Social Media is Motivating and
Thought ProvokingHere is what my friend posted on my time line by a friend from Illinois: “I have been watching the weather and it seems your area is very HOT! I sure hope you are staying "inside" with the A/C on full blast. We have been hot too and I stay in my lower level of our raised ranch house where it is cool because I don't have air!”
My response: ”Yes, I'm staying inside. My "A/C" is window air conditioners... so I stay in my bedroom, mostly, keeping the other rooms warm but not 114 like Sunday, or 112 yesterday. It's supposed to be only 108 today! Won't go below 105/6 the rest of the week. When I was mobile, I'd go from air conditioned house to air conditioned car to air conditioned store, etc. So it never bothered me much. Now it takes too much time getting from house to car into a store and I melt. Getting old ain't for sissies!"
My Illinois friend said: “ I hope you are alright! We have had 90's with no A/C and I think my dogs suffer more than me. I have a pool exercise class 3 times a week and that is very refreshing. My house is surrounded with big oak trees so always a breeze outside. Having a fence installed across part of the front to keep Jethro from getting on the road, about 230 feet, with a nice gate. Then "we" can all be outside when I want to do gardening.....Molly loves to lay in the green grass. Think of you often my friend!"
What to Do When it’s Deadly HotIt doesn’t matter whether it is 108 or 114 degrees temperature where I live or not. These six degrees are still deadly hot. I am not going outside. Keeping my house cool is very difficult. So what do I do when my internet connection, doesn’t function well? I watch Netflix…. Nope, can’t even do that without a wi-fi connection. Shoot. After a week of this imprisonment, I’ve decided that there IS one thing I can do.
Go through all my paper files and documents and start checking to see if they are online in FamilySearch.org Family Tree. If I find original stories or documents, not there, I am scanning them and will put them into the system. My own memory is getting worse, so reviewing notes that I took while interviewing people back in 1969 when I first began researching, is revealing more accurate versions of memories than I had misremembered. Guess I’d better get busy.
Picking a SurnameWhere to begin? I’ve always assumed that my children and grandchildren would absolutely love to have what I’ve accumulated over the years. WRONG! My daughter, who is adopted, simply can’t understand why people save objects that have only sentimental value. Her husband does, however and so does her son who is 9 years old and starting to make his own memories in Scouting. His mother does recognize that others have this need to keep “things” and agrees to ask permission to throw away stuff, before taking action. At age 29 she can’t imagine going through all of my “stuff” when I die. So to make things easier on her I am taking action
My First Choice in Surnames Goes AwryI’d gone to my father’s Surname, Eckles, first and posted on Father’s Day, in Face Book, that I was going through all my years of research notes, etc. in order to pass the torch or baton, so to speak, to a younger generation. And the response that I got was startling. I’d already give the tapes of my interviews with my dad (taped in the early 1980s) to my half-sister, C. She didn’t want to transcribe them, but did, and they sit languishing in her closet while she travels the world. Her younger brother J, a financial type guy, responded to my post:
“hi Bev! Hope you are well. Please don't add my name to anything to do with pictures of our Dad. I have very, very, bad memories of him- he was an abusive, bigoted, alcoholic. I spent years "unlearning" the garbage he taught me, so I would rather not see pictures of him nor have my name anywhere close to his. Thanks, J“
My response: “Oh, my, so sorry. That was kind of my impression of him, too, but no personal knowledge. I promise to not add you name again. I truly understand. He damaged C, too. I always blamed my poor self-image on him, but over the years have realized my memories were a bit off. So am on the forgiveness path; but I'm 72 so it's taken me a looooong time. Love that you're my "brother" even though your mom kept emphasizing that I was no relation. I've always admired you, so I guess you're doing something right. Keep up the good work.”
His response: “Thnx. I get the forgiveness thing as well. But the fact remains some people have no business being around children, he was one of them. He is not someone I am proud to call my father, thus, the preference to avoid the association.”
My final post: “I was lucky that I got him early before he let alcohol take over. He was starting to do that dinner-table-drinking thing when I lived with them in 1961 for six months my first year at Junior College. So okay he's no longer a topic... now... Let's think positive thoughts. Have a wonderful Father's Day.”
This is a Classic Genealogical Conundrum
Negative things want to be forgotten by people. When there’s a lot of that family drama, no one wants anything to do with it. Stories are buried and no one learns from the mistakes of their elders, and then seem to repeat or make the same type of mistakes over and over again. Call it cellular memory or cussed orneriness. Somehow, I missed that gene. I don’t care about all of that. I love the stories, love the research and putting together the pieces of my family puzzle.
Seeing the Whole Picture from an Eternal Perspective
Christian’s believe that through Christ’s atonement all who accept Him as their Savior will be forgiven. Golly, we all make mistakes. Some of us make bigger boo boos than others. Mormon’s believe that everyone who has ever been born on this earth will have the opportunity to accept or reject Christ. Of course, millions have died without ever even hearing His name, much less His Good News! That is why we research our own families and perform vicariously for them the ordinances, including baptism, for those who have died. We are responsible for our own family, no one else’s. God knows where to send us and into what family he wants us born. He knew us before and knew which one of us would actually do this vicarious work, if we had a choice. Guess He knew me. I don’t judge my ancestors, and when they are particularly naughty, I envision them as a seven year old child, without the stains of sin. Hope Heavenly Father will look at me the same way when I see Him again.