Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year

I wish everyone a Happy, Healthy, and Fun New Year.  May only good things happen to you in 2014!


Monday, December 23, 2013

SCGS 2014 Webinar series

Hi all!

The Southern California Genealogical Society (SCGS) has announced its 2014 lineup for their webinar series. All the programs are free, and are featured on a monthly basis. Most of the programs are on Wednesdays at 6 pm (PST) while some are on Saturdays (10 am, PST), and run for about 90 minutes. All that is asked of you is to register ahead of time, so SCGS can send you the internet link for you to use to get into the webinar.  Your computer's speakers are obviously needed, but the webcam and microphone not required. Instead, there is a dialogue box for attendees to type in their questions, and a moderator to pose the questions to the speaker.

The series is great for beginner genealogists, or anyone needing a refresher course.

The link below will take you to the webinar page, with the list of webinars and speakers scheduled.

I also wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, Happy Holiday, a wonderful Kwanzaa, and a Happy, Healthy New Year.


Monday, December 16, 2013

Philomena (the movie)

I recently viewed a movie called Philomena. The movie begins with Philomena, now in her seventies, enlisting the help of noted journalist Martin Sixsmith to help find her son. Partly told in flashback, Philomena, who gave birth to a son in a Catholic convent in the 1950's in Ireland, could do nothing to stop the nuns from adopting her toddler son out to a wealthy, Catholic, American couple. She would spend five decades looking for him, in the hopes that he had lived a good life. And yes, she does find her son--with unexpected results.

The movie is based on the book Martin wrote, "The Lost Child of Philomena Lee".  The story is reminiscent of many young women--not just young, teenaged Irish women--who were forced to place their young children up for adoption with no options of keeping the children and who have always wondered what had become of their children. 

As genealogists, we sometimes meet these women, now older, wanting to find their children.  We also meet the children--now adults--wanting to know about their biological parents. In fact, I have a client whose half-sister wants to know about her biological father. Fortunately, I was able to "find" her father--now deceased--but I found a lot of information about him to answer her questions. It's not always easy to answer the questions and find the information asked for by those who have gone through the adoption process. And it can be a challenge for genealogists to find those answers.

The movie is emotional, but well done. Judi Dench does a wonderful portraying Philomena.