Family History in the Making

Family History in the Making

A True Alaskan Adventure Awaits Him

My son and I just got back from Fairbanks, Alaska, and I just realized something. Okay, maybe I didn’t just realize it, but I am seeing things differently now.

Life is made up of moments, moments that will become our personal history.

If my future posterity were to look upon my life, would I have documented my life story in such a way that they would feel like they knew and understood me?

Would they stumble upon this picture and understand the context of it? It is possible to look at documents and photos and make a general assumptions about a life. But, life is in the details! The feelings, the thoughts – if we don’t add that to our  personal history, our stories are incomplete.

What I would give to know how an ancestor felt about different challenges that they faced. True, I can imagine, but how wonderful it would be if I had a record to let me see how they dealt with the emotions and turmoil of their life’s ups and downs.

My trip with my son to Alaska was for several reasons and no picture would be able to tell you what they were. After being gone on a 2 year mission for our church, I was looking forward to my only son going to a college in-state and being able to come home for the occasional long weekend and holidays. I had it pictured all so well…well, darling son came home from Texas, and hits me with “Mom, I decided to go school at the University of Alaska – Fairbanks and oh, yeah I am joining the Alaska Army National Guard and have a 8 YEAR commitment.” Like they say, if you want to make God laugh – make plans…only I wasn’t laughing!

So, last weekend was his first National Guard duty weekend since he came home from Basic and MP training. I took the opportunity to go with him to Alaska and take a tour of the school and town to help make the transition easier at the end of the month and to spend some time with him while I could.

We had a great time. Alaska is a perfect fit for my son…dang it! Brandon wants to be a Wildlife Biologist and study wolves. Again, a perfect fit. I was surprised about how lovely Fairbanks was, and the people were just so nice.

So,I guess this mom will just have to deal with her son leaving the nest and moving forward in his life. He is making thoughtful and good decisions….except the one about wanting to get a motorcycle. I mean come on, a mom can only deal with some many things a once!

Made me wonder about my ancestors who settled out west, leaving family behind. No Skype, no texting, no Face Time, no internet…maybe they never even heard from them again. How did they deal with that?

Dear Myrtle and her daughter Carrie from Not Your Mother’s Genealogy are promoting a Share a Memory Contest and you can read about it here. What a great way to take the time to save and share a memory with your family and future posterity! Don’t wait to record and document your life, your feelings and your memories. Record your moments. Your story and memories are waiting to be told!


  1. Great story and yes unfortunately those children become independent and must fly the nest. Glad you had some time to share with him. I still want to make a trip to Alaska. Buck list.

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