Wednesday, February 19, 2014

"Remember when, I was young and so were you..." ~ Alan Jackson

Thank you for stopping by my blog.  The post today is part of a blog circle called "Sisterhood Stories." Take the time to follow the blog links, you'll be glad you did.  After you've spent some time here, please pop over to Laura's blog at

Clan Stuart of Bute Crest
Recently, there has been a big advertising push by  Being curious, I tried the free trial, and became hooked on tracing my roots.  Being a photographer, I was THRILLED to find images of ancestors as far back as the 1750's.  Of course, they're not photographs, someone had to take the time to paint a portrait.  These are my 5th great grandparents John Stewart and Margaret Potts.  John Stewart, a first generation American in this family line, and he came from the Scottish "Stuarts."   I have come to meet some Scottish cousins through the DNA portion of, and learned that I am from the Stuart of Bute Clan.

Meanwhile, John's wife Margaret Potts came from the family who founded Pottstown, Pennsylvania, which was another fun historical lesson for me. (Paintings from the Jerry Dagenhart collection)

 Photography is currently so readily available to everyone.  But if you step back in time to 1839,  Sir John Herschel invented a process of "light writing" using a glass negative.  This was followed by Louis Daugerre's more publically adopted photographic process called daguerrotypy, also introduced in 1839, but more widely used starting in the 1860's.  As the new art form took hold, people were documented in a new way.  The subjects had to sit still for 30 minutes to create a non-blurry image.

 This is a daguerreotype of my 3rd Great Grandparents
William Henry Stewart (1810-1860) and Adeline Johnson (1830-1880)
(From the Jerry Dagenhart collection)

I had never seen any of these paintings or photos before, but I must tell you, my grandmother was the spitting image of Adeline, who sadly died from tuberculosis.  Aside from the profound improvements in photography over the years, we are also very lucky to live with our more modern medical advances.

As each generation passed, the photo process improved.  These are some photos of my Great Great Grandparents.  Please note, I discovered that Samuel Clemens aka Mark Twain is a distant cousin to my Irish GG Grandfather Daniel.
Daniel Pomeroy 1837-1916 and Sarah Jane 1843-1917

Reuben Yount 1844-1921
I found this Great Great Grandfather's pictured in an online book about Civil War Soldiers of Catawba County.  Thanks to the internet we now have instant access to so much information.  He had submitted a story of his life for the book, and I learned that he fought at The Civil War Battle of Gettysburg, where he lost his right hand, but luckily not his life.  

Alfred Ratchford 1855-1902 and Letitia Ann Jenkins 1858-1906

I spoke with my 90 year old grandmother yesterday, who said the Great Great Grandparents above died young, Alfred had a heart problem, and Letitia died from measles.   Aren't we blessed to have immunizations?

Finally, this is the first photo ever taken of me.  Photography has come a long way since then.  I'm so grateful for our current ability to capture moments so quickly and effortlessly.  It's also wonderful to be able to share our photos with friends, family, even distant cousins, all over the world.

I wonder what the next generation of advancements will bring?  Thanks again for stopping by and please visit Laura's blog at .

Here's a little inspiration to get out there and live life fully and savor those moments.  Remember, time flies.
Remember When? ~ song by Alan Jackson, "Up" characters by Pixar 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

I see the perfection in all of life. ~ A Louise Hay Affirmation

Thank you for stopping by my blog.  Today, I'm participating in "Sisterhood Stories."  We are an International group of artists and we get together every few weeks by linking our blog posts together and journey through our lives and stories. It's quite inspiring to travel from artist to artist, blog to blog, and country to country.  Please take some time, and after you've visited here stop by Sue's blog at

Recently I've been noticing artist friends who have been participating in the 100 Happy Days challenge.   

The main idea behind this challenge is to notice, and share things that you are grateful for, or things that make you happy.  Since I'm the type who tends to mull things over before I leap into something new, I've just been paying attention.  

The other day I drove my daughter to school when she missed her bus. She likes to get there early, and it was wonderful to enjoy the soft morning light.    We live on Palos Verdes Peninsula, in Southern California. 

I marveled at the Pacific Ocean view, and the faraway glimpse of Los Angeles in the horizon.

I breathed in the ocean air and peaceful feeling and sat for a while taking in natures beauty.

It was a hazy morning, and on the way home, I stopped by Malaga Cove Plaza for a quick coffee, before going home to drive my elementary daughter to her school.

The architecture here is called Mediterranean Revival, which takes influences from Spanish and Italian   styles.

We have the most wonderful Bakery, Flower, Cafe shop called "The Yellow Vase."  It's a great place to get a coffee, or even breakfast or lunch if you have time for that.

Finally, I took notice of all the blooming trees.  Everywhere I look these days, there are blooms on the trees.

January and February in Southern California really are more like Spring than any other time here.  

I was so grateful to have noticed the morning air, the beautiful light, and the gorgeous architecture with colorful flowers.  It lifted my spirits, and I had a wonderful day.  I hope you take notice of the beautiful things in your life too, and thank you 100 Happy Days creator!   I'm certainly happier just contemplating the idea of it.

Thanks for stopping by, and remember to visit Sue at

Have a blessed day!