jennythereader: (Flying Owl w/Full Moon)
Does anyone know if it's possible to pull some data out of a family tree?

I'm especially interested in a way to automatically count what first names have been used most often, and in tracking lifespans and how they change over time. At the moment I'm keeping track manually in a Google spreadsheet, but that's kind of cumbersome.
jennythereader: (* Downtown EL)
This was a very full, very long weekend.

We spent all of Friday driving and just collapsed in our hotel when we got to East Lansing.

Saturday we slept late, then went out to lunch at El Azteco, my favorite mexican restaurant. After that we wandered around downtown for a couple of hours and bought some odds'n'ends at Flat, Black and Circular, Curious Books, and a yarn store that wasn't there last time I visited. Then we went back to the hotel for a little while before heading to Dad's for my step-mother's surprise birthday party. Nancy was expecting the Beard kids, spouses, and grandkids, and her two local-ish daughters and grandkids. But, Dad decided to also invite her brothers and their families. Nancy was blown away. The party was a lot of fun overall, if very loud and crowded. The food and conversation were good and the wine flowed freely. What more can you ask?

Sunday we went for a little walk near the hotel and otherwise goofed off in the morning, then drove out to Grand Ledge for Grandma's party. All 27 (I think) of us went to the decent Chinese place in town, and then back to Grandma's house to hang out for the rest of the day. Again, good food and conversation add up to a good party. We also went back to Dad's after leaving that party and hung out with him, Nancy, KC, and Erin for a couple more hours before going back to the hotel. We stayed up a little late watching some mindless TV, and then passed out.

Monday we forced ourselves to get up early and then drove back to Grand Ledge to pick up my 18 year old sister, who was riding back with us. We had breakfast with Grandma, Mom, and the kids, then hit the road. The only really memorable part about the drive home was the call Tom got from the repair guy about my car. It turns out I need a new transmission. That will be expensive enough that we're trying to decide if we should have it repaired/replaced, or just get a new car. Blah.

And then we got home and passed out.
jennythereader: (* Downtown EL)
This was a very full, very long weekend.

We spent all of Friday driving and just collapsed in our hotel when we got to East Lansing.

Saturday we slept late, then went out to lunch at El Azteco, my favorite mexican restaurant. After that we wandered around downtown for a couple of hours and bought some odds'n'ends at Flat, Black and Circular, Curious Books, and a yarn store that wasn't there last time I visited. Then we went back to the hotel for a little while before heading to Dad's for my step-mother's surprise birthday party. Nancy was expecting the Beard kids, spouses, and grandkids, and her two local-ish daughters and grandkids. But, Dad decided to also invite her brothers and their families. Nancy was blown away. The party was a lot of fun overall, if very loud and crowded. The food and conversation were good and the wine flowed freely. What more can you ask?

Sunday we went for a little walk near the hotel and otherwise goofed off in the morning, then drove out to Grand Ledge for Grandma's party. All 27 (I think) of us went to the decent Chinese place in town, and then back to Grandma's house to hang out for the rest of the day. Again, good food and conversation add up to a good party. We also went back to Dad's after leaving that party and hung out with him, Nancy, KC, and Erin for a couple more hours before going back to the hotel. We stayed up a little late watching some mindless TV, and then passed out.

Monday we forced ourselves to get up early and then drove back to Grand Ledge to pick up my 18 year old sister, who was riding back with us. We had breakfast with Grandma, Mom, and the kids, then hit the road. The only really memorable part about the drive home was the call Tom got from the repair guy about my car. It turns out I need a new transmission. That will be expensive enough that we're trying to decide if we should have it repaired/replaced, or just get a new car. Blah.

And then we got home and passed out.
jennythereader: (It is not true that we have only one lif)
Some cosmological theories state that every time an event could have happened in multiple different ways, it does. That is, that new universes are splitting off constantly.

Now, I'm perfectly happy to live in this reality. It's not perfect, but my life is pretty good. Sometimes though I wonder what my life would be like if I or the people around me had made different decisions. I sort of want to meet some of the Jennys from those other universes.

I'm curious about three of them in particular.
- The me who ended up going to Evergreen State College. I suspect she's doing something that gets a lot more respect than boring data entry.
- The me who's mother moved to Ann Arbor rather than Albany. In addition to not ending up in Albany herself (and all the changes which would spring from that), I suspect she has much less ambivalent feelings about her mother. Whether those feelings are more positive or more negative than mine I couldn't even begin to guess.
- The me who's parents stayed happily married. I can't even imagine what sort of effects that would have had on my life or my brothers' lives.

What versions of yourself do you want to meet?
jennythereader: (It is not true that we have only one lif)
Some cosmological theories state that every time an event could have happened in multiple different ways, it does. That is, that new universes are splitting off constantly.

Now, I'm perfectly happy to live in this reality. It's not perfect, but my life is pretty good. Sometimes though I wonder what my life would be like if I or the people around me had made different decisions. I sort of want to meet some of the Jennys from those other universes.

I'm curious about three of them in particular.
- The me who ended up going to Evergreen State College. I suspect she's doing something that gets a lot more respect than boring data entry.
- The me who's mother moved to Ann Arbor rather than Albany. In addition to not ending up in Albany herself (and all the changes which would spring from that), I suspect she has much less ambivalent feelings about her mother. Whether those feelings are more positive or more negative than mine I couldn't even begin to guess.
- The me who's parents stayed happily married. I can't even imagine what sort of effects that would have had on my life or my brothers' lives.

What versions of yourself do you want to meet?
jennythereader: (Hedgehog *)
Body: I'm doing OK. My left knee is a little twinge-y, but other than that I'm fine.

Reading: Still reading Anathem. I might manage to finish it this weekend, or I might not.

Hearing: The Memory Palace, also Mountain Stage. You need to listen to Vagabond Opera. Their set on Mountain Stage was amazing, one of the best I've heard recently. Added Later: John Cowan's set of Christmas music was also great, with wonderful versions of "Ave Maria" and "Go Tell It On The Mountain".

Etsy find: A fun scarf in many shades of blue

Project Follow-up: Munchies and new insoles were acquired, and dinner was a ton of fun. Everybody seemed to be in a silly sort of mood, which meant there was a lot of laughing. Clothing and activites were also packed, although I'm waiting until I get home tonight to pack toiletries and gadgets.

Tonight's Project: Returning the rental car I've been using for the couple of weeks. Picking up my new car!!! Then we hit the road for Arisia. I'll be mostly AFK for the weekend, and probably will be too busy to answer my phone. If it's urgent send me a "emergency" or "call ASAP" text, otherwise, I'll get back to you when I get a spare couple of minutes.

Randomness: If you could go back in time and meet one of your ancestors, who would it be? Personally, I'd like to meet my Great-Grandpa McCartney (Dad's maternal grandfather), and my Great-Great-Aunt Genevieve (Mom's maternal grandmother's sister). I've heard great stories about Grampa McCartney, and I know that Mom loved Aunt Gen enough that I'm named after her.
jennythereader: (Hedgehog *)
Body: I'm doing OK. My left knee is a little twinge-y, but other than that I'm fine.

Reading: Still reading Anathem. I might manage to finish it this weekend, or I might not.

Hearing: The Memory Palace, also Mountain Stage. You need to listen to Vagabond Opera. Their set on Mountain Stage was amazing, one of the best I've heard recently. Added Later: John Cowan's set of Christmas music was also great, with wonderful versions of "Ave Maria" and "Go Tell It On The Mountain".

Etsy find: A fun scarf in many shades of blue

Project Follow-up: Munchies and new insoles were acquired, and dinner was a ton of fun. Everybody seemed to be in a silly sort of mood, which meant there was a lot of laughing. Clothing and activites were also packed, although I'm waiting until I get home tonight to pack toiletries and gadgets.

Tonight's Project: Returning the rental car I've been using for the couple of weeks. Picking up my new car!!! Then we hit the road for Arisia. I'll be mostly AFK for the weekend, and probably will be too busy to answer my phone. If it's urgent send me a "emergency" or "call ASAP" text, otherwise, I'll get back to you when I get a spare couple of minutes.

Randomness: If you could go back in time and meet one of your ancestors, who would it be? Personally, I'd like to meet my Great-Grandpa McCartney (Dad's maternal grandfather), and my Great-Great-Aunt Genevieve (Mom's maternal grandmother's sister). I've heard great stories about Grampa McCartney, and I know that Mom loved Aunt Gen enough that I'm named after her.
jennythereader: (* Midwestern Girl)

This Day in History 1889: The Oklahoma land rush begins

My family has a personal connection to this historical event:
At 11:50 a.m., soldiers called for everyone to form a line. When the hands of the clock reached noon, the cannon of the fort boomed, and the soldiers signaled the settlers to start.

The soldier who fired the "starting gun" for the land race was a man named Captain Edward Rickey. His sister, Alice Maude Rickey, married a lawyer from Ionia, MI named Cowell. Her grandson grew up to be my Great-Grampa McCartney, father of Gramma Beard, mother of Dad, (obviously) father of me and my brothers.

(This post is paraphrased from the email Dad sent me yesterday.)
jennythereader: (* Midwestern Girl)

This Day in History 1889: The Oklahoma land rush begins

My family has a personal connection to this historical event:
At 11:50 a.m., soldiers called for everyone to form a line. When the hands of the clock reached noon, the cannon of the fort boomed, and the soldiers signaled the settlers to start.

The soldier who fired the "starting gun" for the land race was a man named Captain Edward Rickey. His sister, Alice Maude Rickey, married a lawyer from Ionia, MI named Cowell. Her grandson grew up to be my Great-Grampa McCartney, father of Gramma Beard, mother of Dad, (obviously) father of me and my brothers.

(This post is paraphrased from the email Dad sent me yesterday.)

PSA

Jul. 24th, 2008 09:03 am
jennythereader: (Skif)
I've been meaning to post about this for a while:

Tom's server is dead, so his blog and the private family blog are both down for the foreseeable future.

I'll let folks know when he has a replacement up and running.

PSA

Jul. 24th, 2008 09:03 am
jennythereader: (Skif)
I've been meaning to post about this for a while:

Tom's server is dead, so his blog and the private family blog are both down for the foreseeable future.

I'll let folks know when he has a replacement up and running.
jennythereader: (Tom & I *)
Tom's & my delayed wedding party was today, and in spite of the weather it went really well. The pavilion was big enough that no one felt trapped or overcrowded (as far as I know).

Dad, Tom's brother Jim, and our friend Mark all took turns manning the grill. We were a little paranoid about having enough food, so Tom & I bought huge quantities of the things we were providing (burgers, hot dogs, bread & buns, chips, and soda). In the end, between what we bought and what folks contributed for the potluck, we probably could have fed a group twice the size. We had tons of leftover bread, soda, and meat and ended up sending a lot of it home with people.

We had music for most of the day, mostly fun songs that people can sing along to. We did three SCA dances (Hole in the Wall, Female Sailor, and Korabushka(sp?)), and even succeeded in dragging some of the non-SCA guests in to the dancing.

People gave us some beautiful & generous gifts, and we will be sending out thank you notes when we get back from DC. My brothers Bobby and Jon get extra bonus points for the foot massager. Thanks guys!

Oh! I figured out why my feet were hurting so much: I wasn't wearing the shoes I had thought I was. I had meant to wear my new sneakers, but when we got home and I took my shoes off I looked down and realized that I was wearing my work shoes. Nice shoes, and comfortable enough for office work, but not suited to standing almost all day on a hard concrete floor. I must have been pretty distracted this morning when we were heading out.
jennythereader: (Tom & I *)
Tom's & my delayed wedding party was today, and in spite of the weather it went really well. The pavilion was big enough that no one felt trapped or overcrowded (as far as I know).

Dad, Tom's brother Jim, and our friend Mark all took turns manning the grill. We were a little paranoid about having enough food, so Tom & I bought huge quantities of the things we were providing (burgers, hot dogs, bread & buns, chips, and soda). In the end, between what we bought and what folks contributed for the potluck, we probably could have fed a group twice the size. We had tons of leftover bread, soda, and meat and ended up sending a lot of it home with people.

We had music for most of the day, mostly fun songs that people can sing along to. We did three SCA dances (Hole in the Wall, Female Sailor, and Korabushka(sp?)), and even succeeded in dragging some of the non-SCA guests in to the dancing.

People gave us some beautiful & generous gifts, and we will be sending out thank you notes when we get back from DC. My brothers Bobby and Jon get extra bonus points for the foot massager. Thanks guys!

Oh! I figured out why my feet were hurting so much: I wasn't wearing the shoes I had thought I was. I had meant to wear my new sneakers, but when we got home and I took my shoes off I looked down and realized that I was wearing my work shoes. Nice shoes, and comfortable enough for office work, but not suited to standing almost all day on a hard concrete floor. I must have been pretty distracted this morning when we were heading out.
jennythereader: (*Library Shelves "Life": Iconicized)
I reviewed the book in this post.

As promised, here are some of the highlights of the theory and how they seem to apply to me:



  • Firstborns identify with parents and authority.  As a child I definitely identified with both of my parents, and as a teen and adult I was(am) treated as a peer by both parents, especially my father.

  • Relative to their younger siblings, firstborns are more assertive, socially dominant, ambitious, jealous of their status, and defensive.  This one doesn't feel as if it applies as much to me (although my brothers might disagree), but does relate to one of the later points.

  • A person with a "conforming" personality may espouse liberal attitudes that have been learned from parents or other authority figures.  I seem to have taken my parents middle-of-the-road liberal views and gone a few steps further.  My parents (both firstborns) seem to have taken their parents slightly liberal views, and gone a few steps past that.

  • Firstborns are more "antagonistic" than laterborns.  Again, not sure it applies to me, but it relates to a later point.

  • Firstborns of both sexes emerge as the "alpha males" of their sibling system.  I don't know if I could be called alpha, but my personality is in many ways more typical of males than of females.

  • Within families, the first two siblings manifested the greatest disparities, followed by the second and third.  Differences were significantly smaller for nonadjacent siblings.  True for my family.  Personality wise, I would say that I am most like Bobby (#3) and least like KC (#2).

  • If one sibling identified strongly with one parent, the adjacent sibling identified with the other parent.  This was particularly pronounced for the first sibling pair.  Very true in my family.  I identified with Dad (sometimes to the disadvantage of my relationship with Mom), and KC identified with Mom (sometimes to the disadvantage of his relationship with Dad).


Everything above that is bold is more or less a direct quote from the book.  There are also points that I'm having trouble finding again, but seem significant:


  • A shy firstborn will in many ways act more like a laterborn. 

  • An extroverted laterborn will in some ways act more like a firstborn.

  • A laterborn who is the first of their gender will have some firstborn characteristics.

  • Laterborns who are extremely close in age to their next older sibling will show firstborn characteristics.


These points all go some way to explain why my brother KC is the functional firstborn in our family.  I was painfully shy as a child, while KC has always been extremely outgoing.  He and I are barely a year apart in age (13.5 months to be precise), and he is the oldest boy in the family.

A very interesting, thought provoking book.
jennythereader: (*Library Shelves "Life": Iconicized)
I reviewed the book in this post.

As promised, here are some of the highlights of the theory and how they seem to apply to me:



  • Firstborns identify with parents and authority.  As a child I definitely identified with both of my parents, and as a teen and adult I was(am) treated as a peer by both parents, especially my father.

  • Relative to their younger siblings, firstborns are more assertive, socially dominant, ambitious, jealous of their status, and defensive.  This one doesn't feel as if it applies as much to me (although my brothers might disagree), but does relate to one of the later points.

  • A person with a "conforming" personality may espouse liberal attitudes that have been learned from parents or other authority figures.  I seem to have taken my parents middle-of-the-road liberal views and gone a few steps further.  My parents (both firstborns) seem to have taken their parents slightly liberal views, and gone a few steps past that.

  • Firstborns are more "antagonistic" than laterborns.  Again, not sure it applies to me, but it relates to a later point.

  • Firstborns of both sexes emerge as the "alpha males" of their sibling system.  I don't know if I could be called alpha, but my personality is in many ways more typical of males than of females.

  • Within families, the first two siblings manifested the greatest disparities, followed by the second and third.  Differences were significantly smaller for nonadjacent siblings.  True for my family.  Personality wise, I would say that I am most like Bobby (#3) and least like KC (#2).

  • If one sibling identified strongly with one parent, the adjacent sibling identified with the other parent.  This was particularly pronounced for the first sibling pair.  Very true in my family.  I identified with Dad (sometimes to the disadvantage of my relationship with Mom), and KC identified with Mom (sometimes to the disadvantage of his relationship with Dad).


Everything above that is bold is more or less a direct quote from the book.  There are also points that I'm having trouble finding again, but seem significant:


  • A shy firstborn will in many ways act more like a laterborn. 

  • An extroverted laterborn will in some ways act more like a firstborn.

  • A laterborn who is the first of their gender will have some firstborn characteristics.

  • Laterborns who are extremely close in age to their next older sibling will show firstborn characteristics.


These points all go some way to explain why my brother KC is the functional firstborn in our family.  I was painfully shy as a child, while KC has always been extremely outgoing.  He and I are barely a year apart in age (13.5 months to be precise), and he is the oldest boy in the family.

A very interesting, thought provoking book.

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