19    Jun 20140 comments

Biggest Family Reunion: A TED talk by AJ Jacobs

Six months ago, author AJ Jacobs received an email from a man halfway across the world claiming to be his 12th cousin. It sparked his interest, and AJ began researching his family history.

Since then, AJ has looked into his family history and discovered scores of fascinating relatives. He's now planning the largest family reunion in history - and you're invited!

AJ recently gave a TED talk about his genealogical endeavors, and his plans for the largest family reunion ever. His talk is featured on the TED homepage. Watch the video below:

Each and every person is invited to go to globalfamilyreunion.com to see their relation to AJ and to sign up for the big reunion! We hope to see you all there!

17    Jun 20140 comments

Jamboree 2014: Conference report

This year was the 45th Southern California Genealogical Society's Jamboree, a great gathering of attendees and presenters covering the entire spectrum of genealogical pursuits, from DNA to specific countries.

We were happy to help attendees learn more about MyHeritage.

Chief genealogist Daniel Horowitz (far right) assists attendees.

Continue reading "Jamboree 2014: Conference report" »

14    Jun 20142 comments

FIFA World Cup: A global game

Fuleco the Armadillo is the official mascot of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

This year's FIFA World Cup is just starting in Brazil. Soccer is one of the top sports in the world, and the number one sport in most countries outside of the U.S. It's an international sport, and one of the most exciting games to watch.

Brazil is hosting the World Cup for the second time, after hosting the 1950 World Cup. Games will be held in 12 different stadiums across the country. The championship has been awarded every four years since the inaugural tournament in 1930 (except for 1942 and 1946).

Thirty-two different teams will compete toe-to-toe in a total of 64 games, played over the next month, from June 12 through July 13, 2014.

The World Cup is one of the world's most widely viewed sporting events. It is estimated that over 715 million people watched the final match of the 2006 FIFA World Cup held in Germany.

No matter whom you root for, the World Cup is a unique opportunity for people of all backgrounds to get together and to celebrate camaraderie, patriotism and World Cup soccer on big screen TVs.

Where will you watch games? What team are you cheering for?

12    Jun 201415 comments

Father’s Day Competition: Dad taught me…

One of my first memories of my dad was his teaching me how to dance by standing on top of his feet. We twirled, jumped and burst into fits of laughter as we glided across the room. At my wedding many years later, the father-daughter dance brought back these great childhood memories.

Fathers, grandfathers and step-fathers teach us many things. Whether it’s an important life lesson, how to dance, ride a bike or being a source of wisdom, they are essential to our upbringing.
Continue reading "Father’s Day Competition: Dad taught me…" »

10    Jun 201427 comments

The Father Behind Father’s Day

Father's Day is coming up at the end of the week. It's a special day when we honor our fathers and grandfathers and celebrate our paternal bonds.

The idea for Father's Day originated in the United States with Sonora Smart Dodd of Spokane, Washington. She was inspired by Mother's Day, the special day to honor our mothers, and felt it would be right to create a day to honor fathers. She wanted to honor her own father, William Smart, a Civil War veteran. William had single-handedly raised his motherless children on an eastern Washington farm.

Sonora described her father as “both mother and father to us for 21 years.” He had five children with his first wife who died, six with his second wife who also died, and raised three stepchildren from his second wife's children from a previous marriage. He was a real family man! Continue reading "The Father Behind Father’s Day" »

5    Jun 20142 comments

We Are Family: Sibling bands

Today we spotlight some families that got along well with each other, and also shared the same musical talents and worked together on a daily basis. These family bands toured and performed together over the years.

Here are some of our favorite sibling bands:

Jackson 5
The Jackson siblings are possibly the best-known sibling act in history. Founded in 1964, the five brothers  -Jackie, Tito, Jermaine, Marlon and Michael - began singing in talent shows before they entered the professional scene. The Jackson 5 showcased the then tiny Michael Jackson's talents as a solo artist. Continue reading "We Are Family: Sibling bands" »

3    Jun 20140 comments

MyHeritage: Heading to Jamboree

We're getting ready for the 45th annual SCGS Jamboree conference, organized by the Southern California Genealogical Society, which will be held June 5-8.

This year's theme is “Golden Memories: Discovering Your Family History.” The focus is on our European ancestors. Class sessions are scheduled for German, Irish, English/UK, Scotland, Eastern Europe, Italian, Mennonite, Swedish, and Russian, as well as African American and Jewish classes. An entire day (Thursday, June 5)  is dedicated to learning about family history through DNA.

The conference offers speakers, exhibitors, class sessions and special events, and will be held in Burbank, California, from Thursday through Sunday, June 5-8, 2014. Continue reading "MyHeritage: Heading to Jamboree" »

2    Jun 20141 comment

Poll: Favorite family activities

Spending time with family helps strengthen our bonds with our relatives. We all have so many daily commitments that it is difficult to find ways to spend quality time with those we love. It is important to make the most of the time that we do have together.

How do you spend time with your family? Let us know in the survey below. Continue reading "Poll: Favorite family activities" »

31    May 201425 comments

Old Household Appliances: Cherished family heirlooms

Growing up in my house, we used a very old pop-up toaster to make our morning toast. When I say old, I mean very, very old. It was no longer shiny, but the metal and strong base shouted durability.

As a young child, I actually thought it was from ancient times. It turns out, it wasn't really medieval, but rather a present that my grandparents had received as a newly married couple in the 1950s.

This toaster worked perfectly every single day without fail, turning our bread a light brown color and popping out the pieces just in time. It was a no-fail piece of cookery. Continue reading "Old Household Appliances: Cherished family heirlooms" »

30    May 20140 comments

Story Competition: Our winners’ words

Thank you to everyone who entered our competition to share their stories.

We received so many amazing entries - tales of intrigue, mystery and discovery - with exciting twists and turns.

In genealogy, discoveries are not an end, but rather a beginning. Each door opened may lead to many more discoveries over time.

We hope to showcase the stories individually, although we are sharing excerpts from the winners below:

Barbara's maternal grandmother Clara, her brother James Walter, and stepbrother Frank Mann (c. early-1900s)

Barbara Chase (USA)
-- Finding ancestors on my father's side of the family was pretty easy - there has been a lot of family record keeping. Continue reading "Story Competition: Our winners’ words" »

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