Lessons Learnt: A Grandmother’s Wisdom

Is there anything better than a cold night, a quiet house and a comfy doona? How about if we added a sweet, single-sitting book? If you ask me, with that combo, you’ve got a pretty perfect evening.

a grandmother's wisdomLast week I decided to turn in early and have a read of Catriona Rowntree’s A Grandmother’s Wisdom: Lessons learnt at my Nan’s knee (Allen and Unwin). An inviting little hard-cover book sharing ‘the beautiful relationship which exists between a grandparent and their grandchild.’

Catriona Rowntree loves her Nan. She grew up in the same household and it was to this wise, loving woman that the young Catriona took all her worries and joys. Always there was a sympathetic ear and advice worth following. And as Catriona grew up, left home, started her media career, found and lost boyfriends, met her future husband, married and fell pregnant – her Nan’s words of encouragement, warmth and love helped to guide Catriona’s behaviour and choices, and they continue to do so.

In A Grandmother’s Wisdom, Catriona shares her Nan’s homespun wisdom, based on the experiences of a lifetime. Heartfelt and funny with a straight-talking edge, this is a book to treasure.

Catriona Rowntree has been a regular on our TVs for years, showing us around gorgeous corners of the globe with her big smile and enthusiastic commentary. More recently, she surprised many by embarking on a more rural life with her farmer husband James – the magazines had a field day!

She’s been such a feature of the Australian television landscape that it was quite interesting to find out a little bit more about what made her tick. As a character, Catriona has always struck me as a little old-fashioned, a little old-school. After reading A Grandmother’s Wisdom I think I better understand why. She was incredibly close to her Nan and took her Grandmother’s advice to heart, living by pearls such as…

‘Be careful who you listen to – surround yourself with positive people and don’t listen to doomsayers.’

‘Don’t do anything that you wouldn’t want to see printed on the front page of the newspaper.’

‘Try to avoid being photographed with alcohol in your hand.’

I can understand why she would pay such heed to these words, as her Grandmother Riria was clearly a clever, strong and caring woman, worthy of great respect. This book was a really wonderful reminder of the the importance of maintaining the connections between woman, young and old. There is a great deal to share and learn.

The book itself would make a lovely gift, it’s a quick read, and a really interesting recollection of Catriona’s own career. It’s a sweet way to spark your own memories of mothers, sisters, aunts and grandmothers… special woman who play an important role in guiding us through life.

If you’d like to find out more about Catriona Rowntree’s A Grandmother’s Wisdom: Lessons learnt at my Nan’s knee you can here…

Join us: Facebook and Twitter
Find out more about the TBYL Book Club here