• old town

    Family History Miracles: How my Love for Stories Led to an Important Discovery

    I often have difficulty doing “official” family history work because it feels rather overwhelming. However, I do love reading the stories and viewing the pictures that are found on familysearch.org. One afternoon several weeks ago, I was researching the documents of a particular ancestor who lived in the early 1800’s. One document, entitled “Our Family’s Seventeen Miracles” caught my attention and I became fully entranced as I read the recorded miracles that had taken place in their family. Several of the recorded miracles happened to a family by the name of *Welazski (*name has been changed), and I include those experiences below: FAMILY MIRACLES “My aunt made sure my father told me this story about the Welazski family in Poland in hopes…

  • kiwi fruit

    Gifts And Talents And Kiwi Fruit

    Truth is, sometimes I feel like a kiwi fruit.   On the outside this small fruit appears rough, dull, ordinary.   “That’s me,” I sigh with my best Eeyore impersonation, “rough, dull, ordinary“.   Yet, shockingly, this “rough, dull, ordinary-looking” fruit is actually a powerhouse of nutrition, providing, ounce for ounce, the most nutrition value in a fruit!   According to one source, “just one serving (two medium sized kiwifruit = 1 serving) is…   An excellent source of vitamin C under FDA definitions, offering 60 milligrams per serving. A good source of dietary fiber, with 4 grams a serving, 16% of the RDA. A good source of potassium, containing more than 10 percent of the recommended dietary intake. A…

  • The Power of Social Media

    The Power Of Social Media: Connecting Families One Person At A Time

    THE POWER OF SOCIAL MEDIA   Slowly opening my iPad, I went to my Facebook account and typed in her name.   Christine. (*Name has been changed)   My 1st cousin. A cousin I have never met.   “How do you approach a cousin you’ve never met before?” I wondered.   Putting my uncertainty aside, I sent her a private message.   “Hello, Christine! We’ve never met, but I’m your 1st cousin. It would be fun to hear from you sometime. I hope you are well.”   “There,” I thought. “I did it!” It wasn’t much, but it was a start. I had finally reached out to my long, lost cousin.   With anticipation, I waited for a reply. To my great…

  • making memories camera

    Project Life

    Memory making is a big deal in our family, as it is in yours, I’m sure. Family traditions, holidays, birthdays, vacations, the time little Johnny spilled a tub of honey on the carpet and then stepped in it. You know, the memories that make you smile (and sometimes cringe.) Keeping up with the memory record keeping is a whole other story, however. Perhaps you can relate to that too. Enter Project Life—-the memory-keeping system that allows you to cultivate a good life and record it in no time flat. My kids love looking through their Project Life scrapbooks and reliving the memories we’ve made over the years. And I love that they are now so busy looking through scrapbooks that…

  • Freeing Ourselves of Barnacles The Miracle Of Forgiveness

    Freeing Ourselves Of Barnacles: The Miracle Of Forgiveness

    He was a sailor. He loved the ocean and the ships on which he sailed. And despite the rough and temperamental seas, he always managed to arrive home safely. He was my husband’s hardworking and adventurous grandfather, Benjamin O.Of all the threats to a ship, barnacles may be one of the most fascinating. In his life history, Grandpa recorded the following around 1924, “Had the ship’s barnacles scraped and bottom painted. I heard it cost $6,000 dollars.”     On her website, Dr. Jean Davidson shares a short and beautiful metaphor regarding barnacles. I hope you’ll take the time to read it. You can find it HERE. When I refuse to forgive or don’t offer complete forgiveness, my life becomes like a ship…

  • Strengthening families through storytelling photos

    Storytelling: The Return Of A Lost Art

      Isn’t it about time to bring storytelling back into our lives?   A couple months ago I watched a free webinar on the lost art of storytelling and was inspired to increase the amount of storytelling that takes place in our home. It occurred to me that I could use the storytelling tactic to increase our family’s enthusiasm for family history work, improve our public speaking skills, and practice hospitality all at the same time.   My husband and I immediately set to work telling our children stories about their ancestors. We pulled out the family histories and family photos, which had been packed safely away, and started going through them.     Who knew how engaged our five-year-old son would be…

  • Authentic life

    31 Days To An Authentic Life

    Welcome to 31 Days to an Authentic Life!   Authenticity. We crave it. We long for relationships that are authentic–genuine, real, true– but are often unsure how to go about creating them.   How does one actually LIVE an authentic life on a day-to-day basis with the people in their lives? How can one create a close, abiding relationship with God? How can we connect with family members in powerful, lasting ways? How can we be strengthened through friendships? How might we connect with neighbors and strangers in convicting ways? How can we be true to ourselves?   These questions and more will be addressed in my posts this month. I hope you’ll join me in creating a more authentic…