I don’t know if you’ve seen the TV show Who Do You Think You Are? , but it’s a show where celebrities look into their ancestry and get flown all over the world to discover where they came from. Genealogy has always been an interest of mine and I love family history – the stories, the traditions, the similarities that seem to be passed down from generation to generation.
So when Ally asked about getting an Ancestry DNA kit the historian in me jumped for joy. I honestly thought it was just a phase she was going through and didn’t give much thought to it. But when the DNA kit kept popping up on her birthday and Christmas wish list – why not? She is curious about who she is – where she came from. And if the promotion/advertising department at Ancestry is wondering if their advertising is working – she’s wondering what percentage of Native American she is (sorry sweetie but I’m thinking eastern European is going to be the biggest percentage for you – just because the lady on the commercial is part Native American doesn’t mean you are!)
They way I see it – if we’re going to find out where your roots started you need to know the people too! So I signed us up for the Ancestry free-trial and stared to plug away at the family tree. Luckily for me I had a Grandma who LOVED family history and finding random, long-lost relatives. I know a bit of our family history on both sides – it gets more fuzzy once we get to my great grandparents.
Following the stories and paper trail on how our ancestors made their way to Canada – the different stories and how we ended up where we are is something that is so intriguing. And it truly is something I want my kids to know! In two days of researching Ally and I have found out that we have some Irish and Scottish heritage to go along with our Mennonite last names. Some relatives came up to Canada via Mexico and the US, and that our Dutch relatives and the Dutch government have impeccable record keeping skills! Not gonna lie – the history nerd in me gets a little giddy when a little green leaf with an ancestry hint pops up on my screen.
So today January 1, 2018 Ally filled her little vial full of spit and it is all packed up and ready to be mailed away! Results to come in 6-8. And if you need to find me in the next couple of weeks (during the free trial period) you can find me printing off Canadian census records, birth/baptism/marriage and death certificates and messaging fellow relatives who love to dig into our family history. (thanks Viv for all the help so far!) And if any of my Loewen, Baron, Weidenhamer relatives have any info to add to the family tree (or want to check the info out) you can take a look the Neufeld/Loewen tree Ally and I have been working on.