Thursday, April 20, 2017

About My Genealogy Research & Why I Am Behind with My Posts

It all started because of aunt Lula's old photo album which my husband inherited a long time ago. One day he showed it to me - it was full of old photos (taken possibly at the end of 19th/the beginning of the 20th century). Each photo had a description - the information written at the back by aunt Lula.


In some cases, besides the name of a person portrayed in a photo, the info included also his/her date of birth or the date of their marriage.

Except it all, aunt Lula listed all the names of her closest relatives - with dates of birth/ death as well. It seemed she did not want it all to be forgotten. Still, I loved the old photographs. I asked my husband whether he knew something about all those people - who they were and how they were related to the family. Since he could not answer most of my questions, I decided I would try to find out the answers.

Unfortunately, aunt Lula and all the other older relatives had passed away many years ago, they could not tell me more about the people in the photos.

Soon, I looked for a family tree type software and started my research. To my surprise, finding the information I sought was easier than I had thought it would be. Thanks to all the data available on the Internet, including the family search websites. I gradually was able to learn more and more about the relatives 'from the photo album'.


However, since those persons bore different surnames (not the same as ours), it was a bit more difficult to establish the family lines between them and us. Step by step, I was discovering not only who they were, but also the names of their parents, siblings and other relations too.

I found the research so very fascinating and extremely involving. Learning more about the family members, who lived time ago, in a way was like meeting them all personally. The more information I could find, the more interesting it became. In some cases, it was possible to get to know what a person's occupation was, when they arrived in America, how old they were when they got married, how many children they had or how they died.

Most often it happened that looking for some info on a certain person, I came across the details on another family line or some incredible connections regarding other family members.

Why incredible?

What I learned during the research - through generations, family members intermarried within certain families who lived in the same area. They all seemed to know each other and stuck together. Of course, there were also other, more accidental marriages considering the surnames. However, it was not uncommon that certain surnames appeared in various family lines and generations again and again. Sometimes it happened that a man who married a lady of a certain family, when the first wife died, he married her sister or cousin and the opposite. If a husband died, the new husband was sometimes a next of kin of the previous one.

When the same surnames show up within generations on various sides of the family, it makes my genealogy project a continuing puzzle waiting to be solved. How were they all related? It can be confusing indeed. Anyway, If I happen to find a connection between certain persons who seemed to be unrelated or 'lost in space', I find it quite a rewarding discovery.

The roots of my husband's family tree lead mostly to England and Ireland. From time to time I manage to find such a European connection which is an ancestor who was born in Europe. Some side family lines originate in Germany/ Prussia as well. It is quite fascinating to learn it all.

In the past, each couple tended to have many children, even more than ten. Then each child had about ten or more children of their own (+ a spouse of course) and so on. Therefore, the research seems to have no end. 'Going' from one chain link/person, I find many others. Nevertheless, the new discovered data / 'new' person needs to be checked carefully, not to include in the tree a person who was actually not a family member.

Needless to say, the project makes me spend too much time at the computer screen (which I am aware of) so I try to be reasonable and limit it or/and make breaks - with different results, though.
I try to stick to the main family line, to find more about my husband's direct relatives. Yet, it is not always possible due to many branches of the family tree and all the facts about various individuals which I often discover quite accidentally.

What else I have found interesting

In the old times, a boy's middle name was often his mother's surname. The same case was with other ancestors' surnames in general. They survived through generations in their descendants' middle names.

First names were often 'Biblical' names — 'taken' from the Bible. My favorite ones (considering the family) are Keziah (who in the Bible was one of the Job's daughters) and Hezekiah. Then there are others - no Biblical ones, though - such as Temperance for example.

The ancestors were followers of various Christian religions and the Puritans as well. It makes me think how relative and subjective the matter of beliefs is. I have always thought, it is not important what church a person goes to, the much more important is what kind of man/woman someone is.

The names listed in the records, in many cases, have been misspelled by the state and church clerks, which makes the research more difficult and sometines confusing.

The names recorded in the census/church notes are often not the official names of the individuals they refer to. Unofficial names used by family members to address those certain someones were given to a clerk instead e.g. Jeff instead of Robert Jefferson, Della instead of Ideller, William instead of George William, Gennie instead of Virginia and so on. The spelling again varied depending on a person who made a record (and their spelling abilities).

During my genealogy research, I have got in touch with a few far relatives whom we did not know about at all.

All in all, so far I have found around two thousand persons who are in my husband's family tree - with many still unanswered questions, though. Unfortunately, I cannot find out anything on my parents' family lines as it is not possible to discover any such information online. I almost know nothing about the relatives from their sides. The grandparents passed away before I was born/ when I was a baby and there is nobody I could ask about family matters (regarding ancestors) either. The DNA matches which I have been sent (by the research company who tested our DNA samples), tell me the names of my far relations but I have not the faintest idea which family branches we share as those relatives' surnames say nothing to me at all.


 I would love to learn something about my direct ancestors or - at least - find out anything on my great-grandparents. I wish I knew where and when my great grandpa died. The only thing I know is that he was drafted and killed somewhere on a WWI front. Well, maybe some day I will learn more about him and/or other relatives as well...

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Wywiady Klubowe: Rozmowa z Anną Sowińską

Z Islandii robimy wielki skok i lądujemy dzisiaj w Stambule. Tutaj mieszka Anna, która już prawie pakuje walizki, gdyż wraca do Polski, a póżniej przenosi się w zupełnie inne miejsce na świecie. Zanim to jednak nastąpi, mamy przyjemność gościć ją w Wywiadach Klubowych.

Dzień dobry Aniu, powiedz nam gdzie jest Twoje miejsce w Polsce?

Pochodzę z Warszawy i tam spędziłam całe swoje życie aż do emigracji. Szczególnie ważne są dla mnie Bemowo i górny Mokotów. W stolicy też jest cała moja rodzina, więc miasto zawsze będzie mi bliskie i będę do niego wracać. Drugim ukochanym miejscem jest działka mojego Taty pod Wyszkowem. Cudowne miejsce w dorzeczu Buga, bujna roślinność, dziewicze tereny na spacery, niezapomniane widoki, a przede wszystkim oddech z dala od miasta i piękne wspomnienia z wypadów rodzinnych.

Jak dawno temu wyjechałaś z Polski?

We wrześniu 2015 w końcu, po wielu miesiącach poszukiwania pracy, udało mi się wyjechać do Stambułu na dobre. Pracę później zmieniałam wielokrotnie, ale w Stambule jeszcze chwilę zostałam.

Izrael

Kraj / kraje / przyczyna Twojej emigracji...

Turcję kochałam od 2005 roku, kiedy to z najlepszą przyjaciółką spędziłyśmy w Alanyi nasze pierwsze „dorosłe” wakacje. Później kraj zawsze gdzieś się przewijał w mojej historii, bo uwielbiam brzmienie języka, muzykę, kulturę... W 2014 roku postanowiłam w końcu wziąć się na poważnie za naukę języka i tak poznałam Y. I, w skrócie, on jest powodem, dla którego wyemigrowałam do tego strasznego molocha, jakim jest Stambuł.

Jezioro Sapanca

Powiesz nam co nieco o Twoim wykształceniu?

Z wykształcenia jestem nauczycielką języka angielskiego i tłumaczką i chociaż moje doświadczenie zawodowe wiązało się zawsze ze znajomością języków, to w Polsce pracowałam głównie w finansach.

Czym zajmujesz się na co dzień?

Obecnie (ale już niedługo, bo mam nadzieję, że uda nam się wyjechać wkrótce do Kanady) uczę angielskiego. Poza tym biorę udział w kilku projektach, dzięki którym ćwiczę pióro i warsztat tłumacza: współtworzę polską stronę dotyczącą imigracji do Kanady oraz ją tłumaczę, robię kilka tłumaczeń tekstów o tematyce tureckiej – ogólnie zbieram doświadczenia i staram się nie popadać w marazm i deprechę związane z brakiem konkretnej pracy.

Park Göztepe - Stambuł

Twoje hobby / co lubisz robić w czasie wolnym?

Lubię spędzać czas z moim Y. – dzięki niemu uczę się inaczej formułować myśli, inaczej patrzeć na wiele spraw i prowadzimy ciekawe dyskusje... Lubię czytać, lubię dowiadywać się ciekawych rzeczy o językach, mózgu, kulturach, krajach. Lubię pisać i tłumaczyć, ale zazwyczaj mam za dużego lenia, żeby się za nie zabrać. W przyszłości chcę się uczyć jeszcze jednego języka i robić coś „artystycznego” – ale to dopiero, jak już zdecydujemy, gdzie osiądziemy.

Z czego jesteś dumna?

Jestem dumna z tego, że odważyłam się zrezygnować z ustabilizowanego życia i pracy, którą lubiłam na rzecz pogoni za marzeniem - podróży właściwie w nieznane (bo bycie turystą w jakimś miejscu to JEST zupełnie coś innego niż mieszkanie w nim). Jestem dumna z tego, że ani razu nie wątpiłam w słuszność tej decyzji i nadal uważam, że to jedna z najlepszych decyzji w moim życiu. Jestem dumna z tego, że się zmieniam i staję się bardziej świadoma siebie i bardziej otwarta. Jestem dumna z tego, że mimo iż tracę znajomych z przeszłości, to nadal jestem blisko z rodziną i osobami, które naprawdę się liczą w moim życiu. Jestem dumna z mojej rodziny, a obecnie szczególnie z mojej zdolnej siostry i przecudnej siostrzenicy.

Pendik - Stambuł


Kiedy zaczęłaś pisać bloga / o czym piszesz na blogu?

Bloga zaczęłam pisać, gdy wyjechałam z Polski – po to, żeby nie musieć wszystkim z osobna relacjonować, co robię i jak mi tam jest ;) Blog jest osobisty i poza paroma tekstami o mnie jest też mini (wręcz mikro ;)) przewodnikiem po Turcji. Niedługo zapewne pojawi się na nim Kanada :D.

Czym jest dla Ciebie Klub Polki?

Klub jest dla mnie przede wszystkim społecznością osób kreatywnych i
motywujących innych. Pomysły, porady, sposoby na, akcje, projekty... jestem stale pod wrażeniem! Uwielbiam czytać historie z różnych zakątków świata. Podoba mi się też wsparcie, którego udzielają sobie dziewczyny wewnątrz Klubu.

Egipt

Co jeszcze chciałabyś nam powiedzieć o sobie?

Trzymajcie kciuki, żeby udało nam się wszystko z Kanadą – wszystkie te procedury, papiery, terminy... to bardzo stresuje... Jednak mam nadzieję, że nowa przygoda, nowe życie i nowe możliwości będą tego wszystkiego warte.

Jezioro Sapanca

ANNA SOWIŃSKA 
Blog Ani:
po polsku: annalovestravelspl
po angielsku: Anna Loves Travels
Facebook: @AnnaLovesTravels

Kciuki trzymamy! 
Kto nie przeszedł przez urzędowe procedury związane z imigracją, ten najczęściej nie wie, jak może to być skomplikowane i ile nieść stresujących sytuacji... Wiemy, wiemy, też to przerobiliśmy...

Aniu, życzymy Wam pomyślnego i szybkiego załatwienia wszystkich tych papierkowych spraw, a także powodzenia w Kanadzie!

Wszystkim Czytelnikom Wywiadów, Paniom (i Panu) z Klubu Polki na Obczyźnie, a także ich bliskim, życzymy pięknych Świat Wielkanocnych. Wszystkiego dobrego!
🌼


Monday, April 10, 2017

Interview with Patti Tucker

Patti Tucker is a Texas Woman Blogger whose posts I read quite frequently.

I am so very pleased she has agreed to meet us in our 'Interview corner' and let us know more about herself and her blogging as well.



Hello, Patti! Welcome to 'Gone to Texas'!

Could you please tell us where do you come from and where your place on Earth is?

I’m a Texan by birth. I grew up in West Texas, surrounded by dingos (boys). The wind-blasted land, the stark beauty of vast skies, the rough-edged kindness of people infiltrated my soul as a child and are as much a part of me as any physical attribute.

A few words about your education:

My education is an ongoing evolvement of learning how much I never knew.

What occupies you on weekdays?

The business of writing, letting Dexter in and out to chase squirrels and wondering what’s for lunch/dinner.

What do you like doing in your free time?

I love long distance running...eating cake...enjoying an outdoor fire with drinks...discussing things which evoke passion and heightened emotions...laughing with/at family and friends...DIY projects that aren’t perfect, but perfect for me...Netflix...so much Netflix.

What are you good at Patti?

I’d like to think I’m good at loving, translating life and its absurdities into the empathetic written word and throw your head back, roaring like a crazy person, laughing.

What are your greatest achievements / What are you proud of?

My family, hands down. No matter what else I accomplish in this life, they will be what I’m most proud of.

When did you start blogging? / Why?

I started blogging as a joke with my son when he went off to college, as a way to stay connected. My websites grew from there, over many years.

What do you blog about?

At the moment, I write about life and the unending volume of topics that amuse or annoy me. I’m also partial to writing about educating and elevating subjects as well. My breast cancer series, What I’ll Tell Sweet E series and the Perimenopause Can SUCK IT! series are a couple that folks enjoy.

I have noticed recently, you enjoy making videos. Have you decided to be a vlogger as well?

I’ve been making videos for some time. I don’t consider it vlogging as much as an extension of my voice - a fun way to reach out. It’s one more tool with which to communicate. Plus, they make me laugh.

Patti, where would you want to be/ what would you want to do in five years time?

I’d like to be where I am now, but expanded. More living. More writing. More sharing. More loving. More laughing.

What else would you like to tell us about yourself / your family/ or anything else?

I hope when you read my words, wherever they are, you laugh your behind off. And think until it hurts. Or cry public tears. I hope your life is expanded in some way. Not just because of the singular stories about life's joys and ridiculous twists, but because you recognize the collective us in the words.

I’m compelled to shine the light on the threads that connect us instead of the vast gulf that divides us.

We are stronger together, no matter how terrifying the flying debris appears or how soft the landing cushion feels. We are stronger knowing we aren’t alone. 

That’s why I write.
You're not alone on your journey. You’ve got me.



PATTI TUCKER

Visit Patti's web pages:

Blog: OH, Mrs. Tucker! 
Pinterest: ohmrstucker
Twitter: @OhMrsTucker
Instagram: @ohmrstucker
Facebook: Oh, Mrs. Tucker
 

Patti, thank you very much for your visit and the interesting talk. I really enjoyed our interview and love your vision of you in the future! I do wish you all the good and positive 'more' - now and in the coming years.

Dear Reader, I invite you to check on Patti's blog posts series and her video posts as well.

Good bless you all! 🌼



I

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

My Music ABC: P


First of all: PINK FLOYD. Especially their early albums.
Our very first record by Pink Floyd was Meddle. My sister, enchanted by Echoes,  bought it from someone (again - it was when contemporary western rock albums/bands were not available in music stores in Poland - ancient history almost 😀).

In 1991, while visiting Denmark I purchased a VHS cassette with their concert - Live at Pompeii. I had seen the concert on Polish TV and found the compilation of the visuals and the music magical. Beautiful.
Much later, when I was relocating to Texas, I brought the Pink Floyd VHS to Texas. Unfortunately,  so far I have not found a VHS player with a switch/an option which would allow viewing tapes recorded in the European format/system. I treasure the tape, though, hoping  I will be able to rewatch it one day.

My P no. 2 is The Police. I used to have a cassette with their first album Outlandos d'Amour.  Although the pieces by The Police which were written/composed later could be called more interesting and more sophisticated/mature, I still like those songs from their first record. Maybe it is just a sentiment connected with my teenage days. Maybe.

And then - PUNK. Yes, I listened to that kind of music as well. I still do - sometimes. I never looked like a punk rocker but I was keen on some of the punk rock tracks - the ones with more interesting/regular melody line (comparing to some which were mostly noise only).
My sister happened to know a punk rocker - well, he did not look like one on weekdays. He worked as a jeweler apprentice then. Well, I assume he changed his style on weekends when he attended a local punk rockers club called 'Little Sun'.

Anyway, when at the that guy's place, he played the songs by an underground Polish punk band called Kryzys and I did learn about them for the very first time then. At that time, you could hear punk music only on one Polish radio station (Program 3) which was more open to modern rock trends (Program 3). And I did like listening to it. However, they hardly ever played the music by Kryzys - maybe their songs were banned due to their lyrics. No, there was no bad language in them but they were full of allusions to the political situation in the country and the government at that time. What was more, the name of the band Kryzys (Crisis) had the other, unofficial part - 'of the communism'.

All in all, it was very politically incorrect and although it was not played in the media (there was no YouTube at that time either), the band (which was formed at the end of the 70s) became quite popular during their very short career.  Anyway, I found their songs a refreshing novelty and somehow I had them recorded on a tape too.

After so many years, while preparing this post, I searched for Kryzys on YouTube. Of course, they are there. My favorite songs - Telewizja (TV), Wojny Gwiezdne (Star Wars) and Mam Dość (I am fed up with it) brought back the memories and the sentiment connected with those old days. Well, do not be mistaken - I have always been a good girl....


Pink Floyd
Albums - A Saucerful of Secrets, Ummagumma, Animals, Wish You Were Here, The Wall.

The Police - Outlandos d'Amour album + most of their songs.

PUNK
Kryzys - Telewizja, Wojny Gwiezdne, Mam Dość,
Sex Pistols - God Save the Queen, Anarchy in the UK, Holidays in the Sun
Buzzcocks - Ever Fallen in Love
The Ramones - Blitzkrieg Bop, I Wanna be Sedated, Sheena is a Punk Rocker,
Sham 69 -  If the Kids Are United,
999 - Inside Out,
The Stranglers - No More Heroes, Peaches,
Generation X - King Rocker.