Monday, August 15, 2011

The Farm

We spent the weekend at "The Farm" with my husband's brother and his family. The Farm is an estate owned by my sister-in-law's family. It's been in the family for generations. This was our second time to visit. We had a blast. It was great to see family and for Bubba to meet his Aunt and cousins and see some cows and horses. We also got to swim in the pool both days which the whole family loves to do. The only part that really sucked is that the three hour car ride took us almost six - typical sucky I-95 traffic. The pool more than made up for it in my opinion.

While we were there we talked a lot about family histories. My sister-in-law had all kinds of stories about her family. In fact, she said one side of her family has a family tree painted on the wall of a nearby golf course clubhouse (the house used to belong to family) and it goes way back. There is also a painting of one of her ancestors in the Pentagon. Pretty cool to know stories about different people in your lineage.

I've been working on my family tree on for a few years. I'm not getting too far since no one knows (or is telling) very much about certain parts of my family. In fact, past my grandparents, I'm not sure of anything. Kind of stinks.

My husband asked a good question on the way home yesterday - what makes some families keep track of relatives, stories, family ties, etc. and not others? I think part of it has to do with the ancestors themselves. It seems as if family was really important to my sister-in-law's relatives so they kept track of things like lineage and made sure to tell family stories to the next generation so they could be remembered and passed down. 

I remember my grandmother telling me stories when I was young about the family but I can't get her to write them down. Since it was 25 years ago or more, I don't really remember them. And to be honest I listened to them as bedtime stories, not as stories I might want to remember. I was young, what did I know?

I've given both of my parents and my living grandmother "My Life" type books that ask questions or have room for family stories - I did this years ago and none of them have done anything with them. Of course, other than periodic journal writing, I haven't kept very good track of my own life story. Guess I should probably start if I want to be able to remember enough to tell Bubba stories...


  1. My family story is pretty similar--a lot of stories as I was growing up that I didn't pay enough attention to. But I started capturing what I could 9 years ago and have an extensive family tree. Through Ancestry, courthouse records, library books, and even Ebony magazine, I've been able to trace some of my family back into the 1400's! Admittedly, there are obstacles in some branches of the tree, and wide open doors in others. But I keep working on it. Anyway, a hint/suggestion if you can do this--conduct an "interview" with a digital recorder. Older family will be reluctant to take time to write stuff down but may be happy to sit and talk as you record. Some tree tools allow audio history files which then becomes a bonus!

  2. My grandfather kept a very detailed history of my entire family on both sides as a hobby in his elder years. I have copies of it. I've learned amazing things!

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