled out in melting Golden Syrup on the surface.

9) The idea of having your own bedroom was the stuff of a madman's dreams.

10) Your parents regularly told you and a few small siblings to hide under a pile of coats in the back of the minibus so that they could afford to get you all into wildlife parks and activity centres. 11) You had to stick the Green Shield stamps into books before you could choose your Christmas present from the catalogue (Without parental guidance) This meant that you found yourself with a Tea's Maid capable of boiling water to 100°C next to your bed when you were 12 years old. And you didn't drink tea.

12) You didn't go to a restaurant until you were 18.

13) Your mother dragged a bin liner full of clothes back from a jumble sale and you fell upon it, delighted.

14) You never, ever had a family holiday out of England.

black and white photo of family at pub bench
A few of us in Walberswick, 1975

15) You could not stop whenever someone wanted a wee on a long journey so your mother put a potty in the back of the minibus. Sometimes people had to use it in transit. You would pass it back up, brimming. Mother would instruct you to slide the minibus windows shut. She would tip it out. You could then play race the wee drops as they blustered along the glass.

16) You thought Macaroni Cheese was just the eye-level grill tray filled with plain pasta, sprinkled with cheddar and grilled a bit.

17) Your bedroom was once the end of the landing separated by a curtain.

18) There were so many toothbrushes that you just used whatever.

19) There was always a pair of wellies your size. Always.

20) At Christmas you had to wait for your parents to finish putting the whole dinner on to cook before you could open anything. They had to have a clipboard and pen to record who got what from whom. You had to wait your turn to open a present. It started with the youngest.

21) Your parents took two vehicles to the fusty holiday house you rented. One minibus and one luton-bodied van with a tumble dryer for all the beach towels and around 10 bicycles.

22) Sometimes you would be allowed a big bottle of coca-cola to pass around in the minibus. This is when you worked out who'd just been accidentally left in a car park.

23) Granada service stations and Little Chefs were also the stuff of a madman's dreams. Egg sandwiches in tin foil all the way.

24) The staff at your school would say, "Have we got another one next year?" and the answer was usually yes.

25) Your mum would call you, "RobDunLuceSarTomRoAnna"


You ended up realising that you were one of the richest, luckiest, most blessed people in the world. You may not have had all the toys, the patent leather school shoes and attention you craved, but you are now all grown up, still in the tight web of that crazy experience and it’s woven you a set of the best friends who also happen to be the other Mars Bar lickers, your siblings.

This is what always happens whenever there are more than 5 of us in the same room.

Big Family Love.

1,476 views33 comments

33 ความคิดเห็น

21 ต.ค. 2566

I am one of 5 but our cousin lives with us so one of 6 . 3 bed house with one kitchen and one other room . and enormous extended family around . Trestle tables and benches at family gatherings . No car no phone . A dog . Rabbits tortoises .bikes and more love than I can say - happy healthy - mum always cooked and made a small amount go a long way as there were always friends around . Never ate in restaurant until at uni . Never went abroad until 25. always called Noram at sec school - my sister 12 years older and I wore her cast off uniform . My one child longed t…

Anna | Not Needing New
Anna | Not Needing New
05 พ.ย. 2566

Oh Lynn, I can relate to so much of this!


11 ต.ค. 2566

Thank you for sharing this. I'm sure life was tough but it sounds wonderful and how lovely to have so many people to hang out with. I'm the eldest of four girls and we were pretty hard up growing up. We're all great friends and incredibly resourceful as a result. A rich life isn't about having vast amounts of money 🌺❤️🌺


03 ต.ค. 2566

How lovely and how true, how rich you are!! x love this. I was one of just 2 but my best friend was the youngest of 8, I was always at her house with her family, I loved it.


30 ก.ย. 2566

Almost them all 4,7,,24&25 all made me smile 9 & 23 made me laugh out loud. Youngest of 13 and just shared the blog with my siblings great memories for us all. Thank you for sharing 😊

Anna | Not Needing New
Anna | Not Needing New
01 ต.ค. 2566

Oh wow!! Hello to you all from one of 15 to one of 13! x


30 ก.ย. 2566

Loved reading this Anna, as a only child and no cousins either, I always wondered what it would be like to be part of a big family it sounds great fun Thank you for sharing ❤️x

Anna | Not Needing New
Anna | Not Needing New
02 ต.ค. 2566

Thank you for your lovely comment!

Not Needing New - Anna Kilpatrick - Writer & Blogger.jpeg
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