Saturday, December 27, 2014

A House is Made Of Bricks And Beams. A Home Is Made Of Love And Dreams

"A house is made of bricks and beams.
A home is made of love and dreams."

In this photo: 
My great grand uncle; James Jay Burnes Jr. (left)
My great grand aunt; Lena Jane McGowan Burnes (right)
My 1st cousin, twice removed; Florence Elna Burnes (middle, left)
My 1st cousin, twice removed; Benton Byron Burnes (middle, right)
This was their first home. Built around 1910 in Fruitdale, Washington, Alabama.

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah  :)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

You Never Said Goodbye: A Poem About Losing a Loved One

Author Unknown

You never said I'm leaving
You never said goodbye.
You were gone before I knew it,
And only God knew why.

A million times I needed you,
A million times I cried.
If love alone could have saved you,
You never would have died.

In life I loved you dearly,
In death I love you still.
In my heart you hold a place,
That no one could ever fill.

It broke my heart to lose you,
But you didn't go alone
For part of me went with you,
The day God took you home.

We Are The Children Of Many Sires

"We are the children of many sires, and every drop of blood in us in its turn ... betrays its ancestor."  -Ralph Waldo Emerson

-Sarah :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

I Wish I Had Realized That Family History is a Perishable Commodity

"I wish I had realized that family history is a perishable commodity. It disappears with time, as memories fade, and as loved ones pass on. I wish I had known that the most important aspect of family history is preserving a record of the present for the future." -Guy Black

So true! Start preserving YOUR life history... right now!

-Sarah :)

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

If You Would Not Be Forgotten, As Soon As You Are Dead And Rotten

"If you would not be forgotten, as soon as you are dead and rotten; either write things worthy of reading, or do things worthy of writing." -Benjamin Franklin

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Thursday, July 17, 2014

You Know You're A Genealogist If Your Vacation Bucket List Includes Fort Wayne, Salt Lake City and Washington D.C.

"You know you’re a genealogist if your vacation bucket list includes Fort Wayne, Salt Lake City, and Washington, D.C. (all in the same year)" -Unknown

Genealogists, am I right?

Keep connecting the dots on your next trip to Salt Lake City.

-Sarah :)

Monday, July 14, 2014

"What I Like About Photographs is That They Capture a Moment That's Gone Forever, Impossible to Reproduce."

"What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that's gone forever, impossible to reproduce." -Karl Lagerfeld

About this photo: This beautiful couple (in the background) are my grand aunt Jessie Christy and grand uncle Harry Christy and their sweet baby.
Date: 1944
Place: Jefferson County, Iowa

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

The Old Scrapbook - Poem By C. Nathalie Ellen Milliken

"The Old Scrapbook"
By C. Nathalie Ellen Milliken

It speaks of times now long ago
In a voice so soft and low,

Come, my friend, see what you can see,
Come and take a look at me.

My bright colors are faded and dim,
But my spirit is bright within,

Pictures of people in days gone by,
Laughing and crying, we know not why,

Cards and pamphlets, and programs old,
What are the stories they have told?

Wrapping paper, an old gift tag,
Pieces of this, and bits of that,

Little treasures that people have saved,
Celebrations of special days,

So many mem’ries my pages fill,
They’re waiting now to give you a thrill,

So come, my friend, come take a look,
I am a very special old book,

My binding is cracked, but my heart is whole,
Looking at me is like finding gold.

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

We Don't Remember Days; We Remember Moments

"We don't remember days' we remember moments." -Cesare Pavese

About this photo: This is my father (and his dog) and grandfather in Napa, California. 1952.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Your Favorite Genealogy Design. You voted. We Delivered. Here Are The Winners!

On Facebook and Instagram, we asked for your vote on these four different genealogy designs...
...within only 24 hours, hundreds of votes came pouring in and your votes determined the winner!!

THE WINNER!! You voted #4 as your favorite genealogy design. (Photo below)

THE RUNNER UP: You voted #1 as your 2nd favorite genealogy design. (Photo below)

THE NEW AND IMPROVED #2: Many of you asked me if I would flip the border on #2, so it was on the top instead of the bottom. So of course I recreated it... just for you. What do you think?

Thanks for all your votes. 

Here are the  final creations.  We couldn't have created these without you. Feel free to share it, pin it, tweet it, like it or save it...

 ...and remember to keep connecting the dots!

P.S. These beautiful family members are my ancestors:  John Eli Burns (father), Anna McCloud Burns (mother), and their four children; (L-R) Grover, Jessie, Floyd, Grace.

-Sarah :)

  "We inherit from our ancestors gifts so often taken for granted. Each of us contains within this inheritance of soul. We are links between the ages, containing past and present expectations, sacred memories and future promise." - Edward Sellner

Friday, June 06, 2014

"Cherish All Your Happy Moments; They Make A Fine Cushion For Old Age."

"Cherish all your happy moments; they make a fine cushion for old age."
-Booth Tarkington

About this photo: This is my great grandmother, Maude Ethel Adams (left) and my grandmother Ruth Imogene Adams Burnes (right) standing in front of grandmas home in Napa, California in 1961.  Grandma told me her most treasured moments were spending time with her mother. They had a great bond and were very close. Grandma always spoke so highly of her. 

What are your happiest moments in life?

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Monday, June 02, 2014

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 22 - Your Favorite Family Vacation

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 22 - Favorite Family Vacations

This week, let's get documenting your favorite family vacation from your childhood.

  1. Growing up, what was your favorite family vacation?
  2. What mode of transportation did you use?

  3. What did you eat while on vacation?

  4. What did you do for fun?

  5. Did you visit family or friends?

  6. Did you bring anything home?

  7. What was the best part of the vacation?

  8. What was the worst part of the vacation?

  9. What was the date of this favorite family vacation?

  10. Where would you like to take your family on vacation now?

That's it! Keep connecting the dots!

-Sarah :)

Friday, May 23, 2014

"You Are Our Living Link To The Past..." -George H. W. Bush

"You are our living link to the past.  Tell your grandchildren the story of the
struggles waged, at home and abroad.  Of sacrifices made for freedom's sake.
And tell them your own story as well —  because everybody has a story to tell."
-George H. W. Bush

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Thursday, May 22, 2014

“If We Know Where We Came From, We May Better Know Where To Go..."

“If we know where we came from, we may better know where to go. If we know who we came from, we may better understand who we are.” -Anonymous

About this photo: I took this photo of my great, great, great grandparents homestead in Hope, Indiana. This beautiful tree and old tin shed inspired me to capture all the surroundings where my ancestors once lived. I photographed many angles of the exterior and interior of this 180 year old home. I photographed old tools and farming equipment, rocks, trees, an old ladder and the plants and flowers around the property. This was something I will cherish forever!

Have you ever visited an ancestors homestead?

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Monday, May 19, 2014

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 20 - Which Ancestors Do You Look Like?

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 20 - Which Ancestors Do You Look Like?

This week, start looking through those old pictures of your ancestors. Look closely at their facial features to see if any look like you. I came across a photo of my grand aunt, Catherine Johnson with some of my features, more than any other ancestors.
Now it's your turn...

  1. Which ancestor do you look like? (Full Name)
  2. What similar features do you both have?
  3. Have you seen these similar features found in other relatives?
That's it! Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Monday, May 12, 2014

"Take Care Of All Your Memories..." -Bob Dylan

"Take care of all your memories. For you cannot relive them." -Bob Dylan

About this photo: This is a photograph of my mother Linda and her first baby (my big brother William). He was the first of eleven children. This photo was taken in Napa, California in June, 1967.

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 19 - All About Your Hardships

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 19 - All About Your Hardships

hard·ship (noun) \ˈhärd-ˌship\

  • pain and suffering
  • something that causes pain, suffering, or loss
Hardships come to all of us. Whether it's the loss of a loved one, a disease or illness, an addiction, mental illness, financial problems, insecurites, or family issues; we all have them. This week I would like all of us to dig a little deeper and write about our hardships in this life. Because it was those times, that shaped our lives the most. How great would it be for your grandchild to read about your hardships and learn  how to overcome their own, because you overcame yours. For them to be able to relate to you and be humbled by your example to perservere through great trials. What a great gift that will be.
Let's do this...

  1. What are some of your greatest hardships?
  2. How did you cope during your hardships?
  3. How did you overcome your hardships?
  4. Who helped you during your hardships?
  5. What life lessons did your learn because of your hardships?
That's it! Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day Poem - Rock Me To Sleep By: Elizabeth Akers Allen

Rock Me To Sleep

By: Elizabeth Akers Allen

Mother, dear mother, the years have been long

Since I last listened your lullaby song:
Sing, then, and unto my soul it shall seem
Womanhood’s years have been only a dream.
Clasped to your heart in a loving embrace,
With your light lashes just sweeping my face,
Never hereafter to wake or to weep;—      
Rock me to sleep, mother, – rock me to sleep!

Happy Mother's Day!!

Friday, May 09, 2014

Angels Are Mothers Poem By Kathleen J. Shields

by Kathleen J. Shields 

There are Angels God puts on this Earth, 
Who care for us and guide us.
You can feel their love and gentleness
as they walk through life beside us.

They do great things for us every day
they whisper in our ears,
they even hold us in their hearts
when we are filled with all our fears.

They are always there to give a hug
and try to make us smile.
They treat us with respect and love,
they treat us like their child.

God blessed me with an Angel,
I’m proud to call my own.
She’s been with me throughout my
life, been with me as I’ve grown.

She’s guided me the best she can,
she’s taught me like no other,
and I’m thankful I’m the lucky one
who gets to call her… MOTHER.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Your Mother Is Always With You, Poem

“Your Mother is always with you.
She's the whisper of the leaves as you walk down the street.
She's the smell of certain foods you remember,
flowers you pick and perfume that she wore.
She's the cool hand on your brow when you're not feeling well.
She's your breath in the air on a cold winter's day.
She’s the sound of the rain that lulls you to sleep,
the colors of a rainbow. She is Christmas morning.
Your Mother lives inside your laughter.
She's crystallized in every teardrop.
A mother shows every emotion .......... happiness, sadness, fear,
jealousy, love, hate, anger, helplessness, excitement, joy, 
sorrow... and all the while, hoping and praying
you will only know the good feelings in life.
She's the place you came from, your first home, and she's 
the map you follow with every step you take.
She's your first love; your first friend, even your first enemy, but
nothing on earth can separate you.
Not time, not space...not even death!”
Author: unknown

Happy Mother's Week!
-Sarah :)

Monday, May 05, 2014

Free Relationship Charts - Canon or Common Law & More.

I recently attended a family reunion on my husbands side and I loved it because of the stories that were told of his great, grandfather; Roscoe Titensor. After one of the stories, a woman sitting next to me said, "but how are we all related?" I was feeling confident about my family relationship knowledge and noticed that she was probably the same age as my husband, so I asked her "is Roscoe Titensor your great grandfather?" She said "Yes he is!" I then told her that my husband and her are 2nd cousins and our children are 3rd cousins, and her children and my husband are 3rd cousins once removed. She was completely astonished that I knew this, so I told her with a smile; "I like genealogy."

I realized at that point that there are probably a lot of people who didn't understand family relationships in their genealogy. So I wanted to put together a tutorial to help YOU understand your family relationships using these Relationship Charts.

Here's one of the most traditional charts out there: The Canon or Common Law Relationship Chart:

Click here to Download or print this Canon or Common Law Relationship Chart.

Here is another, more simple relationship chart created by Teach Me Genealogy. We recommend using both of these relationship charts in your genealogy to figure out your relationship between relatives.
Click image to enlarge

Click here to Download or print this simple Relationship Chart.

Keep learning about your family relations and keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 18 - All About Your Mother

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 18 - All About Your Mother

This week, let's document some interesting facts about our mothers. Here are 10 questions to get you started:

  1. What is your greatest accomplishment?

  2. What was your greatest trial?

  3. What is your favorite scent?

  4. What is your favorite flower?

  5. What do you love most about being a mother?

  6. If you could time travel to meet one person, who would it be?

  7. What is your favorite memory of your father?

  8. What is your favorite memory of your mother?

  9. What talents do you have?

  10. What advice would you give to the rising generations?

That's it. Keep going and keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Thursday, May 01, 2014

Family Tree Magazine Named Teach Me Genealogy A Family History "Social Media Maverick"

I was absolutely thrilled to get an email from one of the editors at Family Tree Magazine telling me they published an article about their top 40 Family History "Social Media Mavericks", and Teach Me Genealogy was one of those along with 39 other great tweeters, facebookers, bloggers, YouTubers, pinners and Instagramers all sharing the same passion for family history. So head on over to the Family Tree Magazine website and start following them and the top 40 family history social media mavericks!!

Family Tree Magazine Facebook Page
Family Tree Magazine Blog

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

"The Challenge I Give You as a Genealogist is To Reach Beyond The Vital Statistics To a New World of Understanding..."

"The challenge I give you as a genealogist is to reach beyond the vital statistics to a new world of understanding, both of your ancestors and of yourself. Preserve those details of your family in written form that will bring understanding to many others and truly enable their hearts - along with your own - to turn to their fathers. Someone has said that there is little point in digging up an ancestor if you aren't going to make him live. If that is true - and I believe it is - your job is not finished until you feel a bit of what he felt, have shared vicariously in his joys and heartaches - perhaps shed a tear with him in his sorrow laughed at the humor in his life, and felt pride in his accomplishment." - Val D. Greenwood

About this photo: You may have seen this picture in a few places; like on our Teach Me Genealogy Facebook page as the main cover photo...

You may have also seen this photo on other Teach Me Genealogy designed quotes like this one...

This photograph is very dear to me and the only family photo I have of my great grandparents. In this photo are my great grandparents, George Fredrick Burnes & Nina Isabelle Bradshaw Burnes. My grandfather William Emry Burnes (back, center) my great grand uncles; Orval Burnes (back, right), Ross Burnes (front, left), and Glen Burnes (baby). Nellie Leotta Burnes Henry is my great grand aunt (front, right)

Photo Taken: 1906

Place: Woodward, Woodward, Oklahoma

Tip: Get your old photos out, scan them into your computer, then put those original photos back in a safe place. Once they are scanned, you can bring them back to life by sharing them on social media and with friends and family.

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

"A Mother's Last Name May Not Get Carried Down The Tree..."

"A mother's last name may not get carried down the tree, but her love goes so much deeper and means so much more to me."  -Michelina Santoriello Hall

Michelina Santoriello Hall has a fabulous Family History blog called Preserving Heritage. She's a great resource for family history and has many ideas and freebies on her blog as well.
So head on over to Preserving Heritage -

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Grandmother's Rocking Chair Poem

Grandmother’s Rocking Chair Poem
By Karen O. Tribett

Grandma, hold me a little longer,
Rock me a little more.
Tell me another story,
(You’ve only told me four!)
Let me sleep on your shoulder.
I love your happy smile.
I’ll always love you Grandma,
so stay with me awhile.

Monday, April 21, 2014

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 16 - All About Relationship Charts

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 16 - All About Relationship Charts

This week, let's learn about our family relationships. Do you know the name of your 3rd cousin twice removed? How about your 1st cousin thrice (3x) removed? Use these two FREE relationship charts to help you understand your genealogy a little bit better. Print them and keep them close by.

This week do the following:

  • Print these two relationship charts
  • Study the relationships
  • Learn who your 3rd cousin twice (2x) removed is
Here's one of the most traditional charts out there: The Canon or Common Law Relationship Chart:

Click here to Download or print this Canon or Common Law Relationship Chart.

Here is another, more simple relationship chart created by Teach Me Genealogy. We recommend using both of these relationship charts in your genealogy to figure out your relationship between relatives.

Click image to enlarge

Click here to Download or print this simple Relationship Chart.

That's it. After you've looked over you relationship chart, leave a comment below if you know who your 3rd cousin twice removed is.

Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Monday, April 14, 2014

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 15 - Easter Traditions

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 15 - Easter Traditions

  • Did you celebrate Easter growing up?
    • If so:
      1. Did you have an Easter dinner with family?
      2. Did dye or color eggs?
      3. Did you have an Easter egg hunt?
      4. Tell about any other Easter traditions you had. 
Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Touch Of The Master's Hand - Poem

'Twas battered and scarred, 
And the auctioneer thought it 
hardly worth his while 
To waste his time on the old violin, 
but he held it up with a smile.

"What am I bid, good people", he cried, 

"Who starts the bidding for me?" 
"One dollar, one dollar, Do I hear two?" 
"Two dollars, who makes it three?" 
"Three dollars once, three dollars twice, going for three,"

But, No, 

From the room far back a gray bearded man 
Came forward and picked up the bow, 
Then wiping the dust from the old violin 
And tightening up the strings, 
He played a melody, pure and sweet 
As sweet as the angel sings.

The music ceased and the auctioneer 

With a voice that was quiet and low, 
Said "What now am I bid for this old violin?" 
As he held it aloft with its' bow.

"One thousand, one thousand, Do I hear two?" 

"Two thousand, Who makes it three?" 
"Three thousand once, three thousand twice, 
Going and gone", said he.

The audience cheered, 

But some of them cried, 
"We just don't understand." 
"What changed its' worth?" 
Swift came the reply. 
"The Touch of the Masters Hand."

And many a man with life out of tune 

All battered with bourbon and gin 
Is auctioned cheap to a thoughtless crowd 
Much like that old violin

A mess of pottage, a glass of wine, 

A game and he travels on. 
He is going once, he is going twice, 
He is going and almost gone.

But the Master comes, 

And the foolish crowd never can quite understand, 
The worth of a soul and the change that is wrought 
By the Touch of the Masters' Hand.

By: Myra Brooks Welch

Monday, April 07, 2014

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 14 - Teenage Years: First Job

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 14 - Teenage Years: First Job

  1. What was your first job?

  2. What were your duties?

  3. How much did you get paid each week?

  4. Did you enjoy your job?

  5. What was your boss' name?

  6. Did you get along with your boss?

  7. Did you ever make any mistakes at work?

  8. Did you have any friends at work?

  9. How far did you have to travel to get to work?

  10. For how long did you work at your first job?
Keep connecting the dots! -Sarah :)

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

April Fools Day Quotes and Sayings

  1. "You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time. " -Abraham Lincoln

  2. "April 1.  This is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other three hundred and sixty-four."  -Mark Twain

  3. "I have great faith in fools - self-confidence, my friends call it." -Edgar Allan Poe

  4. "It is the ability to take a joke, not make one, that proves you have a sense of humor."  -Max Eastman

  5. "Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me."  -Chinese Proverb

  6. "Forgive, O Lord, my little jokes on Thee,
    And I'll forgive Thy great big one on me."
    -Robert Frost

  7. "Let us be thankful for the fools.  But for them the rest of us could not succeed."  -Mark Twain

  8. "I hope life isn't a big joke, because I don't get it." -Jack Handey

  9. "Here cometh April again, and as far as I can see the world hath more fools in it than ever."  -Charles Lamb

  10. "We're fools whether we dance or not, so we might as well dance." -Japanese Proverb

  11. "A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to
    underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools." -Douglas Adams

  12. "Even the gods love jokes." -Plato

  13. "April fool, n. The March fool with another month added to his folly." -Ambrose Bierce

  14. "If every fool wore a crown, we should all be kings." -Welsh Proverb

  15. "A sense of humor is the ability to understand a joke-and that the joke is oneself." -Clifton Paul Fadiman

  16. "It is better to weep with wise men than to laugh with fools." -Spanish Proverb

  17. "Suppose the world were only one of God's jokes, would you work any the less to make it a good joke instead of a bad one?" -George Bernard Shaw

Monday, March 31, 2014

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 13 - Teenage Years: First Car

52 Weeks of Genealogy - Week 13 - Teenage Years: First Car

  1. What was the make, model and year of your first car?

  2. What color was your first car?

  3. What was the value or cost of your first car?

  4. Did you have to buy your first car?

  5. Did your parents ever take away your car for any reason?

  6. What was the price of gas when you first started driving?

  7. How much did it cost to fill up your car?

  8. Did you ever get into an accident in your first car?

  9. For how many years did you own your first car?

  10. Did you get any speeding tickets or traffic violation tickets in your first car? If so, tell about it.
Keep going every week to keep connecting the dots!! -Sarah :)