So, I'm really doing it - I'm taking the plunge. I'm starting a blog! I know I'm not exactly cutting edge here, but I'm still pretty excited. I've been thinking about starting a blog for years. All of a sudden last night, I decided to stop thinking about it - and just do it. Yikes! Even though I write for magazines quite a bit and even have a new book out (The Journey Takers), writing a blog seems a little - well, scary. I'm supposed to think of something entertaining and informative to say a couple of times a week. Actually, thinking of something to say shouldn't be a problem. I ALWAYS have something to say. Now whether or not it's entertaining and informative - that's another question...
Why did I finally decide to start this long-thought-about-blog now? Nothing profound happened. Really, nothing happened at all. I just decided to stop worrying about making everything fit a certain theme - stop worrying about planning things out in advance. I decided to just start my blog - and see what happened. So, that's what I'm doing. I'm going to write about the things I love - about family, history, genealogy (particularly immigration research), and my travels. I know there are other people out there who get as excited about these things as I do. Maybe this blog can help us connect!
The blog is called The Journey Takers, after my new book that just came out this summer. The book interweaves my ancestors' experiences, all Western European immigrants, with my experiences in researching and discovering them. I have included carefully researched accounts of peasant life and ocean voyages paralleled with personal accounts of research and of motherhood. I describe the emotional impact of standing in my family's Old World churches, and the "excitement" of chasing my fourteen-month-old up and down the aisles of the Family History Library. This is also what I want to do in my blog - mix together the things I learn about genealogy research and history with the things I learn about life. Oh! But that sounds so heavy. I want the blog to be fun too!
Lately, my life seems to be in a constant whirlwind. I am doing lots of traveling and speaking to share information about The Journey Takers. I have gotten to talk to so many new people. And I have loved it! I have learned so much from their comments and questions. I want to share some of that here. With four children, all these adventures have created more than a little craziness as well. I might share a little of that here too!
This past summer, I drove from Massachusetts (where I live) to California with my four kids (ages ten to nine months at the time) and my mother (it would have been impossible without her!), doing book talks and seeing the sights. In 2010 so far, we have visited 27 states, I have spoken in 14 of them, and we have seen 7 National Parks - and many other fabulous things. It has been great. I don't have another cross-country trip planned for a while, but I do have some adventures on the horizon. This weekend, we will head to New York City and then on to Philadelphia where I'll speak at the American Swedish Historical Museum. So, stay tuned for some thoughts on tracing Swedish ancestors - and, of course, on my trip to Philly!