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Madras grandma brings a bit of Scotland back to sorority sisters

by: Submitted Photo - Submitted photo Aberdour Primary School students who worked on the fundraisers included, from back left, Robert, Dylan, Aurélie, Morna, Jenny, Angus, Ru, Aaron; middle row, Sam, Andrew, Emma, Eilidh, Fiona, Lorna; front row, Catriona, Thea, Findlay, Connor, Jeri Fine’s grandson, Owen Braid, and Joel.


   When Madras' Jeri Fine visited her grandchildren in Aberdour, Scotland, last fall she spotted something that would make a perfect souvenir for her Alpha Omicron sorority sisters back in Madras.
   Her daughter, Mandy (Fine) Braid, and her husband Mark have two sons, Owen, 9, and Ethan, 15 months, and one daughter, Izzy, 4.
   Grandma Fine arrived during the "Autumn Faire" at Owen's school, Aberdour Primary School. The faire is a school fundraiser at which the students sell items they have made.
   Aberdour Primary School has approximately 150 students from age 3 to 12.
   "I was over there during the faire and saw Christmas shopping list booklets that the kids had made. So, to help the class, I brought some home to donate to my sorority sisters," Fine said.
   Other things the students were selling included fresh applesauce made onsite, soaps, decorated cards, and gym bags made from recycled old school uniform sweatshirts.
   Money raised by the students is used to fund field trips, reading books, extra school resources, clubs, choir, hockey games, sports uniforms, and P.E. equipment.
   Aberdour is a small village of around 1,500 people, located on the Firth of Fourth, an inlet of the North Sea. The city of Edinburgh sits across the bay.
   Workwise, many of the inhabitants commute to jobs in Edinburgh, but the village does have a small post office, grocery store, bank and a few small inns.
   "There is an ancient church and castle ruins, and my grandkids walk through the castle ruins on their way to school," Fine said. She travels to visit them twice a year, often accompanied by grandpa Lewis Fine.
   With three kids, their daughter Mandy is a stay-at-home mom, but previously owned a successful baking business in Edinburgh, and before that worked for the Scottish government in recycling. Her husband Mark works in investing with Sir Walter Scott Ltd.