Monday, January 31, 2011

Tika & I Do Bottles

You might find this odd, but Tika and I take long walks and look for bottles.......... glass bottles. And (dangnabbit!!!) there are plenty of them to be found along our roads. We look for different shapes and colors but most of them are the colors you see above. And why do we do this? And what do we do with them? We make bottle sculptures! Bottle trees and bottles on stakes and anything else that creates a sun catcher. Newest idea is to stud a tall pine with bottles.... think that will work? My favorite is my Blue Bottle tree made from special wine bottles given to me by friends. (And it's been snowy here!) So now you know how Tika and I spent a sunny afternoon.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Tika Says: Do More Genealogy!

According to my calendar, Handy Man's ancestor Cornelius Berrien was born on 30 January 1735 in Newtown, Queens, New York. He died there in 1810; he married Jane Warner. Their son, Samuel, is John's ancestor.

Big deal. I know Cornelius' birth and death date, birth and death place and who he married. But how much do I know about Cornelius the man.........and his life and times? Nothing!

A quick Google search found "The Berrien Family Genealogical Website." Tika's barks in no uncertain terms told me to get to work and go learn more than just the skeleton facts on this Berrien family. And I really should, don't you think?

Point of this story really is: If you've not worked on a particular line for ages, there is a whole wide world of resources out there just waiting for you to come see. Get to work!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Tika Goes Visiting

Tika and I went visiting yesterday! We went to visit Bailey and Coco so the three doggers could have a play day while Cecily and I worked on a computer project. Yes, the photo is a little blurry but getting three very active little dogs to be still was impossible! Luckily, our computer project was not and we nearly completed a draft for an updated EWGS membership brochure.

P.S. Tika in the middle, Coco is the dark one and Bailey on the right.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Tika Remembers..... And We Research Together

Today, but 139 years ago, on 24 January 1872, Handy Man's grandfather, Charles Robert Phillips, was born in Georgia. He is one of my most-researched-but-little found ancestors. He was born in Georgia but soon his father migrated to Texas where there was money to pay pensions for Confederate soldiers. He did marry "Lillian" back in Georgia, but was she Lillian Stout? They did have Charles Alexander Phillips in 1906 in Toledo, Ohio......... Chuck always cited that, but I've never found any proof. They did have two more children, Margaret (born in "Mexico?") and James, born in Illinois. I do find Charles Robert and Lillian in the 1900 census in Payne Co, Oklahoma and in 1910 they are in Lake Co, Illinois. By the 1930 census, Lillian is long dead and the family stories kick in revealing a very "colorful" character. How could a "tent and awning salesman" with several "wives" and children not be colorful? He died in 1938 in Seattle and while he was not a Catholic, his funeral and burial (in a potters field) was conducted by the cathedral parish. So many interesting "leads" here and believe me, Tika has suggested to me 100 things to try. I know we'll only fail to find the answers if we fail to keep looking. Wish me luck..... and Tika and I both wish you luck with your tough-problem ancestors.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Tika Gets Fresh Water..... Would Our Ancestors Had Same

Tika is picky; she is a picky drinker and I'm delighted. If there are "floaties" in her water bowl, she looks up at me as if to say, "You expect me to drink that??" So I keep her water bowl shiny clean. Good for her.

Wish our ancestors had been so lucky with getting clean water. And because they could not, and had to drink contaminated water all too often, they suffered and died terribly and miserably from cholera. Cholera is an infection of the small intestine caused by a bacterium. Cholera's main symptoms are profuse diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal pain. A person afflicted with cholera "may produce around 10 litres of diarrhoeal fluid a day." (Wikipedia) That equates to almost 3 gallons........... 21 pints........... 42 cups. No wonder children died so quickly.

Our ancestors, drinking from polluted watering holes on their western treks, would contract cholera and within a day become dehydrated to the point of death. Awful, awful. And to our ken, so treatable...... if only they had known to avoid drinking this water but apparently they did not.

Aren't we lucky doggers and people these days?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Doxie Humor On A Gray Day

Did you ever notice that when you blow in a dog's face he quickly turns away annoyed. But when you take him in the car he cannot wait to stick his head out the window. (Steve Bluestone)

I have a great dog. She's half Lab and half Pit Bull. A good combination. Sure, she might bite off my leg but she'll bring it back to me. (Jimi Celeste)

Don't make the mistake of treating your dogs like humans or they'll treat you like dogs. (Martha Scott) Hummm......... don't know if Tika and I agree with that one!

Money will buy a pretty good dog but it won't buy the wag of his tail. (Josh Billings)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Tombstone: Sad, Sad, Sad

Even Tika would have shed a tear to view this sweet little tombstone. Friend Cecily and I were in the Grandview, Washington, Cemetery (where her grandparents rest) and as I wandered around, camera in hand, I spotted this little stone. To be fair, there was a Darling family in the area, but to me this was "our darling baby" lost sometime in ages past. So sad, so sad.

Question: In a cemetery is it okay, right or proper to let your dog run free?? Opinion???

Friday, January 14, 2011

Tika Bids Me Goodbye...... For Two Days

Tika is not happy that I will be gone for two days, but duty calls. Friend Cecily and I are both on the Board of the Washington State Genealogical Society and the first board meeting of 2011 will be tomorrow in Yakima. The YVGS was lucky enough to be the beneficiary of a bequest that built them a new really big library building and being in the center of our state, YVGS hosts many of our WSGS meetings. On our way there we plan to stop in Richland to visit the Tri-Cities Genealogical Society library. Oh, duty calls........ but we will have a productive time in many ways. "Big deal," sniffed Tika.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tika Learns Social Networking

Since we had/have 5 inches of snow today, Tika asked about something to read to improve her mind. Here's what we chose! Now you are asking, did I read it to her or did she read it? Well, you'll just have to imagine. But we both did learn lots! This book is a "must read" these days.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Tika "Done Me In"

Thank you Tika! Because you ran at top speed heading away from me and pulled my right arm behind me and jerked at the end of your leash, I get to have physical therapy on my arm ....... several sessions over the next few weeks. Would much rather spend that time in other ways!

Had a fabulous genealogical society meeting last Saturday. Besides honoring the service of a long-time member, we had Tony and Suzanne Bamonte come..... and they brought their books! If you are interested in the history of the eastern Washington area, and especially the history of law enforcement, click to their website: .

Thanks, Tika.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Pink Elephants..... Who Would Have Thought?

It's official; there are no more pink elephants in our neck of the woods. May I explain? When we take Tika out for her last walk before bedtime, she looks into the darkness and barks and barks and BARKS. When we ask her what she's seeing and scaring away, she says "Pink elephants!" So aren't we lucky that now there are no more pink elephants in our neighborhood. Lucky us.

Do you remember the Disney movie "Dumbo" from your childhood? Poor sweet little Dumbo, having taken a drink of water from a bucket spiked with champagne, begins to hallucinate singing and dancing "Pink Elephants on Parade." Perhaps Walt Disney got his idea from a 1913 novel by Jack London who described an alcoholic as one seeing "blue mice and pink elephants."

Is that bit of trivia worth including in my personal family history? I did love that movie.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Tika & Me Be Happy

Today was a good day, Tika says. She got leftover chicken for dinner and she politely listened as I told her about the two good deeds I'd done today (resolution, remember) and moan-and-groan that the GEDCOM of a family file (from Legacy) has a problem.......... now was it a PICNIC problem on my end or hers? (Problem In Chair Not In Computer. Like that one?) Tika says she could care less whereas I gotta figure it out.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Tika & Snow Digging

Tika sets a darn good example for me and for all of us. When we go out walking she sniffs along until she lands on some good smelling spot and then she digs......and digs and DIGS. Now watching her is darn good fun (not always clean fun; she digs in the dirt too) but since I liken everything to genealogy, I see her determination and dedication too digging and finding out what's at the bottom of that "smelly" hole as a template for how I should proceed with digging out family history. When I amble along (surfing online?) and get a "sniff" of something good, do I drop everything and go after it with all my might??? Well I darn well should and so should you? Opinions, please?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Tika Says Happy New Year

With temperatures hovering near zero (or below) our beautiful snow has been very dry and fluffy......... but Tika and her friends tried to make a snow-dog anyway. Look closely..... ever see a dachshund snow-man-dog before?

Being January 3rd (already!) it's high time for making
genealogy resolutions (so Tika tells me). I've already begun
on #1 (cleaning up, cleaning out, my office!!) but here are

#2 - Taking time every day to do something. (Thanks to
friend Cecily for this one.)

#3 - Taking time every day to learn/enjoy/participate in
blogging. (Thanks to friend Thomas MacEntee for this one.)

#4 - Get the papers/information in the To-Do tub done and entered into my Legacy program. (Thanks to my Mom for this one
as she taught me to be neat and finish projects.)

Care to share your genealogy goals or resolutions for 2011???

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Tika Greets 2011

Tika "stands" to greet the first sun and day of 2011, as I did when we walked. (Me muffled to the max; how do her paws not freeze?)

Tika's resolutions are basic (so she told me): No more ham bones and be sure to bark when something alien appears in the yard. And not to run off when Nice Lady might drop the leash.

My resolutions are basic too. Would like to shed a few, to be cheerful each and every day, to look for the sunshine each and every day, to be the best genealogy friend and EWGS president I can be, and be the best daughter, wife, mother and grandmother I can be. With God's help, I can do it!