Posts Tagged ‘genealogy’

Well, if you are reading my blog today then there is a huge chance you are not in Savannah celebrating. I think I have mentioned this before—I have never been to Savannah on St. Patrick’s Day and never want to! Yes, I enjoy (love) the city including all of my memories from there, but wild horses could not drag me to Savannah on March 17 unless a family member is ill or something to that effect (knock on wood). It is absolutely beautiful in the springtime with all of the azaleas in bloom but when everyone else seems to be heading there you will find me heading the other way—or just staying still.

Yes, I do have some Irish in me, quite a bit actually, but all of the ancestors were gone from Ireland by 1800 in order to have a better life here in the states. I don’t mind giving honor to good ole St. Pat but I wish he had run all of the snakes out of the states, too. Then, there would really be a cause to celebrate :)!

Enjoy today and imbibe responsibly! Happy Gardening!


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from photoop23 at webshots

I have not been sleeping well with what I have been dealing with so I have been taking little cat naps in the afternoon-not planned. The other day, I had just gotten into a nice sleep pattern when the phone rang. I answered in my usual garble after having been asleep. The man on the other end was very cheery and sounded so familiar but I could not put it together at first. He asked who I was and then he explained that I was listed in his cell phone as “ALWAYS.” Hmmm… Then he suddenly burst into song, singing a song called “Always…” By now, I am wondering if I have died and gone to heaven.

It turns out that this was a distant cousin I met via the internet when trying to contact some individuals about family research. I have not seen or talked to him in a few years and wondered what had happened with him…he is 98 years old and sounds great. His memory is a little lacking—he didn’t remember me, but that’s ok. I am not doing as well as he is and I am a little over half his age…

You know how people talk about angel moments…well, you may not, but I have had many of these in my lifetime and I believe this was another one. He may not have been an angel but he sure put a smile on my face! How about let’s create some angel moments for people? It is much like taking advantage of opportunities that come our way to help others.

May your day be blessed from all sides and may you have plenty of angel opportunities as well as being the recipient of many angel moments!


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Piracy vs. Copyright and Trademark  I’m not giving definitions or directly addressing what has been in the news lately. I want to give an account of the problems/issues from a bigger picture—not just the movie or music part of things. Hear me out. Most importantly, I DO NOT ADVOCATE OR CONDONE PIRACY.

Never in all of time has there been such a tug-a-war between copyright and infringement rights thanks to the internet. There are always pros and cons with “progress” though progress is hard to access sometimes. I am in no way advocating piracy of any kind, but I don’t believe we can truly copyright every single concept or idea-not in this day and time. Let us first examine music. As we listen to music, we develop music sequences in our head-ding, ding, here and clonk, clonk there, and then some whistles and tweets with runs or chords or what-have-you. The more we listen to music and the larger the variety, the bigger our memory collection is because we are exposed to more things. If we are making music, we will draw upon those sequences from our head-sometimes verbatim-sometimes chaotically. This is going to affect what music we make or create. And, just think if everyone made music…and that each of us began to copyright everything we made… We would begin to infringe on each other’s music repertoire and creativity. I don’t know if you are following me down this strange road, so let us go to drawing…a 2-d representation.

If I draw something and copyright it, I “own” it. That’s pretty simple because this is tangible-something we can hold in our hands. Things can go great until someone draws something similar to what I have drawn (own). Now, if everyone draws something similar, do I really own that image? Let’s say no one “stole” it. Can I assume that since I own the image that I own the concept therefore preventing others from drawing something similar to my image? After a while, we should see that there is so much that can be copyright protected that there is no way one can control it (own “it”). We learn from seeing and imitating, so we must have something to begin with. Those seeds that are sewn give the juices that make the creative process run and flourish.

I remember when I was drawing in first grade and everyone said, “OH! She has so much talent!” I actually got an award 🙂 (a blue ribbon). I was then exposed to different things, one being cartooning. I really sucked at cartooning at the age (and all of the years since), but I tried drawing little figures that were comical telling a story… It basically expanded my quest for learning as we should allow all people. We must begin somewhere. What if I was not allowed to copy from others (at their wishes)? I would not have developed my talent  and probably would not have tried to expose my children to art–multiple forms. The wheel turns and they have developed their talents in art, both in music and 2-d and 3-d art design. Their appreciation of art has grown, too.

While doing genealogy research I would come upon people who said all of their work was copyrighted, which in reality they had not copyright protected their work, but they also did not understand what could be copyrighted. Genealogy is about the history of individuals with legal records and notices that substantiate a person’s life. It is all about the linking of that info together to form an accurate picture (figurative). Some people believe(d) that one could copyright vital record information as in, they spent money to get those records and thought that information should be protected…however, they would publish their information on the internet or someone else would do it without their permission. No one can “own” vital record information besides the government, but no one should copy information that “belongs” to someone else and present it as theirs either. Many battles have been waged on this concept of owning certain things. Others shared their family information freely, so there were/are problems. Genealogy is tangible but is subjective to some degree. My summations about individuals and families belong to me-the records did not. However, personal notices can belong to an individual just like letters and such. Overall, it can get complicated but basically, we do not have the right to claim what is not ours. On the other hand, two individuals coming to the same conclusion does not mean that one copied from the other…

I design patterns and projects, etc. I have never sold any, and so far, I have not protected them through copyright, so I can be accused of “piracy” if such a design shows up that is much like mine belonging to another individual who has protected his/her work. I don’t think that is exactly fair, but life is not fair. Right now, we are in the honeymoon period of the internet quickly entering into the leg-shackled part of the marriage (excuse the reference). Again, I do not advocate pirating or copying someone in order to “steal” ideas, but the sharing of ideas is how we grow as humanity. I don’t have the answer to the questions but think that we are too obsessed on one specific issue without giving thought to the bigger picture. Of course, I feel that people choose to help themselves and that hurts all of us. Too much copyrighted material can decrease creativity.

Finally…I know companies who will go after you if you even use the same colors as they use in their advertisement and some who have taken people to court because someone’s drawing on a t-shirt looks (in their eyes) a lot like their trademark (that happened locally). These last individuals have even tried to take on a church because the “company” thought the church was infringing on them… Let me just say, “Be wary to use the name ‘Master’ in Augusta.”

Speaking of color…what if every color was trademarked? I know that is almost humanly impossible, but just think if this happened to just one shade. We have really gone overboard with things. And with all of this, some artists are questioning what they can do. What is ok to use and what is not? I have read the laws. A lot of it is up to interpretation but the final say on it is left to the courts (which is after the fact). Most artists do not have the money to fight big corporations and here lies the crux of the problem/issue, yes? Hmmm…..

Congratulations if you made it all the way through my long-winded posting. I think this topic is something that needs to be addressed, but remember that these are just my musings, not legal advice of any sort. I encourage you to read about the laws on copyright.

Happy Gardening and may your day be bright and filled with no worries of copyright or infringement!


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So many memory quilts are intertwined pieces of long ago. These are probably my favorites. They are true memory quilts. For instance, say granny is about to celebrate her 70th or 80th (or any number actually) birthday. She may have daughters (sons and grandchildren, too) who want to memorialize (honor) her life with items or pieces of items she has sewn (crocheted, knitted, tatted, embroidered, etc). They can be included in the quilt. Another idea is to use photos that can be transferred to fabric and sewn into a quilt to tell a story of granny’s life with written remarks, traditions, and beliefs. What a treasure!




Here are some mementos I have put away. My paternal grandmother and great aunt loved to crochet, tat, and embroider. They made lace for hankies, doilies, bookmarks, etc. The crochet needle (shown) belonged to my grandmother, and the pins belonged to my parents.

These same techniques of assembling a memory quilt can be used to tell a story of someone who has passed away, too, even couples or say a family. I think this is a wonderful way to remember ancestors who have passed on, but do not forget to include the stories that they shared. In the process of making a memory quilt, you are contributing to making new memories that can be handed down to the next generation. Gathering family together to make a memory quilt may help in the healing process of grief from a loved one. Anything that involves getting together to remember good things and happy times, but be sure to shut the door on any sibling rivalry. Also remember that we each process grief differently. Grief healing is a process. We really do not overcome grief, but we learn to better deal with the pain of losing loved ones. Remembering the positive of people’s lives helps us do just that. We are better able to put the focus on someone and/or somewhere else for a minute rather than thinking about our lives without them. I just think this is a great way to remember family that has passed away.

Just a note:  If a memory quilt is made in memory of someone and there is more than one descendant (more than one direct child), then more quilts may be needed so that each sibling can pass a quilt down to their children (no squabbling over who gets THE Quilt later on-at least for a generation). And, do not forget about the male siblings. The men in the family may not be interested in quilting, but that’s not to say that his offspring won’t be or even his wife. It may be hard to find enough memorabilia to include for everyone to use, but using older techniques with newer material (if older material cannot be secured) is one way to tackle this. It is up to the person(s) on what they want to do. There are so many possibilities, so be creative. Whatever happens, we need to focus on the celebration of life and lives!

Next memory quilt posting:  Helping to Remember

Happy Gardening in the Quilt of Life!


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Ok, I am paving a new road for my crafting ideas. Yes, I know I gave a list of what is was planned, but I am now starting down a different path – an unexplored road in a way. I admit that the memory quilt project has really changed the way I look at things. I feel that I am at another crossroads in life, but I’m not sure that I moved out of the intersection last year :).  We all need purpose in our lives, and we need to share our purpose and fruits with others. Anyway, I stopped sewing just before Christmas and could not find the motivation to get going again. During the time away, I have been working on some family genealogy things – it is really hard to juggle too many things. Creating things (sewing, quilting, and other arts and craft things) defines me – genealogy or family history helps me to understand who I am or at least from whom I came. I’m not one of those people who has to have a family tree chart that shows I am connected to a million people. I search to know the individual, his/her obstacles, and his/her successes and triumphs. I have been doing this for more than several years, more than a decade or so, actually. I not only want to remember the past but I want to tie it together with the present and the future. Does that make any sense? I think that is why the memory quilting project has endeared me so. 

New ideas for my sewing projects are being hammered out. This is a change from what I was planning even a week ago. I do not need more material – repeat after me, “I do not need more material!” I can recite this all day, but I broke down and had to make a visit to the cloth store – everyone knew that was coming, right? I spent my profits from my mini quilts (that I will not receive until the end of the month). Eeeeek! Why? Why do I feel that I need more material other than there was a sale? I have a new vision. I do not do a lot of appliqué work – in fact I do very little – almost none at all, but I just designed a quilt block using a purple crocus for a model. I love flowers, so I have picked out some material that I REALLY need (?) and am ready to go. I just hope this turns out like I see it in my head. I plan to post pics of the work as I go. Here are some of the colors and materials I will be using: 

I am also sketching blocks for a birdhouse quilt…and a Sunbonnet Sue quilt…, but they are being pushed to the side for awhile. Then there is an Alzheimer’s memory quilt design I have started. I will blog more about this in later postings, but for those of you who know me, you know that I suffer from a disability that has some of the same effects as Alzheimer’s. In some ways, my disability is worse and in some ways it is not as bad, if that makes any sense. I am not comfortable discussing it openly but have been “afflicted” (such an awful sounding word!) since I was young with more manifestations (not a great word either) in recent years. Whatever ailment that can eat away at the mind is detrimental to one’s very being. Other people do not understand what they cannot see especially if they have never experienced a loved one suffering from such diseases and disabilities. This is really hard on the person who is suffering. I could blog just on diseases like this alone, but I want to draw attention to the people – who they are – not names and faces per se, but their importance in life as individuals. Everyone deserves to be honored and remembered; well that’s the way I see it.

Unless you walk in the shoes of others you will never know what they face.

This is true no matter what struggles one faces, and we all have struggles of one kind or another. So, in short, I am on a new journey, one that is not definitive. It is a little scary, but I need this. It’s time. 

Happy Gardening and may we all take time to walk in the shoes of others so that we may understand each other better!


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