My parents never really talked about any family history very much, (or perhaps I just didn't listen very well) so when they both died I knew very little about my ancestor's other than who my immediate grandparents were and that there was Swedish on my mother's side and Irish on my fathers. After dad died in 2005 (mum had gone 20 years before) I suddenly felt a need to know more and then of course had no one to ask. So with my sister Kerry's help we started to trace our family tree and were able to piece together many generations from the various lines.
Here in Iceland there is no need to trace your family tree as there is a website called Íslendingbók that all nationals have access to. Apparently all Icelanders are related and all descendants of the one family...bishop Jón Arason and his partner Helga Sigudardóttir who had 9 children; every Icelander can find this couple somewhere in their family tree. I think once Henry Thor is born Ross will appear in the website...of course Olga is already there.
My dad always said that the Irish line in our family was way back several generations, so I don't think he knew a great deal about his father's side of the family either and that his paternal grandfather was born in Ireland. My great grandfather on the O'Shea side was from county Cork and his wife although born in Melbourne, her parents were Irish the O'Reilly's and McLoughlin's and were from county Cavan and Leitrim. So our Irish roots are quite strong.
Whilst researching back in 2008 (gosh time flies) I discovered living family members from the O'Shea line that were from my Grandfathers brother's line, living in Western Australia. We had a few email exchanges and then Kerry and I met them for a lovely little family reunion lunch. I still keep in email contact with Betty and Carmel who do read this blog from time to time, so this post is for them, happy St Patrick day ladies to you both and your families, I think of you often.
O'Shea Family Reunion
L-R Betty, Carmel, me, Kerry and Pat
L-R Sherryl, Shirley, Darryl and Yvonne