Posted in a bit of seriousness, humor & fun

Fall Days


fall
Image by eschipul via Flickr

Fall Days

Traci Kenworth

Well, it’s that time of year. When things start to blaze with colors, nature can’t seem to get enough of the different palettes in her paint box. Everywhere you look, animals are busy foraging, getting ready for the season ahead. Sweaters come out, warm drinks ply hands, soups become popular again…ah, this beautiful hug from heaven.

Of course, here in Ohio, we’ve been drenched in rain but I’m sure the sunshine is smiling down somewhere out there. If you could please box some up and send it our way, we wouldn’t mind at all— School is back to a brisk start and the kids are settling into their routines. Apple cider is haunting store shelves and those donuts and turtle apples are looking pretty good right now.

Soon talk will turn to holidays and family gatherings and cheer will gather in our hearts. For there’s nothing quite as special as this time of year. My children have had their Christmas lists ready since last Christmas. Lol. Of course, changes have come up, here and there. Spending time with family and friends though is the best part of the holidays and a joy I wish that we shared more often throughout the year. It is hard with everyone spread throughout the country and sometimes world.

Yes, enjoy those fall colors while they last, they are a gift, a reminder of pleasant days to come. Okay, so we can forego the white stuff, but at least we’ll trudge through it together, smiling, laughing, making memories. And that’s what counts.

Posted in a bit of seriousness, humor & fun

Genealogies are Stories in Themselves


Collage of Cherokee men and women from public ...
Image via Wikipedia

Genealogies are Stories in Themselves

Traci Kenworth

 

I’ve been researching my family for years. I’ve poured through hundreds of birth and death certificates, tax and census records, and even old addresses. Anything to find a clue, a link to the next stage or to fill the pieces in clearer on the person/s in particular I’m looking into at that moment. It’s always exciting to learn their stories. For instance, in the 1800s, my family owned a stagecoach inn here in Ohio that burnt to the ground at the turn of the century.

My family also was quite well off (wish I could say the same for me. lol.). They owned a lot of acreage, giving some away to churches and dowries for their daughters. My great, great grandfather was one of the earliest pioneers in Ohio, coming here from New York. It’s been a struggle to find anything going back further than that or who his parents are, but I’m not giving up. It just takes turning over that piece of puzzle to make it fit.

On my mother’s side, our great, great grandfather comes from PA. We know who his parents are but have little info on them. Sometimes records get lost in fires or misplaced. I do know that we have Cherokee blood in us from my Mom’s side as well. It’s been fascinating learning about these people and their lives. You can see the hardships and triumphs they’ve gone through. This same great, great grandfather, for instance, married a second time to a woman who turned out to be a gold-digger.

It’s been difficult to trace some of my mother’s side as well as there are 16 kids on that side (no, we’re not Amish. Lol.). People lose touch and move on. That doesn’t always mean their life stays invisible to us though. It just takes a little more effort. I’ve been fortunate to find three others who share my passion for looking into our roots. They’ve filled a lot of blanks in for me, and I hope I’ve returned the favor.

Pictures are scarce from days past, but when found they are a true treasure. To see the resemblances, the face of someone who helped shape your future. I’m trying, right now, to link my family pages with as many of them as I can. Oh, and FB, believe it or not, has become a good source of info as well, though you still have to cross-check your facts.

I encourage everyone to look into their past. Open those family Bibles, you’d be surprised at the stories you’ll find. And get people talking—what they have to say may surprise you. Moms, dads, grandparents, aunts & uncles, cousins, you’ll be fascinated by what they went through and what led to defining who they are. So take a look, have a listen, you may be delighted to find that some ancestor kept a journal, wrote a book, invented something, stood out in battle. Good luck!