This morning my cousin called and I told her that I finally finished all five family newsletters, which I've been working on for about nine months. I could have had a baby. Well, not really at 65 but I digress. The journals range from 22-40 pages. My cousin's response caught me by surprise. She was concerned it was too much for me to take on and that there wasn't enough appreciation for my work.
After a few rounds of "I know, I know," I explained how a cousin once wrote to me stating, "This is your calling." I suppose he was right. I started collecting information on our family tree in 1988 when our eldest son celebrated his first Hanukkah. We gave our parents each a book, Reflections: A Jewish Grandparent's Gift of Memories, and saw just how much they never knew or had forgotten. That started the ball rolling and has filled much of my leisure time for thirty years.
After compiling our family trees and distributing them to our relatives, I began a yearly newsletter to keep the family informed of "family matters" and to share memorabilia and photos. This labor of love turned into a full-fledged diary for my children and their descendants with the far-reaching benefit extended to all the relatives of our children on all sides.
It's a tough job but someone has to do it.