|Courtesy of http://books.google.com|
There is a lot of negative buzz in the genealogical community lately about people overselling themselves, and I certainly don't want to come across that way because in reality I don't think anything I'm doing is all that spectacular. I myself am happy with it, but I'm not out to impress anyone. Then again, it seems kind of dumb that you can read my blog and have no idea what I'm doing. I always say that if you carry modesty too far it becomes an egotistical thing. A person who purposefully does not share anything about him/herself can seem closed-off, and for what purpose?
|Courtesy of http://www.networkoffood.com/pies|
Being a wife and mother is my favorite thing in the whole world. With two kids in college and one in high school the responsibilities have eased up over the years, but I always put family first.* Home is where I relax, feel centered and can gaze lovingly at my sons and husband when not yelling at them about socks in the middle of the room or toilet seats in the wrong position. My boys are what sustain me. And my friends brighten my days and I am blessed to have so many that I love.
I work for the American History Company, under contract with the US Army, and have posted about this before. This takes up the bulk of my working time. It is extremely rewarding and my co-workers are the best! I wake up in the morning and start thinking about the cases I'm working on and next thing you know I'm at the computer. Whoosh! Not bad for someone who has trouble getting started in the morning. I also take on various genealogical research projects, most of which are Massachusetts immigration/emigration jobs.
It may be voluntary for some people, but I feel obliged to give back to a very generous and nurturing genealogical community that welcomed me when I was a n00Bish genealogist. I count myself among the most fortunate people on the planet, having a big warm house, the aforementioned well beloved family, a job I adore, fuzzy cat, dear friends, and several ongoing knitting projects beckoning. Most people on this earth don't know where their next meal is coming from. I never forget about those people. Millions of them, all over the place, suffering in ways I can't even imagine. Is it guilt that makes me volunteer then? Or is it a way to return some of my good fortune to the universe? I don't know. I just know I feel compelled to give my time in some way that benefits others.
Lest I not neglect the New England Chapter of APG, I should mention that I am currently in charge of publicity for them. I should not be doing this, don't do it well, and am looking for someone else to take it over. Anyone?
I reluctantly accept offers to speak, and have done so a few times in the past few months. I've been a guest on GeneaBloggers Radio on Veteran's Day talking about my military research, and on FGS Radio-MySociety on January 7th, about transitioning new boards with grace and aplomb. I hate listening to myself since it appears that the only word I've ever fully mastered was "ahhh," but I also like to push myself to do things that make me feel uncomfortable, and that definitely qualifies. I also gave what might have been a fine PowerPoint presentation to the Shrewsbury Women's Club, but the projector experienced technical difficulties, so I ended up just talking and gesticulating grandly for a very bored audience! Remind me to tell you about the lady who was stalked by a genealogist that wanted to harvest one of her kidneys.
I've had a couple of articles printed about me: one in the Worcester Telegram and Gazette and the other in the APG Quarterly, but as for publishing something myself, I still haven't managed it. I've got a little piece I'm going to submit to the Massachusetts Society of Genealogists 2012 Writing Competition that I hope will get published, even if it doesn't win. Some day I'm hoping to actually write up my own family instead of only shoving things into folders and updating the genealogy database. Well, there is this blog, of course. I guess that counts as a publication.
|Transferware Collectors Club Seminar|
Baltimore, MD, October 2011
Lest I give the impression that I never have fun, I should mention that I belong to a very good community chorus. I also adore knitting, being particularly excited about the colors and textures of the yarn, not so much about the finished garment. I try to do things that are good for me, so I have an appointment to walk with a friend every Mon-Weds/Fri, and go to the gym on Tues/Thurs/Sat. I enjoy kayaking immensely. And so I can play dress-up without bankrupting the household I also sell Mary Kay products. I play word games on my iPhone, do crossword puzzles, love to travel, and am intending to create scrapbooks for all three sons one fine day (before they have kids of their own). I also collect blue and white Staffordshire pottery and go to a yearly Transferware Collectors Club conference with my dear sister. Part or all of the family goes on an annual week-long camping trip in New Hampshire where we meet up with old friends and enjoy the simple life. I love to take family vacations in exotic locations. See? I have fun!
|Re-Dedication of the Col. Timothy Bigelow Monument|
Worcester Common, Massachusetts, May, 2008
When you have this much on your plate, you have to constantly try and trim it down. You end up drilling down to the essence of everything you do. If you aren't careful it can be to the detriment of relationships and productivity. You notice the first subheading I listed was Love. You could take all of the other subheadings combined and they wouldn't equal that one. Love is the meaning of life. If anything were to threaten that, I would readily eliminate something else to compensate. I'm so lucky to also love my work, and those that I work with. I'm one lucky lady, that's for sure.
Do you think this post is boastful, arrogant or publicity-based? Does it seem self-serving? I'm curious what people think about this one because it is different from my others. Let me know your thoughts!
* Except the time I went cross-country skiing with Jude and left 12-year old Nathan at home sleeping feverishly. God forgive me!
|With my boys at the top of Mt. Washington, during a camping trip in 2003.|