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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Royalty Here Across the Pond

It was quite a week. Every day so far it has started with a marine layer in the early morning (foggy) and has progressed to rather heated afternoons -- today it is mild so far in the afternoon. They tell me that this is perfect for the "grapes". We actually do not have any ourselves but we know people here in wine country that do -- and this weather is apparently good for the flowers:

The above are some pictures taken today in the backyard. One of these days we are going to get serious about adding more flowers . . .

It wasn't only the early morning fogginess that was interesting, it was the evening sun and the various displays brought along for a few minutes in the window-of-opportunity for photo taking:

The above are actually two different evenings and the time was just after eight p.m. -- Dino actually though there was going to be something in it for him as well -- he was a good sport though watching me snap photos.

The Thrill and Satisfaction of Completing a Task

There's nothing like finishing something that when you start you think "there's no way to do this . . ." For the last three and a half weeks, Gail has worked on this task intermittently and often with total frustration and at other times with a real sense of accomplishment:

If you click on the above you can see various stages of the puzzle completion. Again Dino thought there was something in it for him . . . but the bottom-line is that even though right up to the last few pieces Gail "was sure that there were pieces missing" the puzzle is now in the record books as having been -- done.

You may be able to see some of the many unique shapes of the laser-cut wood pieces from the Liberty Puzzle. We have several puzzles that Gail has worked on over the years and they are great -- and they are quality.
You can check the puzzles out at:      Liberty Puzzles    if you enjoy the challenge of puzzling, Liberty Puzzles are certainly one way to satisfy that need.

The Royal Puzzle (for me and others in our tree)

Speaking of puzzling -- so what is the new baby -- George Alexander Louis' last name?  And how do I enter his name into the family tree. Most folks that I asked for an answer to this did not have a clear answer -- so I went straight to an authority -- People Magazine -- just kidding, but they did have some answers.

Last year in a post (3 Jun 2012) I revealed the information that GENI had sent me (via Melissa) that I was indeed related to Queen Elizabeth II as an 11th cousin twice removed -- those of you related to me can make your own determination of relativity.

So that would mean that George Alexander Louis ______ is also my cousin (and yours possibly). But still I wondered about a "surname" -- I had really never given it much thought before. Well there are answers and I am not sure they help:

The reason that I say that is that the surname choice is up to choosing by Kate & William and it could be one of three different names:    Wales, or Cambridge, or Mountbatten-Windsor, and given the set of first names it hopefully will be either Wales or Cambridge to simplify it somewhat. Most computer forms do not allow for that many letters in a name . . . and if he were here in this country, Social Security would have a difficult time as well.

But it looks like the name Cambridge may be the choice as People Magazine has that on Prince Williams'
shirt front -- time will tell.  I guess that I can use initials -- G.A.L. Cambridge -- when entering it in our family tree . . . I have a few branches actually to fill out before I get that far though.

And Another Major Event this Month

It's hard to keep "in-the-know" about everything that is going on. Who knew that this month -- July -- is and almost over -- National Hot Dog Month. I only found out this week. And there are many ways to celebrate. Over the years I think about the many stands, carts and now Costco where great hot dogs are served. One of my all-time favorites was down in West Los Angeles -- Flookey's -- soooo good and fun.

But these days I satisfy my need for hot dogs after shopping at Costco -- to me it is a fine reward to enjoy one of their dogs.

Above are some of the dogs I really enjoy, As a tribute to this month I just finished a "turkey" dog a short while ago. I had all the trimmings that I like -- mustard, relish and onions -- on a slightly toasted bun. Really good. I wish I could find the place that sells poppy-seed buns like the above for both hot dogs and hamburgers -- we keep looking.

Lots of Activity from the Tree

Today, July 27 was very active for many of the folks in our tree. Several birthdays celebrated on this day and at least one marriage. The marriage involved a first cousin of mine (and yours) Sarah Ellen Hiles. She married Benjamin Franklin Bradford.

They married in 1874 and had nine children the last one born in 1890. His name was Lee Roy Bradford and he lived from 1890 to 1976 and he and his wife Mary had 19 children and their last child is Richard -- and Richard and I have communicated back and forth many times and shared information. It's a small world.

Clicking on the above you can see the birthday folks and to the right the relationship chart of Sarah Ellen Hiles to us. If you know any Bradfords they just might be our cousins.

I Might Just be a "little" Guilty

The Doctors related to both of us that Guillain-Barre may take "some" time before all the symptoms are gone. And in the meantime I would tire quickly. I may have pushed that thought when it was to my advantage to stay "at my seated post" once in a great while.

Earl Pickles on the other hand may have gotten caught with his own carelessness -- I at least do not have any bandages or other outward signs -- that I know of -- to be careful about . . .

So many of their dilemmas I can relate to . . .

Lastly a Wonderful Genealogy Show Returns

Last year it was announced after the season was over that "Who Do You Think You Are" would not be renewed for a third season by NBC. That I felt was really too bad AND then TLC announced that it would carry the show.

And so it has started this week with Kelly Clarkston as the celebrity who finds out about her family history. In this case -- if you did not see it -- Kelly finds out about her 3 x Great Grandfather and his life both through the Civil War (including being held prisoner at Andersonville) and his successful career following.

Next week it is Christina Applegate who learns about her family. The program is to me so well worth watching as they show the steps that the folks go through to uncover mysteries that usually astound the stars.

And while reading Dick Eastman's blog today I see that the first show is still available for watching online. There are several places like iTunes and at TLC itself.

To see the first program: click on    TLC to watch and see other details regarding the season.

That was a bit of our week, see you in a few. Burgers tonight (hot dogs for lunch) . . .

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Uncles Aunts and Family Plants

It was all over the map as to the weather this week. A few of the days we actually had the heat on in the morning and then switched over to the a/c in the afternoon and evening. We pretty much stuck to the home territory and worked around the house -- mostly on needle-points, puzzle points and photo points. A fresh crop of photos to scan and work on -- thank you Marv -- many I had never seen before or I claim that:

An interesting way of displaying the country -- and most of the above were either in triple digit temps or close to it. The Eastern half of the country too has a bit of humidity added in that we here in the West do not have so much of and are we thankful for at least that. I remember those Mid West heat spells and the humidity that was inescapable . . .

From the Photo Vault

I know that there are a lot of folks that have boxes and stacks of photos that are identifiable with foks in our tree. I was lucky enough to "obtain" some of the ones that can be attached to some of the folks in our tree. I am scanning them and giving the originals back to their caretaker -- Marv. And I am really thankful to have the chance to put some images alongside the names of some relatives.

Three of the above Uncles & Aunts (actually Grand Uncles & Grand Aunt) I did not have a photo for -- the remaining folks I was able to update their photos.

The unphoto'ed were Neil Herbert Nelson (did have a child photo for him) and the elusive Charles William Hiles and his wife Fanny. To see who is who -- check out the HILES website:  HILES Website
and first look at the "What's New" section and then go to the individual's home page.

Before you go to the website try to figure out the couples above . . .

And there are a variety of wonderful family get together photos as well. I have included a couple below to view:

If I didn't see "me" in the lower pic I would never have remembered this event. It obviously took place at the Dayton & Hildred Bumgardner home in Chicago. And I am guessing that it took place around 1954 judging from the youngest person in the photo being around two years old . . .

The top photo shows Mamie & Bapa (Dayton & Hildred Bumgardner) along with Mamie's siblings and their spouses -- if applicable. I recall meeting each and everyone in that picture but I do not recall them all together before or since.

The lower picture includes my whole family (including Joan, our foster sister) and my Mother's siblings and their spouses -- except for Stewart who probably took this photo. Bruce Bumgardner is the youngest person in the photo.

Webinar Wednesday (and Friday this week)

This week I figure I was lucky in that I had two webinars to attend. When you attend the "live" session the events are free of charge and remain so for about a week. Later recorded versions can be purchased. The first webinar this week was on Maryland Research -- excellent information and even if I did not have any (Maryland ancestors -- I think we do though) there were good techniques discussed,

The second webinar (Friday) was presented by Barbara Renick, a presenter I met earlier this year at out local Sonoma County Genealogical Society's event. She was excellent then and now. I learned a lot from both of the above sessions and look forward to next week when there are two more webinars scheduled, both on Wednesday . . .

Results from 23 and Me

About six weeks ago -- or so -- I sent in my tube containing the DNA to be analyzed from this the third company that I have done this with (the other two are FTDNA and AncestryDNA).

What prompted me to add the third company is the fact that 23 and Me provides a peek into medical issues as they pertain to DNA as well -- and I think that is reason enough to do it, the ancestry factors being a bonus.

I received my results back a few days ago -- I'll share some of the facts with you and some facts I will be looking at more in-depth:

I like the way that 23 and Me presents the data and how they illustrate their reports. The colorful charts help to visualize what I often find to be a complex issue. Clicking on the above you can see that my ancestry came back as 99.8% European -- no real surprise there. Included in that of course is the 16% or so Scandinavian. The remaining .2% may at some point become known.

In a few minutes, Gail is going to be "filling" the tube for her kit as well. The more people that participate the better for the study and the comparisons. On Ancestry's results we actually got a report back that Gail and I may (besides the fact that we are married) be distant cousins . . . we'll see if that happens on this test.

The Alligator Rider

One close to us celebrated her 18th birthday this week and it "seems just like yesterday" that we held her as a newborn. Congratulations to Olivia for achieving this level -- voting rights and all. She enters a university in a few months and aspires to be a teacher -- just like Gail.

We attended the family dinner for the occasion and look forward to subsequent dinners some of which could be in the neighborhood of her new school -- it could happen.

Lastly a Wordle

Every so often I plug in a past post of the HHH and put it into the "wordle" hopper. So last week's post is summarized in the following:

If you have never tried creating a Wordle you can give it a go at:     WORDLE
There are several variations that you can choose from and they are usually interesting and I might say a bit addicting.

So that was a bit of our week -- we hope that you had a good week! See you all in a few, burgers tonight!

Saturday, July 13, 2013


The week is almost over but the summery feeling continues on . . . we have appreciated the a/c most days even though in the morning we don't think that we'll need it. We are definitely into our summer mode -- which means starting the food cycle mid-morning and eating dinner close to 8 pm . . .

If you click on the above, you'll maybe able to see the bee working in each purple bloom. There are also three tomatoes all ready to eat (we had some cherry tomatoes last night) and so starts the produce this season.

There is a huge amount of apples already as seen in the bottom middle picture and there are cucumbers and peppers starting to materialize.

Seeing the Light of the Day Room

Most of us have certificates and documents once received and almost never seen again . . . and that was the case for some that I received from my brother who received them from our parents some of which were received from their parents . . .

But, Gail knows someone who does a great job framing here in town and so brought these mementos in a few weeks ago for framing. 

Above are six "old" certificates/documents and one reproduction (the Iowa/Nebraska Ad). They each are
now on the wall in our office. 

Top left is the marriage certificate for Swante (Samuel) Nelson & Ella Knutson my (our) Great Grandparents. I feel very lucky to have this and am pleased to see it framed and up on the wall where others could see it if/when they come to our office -- in the meantime the copy above will work . . .

Swante & Ella (I have heard Pella as a name too) were married in Marinette, Wisconsin the 30th day of August 1890 as testified on the document -- I have to wonder, how many folks have actually seen this paper. I believe in sharing, so this will be on the website for others to access as well. 

Next to the marriage certificate is a document in Swedish (top middle). Dop-Attest in Swedish means (I looked it up) Baptismal Certification and it looks as though about 8 months after marrying, Swante and Ella were baptized -- on the 5th of April 1891 -- again I wonder how many folks have actually seen this document.

The remaining four documents relate to my mother and starting with the two at the top right, the top one is a Promotion Certificate from the Primary Department to the Junior Department of the Lutheran Bible School.
And the one directly below that is her Graduation from Grade School (Audubon School) and entitling her to be admitted to High School.

On the bottom left is her Certificate in 1925 for Achieving Excellence in the Palmer Method of Business Writing -- it is signed by A N Palmer . . . my mother's handwriting was always legible and attractive and I would recognize it anywhere.

The bottom right has my mother's high school graduation certificate from Lake View High School in Chicago and presented to her on the 28th day of June, 1929 . . . a memorable year.

Lastly, the "Millions of Acres" reproduction ad is one like the one that maybe the first Bouldrons to come to the U.S. responded to . . . 

We know that the Thomas Bouldrons came to Iowa from England in about 1869 and they rode the train into Iowa as far as it went -- Denison is where they took up their U.S. residence. We have often speculated as to how that trip had come about -- and maybe it was because of ads like the one pictured above.

Webinar Wednesday

Last week I had  webinar withdrawal due to the holiday week and all . . . but this week was different, thank goodness AND next week is really different -- three webinars are scheduled . . .

This week the topic was Canadian Ports of Entry and Border Crossings both ways and how to accomplish research involving such things.

The speaker was very knowledgeable and presented good plans for doing this research. While I have not had huge amounts of Canadian folks, there may be more than I have discovered to date and this type of information will be helpful.

Searching the Branches

I often never know where or when I am going to find facts about relatives as I go about my search. By that I mean I often start out looking for one family or person and wind up discovering facts and things from another family -- this week that same scenario occurred: 

I came across an obituary for Amanda Kay Munyan. I probably would not have delved into the details if it were not for the fact that the name HILES  appeared in the obituary. As it turns out, Amanda is a relative of ours -- albeit fairly distant -- a half second cousin twice removed . . .

If you click on the above you'll see that Amanda was born to David Hiles and his wife Lucy. We share the same John Hiles Jr just not the same wife -- our's is Charity Reed and this is John Jr's second wife Nancy Crosby -- hence the second cousin status. Twice removed comes from the two generation difference from Amanda to me.

Never-the-less, Amanda is our cousin and she lived almost her entire life in a small radius near New Lexington, Ohio -- where so many of our folks are from.

From the Tree

Looking at the tree for anniversaries and birthdays (on this date) we find a few birthdays and one marriage on July 13 -- that we know of . . .

The marriage is of a couple that I know -- my sister's daughter and her husband.  The folks on the birthday list -- I do not know.  I would have to visit the website and refresh my knowledge on these folks. But if you are interested please visit the site and check out who celebrated their birthdays today.

Lastly, the Tiny EASY House

Our local Healdsburg High School has built a house -- a "Tiny House" and it will ultimately be auctioned off using sealed bids starting at $37,000 later this summer. The house was a project by CASA within the school and built entirely by students.

Gail and I toured the house along with Dino:

The house was very attractive and well put-together. And even though it is only 89 square feet, it has everything needed for everyday living -- probably for one person, but maybe a couple. We have already downsized so I don't thing we would be interested -- but we do know someone who might be . . .

Check out the above and maybe put in a sealed bid and offer this as a rental or a vacation home, there are a lot of possibilities.

That is a bit of our week -- hope that your week was good.  Burgers tonight . . .

Saturday, July 6, 2013

5° of Separation or 20° of Temp Change in Healdsburg

This was a holiday week and even though we do not "report" into a workplace we do sense the holiday mode of things. Things like leaving work as early as possible to get a jump on holiday plans -- for those in the San Francisco Bay Area things were really impacted by the 4 day BART strike. I'm sure that a lot of people took vacation days to avoid having to go through the tortuous commute.

Never-the-less it was a great Fourth of July. We celebrated in a "quiet" way and with the TV volume up just a bit higher to mask the sounds of fireworks for Dino's sake. Actually Dino hardly made any indication that he was worried about the concussions we were hearing he just glanced around a bit and then back to some serious chewing.
We have not attended any firework displays in several years due to the dogs that we have had. So we watch some of the ones on TV, which leaves something to be desired. Though we have to say there were a couple displays that we were glad not to have been in attendance . . .

What a Difference a Day Week Makes . . . (20°)

While writing the post last week I mentioned that it seemed like the a/c was being over-worked and that it was not producing "cool",  boy were we right about that. A quick evaluation of the a/c system revealed that the compressor was not on and the normally loud turning fan was not moving.
At the suggestion of our good contractor -- Rich Ryan -- we purchased new fuses for the unit just before the hardware store closed in town but unfortunately that did not start the fan, though we could hear the signal being sent to the unit.

So what to do?  This was the worst heat wave in two years and it was the beginning of the weekend,  just like during the coldest part of last winter when our heat went out, now the cold air would be out. The rest of last Saturday was miserable except for the time spent in the pool -- which really helped us to cool off.

During the heatless cold spell for three days when we used room heating units (and blew fuses too) now we had every available fan up and running and all the windows open for "movement" of air but it was just too hot. Each weekend day was over 100° and we just tried to ignore it as much as possible.

Monday we did get lucky (again through the advice of our contractor) and got excellent repair service and the a/c was up and running again by early afternoon -- however, the house was too hot to ever feel cool again until the next day. So for three of the hottest days of the year we were without a/c -- just like in the days growing up when we never had any a/c in the house or the car. I specifically remember the very hot Sundays when we were in church with 90% of the people fanning with cardboard fans . . . and usually I wasn't one of the 90% . . . I had to rely on the second-hand breezes from those around me.

So Two Factors for Cooling

The first factor was the a/c back on so in our way of thinking just stay inside. We had no reason to have to go out and we did not -- except to get the mail, the paper, to take Dino out and things like that. The other factor was the weather itself -- one early morning, I think Thursday or Friday clouds were spotted for the first time in a week which meant probably a marine layer in the morning and a cooler rest of the day.

And so it came to be, a 20° reduction in temperatures or more -- what a relief, though we are still inside with the a/c on because 80° is still uncomfortable in the house. We have used the pool more though too. The water temperature feels "chilly" at first, but you get used to it fast. During the heatwave Dino was pretty lethargic and spread out flat on any available cool surface usually in front of a fan.

What's Happening in the Tree?  (5°)

Due to the holiday week there was not a webinar -- so I was left to my own devices. has a wonderful feature of "hints" they put on to your tree in the form of shaking leaves. Since I have 16 trees on (15 I have started and do maintenance on for others) I decided I would work on all trees this week is some fashion or another -- mostly on determining at least on one hint or shaking leaf the value of it's recommendation.

I did just that and concentrated on the "photo" hints mostly because they are the most fun and rewarding for me anyway. I went down my list of trees alphabetically and for the way out there trees, I stuck to my goal of working one hint. But for the closer trees I worked more than one hint and especially if the hints bore fruit -- meaning they produced more hints.

The "HILES" tree alphabetically is #12 out of 16, so it was slow to get there -- but there were a ton of "photo" hints not all of which meant a picture of a person. A lot of the photo hints are of documents and more still are of gravestones -- but occasionally I get lucky -- and this week I did:

Click on the above for more detail . . .

I came across a site that had a picture of one of our ancestors -- way back -- I don't have many pictures from her generation and not that many who are close relatives. This lady, Margaret Ann Householder is my -- our, Great Great Grand Aunt. She married our Great Great Grandfather's brother. Obviously she was privy to so much information that I seek.

She came from a family of ten or more and she had ten or more children along with John Hiles III. I would love to find a picture of any of her siblings, especially Daniel Hiles our Great Great Grandfather. I am sure that someone has that photo along with others from our line and hopefully one of the "shaking leaves" from Ancestry will be those.

Another "Pool" Event

Back to the everyday experience -- we are lucky to have the pool for ourselves and for the "kids" in our tree who visit. This time a Grand Niece, Audrey along with her cousin Olivia, another of our Grand Nieces. They enjoyed the pool for the afternoon and we enjoyed having them as well.

Dino as well loves having folks over playing in the pool and one of these days he might just join them -- so far he keeps his distance from the edge unless there are treats involved -- we can all understand that.

Happy Birthday for Some From the Tree

Today was/is a popular day for birth -- nine folks from our tree were born on this day, of course various years. Each of these are available for further inspection on the HILES site most with photos, documents and other facts:

Please check out the details of where they fit into the tree and ask any questions that you may have.

Sadly While Writing This -- "Breaking News"

While writing this post I was informed that SFO had a major disaster. Having flown into SFO many many times I always loved the arrival into the airport. Coming into the airport usually meant returning home and before I moved here, the start of a visit or vacation.

Today though it was a horrific arrival for a plane from Seoul, South Korea. The arriving plane for whatever reason did not clear the beginning of the runway just after cruising over the water, it hit the abutment at the start of the runway with the tail breaking off and the Boeing 777 skidding down the runway -- not everyone got off safely. (Bruce, if you are watching, what is your assessment since you were part of airport safety for many years . . .)

The coming days will give us more of the details -- we can only hope that no more folks are lost . . .

Signage Language

This week I received a picture that was taken of someone from our tree while on a trip. It was a picture in front of a sign -- see for yourself:

When I saw the sign -- I could hardly believe my eyes. I personally have never been to this point geographically speaking -- but I am certain that something needs correcting . . . or is that a "southern" way of spelling.

I actually feel bad about this segment in that I "googled" this geographical spot and the signs that came up did show the correct spelling -- so, either they fixed it recently or the picture that I got had been tampered with or there are more than one sign for this geographical point . . . who knows -- but I found a nice new site to check on word issues:

So that was part of our strange week -- I hope your week was well -- see you in a few!  Burger night!