Sunday, August 23, 2009

Intertwined Roots

I once again realized that in order to maintain a blog you have to have the mindset to maintain a blog. Christine and I went to see the movie Julie and Julia on Monday. What a great movie that is -- lots of good energy -- and what an endorsement for blogging. I came home with the thought that I hadn't posted anything beyond my "giant leap" and should get to it.

I've been reading the Mormon Perkins book regularly. There's a lot of density to the book, both in number of pages and information. I've learned that our branch of the Perkins clan cannot be specifically affixed to one location in Great Britain, and that our beginnings with Richard I (Perkins) have roots in Maryland. Each day I read I feel like I want to get out an enormous sheet of (plotter) paper and draw all the connections just to keep track. I'm sure Eugene (author) must have done this. There's just no other way to do it than graphically.

I'm not quite 100 pages (of 700+) in and the family has moved from Maryland into remote areas of North Carolina and some into Georgia. Looks like their path will next lead them into Tennessee, as soon as we get throught the 1790 census. One of the most remarkable things about this archive is how the history books I've been reading and my history and life are dovetailing. It is so awesome to place Perkins ancestors into the development of a nation, see them crisscross the paths of founding fathers, traverse the waters where Joseph Smith was baptized, and know Perkins people were present in significant places that are now known to this generation by way of books, movies and songs. Perkins represent Americana and the foundation of this country. Can't imagine that ever crossed their minds while they raised large families and struggled day-to-day to make end's meet.

I've read where Perkins family members lived on the Chesapeake Bay, crossed the Susquehannah, moved to the Shenandoah valley, had property on or near the Potomac, settled the wild country of the western Catawba river, and guided others into history. There were those among them who were courageous and valiant, while the occasional rogue makes me realize where I may get some of my own personality. And even as I consider their westward trek and revisiting the roots, what they left behind is now more a part of Christine's family than my own. The Catawba river valley into which they pioneered now sits at the bottom of Lake Norman in North Carolina where Christine's brother and sister have each had a lakeside home.

This reading is great. Makes the connection real. On to where reading connects me to the real and only truth.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Perkins, We Have a History

This blogspot was created 2 years ago and I'm finally figuring out how to post. I guess that's both an embarrassment as well as (to me) justified. I'm on a computer about 10 hours/day so getting on after I get home is usually a matter of figuring out a problem for someone else or paying bills online. So what's changed? Well, 1) my children are an inspiration and always have something worthwhile to post and so should I, 2) my excuses for not are thin, and 3) I have something to say.

I few weeks back my oldest brother, Kent, called me. To tell you the truth I'd cataloged (that's one of my words for "forgot") that he called and thus, archived (that's another) his main reason for calling. (I have a two-week limit on memory anyway.) He'd had an occasion to meet up with some St. George Perkins family members, brothers Eugene and Waldo, who had done extensive research into the Perkins family line. Eugene had compiled the research into a book and Kent was calling to offer me an opportunity to purchase. I, of course, accepted.

Two summers ago I had a craving to know of my history, and on a summer trip to Utah took the time to sit down with Dad and Mom to go through our genealogy. I learned a lot and came home with family group sheets and a sense of the difficult mission my cousin Arn and other developers had embarked on to revamp the Church's databases and search tools. Made me reflect and be grateful for all the work my Grandpa Perkins had done to participate in the effort to find those who constituted the Perkins family framework.

So yesterday, as I was just crawling into bed, Christine returned from the mailbox with an announcement that I had a package from my brother. Upon opening it, the conversation with my brother immediately returned to memory. The opened package revealed a book entitled, "The First Mormon Perkins Families. Progenitors and Utah Pioneers of 1847-1852: A Contemporary History of the Ute Perkins Line." I'm excited.

Eugene's introduction begins, "For years I have enjoyed reading biographical history." Cool cousin! That's me. (And my Mom-in-law, Dee.) My last 4 readings have been The Real Ben Franklin, The Real Thomas Jefferson, The Real George Washington (in progress), and How the States Got Their Shapes, with John Adams (HBO-DVD) -- thank you Allison Holley Hunt -- thrown in for added measure. Boring for some. Not boring for me. Putting the Perkins names into that historical quilt will be a that extra spice for me.

I sat in a work meeting Friday where an east coast software consultant, during a conversational moment, gave us a background on her husband's Portuguese heritage. (There's a rich Portuguese heritage here in Turlock.) She's Boston Massachusetts-area Irish. She mentioned how helped them find his progenitors. It was fun to ask if she (or anyone there) had seen the TV ads for the web site. Sure was cool to have those Perkins family names appear on the ads spearheaded by Shawn and to share that with the group. Family is important.

So far I've learned that Richard Perkins is hard to pin down beyond his Maryland roots, but I'm already connecting him to us and those other historical times and places I've enjoyed reading about. This is going to be the best antidote for bad TV I could ask for. Thanks, Eugene. Thanks, Mom for the other half of my heritage. And thanks, Kent.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Our Mom!

In 2004 (WHOA has it really been that long?) I took several photos of Mom in our backyard. It's been a few years, but she looks just as purty! Love those first two. There's a photo of 3 generations, and if Megan had jumped in, it would have been 4. The last photo is probably not Mom's favorite because she's prego, but look how cute we all are together! Even Jeff made it in that photo (sort of) !

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Memories of Mom - Happy Birthday to the Greatest Mom Ever!

Mom, to commemorate your birthday, we wanted to share with you a few of our favorite memories of you.

Megan's Memories

* I remember when we lived in Utah and it was Hilary's birthday. Mom gave me a present too (a swimsuit) so I wouldn't feel jealous that Hilary was getting all the presents.

*When I was in 6th grade I went to this Saturday math competition. It was horrible and I didn't feel like I knew the right answers to any of the problems. I felt awful. To cheer me up, Mom took me on a shopping spree at Marshalls.

*Mom always makes me feel better when I'm sick. Even though she can't be here to rub my forehead or my back, I still call her when I'm not feeling well.

*I live three time zones ahead of Mom, but she'll still talk to me when I call her in the morning and wake her up wayyyy early.

* My first Valentine's Day in New York I had no money for groceries and no Valentine. Mom ordered tons of groceries for me, including Godiva chocolate ice cream with chocolate hearts. It was so nice and it made me feel really good.

* When I was 8 or 9, Mom took me to a conference with her in Pacifica. We stayed in a hotel on the beach, ate cioppino and painted matching t-shirts with a rose stencil.

* Mom taught all of us to love the outdoors. When we were little she took us to Yosemite without Dad. We biked all around the park (Mom got Jeffy to quickly learn how to ride a bike so the trip would work). It rained a lot of the time we were there, but Mom was determined for us to all have a fun time while we were there, so we did. And she brought my favorite snack with us: apples and peanut butter.

* Mom (and Dad) always dance after movies while the music is playing and the credits are rolling. Sometimes when I see a movie, I realize that I've been dancing along to the credits too.

* Mom always cries in movies -- and now I do too.

* In the 5th grade Mom helped me to make friends at my new school by letting me have a HUGE slumber party! It was really nice.

* Mom used to chase after us with a spoon (like when I was in high school). She'd never catch us to spank us, and I don't think she wanted to. We'd all end up laughing because it was so funny.

* Mom encouraged me to get my ears pierced when I was 8. It was really exciting. (It also might have been because I got a very short haircut--without her permission--and she didn't want me to look like a boy.) :)

* When I was in high school Mom would sometimes unexpectedly pull me out of water polo or swim practice to go to the orthodontist, so I'd be sitting there in the waiting room in my swimsuit and towel. I'm glad she was so good at taking care of me.

* Mom's email address is "Waterbaby" because she really loves the water. She taught me to love the water too. When we go white water rafting Mom would sit on the edge of the boat because she wanted to be part of all the action.

Hilary's Memories (I know they're already on her blog, but I wanted to include them here too.)

Mother's Day is always really close to my mom's birthday, so she always gets a double-dose of celebrating. Or everything gets piled into one this :)
My mom's the best. I wanted to share some fun memories of my mom. Some may be too inside-joke-ish, but oh well.

* When I was younger, I had a sleepover with a bunch of girls. Of course we were 12 or something and couldn't drive, so guess who volunteered. My mom :) She was so funny how she was excited to be our getaway van. She made sure we all had enough toilet paper, and when we were done, we all jumped in through the sliding door and sped off!

* At my little brother's 8th (?) birthday party, all the little boys were trying to burp, and when Jeff told them his mom could do it on purpose, they all chanted, "Burp on purpose! Burp on purpose!" And then she did :)

* My mom dances with her fingers in the air and shakes her hair around. Megan and Jeff know what I'm talkin' bout.

* I remember almost crying because I wanted short shorts and my mom just wouldn't let me. I'm glad we had rules like that. Even though my sister will say I got to break more than she did. Looking back, short shorts weren't even as cute as the long ones are now!

* My mom let me dye my hair bright red in the 5th grade for Halloween, because I was a she-devil that year. Afterwards we decided I looked pretty cute, and she let me dye my hair years after that. Now it's almost 100% natural, but it took a long time! And man, was I cool in the 5th grade.

* One time I was really upset about something, (not sure if it was the sandwich throwing incident or something else) but my mom took me to see Practical Magic at the local theater. It was just us, and made me feel better.

* This sounds really lame of me, but it happened okay? When I was in 4th grade I missed the old elementary school that I used to attend, and my mom called them up to see if I could go to class there for just one day and sit with my friend Stephanie. How nice is that?

* My mom cheers a certain way that you can always pick out: "WOOhoo! Go Hilary!"

* The Barbie and Dinosaur/Stop in the Name of Love Song.

* Once in a while I'd go with her to work, and the big therapy room with the huge swings and big rubber balls for the handicapped kids were the best.

* I was the first girl in the 5th grade to shave my legs. Thanks, mom :)

* She taught me one of the most valuable things in life: How to pluck and shape my eye brows.

* Dress shopping was always fun. My mom always made me feel like I looked good.

* I used to feel bad when I'd get teased for being so short, and my mom always tried to remind me that I was just petite, and that was the way to be! Took me a while to understand what petite meant, and I'm glad I never tried using that as a comeback, but it made me feel better.

* I learned to like most foods, thanks to my mom. I've always been glad she was a good cook and didn't feed us junk.

* If she'd make me a school lunch, I'd find a bite taken out of my sandwich. She said it was a "love-bite". Thief ;)

My mom is beautiful and self-less. When other women in the ward would gossip, I'd never hear her say anything bad about anyone. This is silly, but I think if Jesus had a job, he would be a physical therapist. Like my mom. Hehe. Whenever I'm a butt-munch, she loves me anyway, and never yells at me or puts me down. She'll do anything for you. She's not perfect, but that's what keeps things interesting and makes her more likable. Love you, Mom!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Megan on a typical Saturday

Megan was doing her normal Saturday routine:
1. Wake Up
2. Change into a mu'mu.
3. Facial.
4. Dance with a quart of paint.

I love this woman!


So this week Megan and I went to a really cool Bob Gruen photography exhibit at the "Morrison Hotel" gallery at the old CBGB space. CBGB closed down last summer after years of being the historic underground home of punk rock on the Bowery. CBGB is where the Ramones, Blondie, Sex Pistols, and many more famous punk rock bands got their start. Bob Gruen is probably the most famous photographer to make pictures of all of these bands. His most iconic images are of John Lennon... (see above)

Since I was almost positive that Bob Gruen would be there, I googled his photograph beforehand so I could recognize him at the event. I knew he was a middle aged man with curly hair. When we arrived, I spotted him standing out front. So I approached him and asked "Bob- can I get a photo?" Here it is...

After this photo was taken, "Bob" leaned over and said "I'm not Bob Gruen, he is," pointing to this man:

My mistake. The first guy ended up being David Golless (sp?) and is a some-what found photographer as well.

The event was pretty cool. Debbie Harry of "Blondie" and some other band members even showed up... (we like our city)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Hilary's quiz now, but exciting celeb post to come!

Okay, Hilary. I guess we'll do this quiz too.

What's his name?

Daniel Richardson Parker

What’s her name?

Megan Holley Perkins Parker (that's how it appears on my new social security card)

How long have you been together?

Since October of '05

How old is he?

Soon to be 28 (May 13th)

How old is she?


Who eats more?


Who said I love you first?

Daniel - in the basement of Urban Outfitters

Who is taller?


Who sings better?

At home: Daniel. During karaoke: Megan

Who is smarter?

We're both smart in different ways. Daniel is much more of a schemer/idea guy.

Whose temper is worse?

We both claim we don't have a temper.

Who does the laundry?

We do it together.

Who does the dishes?

Ummm... we do them together (usually).

Who sleeps on the right side of the bed?


Who pays the bills?

Rent: Daniel. Tithing: Megan. Car: Daniel. Utilities: Megan. Credit card: both. What a boring question.

Who mows the lawn?

One of the benefits of living in NYC.

Who cooks dinner?

Daniel is usually Megan's sous chef.

Who drives when you are together?

Daniel. Megan drove once in the city and that was enough.

Who is more stubborn?

Ha ha. Probably Daniel.

Who is the first to admit their wrong?

We both try to avoid that.

Whose parents do you see the most?

Pretty evenly split. Both are so far away. :(

Who kissed whom first?

Ha ha. Daniel tried to kiss me on our second date and I turned my head so he missed. But he was determined and finally pulled it off.

Who asked whom out?

Daniel asked Megan out - via text message.

Who has more friends?

Daniel is better at making friends.

Who is more sensitive?


Who wears the pants in the family?


Where did you meet?

On the roof of an apartment during a party on July 3, 2005.

What was the first thing you said to your husband?

I don't remember, but my guess is "hi."

Where was your first kiss?

On the street at 457 W. 46th St. Daniel walked me home.

Did you have a long or short courtship/engagement?

Depends on who you ask. We dated for more than a year and a half before we got engaged and were married 4 months later.

Where did you get engaged?

At the Bow Bridge in Central Park, March 8, 2007. It was about 17 degrees outside.

Who proposed?


Who has more siblings?

Daniel is the oldest of 6 kids. I'm the oldest of 3.

Where were you married?

Salt Lake City

What do you do now?

Have as much fun as possible.