First bit of news is that at Thursday’s riding session, Emily managed to canter for much longer than ever before and was much more secure in her seat – at no point did she look about to fall 🙂 🙂 She’s very chuffed, the instructor is very chuffed, I’m very, very chuffed 🙂 Back on Monday for more.
The rest of the week has been consumed with family history. After interviewing both Jon’s dad and my mum and dad a few weeks ago to get all the family history information they had, we signed up to Ancestry and let Emily loose on the input and research. She has been absolutely fascinated, spending hours and hours on it. Notable ooooh moments so far have included:
- finding out that my Nana’s Christian name was Lily, not Lillian
- finding out that one of her sisters, who my parents only ever knew as Aunty May and who my Nana only ever called May was in fact an Annie May
- discovering two whole sets of descendants we weren’t aware of; the children of this particular great aunt of mine were well known to my parents (same generation, so mum grew up with them), but then the families lost touch
- discovering, sadly, that the daughter of my mum’s cousin, who I used to play with as a child, died a few years ago aged 41 – again, the families had lost touch and this lady’s daughter had refused all contact with us, so we didn’t know
- discovering that on Jon’s dad’s side of the family, someone else has already traced Jon’s great grandfather’s line all the way back to the 1600s!
We got lucky with that last one, stumbling across someone else’s research, but it’s proving a lot harder with my side of the family – particularly tracing my Nana’s parents, as we have no details other than her father’s name…. which was John Thomas…. which, in the Welsh mining valleys the family comes from and where my Nana was born, is a very, very common name. It will be easier, of course, if we pay to see the 1911 census information (she was born in 1909, so we should be able to find her and her elder siblings). Not much luck tracing my maternal grandfather’s parents either, at the moment…. or my paternal great grandparents – with all of those we have no date, no names apart from John Thomas and, obviously, the other male line surnames, and only approximate places – South Wales, London and Burnely. But again, that will be easier if we pay to see the actual birth/marriage certificates of the people we do have. Going to follow up a few other leads first, though…but am discovering that genealogy can be an expensive business!