Sunday, September 21, 2014

For the Strength of Our Youth

I have worked with some fantastic youth for the past several weeks.  They have been in and around central Ohio, most are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and they are phenomenal!

Let me tell you about yesterday.  I spent the day in Reynoldsburg, a suburb of Columbus.  The youth leaders had been planning a "Beehive Bash", and wanted to know if I would come and talk to the girls.

Sometimes I say no to things, but I rarely say no to working with young people.  They need our encouragement and trust, and need to know how valuable they are.  In turn, we need them.

The moment I got there, I was taken away into another realm.  There were about 40 girls between the ages of 12-13.  There were various "stations" where the girls would go to learn family history facts:
These four women represented ladies from the early 1900's and late 1800's.  They would tell stories to the girls, the girls would listen for clues, and then they would interview the women.

The girls loved being on the computers in the Family History Center.  Their minds and fingers are quick and sharp.

They made crafts commemorating this day.  This dog tag would eventually become a beautiful piece of jewelry.
 I was really impressed with the attentiveness of these young girls.  
 They called the girls "Superheroes".  They even gave me a cape!

 Books from the local library were on hand to inspire the girls to learn.

 They even had a cemetery set up as you walked in the door.  There were clues on several of the graves.  It's amazing what you can buy at the Dollar Store and the Halloween Store.

 Of course, you have to have food.  Mr. Kerry made a wonderful banana split.
And, it finished up with me.  I don't know how had more fun - them or me!

I especially wanted the girls to know how proud I was of them.  On a beautiful Saturday morning, they chose to do what none of their friends were doing.  They chose to learn about how to better research their own families.

And, today at Church, I nearly repeated the same presentation to the girls I see each week.  

I'm happy to be working with the young people of today.  Someday, they will be taking our places.  Someday, they will be the moms and the grandmas we talked about.

God bless the youth!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

She saved me so much time and money!

I had to really give this one some thought.

Gilbert Stephens was an ancestor of mine who fought in the Revolutionary War.  He served from Virginia, later moving his family to Morgan County, Kentucky.

Years ago, I sent for his pension file from the National Archives.  It was a large one, costing a total of $72!  The day it arrived was indeed a happy one.  And, nothing else got done in my house for several days as I read through it.

Gilbert was entitled to bounty land for his service in the Revolutionary War.  We were a country that was cash poor, but land rich.  The last years of his life was spent trying to secure the necessary proof needed for his land.

Then, he died.  Wife Nancy Osborn Stephens was left to continue on with the quest.  And, this quest went on for years.

She spent those years trying to produce the needed proof of her marriage to Gilbert.  Many, many documents are included in the pension file that attest to witnesses having known them all of their married life, and that they were indeed married.

It wasn't good enough.

Even their sons wrote that their parents were indeed married.

That wasn't good enough.

Nancy asked a man to go back to Virginia to see if anyone was alive that could remember the wedding, which took place at Thomas Leadingham's home, where she was a servant.

The man went, but died when he was there.  

One of the final pages in the pension file indicates the following:


Nancy states that after years of trying to prove she was indeed married to Gilbert Stephens, "she expects she will not be able to produce any public record of her marriage".

This absolutely touched my heart.  She was 88 years old and couldn't remember if she was married in 1796 or 1797.  Dozens of friends and relatives stated their knowledge of Gilbert and Nancy being husband and wife, including her own brother, Jesse.

But, none of it was good enough.

In the end, she actually was given the bounty land due to her and Gilbert.  



She died a very short time later.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

May I have the envelope, please?

We have a winner!


Pat Klemann Heywood, of Panguitch, Utah is the winner of a brand new Flip-Pal!

Congratulations are in order to Pat, for I know she will find this a valuable tool in preserving precious memories.


Pat has been notified, and her Flip-Pal unit will be off to her in a flash.

I would like to thank Bob and Diane from Flip-Pal for inviting me to host this giveaway.  They work for an amazing company, and it is an honor to work with them as an Ambassador for the Grandparents Community.  You may follow the blog at:  http://flip-pal.com/category/grandparents/

And, most of all, a heartfelt thanks to each of you who participated.  I loved the comments you left both on the blog and on Facebook.





Disclaimer:  The winner was chosen by Rafflecopter.  I was notified early this morning, and I had no say-so in selecting the winner.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Midnight EST will soon be here...

It's cold.

It's dark.  

It will be cold and dark for a few more months.

What can you do during these long winter month?

Here's your answer!


The winner will be announced tomorrow.

Come on!  You know you want it!!


Follow the prompts on the widget to the right, and it will guide you through the entry process.  

And, for lots of wonderful ideas on what a great product Flip-Pal is, check out the following:








Disclaimer:  Flip-Pal is sponsoring this contest, and the winner will be chosen by RaffleCopter.  I purchased my own unit several years ago, and am an Ambassador for the Grandparents Community:  http://flip-pal.com/category/grandparents/

Monday, December 16, 2013

It's almost over! Perhaps these photos will help you decide...

Tomorrow will be the final day to enter the Flip-Pal Giveaway.

Let me tell you a true story that happened in our family.  A horrible house fire swept through my father's home just a year and a half after my mother passed away.  As we later went through the ashes, we found that the only things that were saved were:

1.  Most all of the genealogy and family history records.

2.  A good many of the photo albums, but not all.

3.  His underwear.

The photos were in magnetic photo albums that were popular at the time.  We now know they are not the best way to house our precious pictures.  However, my sisters and I recently went through those albums and attempted to reconstruct what we found.

 This is a photo of my dad's brother, Charles Clemens, that was rescued from the fire in 1985.  You can see the damage from both fire and water.
 After scanning it with Flip-Pal, I was able to crop it and keep the best part visible.  I will later attempt to restore it to a better image.  This is the only photo I have of Uncle Charles.
 A scan of another one of my dad's brothers, Dewey Clemens and his wife, Edna Gilliam.  The photo was not as bad as others.
 The same photo that has been sharpened and cleaned up a bit.
My father's oldest brother, George Russell Clemens.  I have not done anything with this photo yet.  It was in bad condition even before the fire.  But, at least I have the image.
 A very tiny photo of my dad that was about the size of a quarter.  It was so little that it almost was lost.

 These last two are of my dad when he served at Pearl Harbor during WWII. I don't know that I'll make any effort to restore them, for they fine for me in this condition.  I'm just glad they were preserved.

Even though a fire destroyed only some of our precious memories 28 year years ago, others are not so lucky.  We have all seen the devastation from catastrophic events around the globe.  Our hearts have been touched as victims have searched for any memento they can find.

Please don't let the same thing happen to you.

Go ahead!  Enter!!



Follow the prompts on the widget to the right, and it will guide you through the entry process.  

And, for lots of wonderful ideas on what a great product Flip-Pal is, check out the following:








Disclaimer:  Flip-Pal is sponsoring this contest, and the winner will be chosen by RaffleCopter.  I purchased my own unit several years ago, and am an Ambassador for the Grandparents Community:  http://flip-pal.com/category/grandparents/

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Halfway there!


We are halfway through the Giveaway!!!



A few years ago, I was intrigued at the number of people watching a demonstration at a genealogy conference.  I had to know what was going on.

Though I have no memory of the name of the person demonstrating, I was astounded at what he was doing.  The crowd was pressing forward, wanting to see more.  I'm short, so I pressed forward, too!

He was operating this little device, all while talking to the crowd.  He could do it without looking at what he was doing.  He scanned photo after photo, documents, medals, and newspaper clippings.

But, the most fascinating of the demonstrations involved an older framed picture that was probably three feet long and perhaps eight inches high.  Using the "stitching" technique, he scanned segments of the photo through the glass, uploaded it onto his laptop computer, and allowed the stitching to duplicate the framed photo.

I was astounded!

I did not purchase my Flip-Pal at that time, although I wish that I had.  I continue to see different people demonstrate it at different venues.  But, I just couldn't justify buying it for myself.

Three years ago I attended a Family History Expo in Sandy, Utah.  I skipped one of the classes to to spend time in the Expo Hall.  I found the Flip-Pal booth and was delightfully given one-on-one time with the seller.  I had to make sure this was something I could do.

Needless to say, I walked out of the Expo Hall with my very own Flip-Pal.  It was a long drive from Utah to Ohio, but within moments I was scanning anything I could find in the car.

Now, I scan away on any trip we're on.  I scan mindlessly while watching television.  Just like you, I have hundreds, if not thousands of photos from a lifetime of being part of a family.

My only regret is that I had not purchased it sooner.

Come on!  Enter!  You have until Tuesday night at midnight, EST.

 A scan from my mother's journal.  She drew a picture of her first wood stove for cooking.
 A larger image of the scan.
One of the photos of my mom, done while I was just sitting on the couch watching television.



Follow the prompts on the widget to the right, and it will guide you through the entry process.  

And, for lots of wonderful ideas on what a great product Flip-Pal is, check out the following:








Disclaimer:  Flip-Pal is sponsoring this contest, and the winner will be chosen by RaffleCopter.  I purchased my own unit several years ago, and am an Ambassador for the Grandparents Community:  http://flip-pal.com/category/grandparents/

Saturday, December 14, 2013

So, why would you want a Flip-Pal?

The Flip-Pal Giveaway is underway, and many have signed up to be part of it.


So, why would you want/need a Flip-Pal?

1.  You have an aunt who has a shoebox full of obituaries and funeral cards that are on the top shelf of a closet.

2.  You ARE the aunt who has a shoebox full of obituaries and funeral cards on the top shelf of a closet.

3.  Your parents have military emblems that need to be scanned.  This can lead to some wonderful discussions.

4.  You want to decorate the family Christmas tree with some photos of your loved ones.

5.  You want to create a beautiful wall display of your ancestors.

6.  You have inherited recipes cards and church cookbooks that have some special notes written by mothers and grandmothers that you want to share.

7.  You are receiving Christmas cards that have letters and photographs in them, and you want to scan them as they come in.

8.  You have parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, and in-laws that have photos that the rest of the family would love to have copies of, but they don't want to let them out of their house to have copies made.

9.  You ARE the parent, grandparent, uncle, aunt, or in-law that has photos that the rest of the family would love to have copies of.

10.  You know that when someone passes on, the memorabilia may be thrown away, unlabeled, or just not valued.

11.  You have finished your Christmas shopping and want something for yourself.

12.  You want one because you have seen someone else with one.  You are coveting.  Just admit it.
A photo taken of another photo.
The same photo scanned using Flip-Pal.

The Giveaway runs through 17 Dec 2013 at midnight EST.

You know you want it.  Come on!!!  Enter!






Follow the prompts on the widget to the right, and it will guide you through the entry process.  

And, for lots of wonderful ideas on what a great product Flip-Pal is, check out the following:








Disclaimer:  Flip-Pal is sponsoring this contest, and the winner will be chosen by RaffleCopter.  I purchased my own unit several years ago, and am an Ambassador for the Grandparents Community:  http://flip-pal.com/category/grandparents/