The generations on either side of me link me to my past and my future. My view of family history involves revealing the roots and the branches.

Throughout this blog you will find perspectives related to the doctrines of temple and family history work from revealed revelation given to living prophets of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

They, the Builders of the Nation

Photo from LDS Media Library

They, the Builders of the Nation
Ida R. Alldredge

They, the builders of the nation,
Blazing trails along the way;
Stepping-stones for generations
Were their deeds of ev'ry day.
Building new and firm foundations,
Pushing on the wild frontier,
Forging onward, ever onward,
Blessed, honored Pioneer!

Service ever was their watchcry;
Love became their guiding star;
Courage, their unfailing beacon,
Radiating near and far.
Ev'ry day some burden lifted,
Ev'ry day some heart to cheer,
Ev'ry day some hope the brighter,
Blessed, honored Pioneer!

As an ensign to the nation,
They unfurled the flag of truth,
Pillar, guide, and inspiration
To the hosts of waiting youth.
Honor, praise, and veneration
To the founders we revere!
List our song of adoration,
Blessed, honored Pioneer!

Monday, July 27, 2015

Memory Jogger Monday - July 27

Did your grandparents live close by? If so, describe how they were involved in your life. If they lived far away share some memories of visiting them or of them traveling to visit you.

When I was born both sets of grandparents lived in northern Utah while our family lived in southern Utah.

Grandpa and Grandma Edwards lived in Salt Lake City and I know we went to visit them when I was a few years old because we have photos of that visit. They moved to the Enoch Utah area in the mid 1970's and lived about 2 miles from our home. We would walk or bike to their home. In the summer I would mow their huge lawn. And when they went on vacation I would water the plants and gardens and feed the chickens. They would come to family activities and I remember having them come with us to cookouts in the canyon. In the mid 1980's they moved back to Salt Lake City.

Grandma and Grandpa Peterson lived in Orem for most of my childhood. I remember going to their home on many occasions and often during the summertime we were privileged to sleep outside in the camping trailer. We would go fishing and camping with them. I remember riding my grandma's bike around her neighborhood and down to the park. In 1986 they moved to St. George and they were only an hour away. They came to more of our activities; particularly school events. We would go to St. George and swim in their community pool and walk to the temple.

It was great to have them close to us. I am grateful for the memories I have of knowing my grandparents and actively doing things with them. They were involved in our lives whether they lived far or near.

See this post for more information about "Memory Jogger Monday": 

Sunday, July 26, 2015

A Deep Sense of Alliance With God

Oquirrh Mountain Temple - © Stuart Gardner
“The objective of family history work is to make the blessings of the temple available to all people, both living and dead. As we attend the temple and perform work for the dead, we accomplish a deep sense of alliance with God and a better understanding of his plan for the salvation of the human race. We learn to love our neighbors as ourselves. Truly there is no work equal to that done in the temple.” 

– President Howard W. Hunter, “We Have A Work To Do,” Ensign, March 1995, p. 65.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Blessed Honored Pioneer - Lucy Simmons Groves


Lucy Simmons Groves is my 4th great grandmother. Though she endured many hardships in her life she pressed onward and forward and always maintained her strong testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Today I want to share the story of the births of her children (that touch my heart as a mother) and her journey to escape persecution.

Lucy and Elisha were married 14 January 1836 in Kirtland, Geauga, Ohio. From there they traveled to Clay county, Missouri. Lucy traveled with her friends and family and Elisha traveled separately preaching along the way. He met up with them before they reached their destination in the summer of 1836. They moved in the fall from Clay county to what would become Far West, Caldwell, Missouri and their first child, a daughter, Mary Leah Groves was born 30 October 1836.

Two years later in the fall of 1838 the mob drove them from their home in Far West. In either October or November their second child and first son, John Simmons Groves was born. He only lived a few months.

The images below are from the LDS Church History Library. They are Mormon Redress Petitions (aka Missouri Claims) from 1839-1845. These are statements pertaining to grievances suffered by the Mormons in Missouri, 1833-1839. The majority are petitions collected for the purpose of presentation as redress bills before the United States Congress. These 2 images are Elisha's petition for redress. 

The mob drove them from their home and took all of their property and left them "without a shelter to cover from the storm." It is assumed that their son John Simmons was born during this time.
Image: MS 2703_b0001_f0012_00043
Image: MS 2703_b0001_f0012_00044
The family then moved to Columbus, Adams, Illinois (this is where the above redress was written) and where on 14 September 1840 their third child, another son, Samuel Elisha Groves was born.

After Samuel's birth, the family moved to Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois where 11 months later their fourth child, another daughter, Patience Sibyl Groves was born on 18 August 1841. Some records list her birth as 1843. Though she is quoted in family records as saying she was 7 years old in 1848 when she walked to the Salt Lake Valley.

The fifth child, another daughter, Sarah Matilda Groves was born 14 February 1846 in Nauvoo, Hancock, Illinois, A mob had come to their home and told them that they must either renounce Mormonism or they had only one hour in which to leave. If they were still there at the end of that time the mob would kill the whole family. That night, during a terrible storm, without shelter or protection Lucy gave birth to Sarah. They then crossed the frozen Mississippi River less than two weeks later on 26 February 1846. Can you imagine four young children, with one of them being a 12 day old infant in those conditions? They reached Council Bluffs, Harrison, Iowa in late July 1846 and Sarah Matilda died in October 1846 of cholera.

Now Lucy has three living young children. Her half brother Samuel Thompson enlisted with the Mormon Battalion at Winter Quarters and left his two young children with Lucy to care for and take to the Salt Lake Valley. The Groves family stayed in Winter Quarters until late Spring 1848.

During the preparation to leave Winter Quarters for the Salt Lake Valley Lucy gave birth to their sixth child, another daughter, Lucy Maria Groves on 7 May 1848. Ten days later at 2 pm they left Winter Quarters in Brigham Young's company. Can you imagine six young children the youngest less than two weeks old?

The following took place less than one month later and this excerpt is taken from Thomas Bullock's Journal:

So my dear ancestor Lucy, having just had a baby 4 weeks previous, is sick and she fell out of the front of the wagon and the wheels of the wagon crushed her breast breaking ribs and then breaking her leg.

Nine days later, her eldest daughter Mary Leah was helping take care of the family and accidentally stumbled over her mother's leg breaking it a second time. The pain was so severe that Lucy told Elisha that he would have to pull the wagon out of the train and stop because she could not go on further.

Brigham Young would not leave them alone on the trail. He helped her so that she could ride in a little more comfort. They made it to the Salt Lake Valley with their four young children and the two young Thompson children and Lucy continued to heal. She had a limp and used a cane for the remainder of her life.

I am so grateful for her courage, patience and long suffering. Often when my days seem difficult with my two young children, I remember her and her trials and I take courage that my life isn't as difficult. I have a home where I can exercise my faith and my freedoms. For these reasons and many more, I thank Lucy and all those who traveled the trail.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

What Sort of Genealogist Am I?

Okay, so it is Wednesday and I'm finally participating in last week's Genea-Musings Saturday Night Genealogy Fun. Three years ago Thomas MacEntee wrote Careers in Genealogy - A 2012 Update where he shared 9 current genealogy careers. Using Thomas' categories, an additional category by Randy Seaver and some of my own, I'm going to share how I believe I fit or don't fit these categories.

To start, I have never been paid to do any of these "careers" when it comes to genealogy or family history.

These are Thomas' 9 categories:

  • Researcher: I am a researcher and have been since I was a young teen. Mostly doing research on my own family lines, but often helping others dig in the trenches for documents when they are frustrated in their own efforts. In the early 1990s, when I was in my early 20s I found a couple other women who had my same name "Amy Ohms". One was in Wisconsin and the other in Colorado. I helped them research their "Ohms" family; finding no connection to mine but lots of great documents for them.
  • Author: I am an author ... of this blog and a few other blogs that are still in development.
  • Educator: I believe this category fits me the best. I am an educator. I have been teaching others how to do family history for more than 20 years. I have served for numerous years as a LDS ward and stake consultant. I taught the pilot course for the LDS Religion course 261: Introduction to Family History in 1995 at the Cedar City LDS Institute. I believe my blog serves as a teaching tool and in the past year I have been speaking (teaching) at regional and national conferences. Someday I hope to learn how to offer webinars or other online courses.
  • Curator: I believe I am a curator of LDS quotes regarding family history and temple work.
  • Archivist: I need to be an archivist. I have some family documents, photos, etc that need to be preserved. I need to learn more about proper preservation. When it comes to collections of articles, documents, etc, I believe my brother Seth is a great archivist; at least for one of our ancestors.
  • Librarian: I am not a librarian. I have worked in trade and textbook stores as a retailer and was often mistaken for being a librarian in a library. I know how to use a library, but I am not a librarian.
  • Analyst: I am an analyst. I love data. I analyze how certain software or websites function and when I find errors I submit feedback or enhancement suggestions. I beta test websites. In a non-genealogy career I analyzed data to identify sales trends, product placement, product life cycle and depreciation. In genealogy I also analyze what data may be missing when researching an individual or family.
  • Marketer: I love marketing and believe I am a marketer for all things family history related. I am learning more about social media and am hoping in the near future to get a certificate in Social Media Marketing. For me, marketing is all about the message, the brand, and how to get it to the people and analyzing the response.
  • Retailer: Currently not a retailer for anything genealogy related, but that could change. I have been a retailer for more than 20 years in my career. I have some product ideas that I may develop for the genealogy market. 
Randy's addition:
  • Evangelist: I think this is sort of like "Marketer" - one who promotes genealogy and family history; except without the technical aspects. This also encompasses, spreading the "good word" about genealogy and family history and encouraging others in the process. I believe I am an evangelist.
My additions:
  • Cheerleader / Encourager: This sort of goes along with "Evangelist". Not only spreading the good word about genealogy but cheering each other along. When someone is down or frustrated by a brick wall I try to cheer them up and help them see all the good things through the frustration. I also help them try to figure other ways around their road block.
  • Private Investigator: I am really good at quickly finding the living; often much to their surprise and the surprise of those looking for the living. I believe this is a gift that I possess.
  • Gatherer / Organizer / Planner: So, not only can I find the living, I then organize them into huge reunions. I am really good at gathering cousins and planning and organizing and carrying out family reunions and events.
  • Developer: I don't know how to write software code; maybe someday I'll learn. What I did learn my first year at the RootsTech Innovator Summit is that often software "developers" don't write code either. They develop the concept for the software and others program in code what the developer planned. I have some software concept ideas that I still need to make time to develop and then build a team of programmers to create. Not yet a developer, but maybe someday.
  • Geneticist: I am not a geneticist. I haven't even had my DNA analyzed. I hope to participate in a DNA test sometime soon. There are many people that understand DNA and genetics and I believe this is a growing field for genealogy.
  • Travel Guide: I am not a travel guide ... I just dream of being one someday. I would love to put together groups to travel to ancestral homelands to have grand adventures in walking where their ancestors walked.
What about you? What sort of genealogist are you? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Memory Jogger Monday - July 20

Raymond Henry Ohms, World Horseshoe Pitching Champion
Share some memories of your grandparents.

Paternal Grandparents

Raymond Henry Ohms (19 November 1912 - 22 June 1963)
I never knew my grandpa Ohms (pictured above). He died 8 years before I was born. He was a world horseshoe pitcher. My father has kept this memory and tradition alive in our family. We all pitched horseshoes when we were younger. Some of my siblings and their children continue to pitch competitively.

Helen Arlene Barr Ohms Edwards (29 December 1913 - 7 May 2003)
When I was a pre-teen I traveled with my grandma Edwards from Cedar City, Utah to Salt Lake City, Utah to visit my aunt, uncle, and cousins. I remember us getting in a little car accident; no one was hurt, though I was scared. I also remember the year that we took a family vacation to US and LDS historical sites in the eastern United States and we rented a RV and my grandma came with us.
Tom and Helen Edwards
William Thomas Edwards (30 June 1913 - 21 December 1990)
Grandpa "Tom" married my grandma after my grandpa died. He was the grandpa I grew up knowing. My favorite memories of him were on our birthdays when they lived in the same town as us. He would come over in his pajamas for the birthday party because he knew we would be up all night watching our 8 mm films. I think he also came on Christmas Eve in his pajamas.

Maternal Grandparents

Darrel L Peterson (31 July 1920 - 10 December 1990)
My grandpa Pete repaired televisions. I remember playing in his repair shop while he was working on TV sets. I also remember helping him find night crawlers in the lawn with an electric night crawler probe. We would then go fishing on the lake in his boat. My grandpa also had a metal detector and he let me borrow it to have treasure hunting adventures of my own.
Darrel and Leola Peterson
Leola Pierce Peterson (8 July 1924 - 1 April 2012)
I remember as a young child learning how to play card games from my grandma Pete. Her and grandpa would have card nights with their friends and extended family. She had a drawer full of cards. Later in life she taught us how to play dominoes. She collected coins and I was fascinated by how old they were. I started my own coin collection because she shared this love of collecting with me. And I found one of my oldest coins with my grandpa's metal detector.

See this post for more information about "Memory Jogger Monday": 

Sunday, July 19, 2015

The Lord Will Direct Our Attention

“When we have conscientiously done all we can to locate records of our ancestors, the Lord will direct our attention to obscure records in unlikely places where ancestral information has been preserved.”

– Elder David B. Haight, “Personal Temple Worship,” Ensign, May 1993, p. 25.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Connecting Points Magazine

On March 27, 2015 I posted an article on my blog called Brick Wall Removal. The next day I was contacted by Tom Bailey the publisher of the new free online genealogy magazine Connecting Points. He asked if they could use this blog article in their summer edition of their magazine. I agreed. You can view that issue of the magazine HERE. You can subscribe to their free magazine and get notifications when each quarterly issue is available. 

Monday, July 13, 2015

Memory Jogger Monday - July 13

Did your family have special ways of celebrating specific holidays?

The specific holiday that I'm writing about today is Christmas. Every Christmas our family would send out an annual letter to family and friends describing events each family member participated in during the year. We now do this in our own families as well as the letter our parents still send out to family and friends.

My Papa (dad) crocheted each of us a Christmas stocking; see above picture. My parent's stockings say "Papa" and "Mama" and each child has their own. As each child married the spouse would receive their own stocking. And now each grandchild has one too! It is an awesome gift!

On Christmas Eve we have a special Family Home Evening to celebrate the birth of our Savior. We read from the New Testament in the book of Luke of Jesus' birth and over the years we have taken turns acting out the parts of Jesus, Joseph, Mary, the angel, the inn keeper, the shepherds and the animals.

We sing Christmas hymns and songs and those who play instruments also perform for the family our own mini concert. It is tradition that the men in the family sing "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen". Even some years, my parents get everyone together on a connected phone call and all the men still sing together though distant the miles.

My brother-in-law David was the first in-law to join the family 20 years ago and he brought with him the tradition of reading "How the Grinch Stole Christmas". Even when I read it to my children, I can hear his voice and his word inflection in my mind.

My Papa always read to us the book "Let's Keep Christmas" by Peter Marshall while we would color in our Christmas coloring book. Each year every child got one page to color and sign and date. My parents started this tradition when I was born. It is fun to go through their coloring book and see how our coloring skills have improved over the decades.

We were each given a Christmas coloring book for our own families that is similar to our parents. It is the story "'Twas the Night Before Christmas". I enjoy looking at the pictures my young children have colored over the past few years and am grateful that we have this special way of celebrating Christmas in our family.

See this post for more information about "Memory Jogger Monday": 

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Do You Want the Influence of Dignity, Wisdom, Inspiration, and Spirituality?

Brigham City Utah Temple - Photo from LDS Media Library
“Members of the Church cannot touch this work without becoming affected spiritually.  The spirit of Elijah permeates it.  Many of the little intrusions into our lives, the little difficulties and the petty problems that beset us, are put into proper perspective when we view the linking of the generations for the eternities.  We become much more patient then.  So if you want the influence of dignity and wisdom and inspiration and spirituality to envelop your life, involve yourself in temple and genealogical work.”  

- Boyd K. Packer, The Holy Temple, Bookcraft, 1980, p. 224-225.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

2015 Ohms Family Reunion

2015 Ohms Family Reunion (missing 5)
We had our annual Ohms Family Reunion last week (July 2-5). My sister Sarah was selected to pick the location and the agenda and all things related to the reunion this year. This is the first year that my parents have not done the planning for the reunion. Sarah put together her ideas and submitted them to my parents for approval.

The reunion planning will go from youngest to oldest for a few rotations and then will start with oldest to youngest grandchild. Every four years our family reunion shifts from the summer to the spring when we go to Disneyland for leap year (and my parents plan that event). We will have two Disney reunions before it is my turn to plan the family reunion in 2021.

Back to this year's event. Sarah and her family live in Logan Utah and our reunion was centered in that area. I'm going to share some of the activities that we did. We started the reunion on Thursday July 2 with a family temple session at the Logan Temple. The youth participated in baptisms and the adults in an endowment session; all with family names that we have been working on this past year. The younger children went to an awesome park and Sarah's friends came and watched them for us. What a great morning of service! This was a new thing for our reunions. We haven't included temple work in our reunions before; though we plan to going forward, even when we go to Disneyland.
Sarah gave us an awesome purple paper that contained all the addresses of the places we would be visiting during our reunion. So if anyone got left behind in following the caravan of vehicles they could find their way there. It was a great resource!

We ate lunch at Angie's Restaurant where we "Cleaned the Sink" - HUGE bowl of ice cream. We got two of them for our large group.

My family visited with my husband's mom for an hour while the rest of the family visited an assisted living center.

We went on a "tasting tour" of Cache Valley. We visited the following businesses:
* Pepperidge Farm (cookies and goldfish crackers)
* Lower Foods (meats)
* Lee's Marketplace (cereal tradition - see HERE for more information) 
* Heart to Heart (creamies)
* Gossner Foods (cheese curd)
* Cox Honeyland (honey samples and watching bees in a clear hive)

After we filled up on these treats we drove up Logan Canyon to the Sunrise Campground. I thought that name was fitting. My dad always called Sarah his "Little Sunshine" while we were growing up. I love that we stayed at "Sunrise" and our shirts were sunshiny yellow with a sun on the back of them with the temple motif. Sarah and Jenny came up with the design for the T-shirts and Jenny did all the vinyl work to make them. We have a different t-shirt every year.

On the morning of Friday July 3 we had a Sunrise Service at the Bear Lake overlook. I stayed in the tent and slept, so I missed it. I don't even know what took place. We got our shirts this morning and took family pictures via tripod and timer. Then we headed into Idaho to the Bear Lake North Shore beach. The water was so clear and warmish. The only warmer water I've been in is at the beaches of Oahu. And it was shallow for a long way out. Here is a group of us trying to find a frisbee that landed in the water and sank before anyone could reach it. My brother finally found it.

We ate lunch at LaBeau's in Garden City and then headed back to the camp for naps and playtime. Some of us took a hike on the Limber Pine Trail. We ate a yummy dutch oven dinner made by my dad and sister Jenny. We enjoyed our traditional talent show and then had a fireside program where we shared positive stories and thoughts about each other. We then went to the Bear Lake Overlook to watch the moon rise - it was blood red (from all the fires). I really enjoyed that evening.

Saturday July 4 we had a relay around the campground that was designed and organized by my 11 year old nephew Quinn. The day before he had us draw out numbers which put us on one of three teams and then he determined which leg of the relay we would each do and he walked us through the relay and set everyone up where they were to start from. It was a fun race. A few years ago we started having a race as part of our reunion. That first year we participated in a family 5K.

We then went to Paris Idaho to watch their Independence Day parade. This was the first time that I've seen a parade go down one side of the street and then turn around and come back on the other side of the street. It was a candy parade ... lots of salt water taffy to go around and around. The kids loved it.

We headed back down the canyon to Logan to the motel and to clean up and swim in the pool. At one point the pool was full of just our family. We ate dinner at the Golden Corral which is becoming a Papa tradition; my dad likes the place and the grandchildren do too. You can eat what you want; even dessert first!

The evening ended with fireworks in nearby Hyrum Utah. We took our blankets and pillows and laid on the grass in the middle of a baseball field and enjoyed the fireworks all around us.

Sunday July 5 we attended church at my sister Sarah's ward and then ate some lunch and everyone headed for home.

It was a great reunion! We sure missed my brother Gabe and his family who were still in Taiwan; hopefully we will all get to see them when they visit our parents next month.

I decided to write about this reunion here on this blog not only to document our family's adventures but to show others what kinds of things we do at our reunions. Perhaps your family does something similar or may get ideas from what we have done.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Memory Jogger Monday - July 6

What are some of your family traditions that you remember?

When I was young child one of our favorite Family Home Evening activities was going to the grocery store and picking out our own box of cereal. It could be anything we wanted. I remember choosing Cap'n Crunch's Crunch Berries most of the time. We could keep the cereal in our own bedrooms and eat it whenever we wanted; though I'm sure my parents wanted us to eat it for breakfast. I remember that sometimes by the next morning some of us would be out of cereal already. I also remember that my mom and dad always picked "healthier" cereals than their 5 children. Back then it was 7 packages of cereal.

Fast forward to this past weekend. It was our 2015 Ohms Family Reunion; the 15th consecutive year of this reunion. There are now 27 of us - though 5 were unable to attend this time. We have continued the "cereal tradition" for all of our family reunions. The above picture is what 22 packages of cereal looks like.

When we pick out what we want we hand it to Papa (my dad) and he takes a black marker and writes our name on the package and in the cart it goes. We can't change our minds once our name is on the package.

I love these kid size shopping carts. The children had so much fun filling their carts with cereal.

Here is some of the group making their cereal decision.

And my choice this year is more healthier than Cap'n Crunch. This year I chose Crispix.

See this post for more information about "Memory Jogger Monday": 

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Bound Together By Covenant

Doug and Pam Carter Family - Ogden Utah Temple - June 2015
“Because of our confidence in the perpetuity of the home and family into the eternities, we build our most elaborate and expensive structures – temples of God – so that man, woman, and their children may be bound together by covenant in an everlasting union which will transcend all the limitations of this mortal sphere.”
- Ezra Taft Benson, This Nation Shall Endure, Deseret Book, 1977, p. 129.