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Tuesday, January 3, 2012
'A change is as good as a rest'
Once again I am quoting my dad in the title of this post, 'a change is as good as a rest'. I've decided to refresh the look of 'On a flesh and bone foundation': an Irish History. Over the last month I have wrestled with the idea of not only changing the background, but changing the title of this blog as well. However, after talking to a friend about it, I decided that the title is what it is because of the meaning behind it. My friend asked me why my blog has the title it does, and in order to answer her I had to cast my thoughts way back to the beginning of this blog.
I am very blessed to have my wonderful family members in Australia, England, and The United States of America, but the fact is that my family history, at its foundation, is essentially an Irish family history. My mother, my father, and my brother are all Irish born, and in the many generations back from them our family members were born, lived and died in Ireland. Although I am first generation Canadian, I hold Irish Citizenship and travel on an Irish passport. In the west country of Ireland, our paternal name can be traced back to the 8th century.
We are Irish to our very core, and that was what inspired the title of this blog, 'On a flesh and bone foundation': An Irish History. Although I have been composing basic family trees and doing some family history research since I was about 15 years old, for me building on the foundation of my family began in earnest after the death of my dad. The drive to rediscover the history of our family pushed my research further than ever before. There is something about getting a sense of the mortality of family members that brings such research into sharp focus.
Along the way, with respect to the title of this blog, I have encountered what was probably inevitable, given the inclusion of the words 'flesh' and 'bone', and I have at times regretted the title; however, the fact is the title still fits. The 'bones' of this story are the documents, the official records of birth, marriage, death, and so on, which stand as proof of my connection to my ancestors. The 'flesh' is the stories of my ancestors, the glorious and the ignoble, the joyous and the heartbreaking, all of the times which fill out the skeleton of a life.