Monday, January 27, 2014

Tika & Roots

Tika and I were out in the sunshine last summer when we spotted this Ponderosa Pine tree. It was growing on a fairly steep sandy bank and only those tangled, deeply embedded roots, kept the tree from falling down the hill.

Tika and I had a nice discussion about roots and not the Ponderosa kind. Our roots are our forebears, our ancestors, those who have gone before us in time. The sometimes tangled lives they led have become the foundation which holds us up straight and tall in the sunshine of today. The deeper into the earth the roots reach, the stronger the tree.

The strength of our personal roots are the stories of our ancestors. Just to know the vital statistics of their lives is not very interesting. But to learn how they learned to overcome the big rocks, the lack of water, and the ever present danger of falling down the hill, as with a Ponderosa, will make us strong too.

Tika listened for a while and then dozed off in the sunshine. She only knows that she is from Idaho; her doxie roots are shallow.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Tika & Maps & History

Tika does watch TV. She prefers dog shows (wolves, coyotes, dogs) or cat shows (cougars, cheetahs, cats) but most anything that moves catches her attention. A friend sent me this link and while I held Tika on my lap and we watched this moving-map-video, the was, alas!, not very interested. But I surely was! So I thought to share this link-website-opportunity to learn with you. Enjoy! And share with us what new tidbits of history and/or geography that you learned, please? 

Moving Map Of The Country ( UNIQUE HISTORY LESSON! )

Probably the best capsule of the history of our country ever put together, free! (:) It's fascinating to watch the evolution of growth from the 13 colonies up to the present day -- with dates, wars, purchases, etc. all included. As much as you may know about American history, I guarantee you'll learn something from this short video clip. Best history lesson you'll have in a long time. 

Click on the link below; when it opens, do not click GO at the bottom, but rather click on PLAY at the top. 

Monday, January 13, 2014

Tika &

Tika asked me the other day, "Does everybody know about"  (I've told you before what a smart little dogger she is.) "Most genealogists do," I assured her. "Let's tell them what we've learned about doing research on Ancestry," she eagerly told me. "Great idea!" I replied.

The first thing I might share with you about doing research on is that as you look at the hints (the waving leaves) for a person, and then evaluate the information and perhaps add that person to your tree, more hints come!

The next thing I recommend is to go through all the "wavy leaf" hints and take the time to study what you will or will not add to your tree. Don't swallow them all "hook, line and sinker." 

The last thing I realized is that found references that I had not yet thought to look for.... or that new information brought to light. 

Paying attention to detail, research on can be a delightful "finding" experience.

"Oh, by the way," Tika spoke up. "Don't leave me out in the snow too long!!"

Monday, January 6, 2014

Tika & Birds

Tika is ever on guard against birds. She watched The Birds movie with me once and has had a personal vendetta against birds ever since. She sits with us in the living room watching out the window for whatever might be flying by or flying around. And when a big Southwest or Delta "bird" comes by in a landing pattern, she launches immediately into a barking rage. Good dog, Tika. :-)

Ever thought about what birds might have been in your ancestor's yard? For instance, my Michigan and Illinois ancestors enjoyed Bluejays and Cardinals whereas we here in Washington state have neither. But we have Magpies and they don't! Neither of us have Road Runners that live in the southwest.

Read a neat story in Readers Digest once about when they cleaned out great-grandma's house somewhere in the flat plains of the midwest, they found a very dried-up little bird carefully wrapped in tissue. Of course they marveled but some reading of Great-Grandma's letters (lucky folks) showed that moving to the midwestern prairies was hard on Grandma and the thing she missed terribly were the songbirds. So somewhere along the line she got one to keep in a cage and when it died, could not bear to bury it.

Birds in our environment are powerful to us in many ways. Always has been so and always will be. And Tika is always on the lookout for them!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Tika & Christmas Letters

When Tika gets snapped onto her rope out in the yard, it's a snowy yard at this time of year. But snow or not, doggers must go outside even for short bursts. Few days ago when I let her back in, Tika came bounding to me with snowy paws and a cold nose and announced that she had something important for her blog this week. I was all ears.

"You know those sometimes-boring Christmas letters that family members often send to one another?? Well, aren't they a chronicle of what's happened over the past year to that family?" Tika asked with her big brown eyes.  I had to agree; those boastings and postings that make up the family Christmas letter are indeed a family history record for the year.

"They should be kept as a family history source document," Tika said with emphasis. And I couldn't agree more. I did not send out a family epistle this year but I did receive several.............. I shall think twice about what I really should be doing with them.

What about you?? What do you do with those family Christmas newsletters???