This area is all about me. Well, me and my family.
I have been working at BT in Glasgow since finishing university in 1989. During this time I've been involved in projects using C, C++, Java, Oracle, UNIX, NT and VMS. I was involved in writing the system that the operators use when handling 999 calls as well as 100 and 155 calls, which was a great experience. Recently I've been working on a project which moves data about using a tool called Ab Initio.
I am a Christian, and most of my non-Cate related social activities are related to this. This means I spend Sundays and some other evenings going to and helping at church meetings. We attended Gallowhill Adelphi Church in Paisley, until the numbers dropped to just us and we had to close. We're now going to Harper Memorial Church in Glasgow, and are sometimes involved with The Bible Centre in Inchinnan. When I have some free time I enjoy playing football, badminton, or any other sport, walking up hills, listening to music and playing computer games (I have a Wii, DS, Gamecube, DS, Jaguar, Lynx, Atari ST, Electron and ZX81).
This page is all about Cate, our daughter. She was born in December 2004, and is a constant source of amazement, joy, fun, worry and tiredness to Claire and myself.
Catherine Ellen Meiklejohn was brought into this world at 9:34 AM on the 3rd of December, 2004. She was not keen to join the outside world, and eventually had to be delivered by a section. She weighed 7 lb 11 oz at birth, and took the earliest opportunity to make full use of her lungs. She quietened down soon enough though, and even remained docile during the visits of various odd people she will later refer to as relatives. Mother is recovering and has been quoted as saying "Never again!".
Week 1 - In the Hospital
Claire and Cate stayed at the hospital for a few days after the birth. This was the easiest time for the father: turn up at 2, stay a few hours then home for a good sleep. We had some visitors and lots of presents. Mother recovered quite quickly, and baby did well with her feeding and not being sick everywhere.
First Days at Home
We brought Cate home on Tuesday 7th December, half expecting someone to run out of the hospital shouting "Bring that baby back". Now she's settling in at home and we're trying to get used to having her here, what with waking up every couple of hours during the night for a feed, crying for no apparent reason - and that's just me. Imagine what the baby's like! She still manages to be lovable enough for us to want to kep her around though.
Eating and Growing
I'm amazed by how fast Cate is growing. Not just in the amount of weight she's gaining but in the progress she's making. Every week brings a new ability. She's three months old now, and she's sleeping in her own room (the Moses basket was getting a bit small for her), sleeping through the night (hooray!), making a variety of noises and she'll now hold on to something if you put it in your hands. She smiles a lot, which is encouraging, and cries quite a lot, mainly because she's tired, but too nosey to go to sleep.
We've been on a few outings: including lunch at the Coach House in Luss, and visiting Priscilla's church in Muirhead, for her baptism (hi Priscilla!). We're going to Wales in the early summer and I'm wondering how we're going to get any luggage in the car when the car-seat, pram and bouncy chair are in.
We're started on solids now. Well, not really solids, more like runnies. Pureed apple, pear, courgette, carrot and sweet potato are all being met with an enthusiastic response. Latest skills learned are sticking out the tongue and lunging towards anything that looks bitable. We put a bumper cushion in the cot to avoid sore head type problems, with mixed results.
Cate is 6 months old now, and Claire and I can barely remember the days when we could lie in beyond 7am. We've had our first holiday, which went pretty well. It took a couple of days for Cate to get used to the cottage but she settled in fine after that. Latest tricks learned are shaking things wildly, holding the arms out and rotating the wrists, making pterodactyl noises and being sick into her father's t-shirt pocket. She's enjoying pretty much every type of food we throw at her, and especially likes her carrots.
Four months since the last update, so what's happened? Well, Cate can now crawl, though she's eschewed the standard hands and knees type of crawl for more of a commando style, belly on the floor, crawl. She can now follow us into the kitchen, and play with the fridge magnets. She also tries to crawl off the edge of the couch, so needs a bit of watching. She's desperate to walk, as well, but seems to think the way to do it is to make enormous steps each time.
Clapping is now in the repertoire, as is demolishing towers of building blocks. She has also phoned for a taxi, which doesn't bode well. We can now put her down at night without getting her to sleep first (hurrah!), but she does sometimes have a fight with Winnie first.
Finally, the favourite trip out just now is to the swing park. Oh, and she has a new wee cousin called Samuel. Much bullying expected in the future.
Cate is 1 year old. We had a few friends and relatives around for a party, and just so she could enjoy it a bit more she learned to walk the week before. I'd expected a couple of faltering steps and a lot of encouragement, but true to form she went from holding on to the table to wandering all over the living room in a matter of a couple of hours. She falls over quite a lot but seems to have a skull an inch thick.
This new-found freedom is revealing her character more. If I had to choose a single word it would be mischievous. If she gets into the toilet she comes out with the entire toilet roll in an Andrex puppy type of moment. She has also discovered the joys of throwing my clothes into the shower.
The Christmas decorations are up now, so we expect more destruction to ensue.
It's been 4 months since the last update, and Cate's been walking and running all over the place. She's run after cats, dogs and children, learned how to jump, spin round and climb the stairs. She regularly makes it most of the way down the aisle at church before Claire catches her. She also finds the leaflets at church very interesting.
All of a sudden, Cate gained an interest in her books. Now she brings them up and places them in our laps, insisting we read them to her. Once we've finished, she lifts the book up and places it back down again. This can go on until we've read the same book 7 or 8 times. She's also dead keen on the television programmes on the CBeebies channel, particularly Boogie Beebies. And so came her first real word used in context. One night she handed us the remote control. "What do you want?" we asked. "Boogies" was the plaintive reply.
The next one was even more unexpected. One day she handed me her book about what people like to eat. It has a picture of a girl (Hetty) eating spaghetti on the front. She placed the book in my lap and said "Baghetti". So now she can ask for the channel to be changed or order a meal at an Italian restaurant. Still doesn't say daddy (well not to me anyway) or mummy though. We've been teaching her lots of animal noises, too, but I wonder about the practical value of these. I can't remember the last time I used an animal noise in a conversation at work or with friends.
Adventures in the Woods
More about Cate's progress soon, but we've been going out for walks in the woods, and picking up leaves from the trees we pass. I've put together a wee page on trees from what we picked up.
Well, Cate is now 2. She's been learning words at an alarming rate, and copying the words and phrases we use without having to hear them more than once. She's coming along well with individual words, and stringing them together to make sentences as well: "See dog?", "I know! It's a window!" and our favourite "It's all right, it's just a dancing tree". She still manages to insert a whole lot of babbling in there, though, with requests such as "blabalabalaba juice".
The number of songs Cate has absorbed is amazing as well. I thought we'd have to teach her one song until she knew it well, then start on another. But she knows the tunes and some of the words to all the Boogie Beebies songs, a good few nursery type songs and some of the hymns from church as well. Shows how little I know about child development.
We had a holiday in the summer, with Irene, Colin and Sam, which was great, and we all went to junior camp this year, as well as camp reunion, and these were all a big hit. We also visited the zoo in August, which seems to have made a big impression on Cate. She sometimes mentions the zoo out of nowhere.
Cate had a good birthday, with family and friends round to visit, and we're now preparing for Christmas. She got a voucher from one of the staff at Asda the other day, for shouting "Happy Christmas" while being wheeled through the store. Better than a warning for disturbing the peace, I suppose.
Her eating habits sometimes leave a bit to be desired, but she eats very well, and sleeps well during the night. This makes up for the mad whirlwind of activity we get from her all during the day. It's going to be a fun 2007.
Big Girl Pants
Hmm, too many months since the last update. We're most of the way through the terrible twos now, and it could have been worse, I suppose. We had a few weeks of tantrums at the start of the year but it's died down now to just the occasional screaming fit. Cate is sly as a fox and will look for any opportunity to get up to mischief, immediately followed by an innocent "Are you happy, mum?".
The two big progress events were the bed and toilet training, and both went remarkably well. I took the bars off Cate's cot around April, turning it into a "big girl's bed". We tried to impress on her that she needed to stay in the bed at night, fully expecting regular visits down the stairs. Amazingly, though, she took to it straight away and stays in her room from bed time on. There are the occasional alarming bumps, but eventually we get peace and quiet until mum's bed time (about half an hour after Cate's).
The real biggie, though, was the toilet training. We waited until she was two and a half, and we had a few weeks without too many things to go to, and started on the "big girl pants". After a few poos on the floor ("not do that again") and a couple of weeks of occasional accidents (15 pairs of pants the first day) it seemed to click and there's been no problem since.
So apart from that we've been to the Sea Life Centre, sledging at xscape, Blairdrummond Safari Park, the Glasgow Art Galleries, nearly went to Turkey but went to Berwick instead and had a week of camp.
Cate got an animal book for Christmas, and loves to look at all the animals. Strangely, she's picked the dugong as her favourite. She loves going for walks to the park and going to see the horses in the field down the road: Henry and Tucker. She also continues to eat huge quantities of whatever food comes her way.
Cate's favourite sayings at the moment:
This Christmas I did my usual thing and spent practically nothing on Cate (when she was 1 I got her a cardoard box for her Christmas). She's been showing an interest in the few stones we have lying about and so I started her off on a mineral collection. Here's a page on what she's collected so far.
Nursery and Sharks
At the start of this year Cate started at nursery school. She goes for the morning each week day. Typically for her she was warned on the second day there for strangling another girl. It took her a while to settle in, with regular reports of "I was crying for you, mum" but she's now quite happy there and comes back with an assortment of things created while she was there: pictures, hats and so on. Claire is delighted with 2 and a half hours of peace each day and has been hitting the swimming pool in her newly found free time.
Cate watches a lot of TV, mostly CBeebies, but she's been getting interested in films as well, and has periods where she watches The Lion King, Ratatouille or Wallace and Gromit every day for days on end. She likes Star Wars as well, especially when R2D2 appears.
Always having had an interest in wildlife (last year's Christmas present was an animal encyclopaedia which she memorised and declared her favourite was the dugong), Cate has decided to specialise in one or two areas of the animal kingdom. Deciding on the best animal for a 3 year old girl to study is never easy: puppies, rabbits and ponies were always an option; but she's settled on sharks. We now have a number of books on the subject and she has a pretty good record on identification between whale sharks, makos, great whites, tiger sharks, basking, cookie cutter, nurse, blue, white tipped, monkfish and wobbegongs. Ever the scientist, Cate has also decided on her own method of categorisation. This is based on the answers to two vital questions relating to a shark species: can you pat it? and does it eat girls?
We had a good Christmas and New Year, and we're just past Easter. Cate sang a solo at the Easter service at church and did really well. Next up is the summer holiday: this year we've booked up a holiday in Majorca, so here's hoping for no last minute hitches this time.
"I want to be a marine biologist"
Well, we had a great holiday in Majorca and a good time at camp. After the summer Cate started at a different nursery, at Houston Primary, where she'll be going to school. She settled in very quickly this time and we're getting a steady stream of pictures and paintings home. They seem to be very organised and even have football and french lessons once a week.
For Cate's fourth birthday we thought it would be nice to take her out for the day. There's a place near Lanark called Valley International Park, which does a Christmas train ride during December, so we thought we'd try that out. It turned out to be ideal: it was snowy in Lanarkshire and the park had a real Christmassy feel. We had the train ride, followed by a trip through some darkened caves with various illuminations to Santa's grotto, where Santa spent a good 5 minutes with her. After that there was an indoor play area to keep Cate happy until it was time to leave.
The nursery put on a presentation at Christmas. The children acted out and danced to a variety of tunes, dressed up as different toys. Cate and a couple of other girls sang a couple of songs with microphones, which Cate proceeded to sigh into, much to the amusement of the parents watching.
Once we got past the winter there have been more opportunities to get outside for walks. Cate likes nothing better than to get out for a walk and "discover a bit of nature", or just hang about. We normally come back with a stick or two and get to pat the odd dog on the way.
Cate's interest in sharks continues and her preferred future career is as a marine biologist. This has replaced her previous choice of a stunt woman. With the amount of nonsense she comes out with she may even be a politician: who knows?
This year we booked a week at Disneyland Paris. We had a great time and Cate was able to practise her French on the bus drivers. The nursery is due to finish soon and after the summer it's school!
The day has finally come. Nursery finished in June, we had 7 weeks of summer holidays, including a little trip to Anstruther, and then it was time for school to start. On Tuesday 18th August Cate got her Houston Primary School uniform on and we took the car to the school. We had to wait outside for a while but we were eventually let in and Cate found her desk. That's it! Something between 12 and 18 years of education lie ahead before a young, educated woman emerges.
Birthday time is coming up, and Cate has been asking for guinea pigs for most of the year. Some friends were having to give their's up, so we took them on. They're dead keen on their lettuce and carrots, and though very shy at first, they're starting to get used to us.
School seems to be going well, and Cate's now onto her second word wall. We're getting to know Floppy, Biff and friends with a new reading book each week. She's also been getting involved in other ladylike pursuits.
Cate's been through a whole year of school now, and what a difference! Her reading and writing are coming on, arithmetic is looking good, drawings are much better and she can make any numbers of pictures out of dry pasta if she can avoid eating it all. Yes, the appetite's still there; 5 a day is more of a starting point than a target. Her only dislikes now are raisins and jam (except for her grandpa's blackcurrant jam, which she loves).
We had a very cold winter, so had a chance to use the sledge we got last year but didn't use, and we had a few interesting experiences in the car. Christmas was a double celebration: Cate's first tooth fell out on Christmas Eve, so the Tooth Fairy and Santa visited on the same night. Since it was the first tooth out and a special day, the tooth fairy left a big silver jubilee coin. I'm sure I used to have one of those; I wonder what happened to it...
The school did both a nativity play (Cate was an angel) and an Easter bonnet parade, with various fundraisers throughout the year. The barbecue evening was fun, and Cate had a chance to find out what a hamster feels like. She's doing fairly well with her swimming, with regular visits, and has been going to weekly Tae Kwon Do classes since starting primary school.
In the summer we've had a holiday to Scarborough and a week of camp. The stabilisers have just come off the bike, so Cate's been learning to ride without them. So far we're fine if the practise area is really big, but have yet to master turning, starting and stopping. Falling off has been fully mastered though.
... and now we're through primary two. Landmarks this year: fairly fluent reading, swimming gradually improving, bike riding is now pretty much sorted and Cate can now tie her shoe laces (hurrah, one less thing for us to do). New skills learned: football (getting fairly profficient), badminton (just starting) , hill walking (made it half way up Ben Lomond) and archery (two shots at this in the last year).
At school she has loved being in P2, and the teachers look forward to reading her creative writing (e.g. a haunted house with a dancing skeleton and a dancing elvis). The Christmas play this year was the Wizard of Oz and the class also did a Vikings assembly in May. Cate was one of the narrators in both, and also got a chance to recite a Scottish poem, The Puddock, to the rest of the class.
We had another great winter, if you measure greatness by the amount of snowy days, so we made good use of the sledge again. For her 6th birthday we went to The Singing Kettle, a kid's show run by local talent which is very popular here. They invite a few kids up on stage at one point and her nibs managed to get picked, dressed up as a polar bear and run about to a song.
We've had a couple of holidays this year: a short week at a caravan park in Blackpool, which we enjoyed but was freezing, and a week at Centerparcs, along with Linda, John and Kyle. Cate had a great time and especially loved the falconry activity.
At the end of April Cate's grandpa Meiklejohn sadly passed away suddenly. We'll all miss him a lot, and fondly remember the times we would visit the house at Wemyss Bay, watch Cate out feeding the fish with her grandpa and go for a walk in the woods, looking for the fabled bouncy tree. We'd had the usual birthday meal for him in March at the Point in Greenock, where he used to like watching the boats go by out of the window, and he'd come, along with Cate's other grandpa, for a grandpas birthday meal on Cate's birthday.
Anyway, onwards and upwards. After the summer it's primary three. I'm sure there will be lots more to report at the end of the year.
Primary three was a great year for achievements. First there was the Burns competition for reciting a Scottish poem. Cate won first prize in her class for Wee Freenly Dug. Then there was Houston's Got Talent at the local agricultural show. We were a bit unsure about letting her take part, especially as some of the other acts were really well prepared and very precise. But she went up there and sang the Welly Boot Song and came second.
The class did a couple of presentations, the second of which was a circus performance. Cate and her classmate Sasha were chosen to be the ringmasters, and did a great job introducing all the acts. We had lots of positive comments from the other parents. And finally she won Most Improved Player of the year at her football training. This despite a major amount of hacking.
We had a nice, if very cold, outing in October to Nairn, in the north of Scotland. We had a good time and stopped off at an adventure park on the way home.
What happened to p4? Well, not much, except a lack of time and a good dose of laziness. P4 was less exciting in terms of achievements, but we did have a magical one day trip to Lapland in December, and it was wrapped up with a week at camp and a great holiday in Ibiza.
Cate has loved her year at school, with topics including the highland clearances, the rain forest, magical castles and space.
She took part in P5's Got Talent, and made it through to the final, playing her blues piano piece to both school assemblies, plus an extra one for Mrs Thomson. My suggestion of starting out simply and then bursting into life worked a treat.
This is Cate's last year at the Houston Soccer Academy, so we're looking for somewhere else to train and maybe get into some matches. The coaches have been great over the years and we have our fingers crossed for player of the year, mainly down to persistence for turning up in all weathers. I think she deserves a prize for forbearance, for not lamping the couple of kids who persistently gripe at her.
She's still attending Tae Kwon Do once a week, and had a change in instructor this year. The new instructor has been revising and honing all the patterns but she's now moved on another level and got her green-belt-with-blue-tag.
Piano lessons continue and Cate got a pass with distinction for her initial grade test. Grade 1 is in June. The practise tunes are at least nice to listen to.
We've been trying to go swimming as often as possible too, and setting a target for lengths has worked well. Last week she managed 42 lengths. Maybe we'll get a mile by the summer.
She's also been going to basketball and country dancing classes at school. Ironically, considering all her other pursuits, she doesn't fancy this next year as it's a bit too energetic.
She's also been to the GO Club at Erskine Church of the Nazarene, which is on Tuesday evenings. Her friend Holly has been going with her this year so it's been noisy in the car on the way there and back, but they both enjoy it and are going to camp again in the summer.
That sounds like an awful lot, and most of our evenings are filled with one activity or another, but we've managed to get time for the odd walk, lego construction, drawing or game of Minecraft too. Last year we managed to climb Conic Hill, by Loch Lomond, and this year we made it to the top of Ben A'an, near Loch Katrine.
We had an Easter trip, going down to london from Monday to Friday in the Easter holidays, and visiting the Harry Potter Studio Tour, Legoland and Whipsnade Zoo. This summer we're off to Jersey. Highlight of the year, though, will be looking after Indie, my sister's dog, for a week in the summer. We had a practice couple of days at Easter and Cate's really looking forward to July.
After all the school work and after-school activities, the night-time routine has stayed a constant, with a book before bed. Cate's been reading the Secret Seven books herself some nights but still likes to be read to, and we've gone through The Lord of the Rings and the David Williams books recently.
So it's been a successful year, but it's good to keep grounded, and Cate's been doing that literally, with many bruises testifying to her amazing ability to fall off the floor. It keeps the rest of her class amused anyway.
P6 was a good year for achievements. 3rd place in the photography competition, 6th place in the inter-schools road race, distinction at country dancing (despite her tights falling down during the dance), blue belt at tea kwon do, player of the year at the soccer academy, winner at mixed badminton and winner at the school sports sprint, then distinction at grade 2 piano. All that practise is showing rewards.
We had to find a new football club after graduating from the soccer academy, and the choice was mainly based on available nights and no Sunday games. We eventually found St Mirren Community Youth, and joined up with them. There was a bit of a scene just after summer when all the coaches resigned and took some of the players away with them, but we got a new coach and he started building the team up again from very modest beginnings. After some very depressing defeats they're getting better and winning some games. Cate has established a place in defence as a tough tackler but needs a bit of work on the rest of her game.
We had more drama last summer as half of the church membership left, leaving just me and Claire. We decided we couldn't carry on as a church and so finished up after the prizegiving service. We tried out a few churches during the summer holidays, and settled on Harper Memorial, in Glasgow. Cate has really enjoyed going there, taking part in the Sunday school, which runs during the morning service, and especially enjoying the third Sunday evening service, after which we usually have a fellowship supper. Recently we had a sermon on baptism and Cate has asked to be baptised. She's had some instruction and just needs to be interviewed before that gets arranged.
It was a good year at school, and the teachers seemed to be really good with the class. A decent report means we go for a meal out and so we had an evening at Khublai Khan's where you get to put together your own dish. As well as piano, Cate decided to take up the trumpet, and they also all got a recorder home, so it's been a bit noisy in the evenings.
We managed to get away for the three school breaks this year. We had a few days in Centerparcs in October, with lots of climbing action, a week in Skye in April, with lots of hill walking, and two weeks back at the Marylanza in Tenerife for summer, which was mostly spent in the pool, but also included a bit of parascending.
And so on to p7. There seems to be even more work to do, more responsibilities for the kids and a big trip in May, which Cate's very much looking forward to.
Last update: 26 September 2015 - 10 years old
I am a Christian. This means I have been born again and am a follower of Jesus Christ. It does not mean that am sinless, a good follower, or better than anyone else. It isn't just something I do on Sunday, either, but is part of my everyday life. I'm involved at my church, Gallowhill Adelphi Church, and at The Bible Centre, for which I do children's work at the Gallowhill GO Club.
Here's a summary of what I believe:
Claire and I do voluntary work for a local Christian concern called The Bible Centre, near Glasgow Airport. In the summer we have camps for children, and throughout the year we are involved in monthly clubs for the teenagers and in Gospel Outreach (GO) clubs.
We run a club on Monday nights at Gallowhill Adelphi Church in Paisley. It's been going for a good number of years, and here are some pictures from the past.
Yes, it's true. After two and three quarter years of courting, Claire and I were engaged on Saturday 16th November 1996 on the moor road above Dalry. The time was about 3.30pm, the weather was cold and windy, the scenery was beautiful and the pair of us are quite happy.
For all you girls out there, here's a picture of the ring:
The wedding took place on August 16th 1997. We went on honeymoon to Kenya and moved in to our new house in Houston, Scotland.
To celebrate the engagement, I bought doughnuts for my colleagues. Here's one of them:
I'm a software engineer. That means I write computer programs. Well, it means a lot more than that, but it would get boring if I tried to explain it. I work for BT, and my office works very similarly to the one in Dilbert.
I write a lot of stuff in C++ and in Java, with Oracle databases and over BT's intranet. The projects I've worked on include:
Do I enjoy it? Mostly, yes. I like working with computers, and working in a team. I dislike corporate politics and pointless tasks. But mostly, I get paid for messing about with computers, which isn't something I had thought possible while at school.
I come from Scotland, a small country occupying the northern part of the British Isles. We may be small but we have a proud history, and we most definitely don't like being mistaken for being English.
We Arra People
Coming from Scotland means several things:
Like most people from whatever country, I have an inbuilt impulse to defend my country as "the best in the world", despite our small size, poor health record, tendency to ginger hair, etc. However Scotland does have a lot to offer, despite its seeming insignificance on the map.
There has been a lot of up and down movement in the past in the Scottish landscape, producing an impressive set of hills, mountains and lochs. A huge amount of rain falls on the country, keeping everything very green, so when there is some sunshine, the land can be very pretty indeed.
Any good Scot will tell you that we invented everything. And it's true. Well, nearly true. Here's a list of just some of the inventions of Scots:
I suppose we had to do something while it was raining outside.
Autumn's a great time to look at the trees, so I took Cate out for a walk to gather leaves and the like. I've never been much of an expert on trees, basically being limited to oak and conker. So when Cate successfully identified an oak branch I decided it was time to find out a bit more, if only to keep myself ahead.
Here are some of the trees and seeds that we found on our walk around our estate.
Let's start with the easy one. The oak tree has wiggly leaves. It grows acorns, which sit in little cups. The acorns start off light green, but turn to brown and fall out of the cup in autumn. Find out more.
The horse chestnut tree is easy to spot as well. It has great big leaves which are like hands with five long fingers. This tree is known well to all boys in Scotland as it is the source of the conker. Conkers are shiny, brown nuts which grow inside a soft, green, jaggy shell. The shell is easily split open and the conker is then traditionally kept in the airing cupboard overnight to harden it, with the hope that it will become at least a "sixer". Find out more.
The sycamore tree is from the maple family, which is why the leaves look a bit like maple leaves. They have five points, with the two outside ones being smaller. Its seeds grow in pairs, and when they fall off their shape makes them spin round as they float to the ground. This is why they're odten called helicopters. Find out more.
For ages I've wondered what these little, prickly seed cases were which littered our garden every autumn. At last, I've found out they're from the beech tree. This tree has an oval shaped, shiny leaf, and produces these beech nuts. They open up to spill out the seeds. Find out more.
The ash tree has quite a light coloured bark, and long, thin leaves which stick out in opposing pairs along the stem. When it produces seeds these hang in little bunches. They are roughly similar to the helicopters on the sycamore tree and are known as ash keys. Find out more.
The hawthorn has distinctive leaves, which are a bit like the oak leaves, but with less wiggly bits, which are at more of an angle. It grows red berries in the autumn, which makes it easier to spot. Find out more.
This is a tree I'd never heard of. There's one near the swing park, and it grows little pine cone style things, and it's this really which prompted me to try and find out a bit more about trees. The little pine cone things are the female seed pods, while the male equivalent are longer and thinner. Find out more.
Getting into totally unheard-of territory here. I found this tree with large, tough leaves, which are a bit furry underneath, and large bunches of red berries on it. It took me ages to find out what it was, but apparently it's a whitebeam. Beam is an olden term for tree, and this tree is referred to as being white because in the spring the furry part of the leaves make the tree look like it's in blossom. Find out more.
Here's another one I found and took a while to identify. It has leaves with a serated edge, and grows its seeds in a kind of cluster arrangement. Find out more.
Well, it's nearly a year later, and we're getting quite good at spotting the trees now. Which means that we've noticed a few that we're not sure about. This one was a bit confusing, as it looks similar to the ash, with pairs of thin leaves, but the leaves on this tree have saw-tooth edges. At the end of summer though, all became clear, when bunches of red berries appeared. It was a rowan. Find out more.
The willow was a bit easier to spot. It has long, thin leaves which droop down making the tree look a bit like a fountain. Hence the name of one type of willow: the weeping willow. Find out more.
Here's another tree that started sprouting catkins in the summer. It obviously wasn't an alder, as the catkins were a bit different and the leaves were diamond shaped. The big clue, though, is the silver coloured bark, with black patches, which makes the silver birch easy to spot. Find out more.
Well, that's all for now. I'll try to see if I can still recognise these trees once the seeds have fallen, and maybe get some more pictures in the spring.
Cate's Stone Collection
We've had a few pretty stones around the house for a while, from various holidays we've been on, and Cate has always been interested in looking at them. So from Christmas this year we've started a wee collection. Here are the stones we've collected so far.
We're going to add to our collection as time goes on, so this page should keep on getting bigger and bigger.
These are some web pages I have visited in the past and found useful, interesting or sometimes disturbing. I make no guarantees that the links are still valid.
Meiklejohns around the World
I've put these pages here in the hope that they'll help the Meiklejohns around the world in contacting each other, and in seeing where other Meiklejohns have spread to. Thanks to those who have allowed me to place their details here. If you want added please send me some information about yourself. Pictures are useful. If you are on these pages and want taken off, just let me know.
The Meiklejohn name comes, I believe, from the East of Scotland. It means "Big John". There appear to be a lot of Meiklejohns in Fife, and also up around the Thurso area.
Meiklejohns in Scotland
The following Meiklejohns are resident in Scotland:
Meiklejohns in England
These Meiklejohns can be found in England:
Meiklejohns in Australia
The following Meiklejohns are resident in Australia:
Meiklejohns in New Zealand
The following Meiklejohns are resident in New Zealand:
Meiklejohns in Canada
The following Meiklejohns are resident in Canada:
Meiklejohns in USA
These Meiklejohns live in the USA
Meiklejohns in Belgium
The following Meiklejohns are resident in Belgium:
Meiklejohns in Netherlands
The following Meiklejohns hail from the Netherlands:
Meiklejohns in Ireland
The following Meiklejohns live in Ireland:
Andy Boag from East Kilbride knew of his cousin Stuart Meiklejohn in Sydney but they'd never had a chance to meet. Due to a bit of good luck that was rectified in 2013. Andy says:
I have been involved with coaching and assisting with preparations for the lawn bowls for the Commonwealth Games later in Glasgow. I was asked to go with two players to Australia last April as support for them in the World Cup singles. I had been in touch with Stuart before travelling and got opportunity to meet him for first time ever in my life along with his wife Vicky and also met my aunt Meg who I had not seen since 1986! We spent around 4 hrs together and shared a lovely meal and had a fantastic catch up sharing stories.
I was sent this picture of the shop front of the Meiklejohn Tea and Wine Merchants in Glasgow's Gallowgate by Paul Finch, who collects old postcards of shop fronts. Click the picture for the full version. If you know or are related to the owners, let me know.
Michael Clark has sent in a couple of photos relating to the Meiklejohn Brewery company. The first is the Grange Brewery in Alloa, which the company owned at one point, from around 1925 and the second is a Bass Crest Brewery tray, with the central Bass Rock logo removed due to legal problems the company had with another Bass.
Here are some links to Meiklejohn related pages:
If you have any information about the family, or would like yourself added to these pages, let me know.
Meiklejohns in Scotland
David and Claire Meiklejohn - Houston
David and Claire live in Houston, near Johnstone, in the West of Central Scotland. David is a software engineer for BT, and Claire is a housewife and mother. They're both involved in work at The Bible Centre at nearby Inchinnan. Cate was born on the 3rd of December 2004, and has been attempting to gain superior position in the family ever since, with a fair measure of success.
Graeme Meiklejohn - Dunfermline
Graeme lives over on the east coast of Scotland, in Dunfermline, in the kingdom of Fife, along with his mother and father.
David Meiklejohn - Bishopton
There are some Meiklejohns that live on the other side of the world from me, and some that live just ten minutes down the road. David stays in Bishopton with his wife Tricia and daughters Vhairi and Heather. He enjoys real ale, motorcycles and fishing.
Andrew and Linda Meiklejohn - Aberdeenshire
Andrew was born in Paisley in 1945, and married Linda in Durban, South Africa, in 1969. They have two children: Nicola and Stuart. Andrew and Linda own and run the Castle Hotel in Aberdeenshire.
Alexander Meiklejohn - Clydebank
Alexander Jamieson Meiklejohn got in touch with me. He lives in Clydebank with wife Caroline and has worked back a few generations in his family tree, trying to find out more. He was born in the same year as me, so probably feels as old as I do.
Denise Meiklejohn - East Kilbride
Denise lived in East Kilbride and worked in Glasgow at Strathclyde University. Her mum and dad are James and Margaret and she has two sisters: Lorna and Elizabeth-Anne. Sadly Denise passed away in 2016.
Andy Boag - East Kilbride
Andy and Denise are cousins once removed, sharing the same great grandparents. Their great grandparents were part of a duo of marriages from the same families: two Meiklejohn brothers married two O'Brien sisters. Here's Andy's progress so far. Get in contact if you can help him:
"I have tracked the Meiklejohns for my part back to around 1750 to Tulliallan. From there they have branched out to Lanarkshire - Cambusnethan and Cambuslang and East Kilbride but also to Renfrew Greenock and Bonhill also Barrhead. I am trying to find connections right now to any family in Paisley "region" through descendants of Margaret born 1847 in Greenock Thomas born 1848 in Renfrew Walter born 1852 in Bonhill (My great great grandfather), Jessie born 1855 in Greenock James born 1857 in Renfrew and William born 1859 in Bonhill. Their father was Robert born Kincardine 1801 and mother was Janet Buchanan born Bonhill 1821. Roberts first wife was Grace Wilson (not sure where she was born) but they were married 27/12/1829 and had two kids Robert born 1832 in Greenock and William born 1835 (not clear where). I can also tell you that Robert was son of William Meiklejohn and Elizabeth "Scotland" who were married 27/6/1786 in Tulliallan. I have so far been unable to get any more information. I am pretty sure there was a Meiklejohn family in Tulliallan as I have found a Euphemia born in1786 but do not know if she is related to William or not. As for Elizabeth, I gave up instantly when I seen how many "Scotland" entries came up on the lists. I think I may have reached the end of the line unless I get some connection for William. So I am currently looking at more recent - well within past 180 years and try to build down some other sections of the family as I have established Walters descendry down to myself."
John Meiklejohn - Aberdeenshire
Marilyn Bowers - East Kilbride
Marilyn was Marilyn Ross Meiklejohn before being married. She lives in East Kilbride but was born and grew up in Sandyhills, Glasgow. She's married to Sean and has 3 sons, and she works in Glasgow for Glasgow Life - Communities (formerly part of Glasgow City Council) in the Adult Literacies Team.
Her family originally came from St Ninian's in Stirling at least back to the 1600s. Some of the family emigrated to America and settled in California: mainly Los Angeles. There is a 'Meiklejohn' star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame which is dedicated to William, Campbell and Jean Meiklejohn, who were involved in the film and theatre industry in Hollywood. Marilyn's great grandfather William and their father Matthew were brothers. William ran one of the biggest talent agencies in Hollywood on Sunset Boulevard, and represented some of the biggest movie stars in Hollywood like Judy Garland, Mickey Rooney, Ronald Reagan, William Holden and many others. He was also an executive at Paramount for over 20 years as head of talent and casting and worked with people like Fred Astaire, Shirley Temple, Elvis and Marilyn Monroe.
Marilyn also provided some information about another William Meiklejohn, who the stadium in Pennsylvania is named after: William's father was Joseph Meiklejohn, son of Matthew C Meiklejohn and brother of William (talent agent). Joseph ran a small delivery service in Oakland, California in the 1920s; his company was bought out by a Mr Casey of Merchant Parcel Service in Seattle who were looking to expand. Joseph went to work for them and moved to the east coast, Philadelphia to develop the business there; the company had now changed its name to UPS (United Parcel Services). Joseph became the second largest shareholder in UPS history and when he died his surviving children, William and Rose, inherited a vast fortune. William used the money to benefit many organisations including Penn State University (his Alma Mater). He also donated a total of $85 million dollars to Saddleback Memorial Hospital in California and used to spend most days there after his retirement, chatting to the patients and staff. He also founded the Seniors Table Tennis Association in America and donated the prize money every year. Shortly before his death in 2007, the stadium at Penn State was renamed Meiklejohn Stadium in his honour, and Saddleback hospital have a statue of him and his wife Louise who died in 2009.
So far Marilyn has found members of the family in Staffordshire and Manchester, England; Cork in Ireland; Arizona, Oregon, Washington and Los Angeles in America and Brisbane, Australia and would love to hear from anyone who thinks they may be related.
Deanne Tomasino - Edinburgh
Deanne is from Edinburgh and her mum and dad are George and Elizabeth Meiklejohn. George is the youngest of nine, children of Robert and Janet Meiklejohn (nee Inglis) and his uncle was the famous Davie Meiklejohn of Rangers. Born in Edinburgh, they moved to Fife in 1976, a veritable hotbed of Meiklejohns. George's nephew Douglas also stays in Fife and another nephew, Mark, is in Edinburgh.
Meiklejohns in England
Lyndsay Salaman - Westminster
Lyndsay was a Meiklejohn before marrying. Her father, James, came from Glasgow, and lived in London, where he died in 2004. The family now live in Ayr, and scattered around England. Her aunt, Maisie Meiklejohn, married Jack Mustarde, a retired surgeon, and still lives in Scotland. Lyndsay works at Westminster School
Kevin Meiklejohn - Wiltshire
Kevin lives in Chippenham, in Wiltshire, England. He was born in '77 and is also working in Chippenham. He was married to Gemma in July 2005. Gemma is a secondary school teacher in Swindon, and won the Guardian Award for Secondary Teacher of the Year for the West of England in 2006. Congratulations Gemma, good to see the family name being honoured :-)
Roy Meiklejohn and Family
Roy emailed me to let me know where his family live, increasing the number of known Meiklejohns in England by 8. There are:
Jon Meiklejohn - Kent
Jon was born the same year as me and married the same year as me, but doesn't live in the same town. Instead he lives in Sittingbourne with wife Debbi and children Catherine (hey! he has the same named daughter as me!) and Steven.
He knows a bit of his family history, back to the 1600s in Stirling and St Ninian. His great, great grandfather, John, was one of the first Scotland yard detectives and was body guard to Prince Albert, only to be convicted of money laundering and forgery of Clydesdale Bank notes, along with, amongst others the Chief Inspector. Nice to have some colourful characters in the family!
Jamie Meiklejohn - Manchester
Jamie comes from Manchester but his mum, Laura Meiklejohn was originally from Hill of Beath in Fife. There seem to have been a few Meiklejohn from the East Coast so maybe some of you can fit in your family trees together. Jamie is related to the famous Davie Meiklejohn of Rangers and Scotland.
John Meiklejohn - Midlands
Here's another Meiklejohn from England. John got in touch recently and here's what he said:
I am the 5th John in a line of Meiklejohns, whose forefather was a joiner and travelled down from Scotland to the Midlands. He settled in Penkhull in Stoke on Trent and his wood carvings are seen in Penkhull church.
I was adopted because there was an heriditary bone deformation problem, and my father decided not to risk passing it on - so adopted.
His Grand and Great Grand fathers were successful wealthy builders, but his father, rested on the laurels of wealth and ran the business down - devoting much of his time to the cause of apprentices in the construction industry. The talent of art was apparent in all those I knew and recall my grandfather on his death bed, working away at the traditional ornate picture frame carving. I still have a couple of examples.
My father's brother Philip fell out with the family because he wasn't interested in building and went to a career playing the French Horn in the Manchester Halle orchestra.
My Grand father had one brother at least - Edward, who lived locally, and I recall a relative, another Edward, who worked in their Building business as a painter and decorator in Stoke On Trent, emigrating to Toronto - this would be 55 years or so ago? I know of no siblings after my father and his brother Philip ( who also chose not to have children - or adopt) so guess that was the end of the line. My father died early 40 years ago, his brother Philip survived until a few years ago.
Unusual name - Meiklejohn?
Meiklejohns in Australia
Nola Sheppard - Brisbane
Nola was a Meiklejohn before she married Kevin. The family stay in Brisbane, and include four children, along with, at last count, 17 grandchildren and 5 great-grandchildren. Sadly, Kevin passed away in March 2006. Here are a few family photos:
Ethel Norma passed away in July 2005, aged 91. She'll be missed by the family.
Arthur and Irene Meiklejohn - Brisbane
Brisbane seems to be a hive of Meiklejohn activity. Arthur and Irene live there, as do many of their Meiklejohn relatives. The picture below is of their daughter Nicole with Arthur's mother Dulcie. Arthur's mother Dulcie is the sister of Nola's mother Norma, and his father George was Nola's father William's brother. Arthur and Irene have four children: Nicole, Cameron, Trent and Tammy.
David Meiklejohn - North Carlton
David stays in North Carlton with his wife Franca and their daughter Lucia. They have a website with some pictures from recent months.
Ben Meiklejohn - Brisbane
Ben is another Meiklejohn from Brisbane, and he's been keeping the family going with his first child, Chloe being born this year(2004). He's been getting together with others from the clan and traced the family tree back to the 17th century. Apparently Donald Meiklejohn came over to Australia from Wick in 1853, and he is Ben's ancestor.
Stuart Meiklejohn - Sydney
Stuart stays in the suburbs of Sydney. He was born in Scotland, in East Kilbride, and emigrated with his parents in 1967 (a year before I was born). Stuart is married to Vicki, and they have a son and daugher: Brady and Jodi. His parents, John and Margaret, along with a number of uncles and aunts, came from the Motherwell area.
Stuart now has a granddaughter, Breanna, born in January 2008.
Bill Meiklejohn - Cowra
Bill got in touch with me and sent me some updates to the ever increasing list of Meiklejohns in Australia. His family came from Thurso originally. Here they are:
Jan Gladwin - Canberra
Jan and her husband Bob were Wesleyan missionaries in Papua New Guinea for fourteen years, and now live in Canberra. They have five children, four of them living nearby and another studying in London. Jan has this to say about their Meiklejohn ancestors:
Bob is the great grandson of Barbara McBeath Meiklejohn born 1836 in Thurso - daughter of John Meiklejohn and Mary Manson. Barbara married Peter McKellar in Govan, Lanarkshire and came to Australia via New Zealand. Their daughter Mary Manson McKellar married Lachlan McDonald. Their daughter Mary Barbara McDonald married George William Gladwin and Bob (Robert James) is their youngest son.
Jan has some pictures of some of these Meiklejohns on Picasa.
Matt Meiklejohn - Bathurst
Matt is 18 and lives in Bathurst, near Cowra in New South Wales. His family moved to Sydney in 2001, originally hailing from New Zealand. His dad, Stephen was born in christchurch to Richard "Dick" Meiklejohn and Maureen "Faye" Strawbridge, but moved around a lot as a child. He has an Uncle Rick in New Zealand and an Aunt Lois Randall in Wellington. He's discovered that a "Matthew Fontaine Maury Meiklejohn" received a Victoria Cross in the Boer War and wonders if he might have been a relative.
Barry Meiklejohn - Brisbane
Barry and Margaret live in Brisbane, a veritable hive of Meiklejohn activity, with their three daughters. He also has a brother, Michael, who lives in Brisbane as well. They've traced the family line back to a John Meiklejohn from Thurso, born 1660 & married to Isabel Burn.
Philip Meiklejohn - Ballarat
Philip hailed me from Ballarat in Victoria. His father was James Frederick Meiklejohn and his mother Alva Alice (nee Ford). His father had two brothers and two sisters. Philip has a son, Travis James, born in 1984.
James Sneddon - Adelaide
James' mother is a Meiklejohn and he's been back and forward between Australia and Scotland. I'll let him explain the family:
I am Jim (James) Sneddon and my mother is Rae Meiklejohn now of East Kilbride. My grandparents were Alexander (Sanny) Meiklejohn(D) & Rebecca Simpson O’Brien(D). They had 6 children Walter(D), John(D), Alex(D), May, James (Jim) & Rae. John in Aberdeen & Denise in East Kilbride are my cousins, which means Andy Boag is also my cousin once removed!
I was born in Australia, raised in Cambuslang and am now back in Adelaide, Australia. I have one son Lee.
Meiklejohns in New Zealand
Ken is my first NZ contact, but there seems to be quite a community of us Meiklejohns over there. Here's what Ken wrote:
We are currently planning to celebrate the 150th year anniverary of the arrival in New Zealand of Captain James Strange Mucklejohn (Later Meiklejohn) and his seven sons who built their own ship in P.E. Island Nova Scotia, and left for NZ in about 1856 settling here in 1858. As a young man James was based in Leith, Scotland, where he learned his boat building and from where he went to sea. We would love to know more of the origin of James Strange (we believe that the name Mucklejohn interchanged with Meiklejohn at that time ) . We have developed a comprehensive local family tree involving hundreds of Meiklejohn descendants, and are in the process of setting up a web site under the name www.meiklejohn.org via the Google search engine. We have a very active committee working on the Meiklejohn Family reunion which we are scheduling for March 2008.
I trust that this contact may be of interest and possibly lead to more contacts and information about James and his early origin.
Meiklejohns in Canada
Gregg Meiklejohn - Victoria
Gregg lives in Victoria, British Columbia. His dad was William Murray Meiklejohn, born in Vancouver in 1936 and passed away in 1989. His grandfather, Murray Alexander Meiklejohn, emigrated to Canada in the 1920s and married into the Muir family. He passed away after being hit by a trolley car in 1941. His great grandfather was an international gymnast around the time of the first world war, and his great uncle was that most famous of Meiklejohns, David Meiklejohn , who played for Glasgow Rangers and Scotland at football.
Gregg and Mona have three daughters: Michelle, Amanda and Erin. Erin was born on the 29th of May, 2003.
Gillian McIntyre Gaiser
Gillian has been researching her family and has written a book around it, which includes some Meiklejohn information. Here's her message:
I am a second cousin to Martha through marriage. My first husband, Ian Angus McIntyre, who died in 1991, was Martha's second cousin. Ian descended from the marriage of Jessie Meiklejohn of Uddingston, Lanarkshire and John Robertson of Glasgow. Ian's grandfather, William Meiklejohn Robertson, born 1888 in Alexandria, Dunbartonshire was the 7th child of John and Jessie. He was killed in the First World War.
I have traced Jessie Meiklejohn's line back to Walter Meiklejohn thought to have been born about 1675 in Barony, Glasgow. I have just published a book about my husband's ancestors including the Robertsons and Meiklejohns. It is called "The McIntyre Files" and I am just in the process of building a website with information about the book.
I have a photo of Jessie and also one of her with her whole family if it is of interest to anyone.
David is Andy Boag's brother. He lives in Maple Ridge near Vancouver with wife Shirley, kids Derick, Karen & Jenifer.
Meiklejohns in USA
Christine Hendricks - Utah
Christine and Bob live in Magna, Utah, with their two children Duncan and Jesse. Christine's great-great-great grandfather was David Forbes Meiklejohn. He immigrated to the USA in 1855 with his wife and eight children (7, plus one on the journey, including Mary, pictured). She's traced the family back to Robert Meiklejohn, born in 1728, who's son, George, lived in Culross. (Old pictures from DeadFred.com)
Albert William Meiklejohn 3rd - New York
Will is from Pennsylvania, but has recently moved to Corning, New York, where he and his family are helping a local church. His church in Pennsylvania are involved in missionary work in Uganda, and Will has been over helping build homes to house orphans in the area, with the Covenant Mercies programme. Will was planning to move over to Uganda, and may still do so, if God guides in that direction. The church is associated with a sister church in Wales.
Will is married to Karen, and they have two daughters, Ashlynne and Karina. They
came over to Scotland with their friend Stephanie in 2015 and we had the
pleasure of showing them around Glasgow (at least the bits that weren't shut).
Joan Furrow - Pennsylvania
Joan is the daughter of Albert William Meiklejohn, and Will(above)'s aunty. She lives in Wellsboro, in Pennsylvania, with her husband Larry. Thay have four children: Terry, the twins Larry and Garry and Jeffrey, and Larry has two of his own: Larry and Lewie. Between them they have 11 grandchildren and 2 great grandchildren. Joan and Larry own a car repair centre in their home town.
Shirra Meiklejohn-Wilson - North Carolina
Shirra has lived in North Carolina since 1988, moving there from Connecticut where she studied, earning a BA and a Masters in Religion. She has been involved in crisis counselling, was an Offender Counselor for Polk County and is involved in spiritual development, founding the Soujourner Pass Community in 1994, teaching a discipline known as the Fourth Way.
James Munro Meiklejohn - Michigan
James' grandparents emmigrated to the US from Dunfermline, in the early 1900s. They settled in Lockport, New York, where James was born in 1955. He now lives in Flushing, in Michigan.
Cherie Meiklejohn Spilis - New Jersey
Cherie is Will's (see above) half sister, and lives in New Jersey with her husband Steve. She has a sister Debi, also in New Jersey, and another half brother Robert, who stays in Pennsylvania. Are Pennsylvania and New Jersey near each other? Hold on... ah right, they're neighbour states.
Sylvia Meiklejohn White - Georgia
Sylvia hails from Atlanta, Georgia, and sent me the following information on her part of the family:
John Meiklejohn of Uddingston, Scotland moved to Coventry, England after World War II - he met and married Minnie Moylan and they had three daughters: Linda Meiklejohn Toogood, Sylvia Meiklejohn White and Joyce Meiklejohn Edgens. In 1968 John, Minnie, Sylvia and Joyce emigrated to Atlanta, Georgia - Linda followed in 1981.
John Meiklejohn passed away October 6, 2003 - he was 82 years old. All three of his daughters still live in Atlanta.
John Meiklejohn - New York
John and his wife Mara live in New York City. His father, also John, lived in NYC and John was born there. He stays in Manhattan with Mara and their two daughters: Alison(39) and Sasha(31). They have two grandchildren: twins aged 11, and a yellow labrador.
John works as a director/cameraman, and has done all his life. It has taken him all over the world. He is also an avid fisherman.
Nathaniel Meiklejohn - Maine
Nathaniel Meiklejohn lives in Maine, and has two brothers, David and Ben. His dad, Daniel, also has two brothers, Gary and Steve. His grandfather Robert brought the family name to New England.
Franklin Golt - Maryland
Franklin's mother is Linda Meiklejohn, from Annapolis, Maryland. Her parents are Robert Shirra Meiklejohn Jr and Joyce Meiklejohn. Franklin is interested in the family history and has been over in Glasgow tracing the records.
William Donald (Mike) Meiklejohn - Maryland
Another Meiklejohn from Maryland, Mike (see below) sent me this information. Do you Maryland Meiklejohns know each other?
My name is William Donald Meiklejohn, Jr. I go by Mike. I'm married. My wife's name is Dawn. I have two children, Joey & Staci and one grandchild, Madalyn. I was born and raised in Annapolis, MD and now live in Denton, MD on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. My late father's name was William Donald Meiklejohn, Sr. My late mother's name was Jessie. My grandfather's name was James Alexander Meiklejohn. His wife's name was Bernice. My grandparents were also from Annapolis. My great grandfather's name was William Meiklejohn. Other than that I don't know too much more about my family tree.
Martha Hunter - Philadelphia
Martha Hunter lives near Philadelphia, Pa. with her family. She's a preschool teacher and pastoral counselor. Jessie Meiklejohn Robertson of Bonhill was her great grandmother, daughter Isabella Robertson Macdonald was her granny. She married William Macdonald and moved to the USA in 1923. A branch of the family moved to Coventry, England - Jessie Meiklejohn (of which there are many in the family) and Mary Robertson. Martha welcomes contact with our extended Robertson, Meiklejohn, Macdonald family from around the world!
Jenny Meiklejohn Martin - Maryland
The Maryland contingent increases with Jenny, who lives in Ocean City, Maryland, along with husband Richard, and children Austin and Shannon. Here is some of her family information:
I am the youngest of eight children and I have 5 brothers and 2 sisters. Here are their names and ages (Jan 2007).
My father was William Thomas Meiklejohn and my mother was Gertrude Ila Meiklejohn. My father had 5 brothers and sisters. My family is from Montgomery County Maryland, which is just outside of Washington, DC. My parents were both born and raised in DC. I now live on the eastern shore of Maryland in Ocean City. Also my sister Linda, brothers John, Gary and William (also know as Mickey) live here. I was always told that 2 Meiklejohn brothers came to the US from Scotland and I am a descendant of one of them.
Teresa Meiklejohn - Maryland
Teresa is yet another Maryland Meiklejohn, married to George Alfred Meiklejohn.
George's father George was married to an Alice, and George jnr's sister is Alice
Ed Meiklejohn - Pennsylvania
Edward G. Meiklejohn (Ed) and his wife Claudette live in Mansfield, PA, a small college town in north-central Pennsylvania. Ed is Will's uncle and lives a bit to the south of him. Claudette and Ed are both retired accountants.
His mother's mother was born in Glasgow and her father was born in Belfast. However, they didn't meet until they both emigrated to Philadelphia, PA. The family names were Clements and McClean. On his father's side, his mother's family were German immigrants during the 1800's (Schmidt.) The Meiklejohn's were immigrants to Philadelphia in the 1800's. His grandmother told him they came from Paisley, Scotland.
"If any Meiklejohns would like to contact me by email, I would be pleased to respond."
Kendra Meiklejohn - Virginia
Kendra mailed in to add herself to the list of USAn Meiklejohns. She and a
brother live in Virginia, her sister lives in Arizona and another
brother lives in Wisconsin, while her parents are in Florida. Good to see the
family try to occupy as many states as possible.
Dawn Meiklejohn - Seattle
Paul Meiklejohn and his wife Dawn Meiklejohn live in Seattle, Washington, USA. Their children are:
Paul, son of James and Helen Meiklejohn, was born and raised in Philadelphia, PA
Phil Meiklejohn - Colorado
Phil got in touch from Colorado:
Myself and my two brothers David and Eric are Scott's sons. My grandfather was
a WW2 pilot and returned from WW2 to earn a law degree and go on to serve in
the Colorado State Senate and did a lot of good for Jefferson County Schools
here in Colorado. They also named an
elementary school after him
in recognition of such.
Debbie Meiklejohn - Arkansas
Debbie is the latest contact from the United States. She stays in Little Rock,
I would like to communicate with other people who have researched their lineage. In our country there are only a small number people with my last name. I am trying to get some more information on David Clarence Meiklejohn born February 29, 1848 in Culross, Perth, Scotland and he died May, 6, 1919 in Los Angeles, California. He was a U. S. Marshall in Butte, Montana. A new museum for U. S. Marshalls is being built and they are now accepting information to place in the museum.
I also wanted to find out about the coat of arms. I noticed that there are
different versions for the same name during my search.
Gayle Meiklejohn Dutra - Arizona
Gayle lives in Arizona, but was born in Glendale, California. Her dad, Kenneth Meiklejohn was born in Princeton, New Jersey, along with his brother Charles William. Their father, Charles Algernon Meiklejohn, was also from New Jersey but his father, Robert A Meiklejohn came from Renfrew in Scotland. Back another generation and John was born in Aberfeldy.
Gayle has a brother Kenneth in Mississippi, and cousins Donna and Susan Meiklejohn Campbell, who live in California.
Meiklejohns in Belgium
Roderick Meiklejohn - Brussels
Rod works for the EU, and has lived in Brussels since 1977. He sends us this information:
My two brothers, David and Andrew, both live in England. Our grandfather (another David) was from Kilmster, a short distance inland from Wick. It seems there were a lot of Meiklejohns in the village throughout the 18th and 19th centuries. I have no idea whether there are any still there. The most famous Meiklejohns, apart from the US philosopher Alexander, already noted on your website, were:
Meiklejohns in the Netherlands
Gery got in touch from the Netherlands. Her father Patrick was born in Greenock in 1936, and came over to the Netherlands to live with his mother, who had emigrated earlier, when he was 16. He married a Dutch girl, Willempje and they had two daughters: Mary Johanna and Gery Patricia. After some searching Gery reckons they're the only two Meiklejohns in the Netherlands. We must visit one day to more than double that number.
Meiklejohns in Ireland
Lee Meiklejohn - Cork
Lee is from Forfar, but moved to Cork in 2000. His wife and two children are native Corkers. He's looking to build up his family tree, and has a good number of branches filled out, so get in touch if you're interested.
I'm good at starting things and not very good at finishing them, so the following pages are in a usable but unfinished state. Still, I hope they can be of use to someone out there. These are some of the projects I've started for my own pleasure and for the good of humanity :-)
I've been doing the web pages for the Bible Centre since I started them up a good few years ago. They give some information about the centre, the people there and camps that we've had.
I've recently set up this web page for a family member who has a villa in Turkey. We're planning to go there this June, so will know more about it after that, but hopefully the web page will bring in some custom for Paul. If you're interested in hiring it, give him a call.
As my work has to do with computers and the internet, I've built up a lot of knowledge about technical things. I decided to write down some helpful information about various topics, and keep adding to it as I investigate other areas. My work were kind enough to allow me to put this on the internet, so here is my Technical Help Page.
I wanted to write down a rough guide to the various bits of the Bible. This was mainly so I could find passages again, and to give myself an overall picture of the historical events in the Bible. This is incomplete, but covers the first part of the Old Testament. So here is my Bible Guide.
I do quite a lot of sermons at my church and sometimes at the Bible Centre. I keep notes for these, so I thought I'd collect them on-line in the hope that someone finds them useful. There are lots still in my notebook waiting to be typed out, but what I have typed out can be found in my Sermons Page.
This web site is a project in itself, of course, and I've learned a lot about HTML, CSS, style and layout over the years. To see how some of the old pages looked, and how my web page at work, have a look here.
One of the projects that has taken up most of my time over the last few years is of course this web site. It has changed a bit over the years, and I managed to find some older versions, so here are some snapshots of the site over time.
This collection of pages is a sort of photo album. I like to store the pictures from my holidays, and write a bit of text to remind me of what we did and where we went. If it helps anyone decide to go somewhere or to avoid somewhere or if you just enjoy reading about our experiences, fair enough, but it's mainly a personal reminder.
2017 - Bulgaria
2017 - Belfast
A short trip to the green isle, home of pleasant folk and much rain. We stayed just outside Belfast and hired a car to get us about from Monday to Friday. We did see a rainbow but didn't find any pots of gold.
2016 - South Africa
And now to the big adventure we've been saving up for over the last few years. We had a trip to South Africa, and spent 15 days exploring, driving, visiting animal sanctuaries and goin on safari. We had a great time and didn't catch any tropical diseases.
2016 - Cornwall
When Cate's away the parents will play - we have a very cheap holiday in a manor in Cornwall for the cost of sitting in on a timeshare presentation. It was good weather and lovely countryside but what a long drive to get there, and get home again.
2016 - Paris
Last year of nursery: Disneyland Paris. Last year of Primary: Disneyland Paris. We've started a pattern here and are looking forward to 6th year at High School. We went to Disneyland for the second time, this time staying at a Disney hotel from the Monday to the Friday during the Spring holidays. We had a great time and Claire only felt sick four times (twice on the plane and twice on the rides).
2015 - Haggerston
This October we made a return visit to Haggerston caravan park near Berwick Upon Tweed. We stayed from Monday to Friday and had a full programme of activities booked up, with a free day to go on a trip to Alnwick Castle.
2015 - Tenerife
A repeat visit to Tenerife and the Marlylanza. The place was even better than before with the highlight being the chocolate coated doughnuts available at breakfast every day. This was going to be a real challenge to not gain weight, but many, many lengths of the pool might just do the job.
2015 - Skye
Easter time and we thought we's try a bit of Scottish hospitality. We've talked about going to Skye before but never been, so we crossed our fingers for the weather and booked a cottage on the island. As it turned out, the weather was great and the island is stunning. We had a great week.
2014 - Center Parcs
For the October week off this year we had a Monday to Friday holiday at Center Parcs in Woburn Forest, down near Luton. It's a brand new resort so everything was bright and shiny, except for the weather. But we enjoyed sliding round the river rapids outdoors while it rained on our heads.
2014 - Jersey
Our summer holiday this year was in Jersey. We stayed at a nice hotel with its own leisure pool and hired a car for the period, visiting as many parts of the island as we could. The weather was great, so we got to the beach a few times and enjoyed a few ice creams.
2014 - London
After London last year we wanted to visit a few of the places just outside, which we didn't have time to do on the previous visit. So it was Easyjet again and a hire car this time, to visit the Harry Potter Studio tour, Legoland for two days and Whipsnade Zoo.
2013 - Ibiza
A return to one of our old haunts this summer as we went to Ibiza for our main holiday. We stayed at the top corner in the resort of Portinatx, well away from the clubs on San Antonio and right next to a lovely beach. Read about our relaxing holiday and the one moment of terror at this page.
2013 - London
This Easter we were still getting snow as we went into the holidays, so heavy coats would be required unless we went to the Med. We decided that a mid-week trip to London would be a good idea, so we took our walking shoes onto the Easyjet and Easybus to sample the delights of Kensington and all the other boroughs.
2012 - Lapland
We've had birthday parties, birthday trips, cinema visits and birthday teas. This year for Cate's birthday we did something different. We flew to Lapland to see Santa. It was a very long day, but we had fun in the snow, got some lessons from elves and even had a bit of Angry Birds action.
2012 - Haggerston Castle
For the October break we took a short break at Haggerston Catle caravan park. It was no Tenerife but we did have an enjoyable break and despite the rain we managed to get out for a few trips and took part in some activities at the park. Beware though: a few local attractions are shut by October.
2012 - Tenerife
We had an extra long summer holiday this year, with a two week break in Tenerife while the rain came down day after day back home. We had lovely weather and stayed in a great hotel, with as much food as we could demolish, day after day. We had a few trips out, to the volcano, to a water park (twice) and to an animal park.
2011 - Nairn
In a first for us we had three holidays this year. In October we took the school week off to drive up north to Nairn for a couple of days. We had sun and driving rain but mostly wind and cold, but Nairn is a beautiful part of the country whatever the weather.
2011 - Center Parcs
In July we had a week at CenterParcs Whinfell Forest, which is near Preston, just outside the Lake District. We went with Linda, John and Kyle, stayed in a lodge for the week and booked up lots of activities for the kids. We had a good week and got plenty of exercise riding around the forest paths.
2011 - Blackpool
A short holiday in April to Blackpool Haven caravan park. We stayed for 5 days and enjoyed the park, the Sandcastle and the Pleasure beach. It was a cold start to the season though and the little gas fire in the caravan was on full-tilt for most of the time we were in it.
2010 - Scarborough
This year we stayed at home in the UK. We rented a cottage in the North Yorkshire Moors, near Scarborough, for the week. We managed to get out somewhere reasonably interesting each day and the cottage was an excellent base to work from, as well as being a relaxing place to return to at the end of each day. Colin, Irene and Sam came along with us for this trip.
2009 - Anstruther
Our holiday in Paris was in early May, so by the time summer was well in, we were yearning for another break. So we had a few days in the East Neuk of Fife, staying at a lovely hotel in Anstruther. With a full cooked breakfast every morning we were well fuelled to explore the excellent beaches nearby, and visit a few other places as well. It was only four days but we left with some happy memories (mmmm, battered prawns).
2009 - Disneyland Paris
This is the last chance to book a cheap holiday abroad since Cate will be in school by next year, so we had a May week at Disneyland Paris. The weather was variable but the queues weren't as bad as they will be at high summer and we had a great time. We had four days at the Disneyland parks, plus a day at the nearby sea-life centre and a day trip to Paris.
2008 - Majorca
After last years failed attempt to go abroad we thought we'd have another go. Somewhere warm, fairly quiet and with not too long a flight. The Mediterranean sounded nice and we've never been to Majorca so we tried there. A frined recommended Puerto Pollensa as a nice quiet area, so we found a hotel with a kids club and booked it up. Our most expensive holiday since Kenya, but it was half board so we saved a lot on restaurant bills.
2007 - Berwick
Well, the trip to Turkey didn't work out, but we wanted to get a week away somewhere. We ended up in the Haven caravan park in Berwick, for a week of beach trips, castle visits and trampolining. There was plenty to do in the park, which had an indoor swimming pool as well as the usual leisure pursuits, and the evening show by Rory and friends was popular as well.
2007 - Not Turkey
After a couple of trips to Wales we thought Cate was old enough to travel abroad, so we planned to go to Turkey for our holidays. Our plans were overruled though, as Cate broke out in chicken pox on the day we were due to fly. Instead we spent the week visiting a number of more local spots of interest, from Largs to Loch Lomond, Ayr to Hamilton. We did have a good week, and some lovely weather.
2006 - Wales
We liked our trip to Wales last year so much that we decided to go again, to the same cottage. This time we shared with Irene, Colin and Sam. We had the most amazing week of sunshine, and really enjoyed our holiday, especially the beaches.
2005 - Wales
This year we decided to stay in Britan for a change. I'd read that the Llyn peninsula was a lovely place to visit, and found a cottage in Snowdonia nearby, which had been voted the best place to stay in Wales a couple of years ago. We booked it up and it turned out to be a great choice. We were close to the mountains and within a fairly easy drive of some decent beaches. And the cottage was fabulous.
2004 - Jersey
A week in Jersey this year, trying to get the sunshine of France with the currency and language of Britain. We had a good week here, with a variety of places to visit and some good, sunny weather for the second half of the week. Visit Plemont Bay if you go there and are looking for a nice beach. Just be careful of the tides.
2003 - Paris and Normandy
We fancied a longer holiday this year, so booked up some time in Paris again, plus some time in a hotel in Normandy, booked through VFB Holidays. Paris was suffering a heatwave, so we didn't walk about too much, and appreciated the air conditioning in the hotel. Normandy was cooler, and the food at the hotel was first class.
2003 - York
We had a mini-break, as they're known, in York. We got a hotel near Leeds through Hotel Connexions, and drove into York each day. There's lots to see in York, and the town centre is fairly well contained, so you can walk everywhere. Overall, a refreshing and interesting break.
2002 - Turkey
I found this hotel in Turkey in the advertising pages of a BT newspaper. The rates were very cheap and it sounded nice and relaxing. It was. We spent most of our time sitting by (and swimming in) the pool, with just a few excursions. The hotel food was lovely, and cheap. Our only problem was that Turkey in August is very hot.
2001 - Gran Canaria
We went to Gran Canaria this year, booking through the travel agent. We had a fun week, with a jeep ride and a camel ride being the main highlights. Our hotel was up the top of a hill, and hot in the evenings, but had a good pool and decent dining. Not a bad holiday over all.
2001 - Madeira
We got a free weekend break this year, thanks to a colleague nominating me for an award at work. We spent the weekend at the world renowned Reids Palace - very plush. We did feel we were the youngest tourists on the island, but enjoyed our weekend, including the flower festival.
2000 - Paris
A city break for a change this year. I found a decently priced hotel on the internet, and had enough air miles to get us there, so we had plenty of spending cash for this holiday. We went to most of the major attractions in Paris, including getting lost in the Louvre. There was so much more we didn't do, though. Highlight of the week was our visit to Versaille.
2000 - Lake District
A short break this time, with a few days in the Lake District. We stayed in Windermere, and managed to drive around most of the lakes in our 4 days. There are some lovely views among the hills, and a decent variety of eating places in Windermere.
1999 - Ibiza
Still recovering from the fanancial hit of getting married, we had a cheap package holiday in Ibiza this year. Known for it's clubbing, there is a lot more to the island, and we found some interesting and historical places to visit. The walls around Ibiza Town were a good walk, though perhaps I shouldn't have done that after straining my ankle a couple of days before.
1998 - Torquay
It's a long drive down to the south of England, but we were able to use the car to good effect when we stayed in Torquay for the week. We went to the zoo at Paignton, which was OK, went down int Kent's Cavern, which was good, and spent the day in a forest park, which we really enjoyed. The weather was good, so we managed a bit of time at the beach as well.
1997 - Kenya
This was our honeymoon, so a bit more special than the next few holidays we'll take. We stayed at a four star hotel in Mombassa for two weeks, including a three day excursion on safari. The safari portion was great, seeing the wildlife in the flesh, and the hotel was perfect. The main dining room served great 5 course meals, and there was a good quality Indian restaurant in the basement. Mmmmm.
1991 - Zimbabwe
This was a holiday I went on with my Uncle Alex. We spent a couple of weeks in Zimbabwe with my uncle, aunt and cousin, who stay there. We had a chance to go on safari, cruise on the flooded lake at Kariba, stay in the high mountains and visit the mighty Victoria Falls. A beautiful country, with friendly people and the most amazing sights.
Every summer at the Bible Centre we have camps for kids. These are aimed at different age groups and are for spiritual teaching as well as fun and fellowship. These pages will probably be most useful as a source of amusement for the leaders and kids in the pictures when they have grown up a little and got embarrassed at how they used to look.
Year by Year
Here are the camps I've recorded over the years.
We've been to a few weddings in the past, including our own. I like to make a written record of how things went, along with lots of pictures. This is especially good for relatives who couldn't make it, or nosey friends who weren't friends at the time. It's also an incentive to get back to the weight where we could fit into the clothes pictured.
David and Claire Meiklejohn
Let's start with our own wedding. Claire and I were married in 1997, at the Hebron Hall in Glengarnock. We had our photos taken at a local stately home and our reception at a hotel in nearby Dalry. The wedding went well, apart from the wasp that found its way into Claire's veil during the photos.
David and Marie Renton
There were three weddings among our friends in 1997, and David and Marie were the first, in March. The wedding was held at Knightswood Baptist Church in Glasgow, with the reception at the Redhurst Hotel, in the south of the town.
Iain and Nicola Taylor
Iain and Nicola were the second couple to be married in 1997, in May. The wedding was at Nicola's church, the Hebron Hall in Glengarnock, and the reception was at the Dean Park Hotel in Renfrew. The thought of Iain and Bruce taking part in a solemn ceremony was a bit worrying, but everything worked out OK.
Colin and Irene Davidson
Colin and Irene were married in 1999. Again, the wedding was in the Hebron Hall in Glengarnock, and they had their reception in the Claremont Hotel in Kilwinning. They were piped in to the reception, which was nice.
David and Marisa Mahood
David and Marisa were married in 2003. The wedding was in Newton Mearns Baptist Church, and the reception at the Sherbrooke Hotel. We enjoyed this wedding but I was disappointed to miss seeing the surprise guest in the bar, a Mr McCoist.
Johnny and Stacie Anderson
Johnny and Stacie had their wedding and reception in the Orton Hall Hotel in Peterborough. This was a long journey, so we travelled down by train and stayed over at the hotel, which was a lovely place, and we particularly enjoyed the snooker room. The reception was notable as the DJ gave way to a surprise singer who gave a rendition of Smoke on the Water with Stacie on guitar.