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Your Life is Your Story, Issue #066 – Questions for Fathers
June 17, 2009

"Your past is your story up to now. The future is the story yet to come. The present is where you live with that experience, your hopes and your dreams."

Your Life is Your Story Newsletter

June 17, 2009
Issue #066 – Questions for Fathers

From Tom Gilbert – Editor and Writer,

In this Issue:

Opening remarks: I’m Gonna be a Grandpa!
Featured Article: Questions for Fathers
Resources You Can Use

Opening Remarks: I’m Gonna be a Grandpa!

I shared last month about a number of noteworthy days and events. One of the greatest was my daughter getting married.

Kristen and Nathan planned their wedding for a year and they’ve been friends and dating for three. They talked about maybe waiting to have children, but then decided they wanted to start a family right away. It looks like they are off to a good start as they recently informed us they are expecting a baby around mid-February. Perhaps it will be a Valentine’s Day baby. It certainly is great news.

That means my wife and I will be grandparents for the first time. Wow! In some ways I can’t think of myself as a grandpa. But, then again, I’m really looking forward to it. My wife says she is not going to be a grandmother. She prefers to be called Nina. That was how everyone referred to her paternal grandmother. I send a salute to all you other “grands” reading this. We are looking forward to the new family addition. And if you are a great-grandparent be sure to cherish that. My dad and my wife’s parents are very excited.

Father’s Day is this Sunday. Make time to mark it in some special way. Take pictures, save memories and enjoy it. If you find time, be sure to read this great story from World War II about an American soldier and a French orphan boy.

You are receiving this e-zine because you signed up for it or someone who is subscribed passed it along to you. If a friend DID forward this to you consider subscribing by visiting our signup page . Also, let me know what you’d like to see more of in this newsletter – simply reply to this email e-zine.

While the main focus of this newsletter is to share thoughts, ideas, and insights on life story writing you should know that I offer various services and also mention some products and services that can be helpful. You are under no obligation to purchase anything, but if any of these products or services are helpful and you decide to utilize them then I am most grateful.

Thanks for reading. – Tom

Featured Article: Questions for Fathers

Article by Tom Gilbert - Copyright © June, 2009

You have probably heard the expression about parenting: as soon as you get good at it your out of a job.

There is some truth in this; much of parenting is OTJT – on the job training.

However, being a father or mother never ends. It is a lifetime commitment. What we learn and the experiences we have are worth passing on. Sharing experiences helps us grow closer and it also helps us to be better people.

Mothers are the natural nurturers. Fathers typically are providers. We are “hunters and gatherers” from way back. Because dads often believe in keeping their feelings to themselves it can be hard to find out just what our fathers think, what they most value and what’s going on inside. Being stoic can be virtuous. But always being tight-lipped can deprive family members from valuable information and experiences.

Sometimes you just have to know the right questions to ask and have the right situation to ask them.

Whenever I interview someone for their personal story I like to spend a bit of time in small talk. It is important that subjects feel comfortable before sharing their life experiences. So, before you sit down with your father to ask about his life, be sure to prepare properly and make him feel at ease.

Here are some questions to consider asking:

1. What was it like when you first became a father (e.g. how did it make you feel and what emotions did you experience?) 2. In what ways are we alike and in what ways are we different? 3. What have you learned from parenting? 4. What attracted you to my mother? 5. Is there anything you regret not having asked your parents? 6. Is there anything you want to tell me that you never have? 7. What do you want my children and grandchildren to remember about you?

Certainly there are other questions, but these seem to be good ones to include in an interview. And remember, turnabout is fair play. So be prepared for your children (or parents or siblings) to ask you such important questions. (Thanks to Peter Gudmundsson of Priceless Legacy Company for the inspiration and a few of these questions.)

You can read other articles on life-story writing here.

Resources You Can Use

Journal Software

The Journal Software is so much more than just “diary software”. Great tools, templates, writing prompts and organized with so many wonderful features, all for less than $40! I use it and highly recommend it. Find out more here.

Priceless Legacy

The Priceless Legacy Company has an exciting and affordable way to give you a high-quality / high-tech / high-touch service to preserve life stories. The LifeStory Package includes the audio from the interviews and a digital slide show of photographs, preserved on DVD, along with a beautiful hard cover book with pictures and the life story presented in an engaging first person written narrative. The reviews from clients have been terrific. You can find out more here.

Site Build It

A complete online web building resource that gets results! More than hosting. More than building just a web site. Thousands of small business owners, stay at home moms, retirees, and people passionate about their hobby or vocation (including several personal historians like myself) have discovered the value of Site Build It. It’s proven to work if you will follow directions of the Action Guide. It’s worth way more than the asking price (less than $300) and it is backed by a risk-free money back guarantee. There is a summer time special going on right now. Check out the sale sale. But hurry, the offer is good only until midnight June 21, 2009. Go here for more.

Check out the wide variety of family and personal history/life story services offered through Your Life Is Your Story. I look forward to working with you to capture your life story.

Closing Information

That’s it for this month’s issue. Thanks for reading. Be sure to visit our blog regularly, and here’s to telling your story. Do give it some serious consideration because I just know you’ve got a great story to tell! Be sure to see the Get Started section.

Any comments, ideas or feedback is greatly appreciated. Just reply to this ‘zine and tell me what you think!

Until next time, – keep your story alive!

Tom Gilbert

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