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February, 2004

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February 28, 2004

Some people find that telling their life story involves recounting some terrific difficulties and hardships. Often this means recalling very painful situations. Children who have dealt with abuse, violence, drug and alcohol problems and even attempted suicide are the subject of a new book, Real Teens, Real Stories, Real Life from writer T. Suzanne Eller (also a survivor of child abuse).

If you find that this is an area in your life that you want to write about and wonder about how to do it, especially so it helps others, then this book is for you. In the end, you may find that telling your story also helps you. See more here. And there is more about Eller at her Real Teens...Real Faith web site.

February 24, 2004

Food for thought - or maybe better for action: "I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand."
- Chinese Proverb

February 23, 2004

Part of everyone's story is commemorating the significant events in our lives. It's important to celebrate these occassions. As far as preserving your life story goes, take the time to recall these events. But there is a bigger, more important message here. How are you celebrating the events of today and tomorrow?

Traditions, rites of passage, religious ceremonies, graduations, weddings, and career milestones are all eventful. We can do a lot to memoralize our friends, family and (especially) our children's special life moments. Take this prompting and run with it. Plan ways to celebrate that leave a positive, affirming and lasting impression.

February 22, 2004

The American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress has been actively collecting the stories of America's war veterans, a very worthy history
project. During WWII their were many women involved on the "Home Front" and now their stories are being collected, too. These women, known as "Rosies" from the "Rosie the Riveter" posters, spent countless hours involved in factory work, such as shipbuilding.

The National Historical Park Service is creating a special Rosie the Riveter WWII Home Front Park. You can see more about it and also contribute "Rosie" stories at this site developed by Ford Motor Co., the National Park Foundation and the National Park Service.

February 19, 2004

I came across this site in the UK about preserving your family history and a contest that could win you a video camera and exposure on the History Channel. It's called the Family History Project and is open to anyone 18 or older in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland. Be sure to read the terms and conditions.

February 18, 2004

If you are the family historian of your clan you probably keep track of letters, photographs, important dates, events and maybe a bit of genealogy. You also might be doing some writing.

It's a good idea for anyone to write everyday, but especially so for those who consider themselves "writers". Studies even show that writing is good for your health - yet another good reason to keep a journal.

You should check out this article that talks about the value of free-writing to improve your health, attitude and writing in only ten minutes a day.

February 12, 2004

What is a grandmother? ( taken from papers written by a class of 8 year olds)

A grandmother is a lady who has no little children of her own. She likes other peoples. A grandfather is a man grandmother.

Grandmothers don't have to do anything except be there when we come to see them. They are so old they shouldn't play hard or run. It is good if they drive us to the store and have lots of quarters for us.

When they take us for walks, they slow down past things like pretty leaves and caterpillars. They show us and talk to us about the color of the flowers and also don't step on cracks."

They don't say, "Hurry up." Usually grandmothers are fat, but not too fat to tie your shoes. They wear glasses and funny underwear. They can take their teeth and gums out. Grandmothers don't have to be smart. They have to answer questions like "why isn't God married?" and "How come dogs chase cats?".

When they read to us, they don't skip. They don't mind if we ask for the same story over again.

Everybody should try to have a grandmother, especially if you don't have television, because they are the only grown ups who like to spend time with us. They know we should have snack-time before bedtime and they say prayers with us every time, and kiss us even when we've acted bad.

Pass this along to another Grandmother.
It will make their day

February 11, 2004

I haven't seen the movie Big Fish yet, but I know I should. All of us probably like to spin some wild tales (if only in our heads). Here's a film about a father and a son and dear-old-dad is soon to pass on. Time for "passing the torch". Only the son (played by Billy Crudup) is tired of his father's stories...past exploits he's convinced are mostly fabricated. The Tim Burton directed film features Ewan McGregor as the young Ed Bloom, and Albert Finney as the aging/dying/older Ed. Finney is one of the finest actors around (IMHO). Story sounds intriguing, especially if you are considering a family biography.

February 10, 2004

Do you ever spend time cutting out magazine pictures, gathering scraps of drawings and artwork, old pictures and the like and pasting them together? Just that time in therapy, you say?

I remember doing it in school. Actually, some people make a real artform out of it. You should see the scrapbook collages ( made by Charles Wilkins. He's a graphic designer and he's been doing this professionally for years. Pretty neat stuff.

February 9, 2004

Video Biographies are making the news...or the radio, anyway. Recently NPR (National Public Radio for the acronym challenged) ran a story on a family business that specializes in what they call the"Personal Television Biography".

Why not? We live in a video/television age. Check out what they are up to at Farnese.

Oh, and do check out the information/resources we have on video biographies.

Everybody has a story to tell!
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