Just under 2 months ago, we sadly said goodbye to one of the most influential people in my life – Theresa Gillett, otherwise known as Grandma. Shortly after she died, I wrote a eulogy for her that I was planning to deliver at the funeral. However, as my Grandma was a very traditional Catholic, we thought it was best to stick to the traditional stuff and leave this as my own personal tribute.

I suppose this was my way of saying goodbye and as today is her birthday, I thought it would be nice to share it with everyone and celebrate her life reminding us of just why I miss her so much:

Grandma was never just a Grandma. She did all the things a Grandma would do; she had a sweetie draw with endless supplies of soft mints; she would bribe Nic and I with biscuits and a happy meal at McDonald’s if we went to church on a Sunday. She bought us a pool table, which doubled up as a table tennis platform, and she bought us a slide so we could play in the garden on clubday – however, she was never known as just ‘Grandma’.

She had this saying that became infamous in the Gillett household’s that went like this: ‘By the bilio Nicholas John Gillett’. Nic was the first to hear the saying because he was the naughtiest as a child – he smashed Grandma’s fine china plates onetime at the ripe old age of two. ‘By the bilio Lauren Josephine Gillett’ when I had eaten the majority of a lasagna at the age of 1 and a half. ‘By the bilio Daniel and Joseph Bennett – what have you been up to now?’ Nic coined the phrase very early on due to the amount he heard it – probably.

I suppose the reason why it stuck is because as grand children, we all heard it so often. We are mischievous, us Gillett’s.

She was more than just a Grandma – she was Grandma Bilio and by the bilio was she the best one. We will love her and miss her everyday and I guarantee that when we are older and have children and grandchildren, we will be telling them ‘by the bilio’ until the end of our time aswell.

I love and miss you Grandma Bilio, every single day. The past few months, I’ve found so many incredible things that you’ve done over your lifetime that I had no idea about.

Some of my favourite things I found out were:
1) Her birth certificate and her birthday have contradicting dates. No one really knows why, but Grandma insists that her birthday is today (5th of August).
2) She went to one of the colleges at Oxford University! I always knew she was clever but not THAT clever.
3) She has both incredible taste and also is a hoarder of some of the strangest tat you’ve ever seen. Her wardrobe is full of Laura Ashley and designer clothing, however, she has decided to display some very questionable snoopy and Pokemon toys (probably from happy meals from when me and Nic were young) all around the house.

One thing I know for sure is, we miss her and she isn’t going to be forgotten about anytime soon. Her legacy will live on through all of us Gillett’s and by the bilio, I’m so proud that she was my Grandma.


Goodnight and God bless x