Family

Willie the cat

Whenever things get tough and I start to feel sorry for myself, I like to think of our cat Willie. He has suffered greatly since the day he was born and has many handicaps, yet he’s the happiest, most contently creature I know. Willie was bitten by his mama shortly after his birth, a tragic mistake that should have taken…

The Complexity of DNA

It felt like I was a liar. All my life I had been telling people I was half German, possibly more. After all, my mother’s family and ancestors were all German for hundreds of years, and there was also German on my father’s side of the family. The other side of my family was mainly English and French. When my…

Journey to the Countryside

A few weeks ago, my husband and I had the pleasure of visiting relatives in New York. It was a trip like none other for me, for it gave this city and suburb girl a taste of living on a historic farm. The house was  more than 150 years old, and the barns were even older. The visit also triggered my creative juices and I came home ready to do some writing!

My favorite photos are those of the barns. Majestically rising from the hills of the Genesee Valley, they are the crown jewels of this part of the countryside. Despite the fact that it was the middle of September, there were still many blooming flowers. I think we missed the beginning of the fall color by about 10 days.

Here are some of my favorite photos. Click on each photo to see a larger version of it.

 

Where in the World

I recently had a DNA testing done through Ancestry.com. As an avid genealogist and the family historian, it seemed like something I should do to validate my research, proving—as much as that’s possible—my roots. When I first thought about it, it didn’t seem seem like there would be much variety in the results. I am half German from my mom’s side of the…

Down the Rabbit Hole

Genealogy research is a messy endeavor. I started out with the mantra that my research would be thorough and complete, and that my pedigree chart would only contain the most accurate information available. Somewhere down the road the latter part changed to probably mostly accurate information available. Now, if it looks like it could be good information but needs to be…

Photos from the Past

Fresh from our family archives is a photo of the village of Grimm, Russia, taken from the side view of a typical home. I suspect the home belongs to a relative of ours, although I cannot confirm that detail. In the foreground, the roof of the home is in disrepair, with part of it actually missing. A small mud and…

Finnish Dreams

When I was growing up, one of my favorite friends was a Finnish girl named Leena (pronounced Lay-neh). Actually she was half German, but that side of her family might as well have been non-existent because that family lived and breathed Finland. Her one hundred percent Deutsche father was some kind of salesman and traveled regularly. I saw him perhaps…

Willie the Invincible Cat

Whenever things get tough and I start to feel sorry for myself, I like to think of our cat Willie. He has suffered greatly since the day he was born and has many handicaps, yet he’s the happiest, most contently creature I know. Willie was bitten by his mama shortly after his birth, a tragic mistake that should have taken…