A Musical Interlude: The Video

I posted Thursday night about the concert I attended at my son’s university. He’s second chair in the first violin section of the JMU Chamber Orchestra. I drove down yesterday afternoon to attend. The theme of the concert was “Mozart’s Circle.” Mozart is one of the three composers whose works are featured; the other twoContinue reading “A Musical Interlude: The Video”

The Cemetery Where Laura Played

Yesterday I posted a blog entry from ten years ago this week. Back in 2011, I took a solo road trip to Council Bluffs, Iowa, detouring along the way to visit the town of Burr Oak, Iowa, where Laura Ingalls Wilder and her family lived for more than a year. Visiting there was moving forContinue reading “The Cemetery Where Laura Played”

Pilgrimage to Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Burr Oak Home

Ten years ago, I took a solo road trip to a conference in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Along the way, I treated myself to several side trips, including one to a town I had always wanted to see: Burr Oak, Iowa. This was briefly the home of one of my favorite authors, Laura Ingalls Wilder. ThoughContinue reading “Pilgrimage to Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Burr Oak Home”

Patron Saint of Petrinis

Today is the Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi. While technically I am Catholic, I’m not at all religious, so I don’t claim that the day has deep theological meaning for me. But it does have genealogical meaning: the Petrini side of my family is from the Assisi area. So I’m calling St. Francis’sContinue reading “Patron Saint of Petrinis”

Throwback Thursday: Sicilians in the Family

I wrote last week about a breakthrough in my genealogical research. First, I found names for three more generations back in my paternal grandmother’s line. I was still reeling from that discovery, when those names yielded more names, and suddenly I knew the name of my ninth great grandfather, born in Italy in or aroundContinue reading “Throwback Thursday: Sicilians in the Family”

Genealogical Rabbit Holes

OMG. I posted last night about how stunned I was to be able to link up with some research that other amateur genealogists had posted online, allowing me to expand one branch of my family tree back another three generations. The line I was tracing is my maternal grandmother’s family. And I was thrilled lastContinue reading “Genealogical Rabbit Holes”

Throwback Thursday: Family History Research

I’ve been doing some research lately in Ancestry.com and on various other websites, and tonight I think I struck gold. I was poking around in the family of my maternal grandmother, and suddenly there were lists of names and dates. Most of this still needs to be confirmed with other sources, but I just tentativelyContinue reading “Throwback Thursday: Family History Research”

Holding 9/11 Victims in the Light

Yesterday I posted about my memories of September 11, 2001. Last night, I realized that from our house we could see the beam of blue light that has been shining up from the Pentagon in remembrance of the lives lost there that day. From a friend’s house nearby, we could not only see the towerContinue reading “Holding 9/11 Victims in the Light”

Twenty Years

I posted these memories a year ago, near the nineteenth anniversary of the attacks on September 11, 2001. It was called “Nineteen Years” then. I’m updating it for today, the twentieth anniversary of that terrible day. I was five months pregnant and in bed that morning nineteen years ago, thinking about getting up to packContinue reading “Twenty Years”

Throwback Thursday: 1936 Wedding

August 1936. In the U.S. and around the world, the Great Depression lingered on. In Britain, Edward VIII had ascended to the throne earlier that year, but his scandalous affair with divorcee Wallis Simpson would lead to his abdication before the year was out. In Berlin, the Nazis were rapidly gaining power, and Jesse OwensContinue reading “Throwback Thursday: 1936 Wedding”