Monday, May 2, 2011
Breadcrumbs: Leave a Physical Trace Behind
I love lilacs.They are a beautiful celebration of spring and the smell takes me right back to my childhood. My childhood home in Connecticut had easily twenty-five lilac bushes scattered in clumps around the property. Each spring I would clip the fragrant flowers and bring them into house, typically placing the jugs in the kitchen and my bedroom.
As I've gotten older I've intentionally planted lilacs around the property of the homes my husband and I have purchased. In this life it allows me to continue to enjoy my favorite flower. Just as importantly, it's a silent, indirect reminder of my existence. A secret code that could only be deciphered by my family members. No, there is no sign that these lilacs were planted by Marian Pierre-Louis. All the same, they will be a living, physical reminder of my existence.
Genealogists spend a lot of time researching their ancestors. Some even reserve time to write their own memoirs. More often, it's like the cobbler's children who have no shoes. Genealogists focus so much on the past that some forget to leave behind their own story.
I'm intrigued with the concept of leaving a breadcrumb trail for my future descendants. Whether that means in archival documents or actual physical clues that become part of the environment.
Breadcrumbs is a new sub-series of the Roots & Rambles blog. Favorite plants and trees like lilacs are just one way of leaving a trace of yourself behind. I hope you'll follow along on the journey and consider leaving breadcrumbs for your descendants to find as we discover the possibilities together.
Photo Credit: Photo by PINEAPPLE XVI used under the creative commons license.