19    Aug 20144 comments

Childhood Homes: Fond memories

I remember the home that I grew up in with many fond memories. We moved into our suburban home, in Canada, when I was only 4 years old. We lived in the same house until after I left home for university.

I didn't realize that I still had an emotional attachment to that home, until I went back for a visit recently, with my own family.

On a recent visit, I took my family back to my old house. Some things had changed on the outside -- the garden wasn't as beautiful, the shutters were painted a different color, but above all, the house still looked the same.

My childhood home.

Continue reading "Childhood Homes: Fond memories" »

20    Jun 20143 comments

Nostalgia: Sounds of technologies from the past

We recently wrote about smells that evoke nostalgic memories. Many claim that smell is the most powerful sense, as it brings up memories from the past. Sound is also powerful in that it helps us remember our childhood, and times gone by.

According to a recent article, Ryan Dube explains that for generations of early technology users, sounds of technologies from an earlier time can evoke powerful memories of childhood games, long nights of online chats, and new email messages.

Dube lists five top sounds from a time when technology was simpler and these sounds along with the technology that they accompanied was just being introduced into our daily lives.

1) The whir of the floppy drive:

Do you remember waiting as our computers tried hard to read data from floppy disks?  We would wait patiently as the floppy driver whirred away and we hoped that our disks were not too damaged to be read. Continue reading "Nostalgia: Sounds of technologies from the past" »

19    May 20142 comments

Nostalgia: Smells of the past

Nostalgia is defined as sentimentality about the past, typically for a time or place remembered with happy personal associations.

The word nostalgia comes from a combination of two Greek words, νόστος (nóstos), meaning "homecoming," and ἄλγος (álgos), meaning "pain, ache."

It is attributed to a 17th-century medical student to describe anxieties displayed by Swiss mercenaries fighting away from home.

It can be brought on by many different associations. Memories can be stirred when looking at old photos of people and places, listening to a song that takes you back to when you first heard it, or tasting something familiar from your childhood.

Sensory expert Professor Barry Smith says that "Smell, more than any other sense, can evoke powerful, emotional memories. Whole scenes of people, places and things can be brought back to life by the hint of a long forgotten scent." Continue reading "Nostalgia: Smells of the past" »

21    Aug 20138 comments

Nostalgia: Old family photographs

A few years ago, my grandmother gave me a shoebox filled with some of her mother’s heirlooms and photos. I looked through it briefly, but had then forgotten about it until last month.

My grandmother had told me stories about her childhood, but these photo discoveries really brought my family history to life. I finally got to put faces to those stories I had heard over the past few years, and to see my family heritage displayed in front of me.

I moved last month. Although moving can be stressful, I was in for a surprise when I discovered a box filled with family treasures at the back of a closet.

Last week I sat with my grandmother and together we looked through these family memories. As we viewed each photo and heirloom, she began to tell stories she hadn't mentioned before about the people and events in each picture. Continue reading "Nostalgia: Old family photographs" »

14    Aug 20122 comments

Lego’s Birthday: 80 years and an inspiring family history

Whenever a celebrity - with an interesting family history - celebrates a birthday, we try and share it with you.

Today's post isn't about a person, but a product - one we all know and love - Lego.

This past weekend marked the 80th birthday of the famous family toy enjoyed for generations.

Very much a family business, Lego was founded by Ole Kirk Christiansen in 1932. He built the company, with his bare hands, along with his son Godtfred, who became the company's second owner, and the designer of the important inter-locking brick system. The company is today run by Kjeld, Godtfred's son.

Three generations of the Christiansen family: Ole, Godtfred and Kjeld (Credit: http://www.brickfetish.com/timeline/1891.html)

Continue reading "Lego’s Birthday: 80 years and an inspiring family history" »

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