Marie Louise ROBERT

Marie Louise ROBERT is my sixth great grandmother. She was born 15 December 1698 in Lachine, Quebec, New France. She died 2 April 1776 in Detroit, in what is now Wayne County, Michigan, USA.

Mary Louise was the daughter of Pierre ROBERT and Angelique PTOLEMEE. She married Jean François PELLEITER on 25 March 1718 in Detroit. After Jean François died, she married Louis CAMPEAU on 7 January 1724/25 in Ste Anne, Detroit. Her children with Jean François were Jean Baptiste, born in 1719; Jean François, born 1720; and Angelique, born 1722, all in Detroit.

Under the French, Detroit was part of New France, but France lost New France, which became Canada. I’m not sure if Detroit was part of Upper Canada or not. I have to check the dates. The English split Canada into Upper Canada, present day Ontario, and Lower Canada, present day Quebec, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia.

Knowing where your ancestors were is not enough. I said that last month in the profile for my fifth great grandmother. This only serves to emphasize that you have to know the history of the places where your ancestors lived. Detroit has been part of the United States since the late eighteen century. Before that, it was part of the English possession of Canada and before that, it was part of New France. It was English for only a short time before it was ceded to the US after the Revolutionary War. I have had relatives in the Detroit area the early eighteenth century, but that’s a different family line. That’s what I know about my family in this period. I need to find out more about Marie Louise. She died before the Revolutionary War, but her sons were alive then and likely active in the fighting, whether for the British or the Americans, I have no idea. They would be the ones most likely to have left records that I could find. I will have to research both sides of the war to find out which side they were on, if they got involved at all.

You mostly hear about the Revolutionary War taking place in the original thirteen colonies on the eastern seaboard, but Detroit was involved as well, if only in a limited way. Most of the fighting did take place in the east, but the wilderness, as Detroit was then, was not spared fighting. To learn more about Marie Louise, I will have to research Jean Baptiste, and Jean François, the father and the son, as well as Louis CAMPEAU.

I will need to compile a time line of her life, and theirs. Then I can see where I need to go to find out more. I will even have to delve in to the records of the Revolutionary War to learn more about her, even though she died before it took place. She might be mentioned in the records for her sons. Every little bit helps. I will also look into the records of the diocese in Detroit to learn where she was buried. I suspect her grave has been lost to time, but I may be able to pin down her death date by locating the record in the church documents. I foresee a trip to the Detroit Public Library to see if I can find her death record and perhaps the birth records of her children. Land records are another good source of information on your family. I will have to look into that as well. The more you can learn about one generation can lead you to more about the preceding one.

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Posted in Hobbies, Family History

Feline Freedom League December 2014 Report

From: Agent Cuddlebug To: Mr. Whiskers Date: 7 December 2014
Subject: Mission Report For December 2014

I did some research on the magic screen. Florida is where humans go when they retire. It has nice weather all around the seasons. I’ve considered everything and I believe that I wish to retire as well. Therefore I am enclosing form 11/934-85, to request retirement benefits to be sent to me here. I intend to spend my remaining years here in comfort. I will, of course, still be available for consultation. Any one of my colleagues here in this new den will be able to ask for my input on anything they feel my experience can help them with. I will not be making any more reports. I have enjoyed my service and will probably miss it a bit, but as I said, I will be available for consultation.

From: Agent Luna To: Mr. Whiskers Date: 7 December 2014
Subject: Mission Report For December 2014

This is an interesting place. We had a visitor when a lizard got in here. I don’t believe that I have ever seen such a creature. I have learned that this place, which is called Florida, doesn’t have white stuff fall on the ground. I admit that I am amazed. Why doesn’t it have the white stuff? I have asked everyone that I know and I can’t figure it out. No white stuff. I’m not sure how to react. On the other hand, we do have good food and water here. We should do quite well. We need to establish contact with outside agents. I will try to learn more for my next report.

From: Agent Storm To: Mr. Whiskers Date: 7 December 2014
Subject: Mission Report For December 2014

We have moved. I have been through this before and now I have to establish my base of operations yet again. Why humans do this kind of thing is not something that I understand. They shift their dens far too often for my taste. The lights and darks are saying that it should be cold, and yet it isn’t. I don’t understand that. I also have no idea what Florida means. I will have to do some research into this idea. This place is not a bad place. I think it will be a nice new den. I just wish I understood why we had to change dens. I also don’t understand why we couldn’t leave certain cats and canines behind. I guess I will never understand the way that humans think.

From: Agent Snickers To: Mr. Whiskers Date: 7 December 2014
Subject: Mission Report For December 2014

I was abducted. I traveled with strange humans to this place. I don’t know what happened here. There was the smell of the younger human, but I didn’t see her. I didn’t see anyone that I recognized. The trip took forever. I have no idea where we stayed when it got dark. The air here smells of salty water. I am not sure what it is, so I have devoted myself to hanging out with the humans to learn what I can about this place. I know that the humans are surprised by my apparent garrulousness. I rather enjoy making them wonder. This is fun. I am sure that they have brought us to this place, which is called Florida for some purpose they haven’t revealed. By the way the lights and darks alternate, I know that the white stuff season is coming. We must be ready for it.

Michigan Humane Society: Somebody here needs you.

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Posted in Feline Freedom League Report

Marie Therese AUBRY

Marie Thérèse AUBRY was my fifth great grandmother. She was born 30 November 1712 in Ile de Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, New France, as Canada was once known. She died 14 March 1747 in St. Laurent, Quebec, New France, (or maybe it was Canada at that point). She was the daughter of François AUBRY and Marie Jeanne BOUTELLIER. She married Louis Lemay 15 November 1734. The couple had at least two children that I know of, Theophile and Marguerite Thérèse.

That’s all I know about Thérèse AUBRY . She is shrouded in the mystery of time. obviously I still have some digging to do about her. I mentioned that Canada was once known as New France. That’s important to remember. It affects where the records are. Boundaries change over time and keeping that in mind will save you headaches in your family history research. Even county boundaries change over time as to place names. Cities engulf their surrounding suburbs quite often. Townships change over time and county seats change. The records don’t always follow.

The state of Michigan was once part of the Northwest Territory, which included Ohio and parts of Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Illinois. The upper peninsula of Michigan was once part of Minnesota. Politics changed that. It’s important to keep in mind that the places of today, may or may not have existed when your ancestors were alive. Knowing that, knowing the history of the places where your ancestor lived will help you to determine where the records are, if they even exist. Courthouses sometimes burned. Sometimes the people didn’t see the need to keep records – that was in the earliest times. You will find that to be more common as you go further back in time. They knew who the people in their community were. They knew who was related to whom and how they were related. That was enough for them, but it is a brick wall for us.

I need to delve into the records of Quebec for more information on Therese AUBRY and her family. I may even have to travel to Montreal to get that information, although there are several online sources. I could pay a researcher in Montréal to obtain the information for me, but I rather like doing it myself. It might be fun to travel to the place where my ancestress lived, but that’s another blog.

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Posted in Family History, Hobbies


Writing is like anything else that you do. If you want to do it well, you have to practice. Some people write stories to practice their craft. They do endless writing exercises and that works for them. Sometimes it works for me, but there are times when the writing exercise does nothing for me. I use my journal to practice my writing. I sit down at my computer every morning and write for thirty minutes. I use a timer so that I know just how long I have been doing my writing. It helps keep me on track for the session. I have the session and then I save my work. I go back over it to correct any typos or misspellings that the word processor finds. I also correct sentence structure. So it takes a few minutes more than thirty to do my daily journal entry, but that’s ok. It’s practice. Practicing your writing technique is good.

You don’t expect to take up basketball and be any good at it from the get go, the same is true for writing – or anything else you want to do. It takes practice and it is true that practice makes perfect. Or as perfect as a mere human can get. Raw talent is good, but it needs to be exercised and that’s what practicing does. It exercises and builds on the talent underneath. Talent is a base, a foundation on which your writing sits. I won’t say that if you don’t have talent you can’t write, because you could. I’m not sure if it would sell, but you can write. The mechanics are not that hard. If there is a creative spark in you, practice will help bring it out. Write your story. Rewrite it. Embellish it. Take stuff out, put stuff back in. It’s all practice. Once you get into the habit of practicing your writing, you will see it mature into something better than it was.

Practicing writing is not like practicing scales for music. You don’t write the same thing over and over, although that might help some people with punctuation. It’s not something that you can learn by rote. You learn writing by doing. Practice writing and you will learn how to do it. Stick to the grammar rules until you know what they are and then you can break them, because you will know how to break them effectively. That’s what practicing is all about. So grab a keyboard and computer, or pen and paper, and practice your writing. It’s good for you.

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Posted in General Opinion


Time is finite. There are only twenty-four hours in a day. You have to cram your life into that. . It is hard to find the time to write, work, and exercise. If you are like me, you give exercise or activity a low priority. That’s because I am lazy. I admit it. There are ways around that.

It is definitely hard. I enjoy the more sedentary pursuits like reading and writing. I suppose I could walk along and dictate a story to my phone, but people would think I was weird or something. Then there’s the stuff the phone would get wrong. My tablet doesn’t have a microphone. I suppose I could walk and write on the tablet, or a piece of paper, if it had a stiff backing. Anything is possible, but I am not sure that is the best way to do it.

I could dance while sweeping the floor. That would count as exercise. I could dance while chipping sticks and small branches in the yard. That would count as exercise. Maybe I shouldn’t focus on finding time to exercise and just turn chores into exercise. Dancing with the vacuum, or broom, would be exercise. I’m not sure how I would increase the exercise value of running the wood chipper, but I bet I could do it, even if I have to make several trips to bring branches to the chipper.

Exercise does not necessarily mean time at a gym doing workout routines. You can find it anywhere. Combining the things that you have to do with exercise could also make you exercise your brain. You have to figure out how to be active while you are doing something. the point is to do some sort of activity all day. You need to determine what you do every day and then figure out how you can make it a more active thing. That’s the key. You have to think as well as move.

Like the wood chipping, for example. I set up the wood chipper in the back yard, but there are piles of brush all over the yard. Rather than move the chipper, I could bring the branches to the chipper a little at a time. OK, that’s a no-brainer, in fact, the chipper is electric, and its location is largely determined by the length of the power cord. That just makes it work for me.

I tend to stand up while working, every so often, that’s something. It’s not a lot, so I have been adding knee bends and arm movements to the mix. Every little bit helps. All you have to do is be inventive and see where you can add a little more activity to your day. That’s the key. You have to think as well as move. If you have made a resolution to lose weight this year, you will need to add activity to your list of how to do it. Dieting can’t do it alone. You need activity. It is how much activity you do in a day that counts, not what you do. It’s quantity not quality here. A little bit here, that’s all you need.

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Posted in General Opinion

Fall Musings

There’s a bite to the air these days. Fall has definitely fallen. The trees are vibrant in gold and red leaves. The neighbor’s yard is pink with maple leaves. Yes, they are falling, a sign of the coming winter. They crackle and rustle underfoot as I make my daily walk. I’ve started using a new route. I call it my winter route. I circumnavigate the roads around the park rather than the path in the park. That’s another sign of change.

Fall mean many things to many people. It can mean the new school year, the new TV schedule. To me, it means change. A change of season, TV, but it is still change. Change is good. Everything changes. Sometimes things get better when they change. Sometimes they don’t. It’s no use railing against change. That’s just a waste of energy.

Fall signals the coming of NaNoWriMo. That’s only a few weeks away, as is Halloween. Halloween was more fun when I was a kid getting the candy than it is now, when I am giving the candy. I’m told that it’s better to give than to receive. I reserve judgment on that. I don’t begrudge the kids the fun. I had mine. I’m an adult now. That doesn’t mean that I have to give up all the fun I had as a kid, but the things that were fun then, probably wouldn’t seem so fun now.

Fall is a time for introspection to me. a time for me to reflect on how everything in my life has changed and what is currently changing. I’ve lost people, my brother just this year. I’ve met new people. That’s life. You lose some and then you gain some. Sadly, that’s also the story of my battle with my weight. I’ve gained some. It’s time to lose some.

The movies and TV shows are showing scary and funny scary episodes and movies. Most horror movies have the same basic plot – some people, usually teenagers – are somewhere remote and someone starts picking them off. they make me wonder what the movie makers have against teenagers. There’s a lot of running and screaming and gore. Let’s not forget the gore.

Then it’s on to Christmas. It’s already in the stores. They forget that in the US we have Thanksgiving before Christmas. Stores are starting to stay open for it. That’s wrong. It’s a time for people to gather with their families and friends. I suppose you could shop together, but in my book, Thanksgiving is about being with people you like, not battling for the best deals in a store. I guess that’s because I don’t truly like shopping. Get in, get what you need, and then get out. That’s how I shop. Oh I’ll window shop, but mostly I just want out of there.

Fall makes me stop and think about things. I guess most people do that at New Year, but I do it in the Fall. I don’t know why. Come the New Year, I’m eager to see what’s next. I want to turn the page and get on with the story. How about your?

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Posted in General Opinion

The Christmas Book: Chapter One

Click here to read the first chapter.

Posted in Uncategorized

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