Sunday, April 22, 2012

Podcast Available! Navigating the 1940 Census...

On Saturday, March 31, I and other members of our Genealogy Discussion Group, along with 100-200 other lucky folk, were fortunate to attend our local Enoch Pratt Free Library's annual genealogy event.  They are big into genealogy at the Pratt! 

This year, Thomas MacEntee, yes, Mr. GeneaBloggers himself, was in town!  Talk about thrilled!

As expected, Thomas gave a great presentation, packed with super information on Navigating the 1940 Census and Social Networking for Genealogists

A podcast is now available. Even though the Census has been released, Thomas's presentation still offers helpful insight and tips, certainly timely and worth viewing.

And for a social media newbie like myself, the technology presentations were excellent as well.  Many of us know Google as a search engine, but there are many other applications where a genealogist can while away many, many hours! 

A great day, indeed!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Thrifty Thursday - Keeping Warm in Wales

It's not yet Springtime in Wales.
My feathers are bare, coolness abounds.
A creative recycler adopted me,
Now warmth and fashion surrounds.

My sister-in-law, a talented seamstress and diligent recycler, used an old fleece jacket to create little vests for her two newly-adopted hens.  Their feathers are a bit thin due to stress from their previous living conditions.  Apparently, the girls are happy to have the extra warmth and do not mind wearing the garments.  This one even modeled quite nicely for the camera, don't you think?!!

Beth assures us that both of the girls are doing well and their feathers are coming in beautifully.  I'll have updated photos when we visit again next month. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Travel Tuesday - Toting All Those Photos!

Well, between getting back into the grind from our vacation in Wales to see family, to still being on this crazy-energy whirlwind of re-organizing and cleaning out the house, I haven’t had much time for genealogy.  I had been pretty deep into helping hubby with the boatload of photos and documents he brought back from Wales.  We are now finished with this project.  Good thing, too, as we are on a deadline since we’ll be heading back soon, and will take them back with us. 

Not expecting that my mother-in-law would let about 100 years worth and 500 photos out of her possession, we were unprepared and had no idea we’d have such a blessing (read as: ton) of photos to tote back across the pond.  So what to do? 

Not to mention that along with the photos was a big Welsh bible from his grandmother’s aunt/cousin’s family, and decades worth of family documents of all shapes and sizes.  

As for the documents, a first-grader could have devised a better "folder" than hubby did.  But since he wanted no input or assistance from me on this, so I left him to his own devices. You can see his incredibly "secure" packaging below.  And prepared thus, we hoped for the best and headed home! 

Stacks of British birth, death, marriage
certificates and more.
Larger than legal size!
As you can imagine, the people at airport security were quite interested in all of this when it went through the scanner!  At three airports (Cardiff, Dublin and Boston), we had to take everything out of the carry-on for them to go through it. 

I have to give them their due, they were very polite, understanding of the delicacy of the documents, and gentle with everything, even offering to put the photos back into the tin.  In return, we politely declined and did it ourselves, to have it all in the right order.  One of the agents even wore white gloves, but that was probably to protect himself rather than our aging documents.  I would have loved to photo the process of them investigating everything, but I know they frown on that kind of thing. 

As a paper crafter and scrapbooking enthusiast, I know something about acid-free storage, and have appropriate containers for scrapbooks and other things I have crafted. However, this is A LOT of photos.  And I don’t want to be toting empty storage boxes back with me.  

So when we go back in a few weeks, hubby will instead be using a sturdy cardboard box that he uses to store computer peripherals.  It’s just a bit larger than his mom’s old cookie tin.  The box snaps shut, so even though it is not acid-free, it will be much easier to work with going through airport security.  And it's easy enough to get another here, so we can just leave it there, for perhaps the second round of photos to be transported!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Family Recipe Friday - Orange Almond Cake

This gluten-free Orange Almond Cake is a new recipe in our household, and it is a keeper!  And I have to say, it is yummy indeed!  I wish I had thought to make this for our Easter buffet last week.  The flavors are refreshing, perfect for a springtime celebration.

It is best when eaten still relatively warm (but what cake isn't, right?!!!).  Also, this cake is so moist, as I pulled away the parchment paper, it cracked down the top!  So it most definitely could not stand up to any frosting.  It is suggested that it be served with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream on the side.  You could add a drizzle of Grand Marnier or other liqueur, but it really doesn't need it.  This cake just melts in your mouth.

Gluten-Free Orange Almond Cake

--3 large oranges
--500 grams white sugar
--6 large eggs
--500 grams almond meal

Directions - Heat oven to 365 degrees.
1.  Bring a pot of water to boil; add oranges.  Cover and simmer for one hour.
2.  Strain off water and cool the oranges.
3.  While oranges cool, use a food processor to mix sugar and eggs until all is dissolved.  Pour into a bowl.
4.  Cut the oranges in half and de-seed.  Place oranges (peel and pith) into food processor and pulp until reasonably smooth.  This mixture will be somewhat lumpy.
5.  Pour mixture into the sugar/egg mix and add the almond meal.  Gently mix together until incorporated.
6.  Line a springform pan with parchment paper.  Pour mixture into pan and bake for 50-60 minutes at 365 degrees.
7.  Remove and let cool. 

Be careful when removing from pan--our experience was that this cake is extremely moist, which makes it so delicious.  However, it also makes it difficult to remove the paper and may experience some cracking (as ours did).  Instead of placing it on a platter, we decided to use a straight-sided quiche dish, for extra support should it need it.  It's all worth it, though!  Enjoy!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Military Monday - A Fighter Pilot in the Family

"Will and Adcock"

is written on the back of the photo.  Will is on the left.

Last month would have been the 91st birthday of William Jordan Kinling, my mom's first cousin. 

Bill was born March 29, 1921, and died July 27, 1999, at the too-young age of 78.  Like all our family members, he was much more than dates on a tree.  In between, he was also a son, grandson, World War II fighter pilot, husband, father, grandfather, a great friend to many and much, much more.  Called "Will" as a child and young adult, he eventually became known as "Bill."  I think that happened after the service, not positive. 

Bill's middle name is his mother's maiden name, a common practice, and often seen on mom's side of the family.  There were family names like Jordan, Fulton, Sampson, Wright.  Those names make good "middle" names and carry on the tradition.

That custom doesn't work so well in a big Polish family, like my dad's side, with last names like Szymanski, Poznaniak, Gostomski and Landowski.  I remember it being hard enough to learn to spell my own last name, much less having a four-syllable middle name to deal with! 

My mom has only a few photos of her cousin, despite his family members owning a photo studio.  The one above is my favorite. 

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Happy Easter Greetings!

This vintage card, courtesy of The Graphics Fairy, might have originated in a year
when Easter was very early...notice the four-leaf clovers as well.  Perhaps the artist was trying to include a Happy St. Patrick's Day wish in there?  

Just like a genealogist, huh, always trying to read more into it?!!! 

Either way, I think these musical bunnies are just adorable.

Happy Easter!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Happy Census Release Day!

Have a great Census Release Day!

Hope you have done your advance research,
have pinpointed the enumeration districts you need,
and are well-stocked with supplies and coffee. 

Enjoy the day!