24 Comments

  1. I agree. I am often struck by how fleeting life is. I love that feeling when I look at things in a new light or feel a strong sense of gratitude. I think we are happier when we are aware. Have a great weekend!

  2. Cathryn Harjung

    What a fun blog post. Yes, I can relate. Like you, I find it exciting to explore family history and “connect” and find similarities to folks I never knew. Researching our ancestors can only enrich our lives. And looking through fresh, grateful eyes at our current situation never hurt anyone. 🙂

    • Laurie Stone

      Cathryn, I find history (especially personal history) fascinating. I agree, it enriches our lives.

  3. Your post reminded me of a vivid moment I had in connecting with a past generation. My mother emigrated here from eastern Europe. When I was on a hiking trip in Prague I was sitting in a tea room where tea was served in delicate painted tea cups. There was a lace tablecloth on the table and floral wallpaper on the walls. And all of a sudden I felt a new understanding of my mother –a sense of the life she loved and left behind and, though our tastes were very different, an appreciation of the delicacy and charm of this Old World.

    • Laurie Stone

      Wow, funny how moments like that make us see the bigger picture. I love the old world charms of Europe. I can see how your Mom would miss them here.

  4. I love to make connections with my ancestors too, Laurie. However, I have questions now that I should have asked several years ago about my great grandparents. Now there’s no one left who knows all the answers to my questions.
    Loved your post.

    • Laurie Stone

      Corinne, I feel the same way. Why didn’t I ask my grandparents when they were still alive? I did hear some stories, but I wasn’t aware enough to realize how precious these stories would be later on. Thank God, my 82 year old Mom still remembers a lot.

  5. Beautiful post! Every now and then, I am taken aback by certain aspects of my life today–technology, especially–and I wonder what someone from 100 years ago would think if they were plopped down in the world today. But I never thought of my own ancestors in that scenario–it really does put it in a whole new light.

    • Laurie Stone

      Roxanne, I know, we tend to only look behind us, but ahead of us are many more generations to come. I literally get goose bumps when I think of the technology 50 or 100 years from now. It boggles the mind.

  6. Such a thoughtful post, and you’re right… They would be amazed. There was a ’70’s movie called “The Gods Must Be Crazy,” where an indigenous tribe member in Africa found an empty glass Coke bottle and couldn’t understand what it was for. Charming movie, but it makes me think your post. xoxox, B

    • Laurie Stone

      Brenda, I saw that movie and loved it. You’re right, everything is relative. Still, I can’t imagine technology 100 years from now… literally, I can’t imagine it.

  7. I love, love, love, love this piece, Laurie! I have traced mine back on one side several generations and it is so moving to think of all they endured and all we take for granted. The connection you feel to them is so real and the wonder and awe is overwhelming…and then because we’re human, we go back to our lives again! But that’s okay, we can revisit. One of my favorite quotations is Proust’s “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”

    • Laurie Stone

      Lee, It was funny, how doing this does give you new eyes. And I have to admit, its hard to imagine them as flesh and blood people, as generations from now will no doubt feel when they see pictures (and selfies) of us. There goes another shiver.

  8. It is interesting to think about, that is for sure! I just saw a picture of my Mother’s family around 1926 and no one really smiles. In the future will some relative ask why we were glasses?It is fun to speculate.

    • Laurie Stone

      Haralee, What a great question: will we have glasses in the future? I love trying to imagine, although its very hard, considering how quick technology develops.

  9. I am adopted and looking up ancestry is bittersweet for me. My birth family basically rejected me. My adoptive family is incredible but not my blood!

    • Laurie Stone

      Pia, That’s a hard situation, but you got a wonderful adoptive family and that’s a biggie. Up till a few decades ago (maybe less) many of us didn’t know our true roots. I wish you all the best.

  10. I think knowing your past definitely puts your current life into perspective. I investigated my past after a trip to China with my sister. I was lucky enough to find a website created specifically to find oversea members of my father’s “tribe”. An English speaking member sent me our family tree; scanned pages of a book dating back to the 13th century when the Mongols invaded China and my ancestors fled to where they live today.

    I would LOVE to know more about their lives. But the family tree is a book of names, that’s all.

    But we’re leaving this massive digital footprint for future generations to see. If anything, there might be too much for them to figure out what was true and what was exaggeration.

    • Laurie Stone

      Marian, I also find it gets very complicated as the family tree branches out in every direction with so many people. Your ancestry sounds fascinating. I believe learning about this can give clues as to who we are today. Goosebumps.

  11. It’s so true that our past affects our present and our future. I have an uncle ( 84) that LOVES to tell stories about his childhood. He is the youngest of 11 siblings, so he has a LOT to tell. Those stories are fascinating, about what life was like just 80 years ago. It’s amazing how much has changed, and the internet has dramatically changed life as we know it forever, sometimes in BAD ways, but also in many good ways. Makes me wonder, what will life be kike when I am 84???? ( I got 35 more years to go!) 🙂

    • Laurie Stone

      Darlene, I can’t imagine what life will be like in 20 years, at this rate of technological advance. Your uncle sounds fascinating. So nice you get to hear his stories.

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