Eleven years ago, I received an odd e-mail from a woman I did not know.

Scenes from “Fatal Attraction” flashed before my eyes, as I wondered what she wanted.

I felt like the worried Tom Hanks character from “Sleepless in Seattle,” but instead of one son to deal with, I had three little men eager to meet … her.

When we married two and a half years later, I was confident that my days of receiving-odd-e-mails-from-women-I didn’t-even-know were over.

[Nervous/ Evil laughter similar to the late Vincent Price.].



Jump ahead to the present [2013]: It was mid-February, when I read it and realized that I really couldn’t label this e-mail as “odd” because it came from “Mom” after all.

No, not my Mum … [Shakes head, causing marbles to rattle within.]. No, not my Mother-In-Law either … just “Mom.”

But, just who is “Mom”?  Kassie from Indiana is “Mom” and she blogs about family and friends at “Maybe Someone Should Write That Down

Submitted on 2013/02/20 at 5:53 pm
Hi Liam, There’s a Liebster Award for both this blog and your Grave Matters waiting on my blog for you. Congrats!
Kassie aka Mom

“Liebster Award?” I had absolutely no idea what that was, so I went to her blog, read the details and quickly figured that she had made an honest mistake. (It’s okay, busy, young mothers do that, ya know.).

I thanked her for her generous offer, and the endearing compliment to both of my blogs, then gently informed her that I had far too many followers — or so I thought — to accept the honour she bestowed.

Well! A few more written exchanges, and I learned two things: [1] I can’t count; and, [2] don’t argue with a mother, you won’t win … she’ll change the rules.

So, here we are:


Now, I figured out that being nominated for a Liebster Award is like participating in an IronMan Triathalon. In the triathalon, you must complete three events of endurance; but for this award, you must complete three segments that provide insight revealing a side of your personality, originality and community, outside of the blogging world that you probably would not want too many people to know.

Answer the 11 questions from the nominator.
[1] If I weren’t blogging about this stuff I would be… volunteering for the Alberta Genealogical Society, writing articles for the Graveyard Rabbit Online Journal, and  bartending  for genchat.

[2] Who are you named after?  Shhhh, family secret! Can’t tell you (yet).

[3] I would like my epitaph to read as follows: I don’t know, you look it up!

[4] One of my favourite quotes is from Swiss-American psychiatrist, Elizabeth Kübler-Ross: “People are like stained-glass windows. They sparkle and shine when the sun is out, but when the darkness falls, their true beauty is revealed only if there is a light from within.”

[5] Something I will never understand is: women, when they cry.
[-] They cry when they are hurt — this makes sense; no problem presented.
[-] They cry when they are sad — this also makes sense; no problem presented.
[-] They cry when they are happy (like at weddings) — this doesn’t make any sense. [Problem.].
[-] They cry for no apparant reason — for example:

“Why are you crying?” I asked my wife, not so long ago, calmly with genuine concern.
“I don’t know,” she whimpered with black tears streaming down her face, creating a pseudo-Alice Cooper look.
“Then how do you know that you need to be crying?” I asked, as I prepared to fetch a mop and bucket.
“I DON’T KNOW THAT EITHER!” she bawled, again and resumed flooding the entire house!

[6] If  I could run around all day, everyday, dressed any way that I pleased I would wear: my Guiness T-shirt, fuzzy bunny slippers and Superman underwear.

[7] What class do you wish you had paid more attention to in school?
Geography, because I cannot find my way 300km in any direction without three things:
[-] my iPod with all my music on it
[-] pre-paid coffee/fast food gift cards, and
[-] my wife, who programs my GPS and verifies our course with her roadmaps.

[8] Do you write full time? 
No, although it seems that I do, sometimes. Writing does not pay the bills or put food on the table, but employment outside the home does.

[9] What’s your dream job? 
An opportunity to write full-time and get paid for doing it.

[10] Where is your dream Writer’s Corner? Don’t have one. Currently, computer desk is in spare bedroom closet. Spare bedroom was converted into genealogy office.

[11] What’s the craziest thing you have ever learned about your family?
We weren’t adopted — everyone is naturally crazy, unique, deranged or weird.

List 11 random facts about: the Leprechaun Rabbit.
[-] In 1988, NYC, NY: visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Natural History; realized why I was hooked on history!
[-] In 1988, Tampa, FL: met TV’s first Superman, Kirk Alyn. He was 78yo and flirted with every girl that smiled back at him or said “Hello.” (His show aired 1948-1950 in B&W.). I was only 25 but learned a lot from him (about girls) during those three days.
[-] Long before I started blogging, I had a poetry website (1989-2001), “Rainbow Gateway” called “RainGate” for short. Some of my writings won awards while others were published across North America in small periodicals and online. Before we married, my current wife (MiLady) found RainGate, loved it and began corresponding with me, until I agreed to meet with her.
[-] Served one year (2009-2010) as 2nd Vice President, and two years (2010-2012) as President of the Alberta Genealogical Society (Edmonton, AB).
[-] In 2011, Edmonton, AB: met Lisa Louise Cooke of Genealogy Gems Podcasts and forensics genealogist, Dr. Colleen Fitzpatrick.
[-] In 2012, Calgary, AB: with oldest son, Junior, met Adam West (Batman from 1960s TV series “Batman”); Richard Hatch (Apollo from 1978-79 TV series “Battlestar Galactica”); and Erin Gray (Colonel Wilma Deering from 1979-81 TV series “Buck Rogers in the 25th Century”). Wonderful people!
[-] Have not attended a genealogy conference/seminar outside of Canada; although NGS2014 (MAY 7-10 in Virginia) is on my bucket list.
[-] Wrote about 114yr-old cold case — murder victim was a cousin. Article was published (MAR2012) by Yates County Historical & Genealogical Society in Penn Yan, NY — same place where murder happened! Police report format was used for article, but written in rhyming couplets.
[-] In 2013, Calgary, AB: with sons, met Linda Hamilton (Catherine from 1987-90 TV series “Beauty & the Beast” with Ron Perlman as “Vincent”; she was also “Sarah Conner” in Terminator (1984) with Arnold  Schwarzenegger), John Rhys Davies (“Gimli” from The Lord of the Rings trilogy), Slyvestor McCoy (“Radagast the Brown” from The Hobbit; but also known as BBC’s Dr. Who 1987-89, 1993, 1996 — he has the longest serving career as The Doctor. He was #7); movie director John  Carpenter (The Fog, 1980) … and saw Erin Gray, again!
[-] Also in 2013, Calgary, AB: chatted up and had pictures taken with Craig Parker (“Haldir,” the long-haired blonde elf in charge of the forest archers in The Lord of the Rings trilogy). He also gave me a hug to give to my wife, whom he wants to meet, next year!
[-] Still in 2013, Calgary, AB: my son, “Captain,” spent $700 on medieval armour & sword, and wore it at Calgary Expo. It was his first convention, so he was a distracted walker; he collided with a beautiful redhead, who was also a distracted walker … Dina Meyer (known to Captain’s generation as Dizzy from movie Starship Troopers (1997) but to my generation as Oracle/Batgirl/Barbara Gordon from 2002-03 TV series “Birds of Prey”)!

Create 11 questions for your nominees.
[1] If you could ask ONLY ONE question to ANY ONE ancestor, what would you ask and to whom?
[2] To be more environmentally friendly, and reduce your carbon footprint, would you make your research paperless? Why or why not?
[3] If you could be any genealogy personality for one day, who would you be and why?
[4] What citation style do you use to cite your sources? MLA? APA? CMS? Or have you created your own system?
[5] Have you ever performed a Random Act of Genealogical Kindness? Or been the receipent of an RAOGK? Explain.
[6] What was your earliest exposure to genealogy?
[7] How do you keep your research organized?
[8] Which family line have you traced back the farthest?
[9] Is there a Christian name (like John, William, Elizabeth or Abigail) that has carried down to every generation? Whether as a first name or a middle name?
[10] Have you found a “Black Sheep” in your research? Who?
[11] — pending —

Present the Liebster Blog Award to 11 other blogs of 200 followers or less, who you feel deserve to be noticed and leave a comment on their blog letting them know they have been chosen.

[-] An Imperfect Pedigree from California 
[-] Black Ripley Tiffany from Tennessee
[-] Touching Family History Pat from Delaware
[-] My Genealogy Obsession Patricia from California
[-] Cedar and Sage Kati Smith
[-] Cheri’s Genealogy Cherie from North Carolina
[-] Generations Lisa from Alberta, Canada
[-] In Search of Who? Jana of Illinois
[-] — pending —
[-] — pending —
[-] — pending —


Fearless Females PirateWomen CLUBCARD

Don’t ask, it’s just too complicated to explain (again) … you had to be there.



On Monday, March 25th, 2013, I received a comment on my blog from “Genealogy Lady,” who is known to only a select few as Deborah Sweeney from California. She writes the blog “World War II, One Letter at a Time.” It is a heart-felt and moving account of family trials and tribulations, and should not be overlooked. Dropping in for a visit, is something you will not regret doing.

Returning to her message; it was brief, very brief:

I just awarded you the Very Inspiring Blogger Award:

inspiring blogger

Now, how did I manage that? [Scratching head, still trying to figure it out.].

Complying with the rules, isn’t that difficult; although, I believe TMI will result in the judges’ panel recanting their decision 🙂


PART TWO: 7 Facts About the Leprechaun Rabbit
[1] Left-handed, but cannot use left-handed scissors 😛
[2] Taught self to dance watching popular movies and music videos of the time: Saturday Night Fever (1977), TGIF (1978), Fame (1980), Billie Jean (Michael Jackson’s music video, 1982), Flashdance (1983), Thriller (Jackson music video, 1983), Footloose (1984) Dirty Dancing (1987), Smooth Criminal (Jackson music video, 1987), Riverdance (1995) and That’s Entertainment, Parts I (1974), II (1976), and III (1994).
[3] Played trumpet, French horn (Double F; 4 keys) and small purcussion instruments in high school concert band.
[4] Enjoys cooking dinner (for two) on special occasions then cleans up the mess afterwards.
[5] Is the third consecutive generation to serve in the military.
[6] Met blues legends: BB King and the late Jeff Healey.
[7] Won’t eat peas or carrots.

PART THREE: Present award to 11 inspiring nominees: (in progress)



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