Thursday, September 26, 2013

“MY” Swedish Adventure ~ Förbereda ~ Meeting Others ~ Post 7

 Links to prior posts in this series:

There are some other people we thought we would attempt to see if possible. I sent a message to our friend's son who lives in the Ukraine to see if he could meet us in St. Petersburg while we were there.

The specific week when I was handling this, I found out a cousin I have in Norway (she is a fairly recent connection) has a summer place in Sweden! So now, how was I to get her into the picture?

I was hoping to meet Yvonne Henriksson too, you may know of her, she is a blogger in Sweden. Her blog is Swedish Thoughts. Yvonne was one of the biggest supporters I had when I was trying out for the TV show "All for Sweden" or "My Swedish Adventure."

We also wanted to spend some time with my husband's nephew and his family. The nephew was born in Costa Rica and married a Swedish gal. We hadn't seen our nephew since he was a teenager therefore we have never met his wife or children.

Photo taken by Cheryl Palmer 2013

You are already aware I will be meeting my newfound Swedish cousins on this trip, and we will be spending time with our friends in London also. I am planning to make this event as social as possible, it will make my husband happier, social butterfly that he is.

As time passed us by, I received a response from our friend in the Ukraine and unfortunately, he had plans that weekend already, plus he said he would have to get a visa to go to Russia. My husband and I thought that was odd,(I think we figured he had been to Russia for his work) but I understood he wasn't going to be able to make it. I gave him the rest of our trip plans in case we could hook up elsewhere. At least we have seen him and his wife within the past year, so it hasn't been eons or anything.

Next, my cousin in Norway said she would see what she could do to hook up with us. Her summer place is north of Gothenburg. It was a few hours ride away.

Yvonne, I found out had taken a job, so we knew early on it may not be a possibility for us to meet. I really hoped we could work something out, as I understood she didn't live from Gothenburg. If we could hook up for dinner, or even coffee or tea the one night we were there, I would be happy. I was still going to hope for this, and wasn't giving up easily.

I messaged with our nephew a number of times on Facebook. He works at a hotel in Stockholm and wanted to get us rooms where he works, at the family rate. I explained this to our travel agent and he was fine with that. I gave our nephew possible dates of when we would be in Stockholm and he said he would try to take those days off, it sounded good. He explained to us that his place was small and he couldn't accommodate us comfortably as guests.We had no problems with that, we just want to know we have a place to sleep!

So, as of now, any and everybody possibly involved in our trip had the information of where we would be and when. The next project was to decide what day to come home and get the flight booked.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts!

Copyright © 2013 Cheryl Palmer All Rights Reserved

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Wordless Wednesday ~ Along the Way

Thanks for stopping by! 

Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts! 

Copyright © 2013 Cheryl Palmer All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The Book of Me Written By You ~ Prompt 4 ~ Favorite Season

I am participating in Julie Goucher's activity:

Prompt 4 - Favourite Season

Do you have one?
A Happy Memory or association

Close your eyes and imagine your favourite season – write down what you see, feel, hear.


My Favorite Season

I have a favorite season
Years ago I'd have chosen two
Summer and winter it would have been
Now winter will have to do.

Back when summer was included
I was a lot younger then
Swimming was a favorite
The pool was close to our den.

Twenty years I've had a pool
No matter where I've been
Another ten without a pool
But a large spa has filled in.

The times oh how they have changed 
 I find I have gotten much older
It is clearly now I despise the heat
I really prefer it being colder.

Winter has always been my favorite
I'm sure Christmas is one reason
Another may have something to do
With it being a crafty season.

I have fond memories of watching it rain
Making everything outside glisten.
While sitting inside by the Christmas tree
Records of old crooners I would listen.

Snow is a favorite for many people
But it is to bright for me to see,
Some like to ski or make a snowman
But keep the snow away from me!

My favorite is the rain, although
I enjoy a clap of thunder or two
Lightening keeps the mind alert
Of what can happen to you.

I am basically a romantic I suppose
I say let it be cold and rainy
I'll stay in the house with a fire going
Snuggling is a no brain-y.

Thanks for stopping by! 

Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts! 

Copyright © 2013 Cheryl Palmer All Rights Reserved

Monday, September 23, 2013

Note from The Civil War

Back in the beginning of August I found a message in my genealogy mailbox that made my day! The message was titled "Fleming/Hohimer family." I felt this message was a new cousin contacting me as these are names in my tree. I was so excited I could hardly wait to read the message.

The email started out stating she had stumbled across my blog and thought I had done some good research. She explained to me that Laura and Joe Fleming, my great grandparents, were also her great grandparents! This was very coincidental because not long before this her parents had been a topic of conversation between me and my father. 

I learned from this initial email that my grandfather, her great uncle, she referred to as "Uncle Fud." She said she had fond memories of him. This was a new name for my grandfather I had never heard before. 

My cousin wrote that she found me because of a slip of paper written by our great great grandfather. She explained this paper was a note detailing the Civil War and it discusses the battle at Cabin Creek. She had gone on the internet looking for information about this when she found my blog. 

This paper came out of a family bible that my cousins mother owned, which had been passed down to her by her mother. This is the second time I have known of a family member owning a bible with useful information! 

My cousin has a tub of quite a few documents and information that has been passed down to her. I can hardly wait to go through them with her! She stated she made contact with another cousin and received many things from him also, including a postcard my grandfather had sent him when they were kids.

I am so happy my cousin reached out to me. I could hardly wait to tell my dad about our connection. I think I called him immediately after reading the email. Neither of us had  information about her family before this. 

This cousin lives an hour or so away from me. She lives about half way between where my father and I live. Her mother is coming up from southern California to visit her the beginning of next month, and I am going to meet them both! 

The best part? I will then take them for a ride up to my dad's house so her mother and my dad can reconnect. If ever I will need a tape recorder, this will be the time. All four of us are so excited about meeting and reconnecting, it will be a great day! 

I am, once again, going to meet new cousins!

Wasn't it not long ago I wrote thoughts to stop blogging? THIS is exactly why I won't stop!

Thanks for stopping by! 

Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts! 

Copyright © 2013 Cheryl Palmer All Rights Reserved

Thursday, September 19, 2013

The Book of Me, Written by You ~ Prompt 3 ~ Describe Your Physical Self

I am participating in Julie Goucher's activity:

Describe yourself such as~
Your size – clothes size
Eye colour
Draw your hands
Finger Prints

This week’s prompt is going to be a tough one for me. I am not one to think of or about myself. I now feel this is one of the main reasons I received the final cut when I tried out for the “Great Swedish Adventure.” 

My final interview in Burbank went really well until the director left the room and I was with the assistant director and another lady. They asked me “what do you consider your worst asset? ” I think to myself...besides my obvious weight problem…what could it be? 

I stumbled and stammered and finally told them I don’t like to think about "me" and that I really didn't know. I am most certain now that was what did me in for being on the show. Of course, when I came home and told my husband he quickly spilled out answers! Let's see how I handle this prompt.


My Size
 One of the reasons I hate having my picture taken,my weight. But if you know me, that is obvious. I am short, under 5ft. 4in., and feel my body has gotten "square." I have always wanted to be taller, so I wouldn’t look so fat. I have lost weight a couple of times in my life and actually got to thin. I am not sure what kept my motivation during those times, but I would love to have some of it now. It has always been a life long struggle for me.

Recently I had blood work done. I am very grateful I do not have diabetes because of my weight problem. I feel I have been given a second chance, and hope I can become successful in loosing weight!

Yes, I have a few. The first I ever received was when I was in kindergarten. I had to walk to school, which was right around the corner and up a slight hill from where we lived. One day I tripped on a lip of the cement, fell and put my front tooth through my lip.

When I was in the 6th grade, age 10, I ended up in the hospital for a very serious, unexpected, surgery. This left me with a hefty scar, which no one sees.

I have an acne related scar on my face, but worse, I had MRSA in 2008. I had it for a two years before the final antibiotics I tried finally killed it. I now have several scars on my face and elsewhere from my bout with MRSA. I have photos, but no one would want to see them, trust me.

I have had carpel tunnel surgery and major neck surgery, so I have scars from those as well.

My scars are the beauty marks of what I have experienced in this life.

My hair is naturally mousy brown in color, but I have been blonde most of my life. When I was young I spent a lot of time swimming and after being in the sun and chlorinated pool water all summer, my hair would get red highlights. By the time I was 19 or 20, I became a bleached blonde. Everyone thought I should have been born a blonde because it looked so good with my skin coloring. I think I should have been born a blonde also, it would certainly fit my heritage, being primarily Scandinavian. 

A couple years after I retired, I thought I would let my hair grow out and hope for some beautiful white hair so I wouldn't need to color it anymore. I hadn't seen my own hair color in almost 4 decades, I was ready to let it go. That was a BIG mistake! My hair is still mousy brown and ugly grey! I went right back to blonde hair. My husband has only known me as a blonde. He denies any pictures of me with brown hair.

My profession has helped me to love my hair, most of the time.

It has been discussed already that my eyes are blue. They are a deeper blue, but I always wished I had eyes like my maternal grandfather. He had the most gorgeous blue eyes I think I have ever seen. They were light, bright and really stood out.

I used to think that one of my best assets was my eyes and eyelashes. I really enjoyed building up those lashes with mascara in my younger days. I never needed an eyelash curler, they curled up on their own. Today, they don’t turn up so nice anymore, and one side is worse than the other. 

My eyes are blue, my favorite color. Glasses continue to allow me to read and see everything I want and need to do, including all the wonderful beauty in our lives.

If I could have half the money that has been spent on my teeth... I had many cavities and braces when I was young and grew up disliking dentists very much. I have had only 3 dentists that I was comfortable with. 

While in my 20’s I had an incident with a tooth. A cyst grew in between the roots of one of my molars and as it grew it pushed my tooth up and caused so much pain. They didn’t know what was going on. The dentist said he could send me to a specialist in San Francisco, or he could pull it. By that time I was so tired of the pain I told him to just pull it. When he did was when we saw what the problem was, and no more pain. 

I used to be so proud of my white teeth, the dentists used to tell me how white they were. Now, I can see the color difference in a crown compared to my other teeth, only the crown is now much whiter! I have all of my own teeth except the one which was pulled when I was in my 20's.

With all the money that has been spent on my teeth, I should have them still! Grateful! Grateful I can eat and chew with my own teeth!

I have short stubby fingers, just like my mother did. My baby fingers have always looked crooked or like they have been broken, another trait from my mother. I never felt that I would ever be a piano player with the short stubs I have, but I did once upon a time take some piano lessons. Music was not my forte however.

Here I have attempted drawings of my hands. I have added some wrinkles, age spots and veins as well as the rings that stay on my fingers 24/7. I certainly am not an artist and certainly didn't go for perfection here.

My hands have spent 30 years in chemicals, not having worn gloves. I had elephant skin, I didn’t need gloves! Bleach, peroxide, permanent solution, hair spray, sun, chlorine. They have all contributed to the dried out ol’ lady hands I have now. Add to that psoriasis (which I have on my legs, elbows and feet) and you can imagine the tough elephant hands I have! 

My hands are not as strong as they used to be.

These have given me the opportunity to craft and work at my career as well as touch and feel, everything.

If you read what I just previously wrote, you will understand I probably don’t have fingerprints anymore! I am sure you have seen in movies where the bad guy tried to remove his fingerprints by soaking them in chemicals…

Although I said I probably don’t have any, I did a “looksie” and see that I actually do have some! Amazing, if I ever need to be fingerprinted by the cops, they will get some!

I have always called my legs "elephant thighs" and I felt my calves could have had more shape on the inside of the leg.

They keep me mobile. I can walk, hike, run, jump, skip, ride a bike, do yoga, etc. I appreciate my legs we so take for granted.

I used to think my second toes were deformed because they weren’t longer than my big toes. 

My grandchildren had fun coloring them one day in October 2011.

You probably noticed my large toenail on my right foot it rather small. I got a fungus from a nail salon while getting pedicures. I am hoping some day I can beat this thing, but I am not sure, it has been getting worse instead of better.

Where would my legs be without my feet? They are one of the smallest parts of my body and are one of the most used parts, thank you feet for all you do for me!

We are all born with the skin we have, mine is tough as elephant skin. I have freckles and age spots on my skin. It is  weathered, and aged from chemicals and the sun. However, I am comfortable in my skin. Not happy maybe, but comfortable. 

Even though my skin is very fair, blemished, and wrinkling, it has protected my body my whole life. I do not have any skin diseases except some excema, and I can deal with that!

My ears are pierced three times on each side.The top two holes on each side have earrings in them 24/7 and the other two, get earrings every time I leave the house.  

I have one tattoo, it is on the backside of my shoulder. I got the tattoo as a "family bonding" thing 12 years ago. It was my daughter's idea, she paid for my husband's tattoo as a birthday present. All three of us got a tattoo at the same time.

Ooops...a finger got in the way when the photo was taken!

 With the flaws we each feel we have, we also have many great qualities. Overall things could be much worse. My body has taken care of me over the years and I am grateful. I have family and friends who love me, and I am grateful. 
I am older, and hopefully wiser.

I have elephant skin and elephant thighs,heck might as well add elephant weight too! Think I need to make sure I am not a real elephant...

Thanks for stopping by! 

Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts! 

Copyright © 2013 Cheryl Palmer All Rights Reserved

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

“MY” Swedish Adventure ~ Förbereda ~ Dates ~ Post 6

 Links to prior posts in this series:

"MY" Swedish Adventure~Förbereda~Cruise & Rosetta Stone~Post 3  
"MY" Swedish Adventure~Förbereda~A Hiccup~Post 4
“MY” Swedish Adventure ~ Förbereda ~ Choosing our Cruise ~ Post 5


We booked our 12 day Baltic cruise on March 18th. Departure date was August 19th. Now that we knew where and when we were going on the cruise needed to, I wanted to contact some people to see if we could hook up with them while we were in different ports, etc.

The first contact I made was with some people we friended on our cruise in the Mediterranean on 2011, Dave and Cathy. Our first stop before our cruise was in London, well, Harwich actually, but close enough to London that we wanted to see if Dave and Cathy would like to do the cruise with us. They live in the outskirts of London. If they couldn't or didn't want to do the cruise with us we wanted to see them for a couple days anyway if it was possible. 

Maybe you will remember, this is the cruise ship we took on the Mediterranean Cruise,
and it will be the same ship we will take on our Baltic Cruise.

Dave and Cathy weren't able to go on the cruise with us, but were very favorable on hooking up! Our cruise left on a Monday, so we decided to leave the Friday before the cruise, on August 16th and fly straight to London.  We would have the weekend to spend with them, doing some sightseeing, enjoying a typical English Pub, and maybe even seeing a show. With this new information, we had a "leave" from home date, Friday August 16th it would be!

I also needed to set up the dates at the end of the cruise to meet my cousins. After all, this was what the trip was all about, in my eyes anyway. I emailed a bit of information about our plans and asked if the first week in September was ok for us to spend with them. They needed definite dates ASAP as they wanted to take time off from work. 

For three years it has been discussed about when we could/should come to Sweden. I had the general idea of when would be best for everyone concerned for us to be there, and the first week in September worked perfectly for us. I chose a cruise based on the basic time period also. The weather would be good still, it wouldn't be time for snow or anything yet. Now I just needed to make sure the dates would work for everyone in Sweden.

 That first week in September was good with my cousins. It was hard to believe dates were finally set! I stretched the three-four days my husband thought we would be there, to eight days leaving on the ninth.  After all, they were taking a whole week off, we HAD to stay at least that long! Still, I needed to figure out how to tell my husband this...remember, he doesn't do genealogy and doesn't really understand why I want to see distant cousins I have never met before.

This part of our trip, to meet with my cousins, was planned for us to be at the airport in Sundsvall on Friday, August 30th and be back at the airport to leave on Saturday, September 7th.

I still do not have a fly home date, and have a few "other" plans I need to work on. More on this next time!

Thanks for stopping by!

 Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts! 

 Copyright © 2013 Cheryl Palmer All Rights Reserved

Sunday, September 15, 2013

“MY” Swedish Adventure ~ Förbereda ~ Choosing our Cruise ~ Post 5

 Links to prior posts in this series:


I can’t begin to tell you how many times we changed our minds on which cruise to take. We liked different stops on each cruise! Of course, we had decided we didn’t “need” a stop in Sweden because we could always fly from London to wherever we decided we wanted to go.

There were a few things that did help us make a decision on which cruise to take.
  •  First, and one of the most important things, when was my son in law’s mother available to come stay at our house? She was already planning on being gone for three months prior to our trip and had an event she needed to be available for after our trip. This narrowed down the timing actually quite a bit. 
  •  Then, of course I needed to think about my cousins and when     was a good time for them to take off time from work.
  •  I wanted to be in Sweden when it was nice weather and not   winter.
  •  Was there anyone we knew that we could meet at chosen ports of calls?
  •  Where would we like to be at the end of the cruise?

Have I mentioned we love cruising? In a previous post, I believe I said we had recently returned from our first cruise to Alaska. It was beautiful and we enjoyed it more than we expected. This trip was three months after my husband’s heart surgery and I wasn’t sure he was ready for it, but he was really looking forward to it and did great. The Baltic cruise I was planning was to be my seventh cruise. Who would have ever thought I would be such a cruiser!

The ports of call for this cruise ~

  •      Copenhagen, Denmark
  •      Stockholm, Sweden
  •      Helsinki, Finland
  •      St. Petersburg, Russia
  •      Tallinn, Estonia
  •      Gothenburg, Sweden
  •      Harwich, England

I know, I know…I said we didn’t need stops in Sweden, but during the time we wanted to cruise this was the cruise that fit our schedule the best!

Thanks for stopping by! 

Wishing you success in all of your genealogical treasure hunts! 

Copyright © 2013 Cheryl Palmer All Rights Reserved