Thursday, October 31, 2013


It's Throwback Thursday!  I guess that is a bit redundant with genealogy since isn't it all in the past.  The photo was taken in 1983.  My cousin Sean was getting married in November so for my aunt decided the theme for the wedding shower would be Halloween.  My Dad and his two brothers joined in the merriment and the spirit of the event.  Uncle Chuck was the headless man/woman, my Dad was a fisherman (already caught a can of sardines) and Uncle Eddie was a belly dancer.  I was sure happy that I had brought my camera with me to the party to take photos.

Wishing you all a Happy Halloween or as they say in Irish --

OĆ­che Shamhna Shona Duit (EE-hyeh HOW-nuh HUN-uh ditch*)

Thursday, October 17, 2013


While I was perusing the slides of my Grandparents' visit to Austria in 1961, this one caught my eye.  I remembered that Innsbruck had hosted the Winter Olympics several times.  Perhaps, this is what made me save this photo vs. disposing of it like I did with all the other photos without people in them.  Yes, I am still kicking myself for doing that five years ago.

So, when I found out that I would be traveling to Innsbruck this fall, the ski jump was definitely on my list of sites to see.  Now, I guess it is not surprising that it doesn't quite look like that anymore.  The photo below is the current ski jump (the 6th one that has been built).  The current one is 14 years old.  Our tour guide told us that the Innsbruck cemetery is below the ski jump so the jumpers can see the cemetery on their way down.  I guess that gives them added impetus to jump correctly and not end up in the cemetery -- one way or another!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


On our first full day in Austria, we took a tour of Innsbruck.  The first place we stopped was the Basilika Maria Empfangnis (also known as the Wiltener Basilica).  As I was sitting in a pew in this absolutely gorgeous church, I suddenly remembered that my Grandmother commented about this church in her travel journal while visiting  Innsbruck in 1961.  

Grandma Theresa wrote in her 1961 travel journal about the church of "Our Dear Lady" in Innsbruck --
"words can't tell you how beautiful it was".  Grandma Theresa, you were so right!  It was absolutely breathtaking!

Wow, even the organ in this church is majestic.  There is a statue of the Blessed Mother (shown in the photo below) that is the reason why people have been making  pilgrimages  to this church since the Middle Ages.

On the ceiling of this church are murals of the life of the Blessed Mother.  Visiting this church was a wonderful way to start off our trip to Austria and Germany.

Monday, October 14, 2013


I always feel like a detective when I am putting clues to together to solve one of my genealogical ancestry questions.  For example, I know a given person is related to me but how are they related.   I am so happy when I finally put all the clues together.  I go through that same process with some of the photos I have inherited of my Grandpa Charlie's years in the movies.

I have about 50 photos and a fair amount of them have the name of the movie and the other actors listed on the back of the photo.  However, I ran across the above photo (which I just love because it looks like they are having so much fun).  Grandpa Charlie is the 4th from the left. I have several photos with these same people.  For some reason (I can't recall exactly why now), I thought these photos were from the movie "Task Force".  I watched the movie and I did see Grandpa but none of my photos were shots in the movie.  So, I assumed (incorrectly of course) that they were just outtakes (of course, that assumption meant that this part of the story was totally taken out of the movie which obviously could happen.)  So, while I decided that this was the correct theory, it didn't stop me from wondering and continue researching to see if possibly there was another movie that did have these photos.

Yesterday, in the middle of my research, I found another movie (just the title and story, not the actual movie) titled "China's Little Devils" which was made in 1945.  Grandpa played one of the Flying Tigers.  Okay, now this is making much more sense to me. That is exactly who they are depicting in these photos -- The Flying Tigers. Now, I really want to watch this movie, but so far it is unavailable.  I will have to keep an eye for it while I continue my detective work.

Thursday, October 10, 2013


Fifty two years, my Grandparents (Charles and Theresa Sherlock) enjoyed a month long vacation in Europe.  They visited England, Ireland, Amsterdam, Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland and Italy.  It is my dream to follow in their footsteps -- to visit the places that they visited and create my own memories.  I won't be able to visit them all in a month long trip like they did, but rather in several separate trips.

I began fulfilling that dream this month on October 1st.  My brother invited my husband and I to join him and his wife on a trip to Austria and Germany.  How could we say no?

After a very long flight from California to Munich via Chicago, our tour bus drove us to Innsbruck, Austria which took an additional 2 or so hours.  We checked into the Grauer Baer Hotel in Innsbruck, exhausted but very excited, and was just in time for dinner with our tour group at the hotel restaurant on that first night.

Our adventure would begin the very next day ....