Thursday, August 30, 2018

Happy Birthday, Mom!

My Mom, Jacqueline (Desgroseilliers) Belair, is celebrating her 85th birthday today.

Born on 30 August 1933 in Hearst, Ontario, Canada, Jacqueline was the sixth child of Eugène and Juliette (Beauvais) Desgroseilliers.

I made this collage of some of my favorite photos of Mom.

Happy birthday, Mom!

Jacqueline Desgroseilliers Belair photo collage

Copyright © 2018, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Revisiting Our Trip to England and France of 2008

Ten years ago in August 2008, my husband and I took a trip of a lifetime when we visited England and France. (I first wrote about our trip in Travel Tuesday: Our Trip to England and France.) 

We had an amazing time and have great memories of what we saw, did, and experienced in Europe. Here are some of the photos we took during our three-week vacation.

London:
Buckingham Palace garden
Buckingham Palace garden
Street sign near Westminster Abbey
Street sign near Westminster Abbey

The Middle Tower (entrance to the Tower of London)
The Middle Tower (entrance to the Tower of London)

The Chapel of St John the Evangelist in the White Tower at the Tower of London
The Chapel of St John the Evangelist in the White Tower at the Tower of London

The Rosetta Stone at the British Museum
The Rosetta Stone (a copy) at the British Museum

Sherlock Holmes Museum
The Sherlock Holmes Museum

The Albert pub near our hotel
"The Albert" pub near our hotel

Exterior of (1)65 Eaton Place of Upstairs/Downstairs series fame
 Windsor:

Windsor Castle's visitors’ entrance
Michael at the Castle's visitors’ entrance

St George’s Chapel
St George’s Chapel

Frogmore House
Frogmore House
King’s Lynn and Sandringham:

Captain Vancouver statue in King’s Lynn
Captain Vancouver in King’s Lynn

Sandringham House
Sandringham House

Paris:
Mur de la Paix monument with the Eiffel Tower in background
Mur de la Paix monument with the Eiffel Tower in background

Dôme des Invalides
Dôme des Invalides

Paris street sign
Paris street sign

And last, but not least

Mona Lisa
Mona Lisa

Copyright © 2018, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Saturday, August 25, 2018

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Earliest Known Birth Date in Your Family Tree

It’s Saturday and Randy at Genea-Musings has issued his weekly challenge to his readers.

Tonight’s assignment is to write about “the person with the earliest known birth date in your family tree”. For extra credit, Randy asks who is “the person with the earliest known birth date in North America in your family tree?”

The person with the earliest known birth date in my family tree is William the Conqueror, Duke of Normandy and King of England. He was born about 1028 in Falaise, Normandy. To locate him, I opened my family tree Microsoft Word document, went to the last page of ancestors (p. 763), and found William. He’s my paternal ancestor in the 34th generation.

As to the person with the earliest known birth date in North America in my family tree, that’s Hélène Desportes (1620-1675). She is my double maternal ancestor: I descend from her by her first husband, Guillaume Hébert, and by her second husband, Noël Morin. Hélène was baptised on 7 July 1620 in Quebec.

Copyright © 2018, Yvonne Demoskoff.

Thursday, August 02, 2018

Treasure Chest Thursday: The Baby Brush and Powder Puff

My father Maurice Belair was born on August 2, 1927 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. He was the eldest child of Fred and Julie (Vanasse) Belair. Dad would have been 91 years old today. I want to honor his memory by highlighting an heirloom that has been in our family since he was a baby.

This dresser set features a brush, talcum canister with cover, and a powder puff. I imagine that my grandmother Julie bought this set at a local department store or from a mail-order catalogue. On the other hand, she might have received it as a baby gift from a family member or a dear friend.

Vintage baby brush and talcum powder canister

The ivory, round baby powder canister made of celluloid measures almost 8 cm (3 inches) across and 4.5 cm (1¾”) deep. It is in fragile shape and the canister has two small cracks. A raised blue and pink floral design decorates the lid, which is missing its little knob handle.

The brush is about 11 cm (about 4”) long. It features a faded pink and blue floral design. The bristles are considerably soft to the touch.

Vintage baby brush set

The powder puff is about 6 cm (about 2”) wide. The puff is set in a pink, gathered silk fabric trimmed in eiderdown, swansdown or marabout. Interestingly, it still has a faint scent of talcum.

I wonder if Dad’s dresser set included a little comb and perhaps a tray. I vaguely remember there was a comb, but it is now missing.

There are no markings on the items to indicate manufacturer or country of origin.

I asked my Mother how she acquired this set. She thought for a moment and then replied that, sometime after she and Dad married, Julie gave it to her, saying something like “This was Maurice’s”. I wonder what my grandmother would say if she knew these humble baby items are still around and treasured by her family after all these years.

Copyright © 2018, Yvonne Demoskoff.