As I write this, the sunshine outside my office window is beckoning. “Come…come enjoy my warmth,” it seems to say. With the Kansas weather being so ever-changing, it is indeed tempting, but I will pause first and write a note.

It’s been a busy month here. I’ve been participating in an online writers’ challenge during the month of February, but I’ve also been getting things created and organized for my upcoming workshop. Every Wednesday morning during March, you’ll find me at the Canton Township Carnegie Library in Canton KS with a few others who are passionate about preserving their family stories.

Generational Storytelling: The Workshop! is a five-week course. We have a small group for this debut workshop, but I know we’ll have a great time and learn a lot from what I have prepared as well as from one another. That’s how it works with those of us who are into family history and storytelling. And, that’s what makes it so enjoyable, too.

We will do some quick exercises (not the physical kind, mind you) in some of the modules – fun ideas to help us think and write. We’ll discover where to find more information about ancestors. I’ve put together some awesome resources, and I’ve requested (and received) permission from two experts in the field to share some of their copywritten material with participants! Woo hoo! That makes me happy!

Every day during the month, I’ve got a great resource to share via email with those who are enrolled. More information to help us all in our quest to preserve family history.

Did you know that children who know about their family history (who we are as a family, what we lived through, where we are from, etc.) are more self-assured and better able to deal with life than those who are less well connected to their roots. (The children of 9-11 were part of this study.)

Now, what I just said is not, exactly, as it is stated in the actual study – I’ll share that in class – but you get the idea. Right? I love that someone (much smarter than I) did this research. I would have believed it even if no one had studied it – but it’s great to have it documented. I love knowing the value of sharing one’s family history with younger generations.

I’ve spent a lot of time putting this together. I’ve spoken on various subtopics several times – locally as well as at the Heartland Family History Conference held every year in Topeka — connected with the Topeka Genealogical Society.

It’s not just about family histories, or genealogy, or writing – it’s a combination of all three. I’m not a genealogist, but thankfully my brother is! He’s traced our ancestry WAY BACK! Almost to Adam and Eve! LOL! But, I’m more interested in the STORIES of these people I came from. I want to KNOW them, not just the hard facts of dates and places and gravesites. Together, my brother and I actually make a good team!

We’ll touch on document preservation and how to identify the unidentified photos you may have in boxes. We’ll discuss various writing styles or techniques – from ancestor profiles to memoirs. We’ll brainstorm and you’ll be able to decide what’s best for YOU! We’ll take a look at how US History may or may not have impacted your ancestors, by comparing timelines.

So much great stuff awaits! When I first started planning, I wondered if I could fill five weeks. Now, after months of preparation and years of my own ‘wandering’ through the topic of Generational Storytelling, I’m having a hard time packing it all INTO five weeks.

Some of the participants have already begun their journey – they just wanted to learn more and get other ideas to continue what’s already in process. Others are frozen, looking at boxes of STUFF they have inherited, and don’t even know where to begin.

That’s the CHALLENGE in this! And, I can’t wait! We’re going to have some great times together as we delve into this!

Contact me if you’re nearby and interested. The first class is Wednesday, March 1st at 10am. (Early Bird special rate if you sign up before the end of February.) Text me. Call me. Email me. Would love to see you there.

Pray for us if you’re so inclined – this is QUITE an undertaking and can be overwhelming to family historians.

I’ll be posting more about this throughout the month….TTYL!



(c) Elaine McAllister, 2023

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