Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thanksgiving Memories

With Thanksgiving just finished, you probably remember many Thanksgiving Days from the past. What did your family do for Thanksgiving? Did you travel to your grandparent's house? Did you stay at home and just have a family celebration? Did you invite friend's or other family members?
What was the menu like for your Thanksgiving Dinner? Did you have traditional dishes or did you have new and different food? Did you decorate the house for Thanksgiving? Was it cold and snowy or warm and sunny? Did you have any memorable travel experiences?
When I was growing up, we mostly had Thanksgiving at home with just our family. I do remember a big Thanksgiving Dinner with my grandmother and my mother's sister and her family joining us. I remember my Dad putting a board across a couple of cans to make a bench for more seating. My mother cooked several pies ahead of time. Usually Thanksgiving was cold, but it didn't normally snow. It could be snowy though. As an adult, we often traveled to have Thanksgiving with family members when we had a four day weekend.
My stepmother died just before Thanksgiving and her funeral was held a day or two before Thanksgiving. We were invited by my brother's friends for Thanksgiving Dinner. That was probably the most unusual Thanksgiving we had. We were appreciative of the friend's kindness, but it was still a rather solemn Thanksgiving.
Now work schedules of family members makes it hard to get together. We have had late evening dinners. We have had dinners on Friday instead of Thursday. Thanksgiving has had to become much more flexible. In some ways it is sad that the world has changed and people have become too busy to stop and celebrate a holiday together. The work world has become twenty-four hours a day, 7 days a week leaving less time for families to get together. Still there is much to grateful for and Thanksgiving celebrations are important even if not celebrated in the traditional way. Recording what you have done for Thanksgiving celebrations is an important part of your family history.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Writing About Your School Years

When you write about your school years, it's easy to start with the obvious. You will probably put down where you lived, what school you went to, the events you remember from school, the friends you had, what subjects you liked best, the teachers you had and so on. Make sure you include what else went on in your life. What did you do when you were not in school? How did you spend your summer vacation? What was your family like? How many brothers and sisters did you have? Were your parents working or at home? What happened when you got sick? What kind of a house did you live in? What was the town or city like that you grew up in? What world events do you remember happening?
You may not be able to remember exactly when certain things happened. What you write down doesn't have to be strictly chronological. Unless your parents have a good memory or it is written down some where, you may not be able to remember exactly when certain things happened; yet, you wouldn't want to not write down about the time you fell and broke a front tooth, just because you can't remember if it was fall or spring of the 1st or 2nd grade when it happened. It still had a significant impact on your life and should be recorded.
You will probably add frequently to this part of your life story as you recall other events that you didn't think of when you first started writing. Again writing on the computer has advantages, since you can add in the additional memories wherever you would like to.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Starting School

What age did you start school? This can be very interesting to compare when your parents started school, when you started school and when your children started school. Kindergarten didn't use to exist. Then it was for a short period of time. When I went to Kindergarten, it was for six weeks during the summer. Then Kindergarten went through the school year for half a day for my daughters.
What was the first day of school like? Were you scared or excited? Did you already have friends to attend school with or did you have to make all new friends? You may have to rely on what your parents tell you about your first day. I don't remember my first day of school. If you don't remember your first day of school, then describe a typical day of school.
Do you remember your teacher? Do you remember the other students in the class? Do you remember anything in particular that you learned? Do you remember any incidents that happened? Were there any special performances or activites that you remember? Did you have any accidents at school? Did you walk to school, get a ride from your parents or ride the school bus? What did you do for lunch? What did you do for holidays at school?
Most of us spent a good part of our childhood in school. The things that happened in school truly affect and shape our lives.

Friday, November 9, 2007

The Gratitude Dance!

Here is a wonderful video to help you feel gratitude in your life.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Gratitude

As you write about your early years, think of the things that you are grateful that happened during that time of your life. Were you grateful for your parents, your brothers and sisters, your grandparents? Were you grateful for the kind of home you lived in? Were you grateful for any pets in your home? Were you grateful for certain things that were done for you? Some things are really hard to be grateful for when you are going through them. Years later, those same things may be something you are really grateful happened, because of what you learned from the experience.
What kinds of things were other members of your family grateful for? Thinking of the things you were grateful for can give you new insights and thoughts of what to write about. Start making a gratitude list and watch your story expand with all the things you're grateful for.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Preschool Years


Most people have few preschool memories. What memories you may have from before the age of five are probably ones that made a big emotional impact in your life. One memory I have is when our dog had puppies. I picked out one for my own. I wanted to keep the puppy. My parents wanted to keep a male puppy. I had picked out a female. I remember a man coming and wanting the puppy I had chosen. He offered to pay me a quarter for the puppy. I ended up accepting the quarter although I really wanted to keep the puppy.

Some of the memories from preschool years are things you have been told about. You may or may not really be remembering the incident, but you have been told about it so many times, that you know about the incident. I don't know if I actually remember the time I went out to the chicken coop and started breaking eggs. Chickens love broken eggs. They will snatch a piece of egg shell from another chicken's mouth and run with it. I was having a great time watching the chickens. Since selling eggs was our family's income, when I was discovered I was in real trouble. I can see the chickens snatched the eggs and running in my mind, but I don't know if I actually remember the incident or if I remember my parent's telling about the incident.