Monday, July 27, 2009

What I'm Currently Working On

Another fun, family-friendly family history idea from the Ensign.

Kelly Toth, “Our Family Picture Book,” Ensign, July 2009, p. 67

Scrapbooks shouldn’t just sit on a shelf collecting dust. You can use them to stay connected with extended family or learn about your ancestors.

Since the albums are going to be handled a lot, I recommend using a convenient size, such as 6 inches by 8 inches. They should have clear, archival page protectors that are easy to insert and remove as needed. I begin with a table of contents, followed by a pedigree chart that starts with my parents and goes back two generations. Next is a page that explains the meanings and origins of our family names. Then I designate a page for each paternal and maternal great-grandparent, ending with current family members, and I update the pages when new photos are available. I also tuck in a few blank pages for future spouses and children, knowing that I can always insert more as needed.

Each person’s page contains a photo, vital statistics, favorite scripture, and favorite dessert. Before each married child’s picture, I place a pedigree chart of the child’s immediate family. I also share the meanings of maiden names or husbands’ last names.

I enjoy scrapbooking and preserving our family’s heritage. It’s a great way for my children to remember family members who live far away. Though this project may seem daunting at first, you can do it a page or two at a time. Then use it and share it, but don’t shelve it.

I recently finished my first set of pages for my great-grandfather, Maurice Warfield Smith. Finding old pictures and using the autobiography my grandfather wrote have been fun, and have fleshed out details about Maurice that I didn't know before.

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