Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories - Day 22 - Christmas and Deceased Relatives

From Geneabloggers:

1. Did your family visit the cemetery at Christmas?

Did I? I'm embarrassed to say 'no' -- though I plan to this year, since I'll be in town. Did others? Yes. My grandmother would go lay wreathes on many of the graves, and knowing my grandmother, probably with clippers in hand to trim back any overgrown evergreens obstructing some of the tombstones.

2. How did your family honor deceased family members at Christmas?

Our family gathers every year around Christmas for a party. To honor those passed, we tell stories, laugh, and raise a glass in toast to them. As for me, I like to get a bottle of my grandfather's favorite champagne (when I can find it) to share with family and/or friends around the holidays.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The footnoteMaven's Tadition of Blog Caroling

footnoteMaven is challenging us to blog our favorite Christmas Carols for Blog Caroling.

There are several carols I love for different reasons, but I think my favorite is The Little Drummer Boy. I don't think I've ever heard a version I didn't like, but the version by the Harry Simeone Chorale is tops in my book.

YouTube offerings of this carol didn't have wonderful accompanying visuals, but I like this one because my parents had an album with similar cover art back in the day, and I can still picture it when I hear the Harry Simeone Chorale sing The Little Drummer Boy.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories - Day 4 - Christmas Cards

From Geneabloggers:
"Did your family send cards? Did your family display the ones they received? Do you still send Christmas cards? Do you have any cards from your ancestors?"
It's all about photo cards in my family. My grandmother always hung the photo cards she received on a ribbon by the fireplace, and then around doorways, or in a china bowl when the prime fireplace real estate was full. My mother and her siblings have adopted similar practices.

I don't think I have any cards sent by ancestors, but what I do have are photo cards they received from other families. After Christmas, my grandmother would usually place a selection of the photo cards received in her scrapbook, labeled for the year. I have several scrapbooks with such pages in them, the earliest of which (in my possession) probably dates back to the 1950's.

Do I still send Christmas cards? Some years. This year I should, since I have good photos from summer trips that rate a photo card this year, but my procrastination seems to be getting the better of me. Maybe there's still time...

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun - What are your d'Aboville numbers?

I'm back after a sizable dry spell. Randy Seaver has another Saturday Night challenge that uses your genealogy software to calculate d'Aboville numbers. See his post and instructions at Genea-Musings.

To summarize, Randy asks us to calculate our own d'Aboville numbers for the lines of our four grandparents, from the earliest known ancestor.

I've calculated what I think are d'Aboville numbers. Reunion doesn't use the term (that I can find), and these are called (in Reunion-speak) 'Legal Numbers'. But the numbering scheme seems to closely match the definitions of d'Aboville numbers that Randy identified. [See Encyclopedia of Genealogy and Wikipedia] The numbers are organized by generations, using periods to separate the generations, and does not change numbering for more than nine children. What Reunion's Legal Numbering system does, that neither definition above indicated, is add lowercase letters for generations where there is more than one marriage. First marriage = a, second marriage = b, etc.

Here are mine:
  • From Stephen Greenleaf (1652-1743) -
  • From Thomas Joseph McCormick (1850-1905) -
  • From Peter Worrall (b.1719) -
  • From John Cadwalader (1677-1734) -
How I did it:
  • Numbers can be made viewable on the family cards by navigating to Reunion Preferences and adding the "numbering" field to the default view.
  • Navigate to the ancestor for whom you want to calculate the numbering scheme.
  • Under the 'Change' menu, click 'Numbering'
  • Select the 'Descendant' tab
  • Select 'Legal Numbers'
  • Confirm the source individual. If you navigate to a married couple, you can select either spouse as the source of descendant numbering.
  • Click 'Assign'
  • Numbers are now viewable on each persons card.
All four numbers are viewable on my card, in the order in which I assigned them, separated by commas. What is less clear is if there's an easy way to remember which is which, should I forget. But it's also easy enough to clear them and recalculate.