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I smiled when I read the caption for the photo taken in the Diceys’ container home in Wolseley: “cushions and covers by Tannie Elmarie”. Just like that, with no surname – like Princess Diana. Like a celeb. And I’m sure Tannie Elmarie is just as well-known and loved.

Tannie Elmarie sounds to me like one of a kind, and don’t we all need a ‘Tannie Elmarie’ in our lives? In my case it was Tannie Anna, who has sadly been gone for many years…

When my mom (Tannie Anna’s youngest sister) was at a loss, she’d always say: “Call Tannie Anna”. From green fig jam with too-thin syrup to planning the tombola table for the church fête. And boy, could she crochet! Spanish doll-type covers for the toilet brush. She never dropped a stitch and none of her cakes ever fell flat. Well, not that I know of…

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