Several years ago my youngest daughter gave me a genealogy program for Christmas. It was her plan that we would work on our family tree together. I started fooling around with the program myself and immediately got hooked on tracing my ancestors. Unfortunately, my daughter wound up not working on it with me. She had just graduated from college and was getting settled in her career.
After a few years I found that the program she had given me was outdated. It was then that I transferred all of the research I had done to Ancestry. After my daughter married she and her husband joined me in working on our heritage.
There isn’t much more that excites me than tracing my ancestors across Europe. I have gotten back to the eleventh century in England on my father’s side. I find that so exciting. On my mother’s side, I have hit two brick walls one in Germany the other in Ireland. I dream about traveling to those places one day to find my ancestors there.
If you have never tried to trace your ancestors, I highly recommend it. You might be surprised at who you are related to.
What is the most famous landmark or building you have ever seen?
I am from the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area so I have been to many famous landmarks. Independence Hall which houses the Liberty Bell. The Pennsylvania Hospital which is the first hospital in our country and it has a great museum right in the hospital. I have also been to Penn Manor, the summer home of William Penn. It is located very close to where I lived in Bucks County. I have also visited Valley Forge, Gettysburg and Washington’s Crossing which are all historical parks from the Revolutionary and Civil Wars. I was at the National Cemetery and the Arizona Memorial in Hawaii when my youngest daughter was in her high school band and invited to perform in the King Kamehameha Parade. That was a wonderful trip. Hawaii is really beautiful. I love to visit places of historical interest.
Do you like long vacation or lots of mini-vacations?
I like to do both. I went on a cruise once and we visited seven islands in the Caribbean. That was really cool. It was like taking several trips in one. I was amazed how beautiful the Atlantic Ocean is where it meets the Caribbean. Up till that point I had only seen the Atlantic Ocean at the Jersey shore. Believe me, there is no comparison.
What is your favorite National or State Park?
I think Yellowstone National Park is my favorite park. I have very fond memories of going there when I was a child. But in my teens I spent many hours in Washington Crossing State Park both in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
What is your fantasy vacation?
My fantasy vacation is to travel to Europe. I so want to see Rome and the Vatican. I understand that the art there is just phenomenal. Ireland is my second choice then Germany. Mostly so I can trace my family ancestors.
What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?
I am grateful that my dear friend is healing and getting stronger and I look forward to being able to visit my son and his family in Miami soon.
If you live in the United States you are more than likely celebrating Memorial Day. Today we remember those who have served our country to preserve our freedom. It also signifies the beginning of summer. There are parades, picnics and in Miami Beach this weekend there is an air show.
My son lives in South Beach right on the beach. He called me yesterday to tell me about the air show going on right along the beach. While we were on the phone, I heard a loud boom. It sounded like a bomb had been detonated. Gary told me that a stealth bomber had just passed by his building and he was standing on his balcony watching the show.
I was sorry I was not there to see those planes in action. He went on to tell me that there were numerous boats anchored right off shore to watch the show. I was concerned that my granddaughter, who is only fifteen months old would be frightened by the loud noise. Thankfully she was with her mommy at a birthday party away from the beach.
I really think it would be cool to take a ride in one of those stealth bombers. It would certainly be the ultimate amusement park ride, don’t you think?
Happy Memorial Day and thank you to those who have served.
Of all the physical characteristics we humans have our smile is the one which shows our inner self the most. It radiates our warmth, our happiness and our determination to achieve what makes our hearts soar. It shows our fellow man our acceptance, our sense of humor and our joy.
I cannot imagine what our world would be without our leading with a smile. Even in sadness, our smile pushes through as we see hope through that sadness. That’s what our smiles are mostly, an outward sign of hope. Hope in the future. Hope in our indomitable humanity. Hope in our faith of what is to come.
This past week I have been evaluating self-acceptance. After the first two weeks of the 2017 Kindness Challenge, I have a better perspective of who I am and how I feel about it. I have always tried to be what my mom raised me to be. A good wife, mother, nurse and the list goes on and on. However, I have to admit that what my idea of each of these things is quite different from what other’s ideas are. My husband, for example, began our marriage comparing what I did with what his mother did. Because of my basic personality, I rejected this immediately. But if I am really honest I did feel as if I was not what he expected and felt badly about it.
There are so many aspects of my life that I felt that I didn’t measure up and disappointed my parents, husband, children, co-workers, etc. I don’t think I ever thought much about it before this challenge. I have come to the realization that I probably wouldn’t have had an ulcer if I had. I guess that says a lot huh?
I have decided to actively let go of all of those guilty feelings about not measuring up to what everyone else thinks I should be. I will accept my looks, my weight, my talent, my work ethic, my parenting style, and everything else that makes me who I am one day at a time and one issue at a time.
I am a work in progress. The operative word being progress. I feel as long as I am making progress I will eventually get there.