It has been a good few years, since I first had the desire to compile and somehow share the incredible people that I have met throughout life and how they inspire me to live the way I live. I could just never quite wrap my mind around the most effective way to do it. Sure, I went through a few options in my mind but none of them seemed like the most interesting way to capture others attention and lets be honest, the option of a blog? Well, it must be obvious to anyone that the blogging world is nearly over saturated with creative and "willing to share" people with the best and most innovative ideas that we all love. Hello Pinterest! I am right there with the next person getting inspired by Pinterest daily, to which I thank those over zealous and most creative people for sharing from the bottom of my heart. Seriously!… But somehow I just couldn't anticipate that another blog, Especially one that does't boast tasty recipes or the latest trends, would be fascinating to anyone. So, I got real and asked myself who is my target audience? (I know, hilarious that I assumed there would be an audience) and I'm going to venture to say that it was almost immediately that the answer was a resounding: your posterity! I want my boys to know who I am, and why, and plant in them the seeds to look for the good in others. To know that God answers our prayers and molds us through others and we in turn have the power to do the same. So of course a blog is in fact the best way that I know of to write your own personal story and have it made into a book.
I believe strongly in the connection between the human family and specifically between past and future generations. I have never been much into the data collecting of my genealogy, (despite the fact that I worked at Myfamily.com for nearly a year during college), I have however, always loved to hear the stories told to me by Grandma Elsie and Grandma Eileen. I would listen in amazement that they could actually recall all of those facts and stories, some passed down through generations. One time, while in college, I sat down with Grandma Eileen and gave her an interview of sorts as I typed as fast as I could go, the answers she gave. Speaking of Grandma Eileen, it has been almost 3 years since she passed and I have to say that I think I am just beginning to mourn her death. It happened so unexpectedly, and with all the attention on Grandpa Bill and his rapid decline in health, her passing almost seemed like a cruel joke. I didn't know how to get myself to believe that it was truly real.
The only way that I know I am starting to accept that she has literally passed to the other side, is that lately as I sit to play the piano, and plunk my way through the Hymns that Scott has assigned me, I think of Her. I think of her love of music, I think of the story I heard time and time again, of her father who was also very musical buying her a piano as a girl, which was no small feat in those days. I think of the fact that she was self taught, which is mind boggling to me, and then taught others for decades. She used her talent to give a lifetime worth of service in the church playing the piano. So while I practice, as of lately, it is her example that motivates me to develop and grow. And I literally feel her presence with me and her encouragement as I take on this challenge at such a busy time in my life.
Picture taken of us in 2007 at my baby shower when I was pregnant with Ty.
Having all of these thoughts lately and following my heart to start "my book", I was thrilled to learn today in church about the stories of Pioneers and how we are all Pioneers in some shape of form. In fact a beautiful lady raised her hand right before the lesson was ending to make the comment that she had once heard, "if you ever write a book, let it be the book of your life." Well there ya go!
One lady was heavy advocating the family search section of LDS.org during the lesson. I became really excited about the idea of showing this to my boys and more particularly about finding out exactly what countries my ancestors came from since I LOOOVVEE to travel and have been wanting for sometime to go to several European countries. Ty and I searched and so far found that we had Ireland, England, Scotland, Denmark and Germany in our family line. We even have an ancestor who immigrated to Canada first before going to the U.S. It was fun to be about to show Ty the pictures that were on the site, entered by others in the family line. On one particular ancestor it was noted that she was known for her blond hair and blue eyes. I turned to Ty and said, "that's where we get it!" He quickly put that to rest by replying, "no mom your hair is black, you just make it blond." Hummmm, well it was once blond, smarty pants. Here are some of the pictures I found
Charles E. Peterson middle back row, is my Great Great Grandfather married to Barbara Ann for whom I am named after. She was an amazing hard working woman, who raised my Grandpa Bill after his mother died while he was a young boy.
Jane Johnston Black is one of my more famous (in the LDS Church) relatives, as she was a midwife who delivered many babies on the trek as well as took care of John Taylor and dressed his wounds following the martyrdom of Joseph and Hyrum Smith.
There is simply an empowerment that comes, when you learn the legacies of those that came before you and consider the legacy that you want to leave behind to those that follow.
If that doesn't motivate you to live a full life, I can't imagine what could.