Sunday, July 31, 2011

Happy Birthday Mom ~1936~2011~


Elizabeth Ann (Lucas) Shaw

31 July 1936 – 6 January 2011

Today, our mom would have been 75 years old…Happy Birthday Mom~
We love and miss you; Kathy, Bobby, Billy, Chris and the whole family~

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Goals and Objectives

goalsettingI’ve seen a lot of blog authors posting their goals for the week, month, year. What a fantastic idea! So, I am going to steal the idea I got from some other bloggers and post the goals we have for our family history research. One of the main reasons for this blog is to have another forum to document the research we are doing and I believe goals 101 says to write them down. Plus, if they are written down here in my blog for the whole world to see then that may help keep me accountable towards those goals.

I am going to take a little different approach as I mentioned in my Genealogy Time Management-Focus post. I have several goals in mind but most are not easy fixes and will take several different steps to reach. So, I am going to post our goals for the rest of 2011 and then each month (starting in August) I will post the objectives we want to accomplish that gets us closer to that goal.

Goals for the rest of 2011 are as follows and in no particular order:

  1. Locate birth record for William Van Capen
  2. Locate any military records for William Van Capen
  3. Visit William Van Capen’s gravesite and memorial to his unit, the 3rd Aviation Instructor Center near Issuodun, France
  4. Uncover specific locations/information of my wife’s line in Danzig, Poland and start planning a trip there for next year
  5. Locate birth record for Joseph Lucas

Those seem to be some reasonable goals for the rest of this year. I am sure we will amend them as the year progresses but for now we can use these to maintain focus on our research.  Now I have to get to work on our objectives for August which is only a couple days away Yikes!

I’m curious how others set their goals and maintain accountability to those goals – if you have ideas and suggestions or want to share how you do it please leave a comment.

Hope you enjoy our journey and please help us stay accountable to our goals, objectives, and more importantly, our ancestors/descendants for whom we do this for.

Keep diggin’ for that family, Chris

Photo by: Angie Torres

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Note Taking

notetakingI just read a post over at Elyse’s Genealogy Blog about using Microsoft OneNote and have to put a plug in for it. Along with her I have been using OneNote for classwork and am now playing with OneNote to see how best to use it for my genealogy notes. One thing that I do like about OneNote is that there are plugins for Firefox (my preferred browser) that allow me to right-click any webpage and send it right into OneNote. Makes saving information so easy. I can’t wait to read more of what Elyse says about OneNote.

Thanks for stoppin by and keep diggin for that family,


Photo by: MEDEA Malmö

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Ice Cream Sundae–Sunday

_MG_7894What can brighten up a miserable rainy day better than finding out it is Ice Cream Sundae day?

All over the world people are counting calories and skipping those all-too-delicious deserts or evening snacks. But, today is a holiday in honor of one of those great deserts and snacks so those calories do not officially count – heck, we can even say they don’t even exist today. Me and the family indulge in the sundae every now and again and we will again today since it is a holiday and we must, right?  With it being sundae day it gets me to thinking of my childhood and the part ice cream played in it.

My biggest childhood memory involving ice cream doesn’t actually involve pure ice cream but instead custard. I don’t really know the difference between the two and honestly don’t care. What I do care about is the memory of stopping at the local custard shop, Custard Time when I was growing up. We used to stop there after our baseball or soccer games. I think I would always get the vanilla cone with the red, white, and blue sprinkles. Delicious! I can almost taste it now.

Although that custard was great, I think it is the combination of events and making it a tradition to go to Custard Time after a game that makes it so memorable, even after all these years. That memory and tradition is so strong within me that I stop at Custard Time whenever I am back in the home town, which isn’t nearly enough.

Custard Time still exists in my hometown of Northville, Michigan and even has their own Facebook page which I just ‘liked’.

Thanks to Geneabloggers for mentioning that today is Ice Cream Sundae Day and taking me for a short trip down memory lane.

What are your childhood memories of Ice Cream? Leave a comment and let us all know. Now I think I’m going to make a sundae.

Thanks for reading and keep diggin’ up those memories.


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Making Memories

LegolandWe have a little saying between the wife and me and I’m sure many families say the same thing, it’s ‘making memories’. We use that for all the special things we do as a family. We want our kids to have special memories that center around our family that they will hopefully cherish for the rest of their lives.

This past week was a short family vacation centered on two days at Legoland. The kids have been waiting for this since February when we announced we would be going when dad got back from his deployment. These are the kind of ‘family time’ things that both me and the wife thought would make the list of our kids special moments, those ‘making memories’ moments. The kids love it as I am sure all kids do but it surprises me and the wife that these are not the big items in the ‘making memories’ treasure chest of our kids.

I asked my oldest who just turned 7 last month what is his favoriteOur Oldest - Tyler memory, one that makes him very happy. I figured Legoland would come spurting out from his lips without hesitation. But, to my surprise, he hesitated and then said “when you and mom pick me up from school, I really like that”. My jaw probably dropped a little because I did not expect that answer. Like I said, I expected Legoland or the birthday party at the zoo or some other big event.

That got me to thinking about my ‘making memories’ moments from my childhood. I can think of several from family gatherings to trips taken. However, there are three moments that top the charts of my past. First, is the weekends I spent at my grandparents. We never did anything really special or extraordinary. We did basic things together. My grandma taught me to fish for bluegill in Wolverine Lake. Then showed me how to scale and gut them so we could eat them for dinner that night. Me and my Dad at Grandma and Grandpa'sMy grandpa bought me a mini-motorcycle and taught me how to ride it. I could spend hours out in the yard riding that thing in circles. The second of my moments are the camping trips with my mom and dad and the camping club we belonged to. For the year or two that we belonged to that club I think we went out at least one weekend every other month or so during the camping season. My dad worked many hours and usually seven days a week so he usually was not there to get the camper to the park and set it up so my mom and I had to get it done. Mostly mom because I am sure I was not that much help because I sure don’t remember being any. But, other members of the camping club were always there to lend a hand. My dad would get there after work and finish up. It was at one of these camping trips that I decided I was too fast and my dad couldn’t catch me anymore. Boy, was I wrong and it is only now, after I have gained some years that I realize what he knew at that time, experience makes up for youth and speed.

Me and DadThere is one memory from my childhood that will always be the tops of my list for ‘making memories’. This is no vacation or big event. I mentioned that my dad worked long hours and usually seven days a week so obviously I did not get much time with him. He always took his lunch to work and had a lunch box. On his way home from work he would stop at a store and pick up a candy bar for me and put it in his lunch box. Thinking back, it is not the candy bar that is the great memory for me, it is that little act that told me that he loved me and was always thinking about me.

My eyes are now a little more open to what our kids may think are those special moments and what they will pack away in their ‘making memories’ treasure chest. It is not necessarily that extravagant and fun-filled family vacation to Legoland. It may be something as simple as picking your child up from school so they don’t have to take the bus or bringing them a treat after work.

Think back to your childhood, what are your ‘making memory’ moments? Are you writing them down so they are around longer than you? Will your kids have the same special memories?

Thanks for reading and keep diggin’ for that family.