Recently, I've heard from several different people that their family history is "done," so they don't have any research to do. As kindly as possible, I'd like to take issue with that mindset.
Perhaps some people view genealogy as a big logic puzzle, and if someone has already filled it in, there is no need to try. Every day, newspapers across the world are filled with the same crossword puzzle, and everyday, people attempt to come up with the answers on their own. Genealogical research brings similar feelings of satisfaction.
Family history is much more than just a big puzzle, though; family history forms connections through the years. The best way to get to know someone is to spend time with them. Our children won't know our grandparents in the same way we do, unless they spend time hearing about them. We will miss out on knowing our ancestors unless we make an effort to know them.
Even though my mom has done family history research for years, and I have copies of her information, I still have done my own research. As I document names and dates, I learn more about my heritage and I feel closer to my ancestors.
My mom might know her multiplication facts, and she might even share a multiplication chart with me, but unless I pour over it and commit the facts to memory, I won't really reap the benefits. The same holds true with family history.
I have never been great at remembering names. We have lived several different places during our marriage, and I know I have forgotten some names over the course of those 26 years. The names I remember best are those of people with whom we spent the most time.
If I put family history aside for a while, I tend to forget who belongs to whom, and how I am related to any particular person. Of course, I remember my grandparents, and usually great-grandparents, but beyond that, things can get fuzzy. However, when I spend time looking for historical documentation, I tend to remember names and relationships better. I notice children who died young, or Civil War soldiers who died in battle, or families that had about a dozen boys and only two girls. I notice names showing up through generations, or names that make me smile--like Thankful, or Fiasco, or Orange Root.
"When our hearts turn to our ancestors, something changes inside us. We feel part of something greater than ourselves."--Elder Russell M. Nelson
If you haven't done family history, you don't know what you're missing. If you think the work is "done," you don't know what you're missing. Whatever amount of time you can spend, you'll be blessed with increased love and appreciation for your family.
Have you caught the "bug?"
Thanks for family history.
You might find my posts on these blog hops:
Sew Darn Crafty Party, Find a Friend Friday, Farmgirl Friday Blog Hop, Show Your Stuff, The Wildly Original Link Party, Wow Us Wednesdays, Down Home Blog Hop, Tuesday Archive Link Up, Linky Tuesday at Freemotion by the River, Grandparents Say It Saturday
The Creative Home Acre Hop, Best Blog Post Ever, Grand Social,
Crafty Garden Mama,
Let's Get Social Sundays
Tuesdays with a Twist
All My Bloggy Friends
A Peek into My Paradise