Connect To The Youth In Your Family By Connecting Them To Their Family History

Thursday, February 21, 2013

It works with all ages

 On my way to speak at the Who Do You Think You Are Live conference in London this week I got the opportunity to take my Dad on a Who Do You Think You Are tour.  It was absolutely fantastic.  It was just the two of us and we had a great time together.  It was so wonderful to have some good time with him, and to introduce him to his ancestors in a more real way.

Although Dad has some great scholarly research skills, he hasn't been all that interested in genealogy.  But he was quite impressed.  How could you not be when you are looking at signatures and wax seals that date from before the time of the American Revolution--who are related to you.  I talked about it more on my Chart Chick blog.  I think Dad was impressed. 

Now you may think at this point that this blog is going to be all about taking your family on trips, but that isn't the case.  Family history trips are one of the most incredible ways to engage your family members but they can be long and expensive, especially if your family moved around alot.  Things have just happened to work out that way in my life right now and it has been so fun I've wanted to tell you about it.  But I'm launching the new workbook at the conference this weekend and as soon as I get back, we'll be getting them ready to ship out.  I had the most fantastic time finishing up this workbook and I'm so excited to share with you all the wonderful ideas I found about how to engage your family members with their family history.  Stay tuned.  I'll be sharing them on the blog as well.

I was amazed at how settled I felt this time as we left the area.  The first time I went I longed to share it with my family members.  Now that I've taken my Dad and my children--the other descendants of this line, I feel completed, like I'm ready to move on to another line.  Mom and I are already planning a trip to work on her lines as well--so that's something to look forward to.   What a great adventure family history is.  Something deep in your stomach or your chest that feels good.  What an important thing to give to the next generation. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

If you missed the sale...

Come see us at the conferences we are attending this spring.  I'll be speaking alot about youth and family history.  I'm excited to get to see you and find out what your ideas are too.  Here's where we are going next. 
  • Who Do You Think You Are Live. February 22-24 London, England
    • Janet is speaking on "Grandmother’s Bullet Proof Vest: Why Your Children Need To Know Their Family’s History and What To Do About It." Feb 23rd at noon and "Grandpa's on my Ipod: Extending your Family History Using Social Networking and Mobile Devices." on Feb 24th at 11am.
  • Family History Expo February 22-23rd St. George Utah.
    • Lara will be exhibiting and showing off our new book. 
  • North Florida Genealogy Conference March 8-9, St. Augustine Florida
    • Janet will be speaking on "The New Family Tree," "Grandmother’s Bullet Proof Vest: Why Your Children Need To Know Their Family’s History and What To Do About It," and "My Mother's Manipulations:  How Mom Turned Me Into A Genealogist Without Really Meaning To."
  • RootsTech March 21-23rd Salt Lake City, Utah
  • UGA Spring Conference April 19-20 in Woods Cross Utah.
  • National Genealogical Society Conference May 8-11 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  
    • Janet will be speaking on“Magnifying Glass, Wide-Angle Lens or Telescope? Charts To Visualize and Share Your Family Tree” at 9:30 am on 11 May
  • Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree June 7-9 Burbank, California
    • Janet will be speaking on "Double Your Membership, Double Your Fun: The UGA Case Study" at 11am June 7, "Beyond Scotch Tape: Charts to Fascinate Your Family" at 3:30 on June 8th. and "Let's Get This Party Started, Family History Conferences For The Whole Family." at 2:30 on June 9th.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Heartfelt feedback

Celia Lewis wrote me a very inspiring email this week.  I asked her if I could share it with you and she said I could.  She expresses exactly what I was trying to say in the first email of our 52 weeks of ideas newsletter about the value of family history.  She is a hero for turning around a destructive pattern in her family.  We all need to teach our children and grandchildren about the past so that they know the value of what we have built in our current families and that it is worth the effort you have to put in to it. 

She writes..
"About your newsletter post today - the lessons learned by the older
generation, passing on to the next...

I was very upfront with my kids about how in our family, swearing at
each other or calling each other names was absolutely not done to
people you love.   That it was as nasty as hitting them with a
baseball bat.

My own upbringing was quite challenging - my rageaholic mother
targeted me and verbally beat me into a rather broken mess for the
first 12-14 years of my life - I'm the 2nd daughter with a younger
brother. She only ranted and raged at me when others were not around,
of course.  But having random but frequent rages directly into my face
about what a piece of stupid ugly I am ( in details I'd rather
not hear ever again...even on virtual paper) - does incredible damage.
 I used to think I must have been adopted, but unfortunately I looked
just like my dad and I had older cousins I talked with when I was in
my teens who remembered mom pregnant and me as a new baby.  Sigh.

So when I grew up and married I determined never to do that to my
kids.  Ever.  I already knew that her father had also been a
rageaholic with some physical violence to the elder two of the 5
children (mom was the baby); and that HIS father had been rather
fanatically 'religious' and physically abusive as well.  Not in my
house, thank you very much.

The best statement my kids ever gave me was when my eldest daughter (I
have 4 kids, 2 of each) told me when she in her 20s "Well, mom," she
stated with one hand on her hip, "we might not have liked what you
decided was our discipline or consequences when we were out of line,
but ... (long pause) ... we always knew you had thought about it for
awhile, first.  You didn't just get all reactive and mad like (a
friend's parents).  So that was okay, I guess."

I taught parenting classes for over 23 years to keep myself honest
with my kids, being clear about their developmental abilities, keeping
the house rules down to 3 rules, and trying my best.  I was very open
about the abuse in my mother's family - people think that only sexual
abuse is bad... Let me tell you that emotional abuse is absolutely
soul-destroying.  Three of my four kids are married, two with 3
children each, and I'm very proud to say that they all - all 4 of my
kids - are absolutely respectful and clear communicators with

Yes, one does need to teach the stories in one's family.  Not only to
add depth to what your grown up kids think they know, but also for
their own children to understand that being the best you can be is
sometimes hard work, sometimes incredible fun, and sometimes very
frustrating to figure out in the middle of a problem situation.  But
it's possible.

All best wishes in your genealogy endeavours!

- Celia
Vancouver BC

Congratulations Celia.  You are a real ground breaker, understanding your roots and strengthening the future generations.  

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Preview of the workbook

I'm sending the workbook to the printers today.  I'm so excited about how it turned out I can't wait to show you. 

Power Up Workbook Cover We know these books will help you leave a strong and stable heritage for the next generations in your family.   They teach you how to live your family history as a lifestyle that teaches your family about their heritage in easy and simple ways.  Here is a 24 page excerpt of the new workbook.  With over 100 pages of amazing ideas and resources, the workbook will really get the ideas flowing about what will work with your family.  A 28 page excerpt of the book are on the website as well.  Take a look.  They are guaranteed to get ideas flowing about what will work with your family.

We've had such a wonderful response to the release of our first book.  Comments like "overflowing with valuable ideas and suggestions" and "must-read for everyone who treasures family history" have been really gratifying.  This is the book that will finally help you involve your family in their family history. 

The introductory sale has the book at $19.95 (regular $23.95) until tomorrow.  During the sale you can also pre-purchase the workbook that goes with the book for a reduced price.  Order the Power-Up Workbook at the same $19.95 price (regular $23.95) and we'll pay the shipping when the book comes out in March.   Click here and you can save $13.00 on both books until tomorrow.  Enjoy the book now, get started with the ideas, and then when the workbook comes you'll find even more to help you connect to your family.  

Zap the Grandma Gap : Connect With Your Family by Connecting Them To Their Family History by Janet Hovorka  and Zap The Grandma Gap: Power Up Workbook: The Particulars About How To Connect Your Family by Connecting Them To Their Family History by Janet Hovorka are on sale until tomorrow at $19.95 (regular $23.95).  You can purchase them now at