Sunday, October 26, 2008

Finale for Family History month...

Next Saturday I will join the Scottsdale Women Writer's Society at a book signing event at Pages Bookstore in Cave Creek, Arizona. The day technically falls in November, yet it is a great way to close out family history month with a bang. During my presentation, I will share ideas to inspire you to build your family history. I will sign Value Meals on the Volga, Maggie Visits Grandpa and Thirty Years in the Desert. Free giveaways, too!

Pages is one of those rare, independent bookstores which offers new, used and rare collectible books. For more details, visit their site at

Seven other authors from the society will be at this event including:

•Patricia L. Brooks,, Gifts of Sisterhood
•Kebba Buckley,, Discover the Secret Energized You
•Dana Davis,, Desert Magic
•Lilia Fallgatter,, The Most Important Letter you will ever Write
•Barbara Levy,, Mexican Strawberries
•Marilyn McGrath,, All you know on Earth
•Fairlee Winfield,, Buffaloed

Be sure to stop at Pages next Saturday and get a jump on your holiday shopping!

WHEN: Saturday, November 1st - from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
WHERE: Pages Bookstore – 7100 E. Cave Creek Rd., 480-575-7220

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Another Terrific Thursday...

My daughter and I had the pleasure to meet Billie Jean King at Changing Hands bookstore two days ago.

I've followed tennis for years, and Billie Jean has been an integral force inside and outside of tennis. To find out how she has likely impacted your life or your daughters, visit

Her new book ;Pressue is a Privilege. Its publication coincides with the 30 year anniversary of Billie's "Battle of the Sexes" tennis match with Bobby Riggs.

The book is short yet powerful. Billie chronicles her memories of the historic match. She builds a book of golden rules for all ages and sexes to follow in pursuit of their dreams. The book is a fast,fun and inspirational read.

Billie answered questions in the jam packed store for over forty minutes. I don't remember all of the questions, however her responses entertained us. One of my favorite quotes was, "The more you know about history, the more you know about yourself."

But my best memory will always be how Billie Jean inspired my daughter to pursue her dreams. She wrote in the book to Ashley, "Go fot it." And,the attached photo says it all for me.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Terrific Thursday....

Work has been a bit of a challenge this week so I welcomed a brief reprieve to join the CFMA (Construction Financial Management Associationlunch at the Arizona Country Club for lunch. The guest speaker today was Joe Garagiola Sr.

Chances are, you already know how baseball is a major part of my family history so today was extra special for me. I laughed so hard, I cried. Joe was hysterically funny and eloquent. He told stories about many of the ball players he knew including one about Gus Bell. After the lunch I had a chance to talk with him and tell him how I played baseball for years with a Gus Bell glove. My glove was a hand-me-down from my Uncle Fred. I still have it.

Joe was a wonderful person to meet. I attached a copy of a picture my boss took with his cell phone even though it is a bit blurry. But, I believe you can get a sense of happiness from it.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Life vs. Plans

My life has been so busy with work, family relationships, etc. that I haven't followed through on my plans. So, what is more important, life or plans?

Obviously both are important. And while my plans are important, life comes first. It has to. My job, my children will always demand my immediate attention. Being with family is what counts during family history month. So, my editing and writing has been on the back burner so far this month.

Yet, my plans ultimately turn into life. Like my plan to go to Argentina. I read one book and have another book to read, I have an itinerary, yet I don't feel like I understand or am prepared for my travels. Perhaps it's because I have too many other tasks to finish before I leave.

My main reason for the trip is to visit Entre Rios Province where German Russians from Mariental, Russia settled the colony of Valle Maria. My Discovery Channel Insight Guide is a good resource, but Valle Maria is not the most likely tourist destination for travellers. However, I have found details and pictures of the town at Pictures of the church dominate, but give me a clue of what to expect on my journey.

Our hostess in Argentina is Isabel Kessler and some of the original settlers of Valle Maria were Kesslers from Louis. There are also a number of Hermanns on this list. I will have to check some of my research and see if I can connect my line of Herrmanns to these Hermanns. Of course, most of the families of the German Russian villages intermarried over the years so a third cousin could also be your brother-in-law so there has to be a tie somewhere. Just like a needle in a haystack, I know it is there.

from the first site developed by Concordia University, I linked to This Argentine site is in Spanish however the links and the maps are valuable for me to get my bearings.

As I continue to live my life and create my plans, my excitement for my trip is re-ignited. Only nineteen days to go, busy days of living and preparation.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

I write because my passion is family history. I write to inspire you to make family history fun...after all it is the story of how you became you

I traveled to Fountain Hills today for the book event and art walk at the Fountain business plaza. The drive was beautiful as were the fountains and the plaza. Authors and artists were out in force. Marilyn McGrath and Joy Collins continue to be two of my favorites.

I love to talk with people about family history. I shared tips on how to celebrate family history month this October. I met many people who use and LDS sites. I gave free coloring sheets to help families spend quality coloring time with their children to share their stories. And, I inspired the author at the next table, Marty Frees, to write his story for his son for Christmas. As he said, who wants to give another gift someone doesn't need? It's time to give a gift of a lifetime.

Another friend, Dana Davis, was there and we shared genealogy stories and DNA updates. Another writer told me about her next book which will feature author answers to the question: "Why do you write?"

I quickly wrote my answer and gave it to her. I wrote:

"I write because my passion is family history. I write to inspire you to make family history fun...after all it is the story of how you became you."

I think that says it all.

Now I am home, relaxed, sitting in my lounge chair, wearing my Prince Fielder t-shirt, and re-energized on my writing objectives. Family History month is here, and October baseball, such a staple of the Dalhaimer and Bartkowski family. I am ready to watch more baseball history to unfold for my team, the Milwaukee Brewers.

Let the game begin.