Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Grandpa George's Garden

Brin George in his garden, Windsor, Ontario, 1978. Original photograph. Privately held by Kathryn HoganUE, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Windsor, Ontario. 2005.

Quite a few of my ancestors were farmers or agricultural labourers who made their living from working the land. However, the ancestor I best remember as the master gardener in the family was not a farmer by trade. My grandfather, Brin George was a carpenter, and enjoyed gardening as a hobby.

In the small backyard of the yellow brick house at 422 Foch Avenue was a large maple tree. The tree was planted the spring of 1946. By the time I was a child it was very tall. In order to keep the branches and leaves from interfering with the hydro wires overhead, Grandpa George would have to regularly trim the tree. He found the best way was to shape the tree into a pillbox. Even when Grandpa was in his eighties, he would climb up the tree, wedge a board between the limbs, and stand on the board up through the middle of the tree. Then, with a large pair of wooden-handled, metal pruning shears in-hand he would trim the leaves and branches while the hydro wires dangerously dangled overhead. He never once got zapped!

I remember Grandpa once won a $100 prize in a gardening/landscaping contest for the way he trimmed the tree. What did he do with the prize money? He bought more plants for his garden, of course.

I think Grandpa George was most proud of his beefsteak tomatoes. He had quite the green thumb. I remember how big these tomotoes would grow! They tasted great. Grandpa's garden included other vegetables but also many flowers such as lupins, snap dragons, pansies, and tea roses growing on the arbour in the backyard, and on the trellis on the veranda in the front yard.

It's Grandpa George's birthday today. I think I'll have a toasted tomato sandwich for lunch in honour of the man who was my family's master gardener.

Copyright 2014 by Kathryn Lake Hogan, UE.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Where Were the Canadian Experts in WDYTYA? Rachel McAdams Episode?

Photo credit: TLC

I thought this episode Who Do You Think You Are? with Rachel and Kayleen McAdams was interesting and entertaining. Both Rachel and Kayleen were genuinely curious to find more about both sides of their mother's family. It was fun to watch how excited Kayleen and Rachel were when they learned they had a long line of ancestors in Canada. Both young ladies asked good questions about their ancestry, and the information presented to them.

My particular interest in this episode was the McAdams' Loyalist ancestry. I had the pleasure of attending the United Empire Loyalists' Association of Canada Conference 2014 this past June. One of the speakers was Todd Braisted. Todd is what I consider to be an American Revolutionary War expert especially with the battles and regiments of the New York and New Jersey. Rachel's and Kayleen's Loyalist ancestor, James Gray was from New York. Todd did a lot of the research for the show. The information presented was spot on. Todd did a great job.

I was dismayed and disappointed that the two male experts who met with Rachel and Kayleen were not Canadian. Both were Americans who the WDYTYA producers flew to Ottawa. I don't know if the female expert who met the sisters at the Archives of Ontario was Canadian or not. Don't let the little red maple leaf on Dr. Allan Taylor's cap fool you. Dr. Taylor did a find job of presenting the information, but he is not Canadian. Were any Canadian experts contacted for the show? Was the UELAC contacted? I can easily think of a half dozen or so Canadian genealogists and archivists who, in my opinion, should have presented the information to their fellow Canadians, Rachel and Kayleen.

They were two pieces of information presented that were not quite accurate. People living in the Thirteen Colonies at the outbreak of the Revolutionary War were not American. They were British. Yes, British subjects. Check the date when the Constitution was signed. Also, it is important to know those who were loyal to the Crown and came to Canada could petition for land, and so could their children in their own right. This was not made clear on the show.

Overall, I enjoyed this episode. I was glad to see the producers didn't try to put an American spin on the story, but allowed the Loyalist ancestor to be the Canadian hero that he was. I'm looking forward to watching this episode again.

Should Rachel and Kayleen, or anyone else be interested in obtaining their certificate as a descendant of a Loyalist ancestor, please visit the UELAC website at www.uelac.org

Copyright by Kathryn Lake Hogan, 2014.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Why I Need Your Consent

Changes to how people in Canada receive email messages takes effect this coming Tuesday, July 1, 2014.
In order to receive my newsletter, LOOKING4CANADIAN ANCESTORS, I need your consent.

 No consent = no newsletter (even you were a subscriber to Honey Badger's Burrow). The old email list has been deleted.

The newly rebranded monthly newsletter is already in the works, with a scheduled delivery time the third week of every month starting this July.

Don't want to miss out on great tips, resources, stories and information about researching your Canadian ancestors? Subscribe by entering your email address in the right sidebar.

Copyright by Kathryn Lake Hogan, 2014.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Interviewed for The Genealogy Professional Podcast

Last week I had the pleasure of spending an hour or so via Skype with Marian Pierre-Louis of new podcast The Genealogy Professional podcast. Marian had contacted me earlier about being interviewed for the podcast. Oh, what fun! We hit it off straight away, and discovered we have quite a few things in common. Our interview time flew by quickly, and before I knew it we were at the lightning round of questions.

Here's the link for this week's episode of the The Genealogy Professional podcast, Episode #6, featuring yours truly. I hope you enjoy it.

Copyright by Kathryn Lake Hogan, 2014.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

What Are My Three Words for 2014?

A few years ago, I started following this exercise of Chris Brogan. Take three words and use them as your focus for your goals and efforts in the year to come. You can use these words in your business, personal and family lives.

My Three Words for 2014

Fresh - I'm taking a fresh approach on how I do business this year by making some changes to what I do, how I do it, and who I'm working with.

Fit - This just isn't a personal focus and goal, it's also a business one. It's time to cut out the distractions, make better use of my time, and get my get fit.

Fabulous - I'm working on improving my attitude in 2014. I'm aiming for fabulous - not in an arrogant, self-serving way - but in a grateful and positive way. I think having a fabulous attitude and approach will allow me to serve my customers, colleagues and contacts better in 2014 and beyond.

Copyright by Kathryn Lake Hogan, 2014.