Day 2 – 30 Days of Gratitude

attitudeofgratitude

For Day 2 of my 30 Days of Gratitude I’m thankful for all my ancestors before me.  As a person who has begun seriously working on my Family Tree in August while I was on vacation, I have found it interesting finding the interesting tidbits of information I didn’t know.  Like having relatives right where I live that I never knew existed (I really need to contact them too).

But in learning about people – such as how my Great Grandmother was married 3 times in 6 years (just so you know, she was married to her third husband until he passed in the 1970’s), but while searching for the information on where my Great Grandmother lived while married and single, I saw that she lived with her own mother most of the time.  While doing this I am assigning demeanors to my ancestors, finding that my Great Great Grandmother Mazie must have been compassionate, because she took in her daughter and her daughter (my grandmother) despite the failed marriages, and my Great Grandmother and her final husband lived with Mazie and her 2nd Husband, Samuel, the first year of their marriage.

On the flip side, I hear stories of my Grandfather, from snippets I remember my Grandmother told me, and now stories that my dad has told me, and I realize how what some have described as “stubborn” now has me realizing that I just don’t think he was a very nice man.  I hear that he loved me to pieces and whenever he came over it wasn’t long before he found a way to sneak into my room and wake me up as he couldn’t wait to see me, but there’s a line between being stubborn and being kind – and I just think he wasn’t kind.  Getting into a snit with your sister and never even seeing her before she passed away from cancer in my world is a horrible thing.

So I’m grateful for my ancestors – and if I’m right, I want to be a little more like Mazie and a little less Leroy (sadly, my own temperament has been compared to his in the past – where this once made me proud, now I’m not so sure).

I’m also grateful to the libraries and the many ways available to allow a girl from Northeast Ohio to be able to dig into her Family Tree as years ago information I find in a matter of minutes could have taken me weeks to obtain back in the day.  How others did it I have no idea – as I know I’m not always the most patient of people.

So today I’m happy for the past – as I wouldn’t be here otherwise – what are you grateful for?

 

 

Day 1 – 30 Days of Gratitude

30daysofgratitude

So today is November 1st.  Where has the year gone?  It seems like it just flew by and before we know it 2017 will be underway.

I am going to attempt to do 30 Days of Gratitude again this year.  Last year I started and then quickly faded.  But not this year.  This year I am going to aim for all 30 days, or at least until Thanksgiving – I guess it all depends on how badly I am struggling for things to be thankful for by the big holiday.

So today is day 1 – and I’m going to start off with one that I hardly ever do – I am thankful for me. I often forget that I can be grateful for myself.  Without me I’d have no kids, I’d have no home.  Without me I’d have nothing to be grateful for – so I’m starting with myself first.

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I’m grateful I can be a little on the paranoid side from time to time making all those around me feel a little crazy too.  I’m grateful that I have the ability to be a good cook (thanks to Miss Neal, my mother, my grandmother, and the knack of picking interesting recipes on Pinterest).  I’m grateful for my constant battle of trying to live a happier, more complete life – where I am trying to see the glass as half full as opposed to half empty. And I’m grateful for my constant attempt at trying to lose weight – despite my constant failure.

I guess I’m grateful that despite not being a perfect individual I know I’m a work in progress.  Constantly trying to improve in areas that need it and knowing that if I don’t I’ll be okay.

So day 1 is in the books – let’s see what I’ll be grateful for tomorrow.  What are you grateful for?

Getting Crafty

Evening Peeps!

The temperatures here in Northeast Ohio are finally getting cooler and it has given me the opportunity to start picking up in my attic a bit so I can once again scrapbook.  I began this hobby a handful of years ago when I went to a crop at my Aunt Barb’s house.  I had never done any sort of scrapbooking before but I went to her house with a kit my mother had purchased for me a few years before, and there my creativity sprung to life and I was hooked.

Until about 2 years ago when life seemed to take over and I just stopped.  Sadly it also coincided with when my mother purchased herself a spiffier Silhouette cutting tool and gave me her old one.  This was bad.  My mother has been unhappy that I haven’t jumped at the chance to use the machine.  The few times I have tried it’s been a disaster. But as with everything else in life, I have a Pinterest board I’ve started that will hopefully teach me the basics and allow me to use the Silhouette along with my other scrapbooking tools.

I’m still quite interested in working on my Family Tree.  Here I discovered I had relatives living right here in town that I had never ever met.  When I discovered this last week I couldn’t wait to get to my parents house the next morning (I take the kids over there in the morning and hang out until it’s time to take my son to school) and tell my dad that I had found his cousin.  I was like bursting.

And then he shocked me.  “Yes, I knew Viola lived here.  I bumped into her when I was doing an inspection in the mid-90’s, she was an executive secretary.”

Really?  The only relatives I knew of on my dad’s side of the family were in Johnstown, PA and Flagstaff, AZ.  He went on to clear up some of the mystery surrounding his Aunt.  Like my Great-Great Grandmother Mazie on my mother’s side of the family, my dad’s Aunt Genevieve seemed to elude me on his side.  I saw where she got married just day’s before my Great-Grandfather passed away (he worked in the mines and he was crushed), moved to Akron, had 2 girls, her first husband passed, I knew from her mother’s obituary she had re-married, and that she lived in Akron until her death in 1964 at the age of 54.  But I couldn’t find why she died so young.

When I discovered her daughter living so near, I was ecstatic thinking they could supply these answers.  And maybe they will supply photos so I can find out what Genevieve looked like (so curious as my Grandmother always spoke so fondly of her).  But here she passed from cancer. I am fairly certain my dad didn’t know what type of cancer, just that she had gotten sick a few months after she fell out of favor with my Grandfather, and he was very stubborn and he refused to speak to her.  They were close in age (she was born in 1910, he in 1911) and he apparently never went and saw her while she was sick.  My dad, who was in the Navy, took my Grandma to see her when he was on leave, and that was the last time my Grandma had the opportunity to see Genevieve.

As excited as I get learning about my distant family, it’s amazing how happy I am one minute about a find and how sad I can be the next when I find out more background information.

Tomorrow I’m taking a class at the library about the basics of working on a Family Tree, just in case there is some major thing I should be doing that I’m not.  Then my husband is planning on spending the afternoon at his Aunt’s and I may take my time and utilize some of the software that the library offers free of charge.  One is Ancestry Library Edition – as long as you are in the library it’s free to use.  I love it as it gets me what I need without having to spend a monthly fee!  And it’s nice for me as our local library is just about 9 blocks away so I drive down after dinner and try to find the information I need as Ancestry has access to some of the information that it’s a little vaguer when using the free FamilySearch.org.  I like using it though, as my cousin who does live in Flagstaff is a member of the Latter Day Saints so I hope that eventually I’ll find more information because she has worked on the family tree in the past herself!

So I will try to be a better blogger.  I often have thought about what I wanted to write – but then my children get on my computer and by the time they go to bed, I head their myself shortly afterwards because I’m so exhausted from waking up every day at 5:30 in the morning.

Wishing everyone a wonderful evening!

 

Rough Weekend

Yesterday is a particularly hard day for me.  It’s my Grandma’s birthday and normally it would be a marvelous day but these days it just symbolizes how much I miss her.

You see, my Grandma passed away what will be 9 years ago near the end of May.  And it’s odd how every time I think of her passing, I still cry.  Hard.  Almost as if it just happened yesterday.  I miss my Grandma so very much.  I could talk to her about just about everything and I think I did.  And the best part?  She didn’t judge me.  She accepted me for who I was, the choices I was trying to make in life, and just hoped that those choices would make me happy.

I also cry for my children who never got to know the awesome woman who would have been their great grandmother.  It’s funny, Grandma never spent gobs and gobs of money on me (though back in my junior year of high school I got the funny idea in my head that I wanted to go on the school trip to London, England.  I asked my parents if I could go, they looked at me shocked and said no.  So I presented the idea to my Grandma, she happened to have a visitor staying with her for a few days when I asked and she convinced my Grandma to say yes. But that was the BIGGEST gift I ever got from her.  Otherwise it was $10 at Christmas which normally went towards music or movies for me to add to my vast collection), she was just “there”.

My dad was an only child so if we ever ventured somewhere else for a holiday, Grandma went with us.  If we went to any family function on my mom’s side of the family, Grandma went with us.  She spent the night on Christmas Eve and was always a part of the Christmas morning festivities.  We went to her house for Thanksgiving and Easter.  She always had dinner for my parent’s birthdays and my mom did mine and my sisters, and Grandma was always there.

But no more.  And the part the makes me even more upset than the fact that I am lost without her, is that I know how much she would have LOVED my kids.  She would have loved how boy child (who was 6 months old when she passed) loves to sit on laps and get his back scratched (she was so awesome to sit there and scratch my back for what seemed like forever) and she would have been pleased to no end how girl child is a girly girl at heart (even if dresses get eye rolls these days) but her favorite color is pink (just like me, just like my Grandma).

I don’t know if my Grandma ever knew that I would still be in this much grief over her no longer being there.  Grandma would have been 102 years old.  She was no spring chicken when she passed. Most of her friends were gone and I know she was lonely.  But at least now, as I know she looks out for me, she realizes just how much this girl loves her.

Happy New Year!

As the first day of 2016 is coming to a close, I have chosen to have a few goals for the new year in order to be a better me.

2016Goals

  1. Better Budgeting.  This has been a challenge for me most of my adult life – and presently with 2 car payments again, life has become a little tight when it comes to spending money.  So I am trying to be a better “budgeter” and live a life more frugally.  Wish me luck.
  2. Healthy Eating.  Last year I joined the local gym and found a love of water fitness.  Trouble was I didn’t eat healthy.  I could tell I lost inches but the scale told me I didn’t lose weight.  So this year my goal is to eat healthier with the results being shown on the bathroom scale.  Wish me even greater luck.
  3. Be Creative.  I use to go into my attic every Friday night and do a challenge that this scrapbooking website I followed provided.  The website no longer exists and that pretty much ended my scrapbooking on a regular basis.  Since then my mother gave me her machine she doesn’t have a need for anymore as she has a much spiffier one, and I have never even gotten the hang of using it because I just haven’t scrapbooked.  But I want that to change.

So those are my big 3 goals.  Most of these will be spelled out here on my website… I figured I could share healthy recipes I find to be good and tasty (or possibly not so good) with all of you and give you insights on budgeting ideas I find that work that maybe will work for you too. And who doesn’t love to be crafty???

Wishing all of you have a happy, healthy and prosperous 2016!