The 1st step to doing Genealogy is keeping a record of your own life, AKA, writing a JOURNAL. It's really not hard, you can do it, and you should do it. Maybe your journal is your scrapbook, or your blog, or a notebook of impressions, or a daily compilation of what you've eaten...:). What's important, though, is that you do SOMETHING. You never know what might be most valuable to your family at any given time--your thoughts, your feelings, your struggles, your successes, your walk with God--what may surprise you the most is the value these experiences actually have for YOU. What? Your personal journal can be most beneficial for personal use? Crazy, I know. But, there have been lessons I've learned & forgotten, testimony building experiences I needed to remember, and good times to laugh at that I've re-read in my own personal journals that have helped me at later dates.
Many years ago, President Kimball said that, "...those who keep a personal journal are more likely to keep the Lord in remembrance in their daily lives." I have pondered this statement, and have realized that many of my faith building moments (when written down) have helped to build my faith back up again later. Sometimes writing down experiences helps you see God's hand in your life that day.
At any rate, last month my husband took the older 2 boys on a father & son camp-out, and so I took a mini-trip also, to visit my Grandma Carlene. We typed up a life-sketch of her mother, Ella Mae, and her father, John Leo. Grandma can't see well enough to type anymore, so all the editing is up to me. She tells me the stories and I type them up as she speaks. It was fun. We wrote up about 15 pages worth of stories. I learned a lot. I laughed. I cried. Mostly I was amazed at my ancestor's work ethic--an art that has all but died in our modern society (now I know how my mom turned into a work-a-holic, she comes from a long line of them). I wanted to keep going & make Grandma tell me her life sketch, and Grandpa Zane's, but she said, "That's enough for today." And then she took us out to see the shop she'd worked on, and to see Wayne's new horse. We enjoyed some hearty chit-chats with cousins, too. I had to laugh--I think I was wearing Grandma out a little to make her tell me so many stories (even if it was her idea). But it's okay that we didn't finish everything. Now I just have another excuse to go visit her again.
Leaving to the Camp out!
(Emmett puked on the way up from car-sickness. Poor Mitch. I will confess it made me smirk just a smidgin' when he called me, but I'm so proud of the boys for surviving without me to clean up the mess.)
Emmett riding Clara (my cousin Wayne's horse)
Tyson riding Clara.
Miles' miserable 5 seconds on a horse.
Emmett feeding Clara
Tyson feeding Clara (don't tell anyone it was a marshmallow peep)
Grandma rocking on her porch as she watched us drive away. Her face just makes me happy, and so does the fact that her feet don't touch the ground in that rocker. She's so short. I love her laugh, and I have grown to ADORE her mountain dialect with a little extra dose of the words "them" and "was". I never want her to talk any other way. It was so nice to have Grandma dote on us all weekend. We had the best homemade meals, and pure attention from a woman I would define to be "the salt of the earth". Someday I hope I can grow up to be more like her.