I'm spending my time this week getting ready for next week's activities. My mom -who was just here a few weeks ago - will be making a return trip from Texas, and then her and I are taking off for Northern Michigan to visit this wonderful woman who just happens to be our oldest living family member!
According to my genealogy program - Irene is my 1st cousin twice removed. Now, after being hit with the genealogy bug for the past 2 years, I still haven't quite figured out that "removed" thing when it comes to cousins. All I know is that my great-great grandfather, William Bryan Andrew Parrish, was her grandfather. My grandfather was his son from his first marriage, Irene's father was his son from his 2nd marriage. So maybe that's where the "removed" card comes into play? (Confused yet?)
In the midst of my research, I discovered these 3 wonderful family histories that were written by Irene. Within the chapters of these books were references to a future volume that would be the history of the Parrish family. Upon discovering these, I wasn't sure if Irene was still working on these histories, still had plans for that 4th Volume, or if she was still alive! Silly me for not giving credit to the Parrish women! At 91 years old, not only is she still alive and kickin', but yes - she's still working hard on that last family publication! And after making contact with her, I was invited to come meet her and pour over what I'm sure are just miles and miles of information on our common family!
So, next Tuesday, 3 different generations of Parrish family will meet together for the first time to trade stories and share our memories. I never knew my great-grandfather, and he died before my mother was born. But I'm looking forward to hearing what Irene can tell us of what she remembers of the man who was her uncle. As well, my mom and I will be able to tell her of the Parrish family that remained in Northwest Ohio after she married and moved to northern Michigan.
This meeting will be a historical moment in the Parrish family history that I get to be a part of!!