Archive for the ‘Stocking Family Genealogy’ Category

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – Use Your Family Tree Program to Make a Calendar

by Sherry Stocking Kline
by January 30, 2010

The following is from Randy Seaver’s Genea-Musings! It is our Saturday Night Genealogy Fun challenge!  Don’t forget to cue up the “Mission Impossible Music”

Hi SNGF fans – it’s Saturday Night, time for some major Genealogy Fun!!!

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to:

1) Open your genealogy software or family tree program of choice and make yourself the highlighted person.

2) Find out how to create a Calendar to show birthdays and/or anniversaries of yourself and all of your ancestors (or all relatives, or all persons – your choice!). The “Help” button is your friend here!!! It can be done in all of the current software programs.

3) Create your calendar. Pretty it up if you want. Save it. Can you show us a page from your calendar – say January 2010?

4) Which of your ancestors (or relatives, or descendants – your choice!), if any, were born on 30 January?

Have fun with this. How can you use this information during the coming year?

I have to confess it took me longer than 30 minutes, and that just for one program!  I chose Legacy, though I do have Family Tree Maker 16, and also the free Roots Magic software.  I’ve read great things about Legacy, and so wanted to try it out, and a cousin swears by RootsMagic, so downloaded the free software.

But I digress…

I just did one photo and one calendar page, and I’ve scanned the photo page and will post it here:

Stocking Legacy Calendar Page for January

Stocking Legacy Calendar Page for January

Legacy Calendar for January

Legacy Calendar for January

When I first began entering my family into my family tree programs, I did it in a way that I wish I hadn’t.

I created a separate file for each surname.  I know that I can combine them all into one comprehensive family tree and I plan to but I’ve not done it – yet.

Five or six years ago, I bought Broderbund’s Calendar Creator and because I already have the birthdays of all family members (from all my trees!) and friends and neighbors that I would send cards to and it’s very simple to create a new one each year by  just adding new photos I may stick to using it.

However, if there is a way to have Broderbund’s Calendar Creator tell me that today is Susie and Joe’s 25th anniversary, or next month it’s Kris’s 50th birthday without me manually entering it, I’m not aware of it, (which doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist!) and that was a nice feature when I printed out the calendar from the Legacy software.

And from the short time that I played with it, it looks like the calendar creator in Legacy is pretty similar to the one in Broderbund, and if I had spent a little more time, my Legacy calendar would have looked much nicer!

Related post: Stocking Family Genealogy

Wordless Wednesday – Dad & Dimples

Sherry Stocking Kline
January 20, 2010

This is going to be an almost wordless Wednesday.  My mom was going through old photos this week, and found this gem of my dad, Harold F. Stocking, Sr. (mostly known by his childhood nickname of “Jiggs” all his life)  and his favorite registered Ayrshire cow, “Dimples”.  This was, I believe, before I came along, as I don’t remember her at all.

My folks were wheat and dairy farmers in south central Kansas (a.k.a. tornado alley) and they raised and milked registered Ayrshire cattle.

Harold F. "Jiggs" Stocking, Sr. & Dimples

Harold F. "Jiggs" Stocking, Sr. & Dimples

Mom said that Dimples was his favorite, and that he was very proud of her, but she developed some health issues and was sold.

If my dad were still alive, today, January 20th,  would be his 99th birthday.

Happy Birthday, Dad!

More Stocking family memories & genealogy here…

Advent Calendar Challenge – Other Traditions…

Sherry Stocking Kline
December 11, 2009

Thanks once again to Thomas MacEntee of GeneaBloggers for today’s Advent Calendar Challenge!

December 11 – Other Traditions

Did your family or friends also celebrate other traditions during the holidays such as Hanukkah or Kwanzaa? Did your immigrant ancestors have holiday traditions form their native country which they retained or perhaps abandoned?

My Stocking ancestors came from England in the 1630’s, and while they inter-married with those of Scottish and/or Irish descent as well as Native American, whatever traditions any of them might have brought with them have been long lost, or interwoven with more recent American ones.

On my mother’s side, I’m still trying to knock down the brick wall that a man named Jones who marries a woman named Smith creates.  I’ve read in a book  that speaks about our Smith family history that we have Welsh and French on that side.

For my family, it was all about Christmas Eve…

For my family, wherever the tradition came from or whether it began with my parents, Christmas was all about Christmas Eve. We gathered together, Dad, Mom, my youngest brother (still older than myself), my oldest brother and his growing family, and we exchanged presents.  And we all knew that the presents that night came from our parents and grand-parents, not from Santa.

But the Christmas Stocking was what held the magic! It came from Santa himself!

Here is an excerpt from that sounds like my experience, too!

“And we aren’t talking about the rather large, decorative stockings of today. These were literally their stockings [socks] that they wore on a daily basis.”

We didn’t have a fireplace, nor even a wood stove, so we pinned the stockings to the couch, usually the side nearest to the door, as that was where the jolly old elf was believed to come into our home!

The stockings that we hung had to be our own!

The stockings that we hung had to be our own! So the presents that we got when we were little were, well, little!

I remember getting tiny little animals that I loved to play with, and most often they were tiny little horses with cowboys and Indians to ride them and sometimes there was candy in the toe, and a barrette for my long honey-blonde braids.

And the good thing was, that as I grew, the socks grew, and the presents became bigger!

How exciting it was to ‘graduate’ from not-so-stretchy little Buster Brown cotton socks to extra stretchy (and longer) bobby socks!  Much more room for goodies!

My children used to ‘cheat’…

I continued the hanging of the Stocking’s with my children, though they were allowed to ‘cheat’ and particularly the youngest more often than not scoured the house giggling and laughing, comparing one sock to another while she hunted for the largest stretchiest stocking available, most often her Dad’s calf high athletic sock.

A good thing, that, as they sometimes found their favorite music CD all tucked in with other goodies from Santa.

Advent Calendar Challenge – Gifts

by Sherry Stocking Kline
December 10, 2009

Thanks to Thomas MacEntee for today’s Christmas Advent Calendar Challenge!


What were your favorite gifts, both to receive and to give? Are there specific gift-giving traditions among your family or ancestors?

Today’s prompt is a tie-in with the Smile for the Camera carnival at Shades of the Departed.

What were my favorite gifts?  To receive or to give? Hmmm…

There are several empty places in my family’s circle now, so my Christmas memories are tinged with sorrow as well as joy because I miss those people very much, but there were several gifts that were fun to give, and I remember some I received that gave my little heart joy!

Stick Horses and Cowboy Outfits!

After my nephews came along, most Christmases my folks bought us all something quite similar, and one Christmas when we were all little stair steps, me about seven, and them five and two, we were given the stick horses with the plastic heads and the cowboy and cowgirl outfits to go along with it!

Because we watched Roy Rogers, Gene Autry, HopAlong Cassidy, The Lone Ranger and Tonto, and the Cisco Kid on tv every week we were well-versed in the bang-bang-shoot-em-up outdoor play that included galloping all over our pasture on stick horses to  shoot the bad guys. Of course, we were the white-hatted heroes! My youngest nephew, not quite old enough to keep up, insisted on riding his  ‘horse’ head down, so his mighty steed’s head got drug all over the pasture!

The most difficult Christmas present I ever bought…

The most difficult Christmas present I ever had to buy was the first one I bought for my mom by myself after my dad passed away.  I just couldn’t figure out what to buy.  But I found a grandmother’s charm bracelet, with little boy and girl heads, with the names and birth dates engraved on the little heads.  By that time, Mom had five grandchildren and one on the way, but I remember standing in the store, feeling very lost and very alone, trying to decide between the choices.

One of the most fun presents we ever bought…

One of the most fun presents that we ever bought was for my father-in-law when our children were small. My father-in-law always hoped that someone would give his boys a train set. (I think so he could enjoy it, too!)

So my husband and I picked him out a neat little train set, and as the television commercial says the look on his face was “priceless.”  He set it up in his basement for awhile, and shared it with his grandchildren, and then a few years down the road, when he started spending more time in Texas in the winter, gave it to our children to enjoy.

A Personalized Family Photo Calendar Keeps us All Up to Date!

For the past few years, I’ve e-mailed family members to request family photographs, (whatever they want to send) though the ones where they are fishing, playing softball, and just doing fun things make great collages for the calendar that I make and give to my mom.

I try to focus on a different family group each month, and when possible, feature someone that is having a birthday that month, though in some months, there are several birthdays.

Here is this year’s calendar front, the photograph on the left was taken in 2000, before we lost my brother Gary and my sister-in-law Nancy to cancer in 2001. It shows my mom, with my two brothers standing on the left with their spouses and me on the lower right with my husband. My dad ‘s photo is inset on the right.

Harold and Dorothy Stocking Family

Harold and Dorothy Stocking Family - Standing: Gary "Sox" Stocking, Harold Frederick "Fred" Stocking, Jr., Norman L. Kline. Seated: Sharon Stocking, Dorothy Stocking Barry, Sherry Stocking Kline. Harold Frederick "Jiggs" Stocking, Sr. in oval on the right.

I usually make copies for the rest of the family, complete with all the birthdays and anniversaries.  They all love it!  It’s a great way to help us all keep up with important dates!

There are several places that offer this service…

I bought Broderbund’s calendar creator several years ago, but you can also make calendars several places on the internet, such as at my Heritage Makers’ website, and I believe that Kodak and other places also offer this service.

One good thing about making it with Calendar Creator, and at the Heritage Maker’s website, is that once you get the template set up, complete with birthdays and anniversaries, you just copy and save with a new name for next year, and re-place this year’s photographs with next year’s new ones!

Christmas Advent Calendar – Grab Bag

Sherry Stocking Kline
December 9, 2009

When I was growing up, my Grandma Maud (McGinnis) Stocking lived an hour and a half away in a little town named Cedarvale, Kansas .  And though we went to see her and brought her to see us, it didn’t always happen exactly on Christmas.

So Grandma Stocking would pack up a little package for our family. It was all wrapped up in brown paper with packages inside for each of us, and oh, how I looked forward to that little package!

I watched for the mail man to turn the corner and drive down our little country road and when I saw him coming, I would run down the driveway of our farm to the mail box to say hello and check and see if today was THE day.

When the package came, I would run back up to the house with it and begin badgering and begging my mom to let me open it early. Most of the time, she made me wait at least until closer to Christmas. So then it was time to shake, squeeze, and guess what the package had in it.

The present I remember best is the one she made herself.

I can’t remember every present that Grandma sent, and I don’t remember anything that she sent my folks, but the present I remember best is the one she made for me herself.

It was a crayon apron.  It was a pretty pink, girl-y looking with colored braid stitched on it and stitched into  it were slim little pockets for crayons and each pocket had a colorful crayon in it. (I think there might have been a coloring book, too) It was designed to keep my clothes clean I’m sure, but I loved that little apron.

I was thrilled with it, proud of it, and I wore it and used it for many years.  Finally, one of the ties came lose, and we didn’t instantly repair it. And, I was beginning to ‘outgrow’ the tiny little apron.  For a long time, I left the crayons in the apron, and used it to organize my crayons.

I hope the little crayon apron will be there…

I’m not sure what happened to that little apron, but I hope (and pray) that when I go digging through my attic for the keepsakes I stored there many years ago that the little crayon apron will be there.

Advent Calendar – Christmas Cards

Sherry Stocking Kline
December 4th, 2009

When I was just a little girl, I looked forward each year to my Uncle Frank Stocking’s Christmas card.

It was unique, shaped like a little stocking, with a verse about each member of the family and their travels, triumphs, and sometimes the trials of their life.  I still have most of them, stored away.

Sometimes this little Christmas card was my “show and tell” for school, I was that proud of it!

After I married and had children, Uncle Frank’s example became my inspiration. Nearly every Christmas I drew up a little picture (usually of children in old-fashioned sunbonnet and overalls) to depict my two kids doing something representative of our year, and wrote a poem that reflected the years happenings,  joys, and sorrows.

2001 was a year of incredible sorrow intermingled with small joys and it is that poem that I’ve chosen to share here:

Kline Christmas Card 2001

I want to be a kid again, it’s Christmas time you see.
I want to hang the tinsel on a lop-sided Christmas tree.
I want to lick the frosting bowl and nibble cookie dough.
I want to call up all my friends and Christmas caroling go.

But most of all I want to wish you Peace and Joy and Love.
And thank our Lord for all His blessings and strength from above.
I hope that kids of every age receive their most-longed-for toy.
And find each day filled with love and the season’s Christmas Joy.

There are days that bring us sunshine, while others bring us rain.
There are years that bring us joy, while others bring us pain.
2001 was such a year of sorrow and sadness in our life.
We pray for comfort and healing from life’s sorrowful strife.

Nancy, my brother Fred’s wife and friend lost her cancer’s fight
In the wee hours of the morning on a January night.
Fifty years of marriage, with five children they were blessed.
Nancy’s smile, her laugh, her faith, her courage, all are sorely missed.

We lost my brother, Gary, on Memorial Day’s afternoon.
He was too young, he was so loved, he died much too soon.
His mom, his wife, his daughter, his brother and “step” sons three,
We each and all miss him so very much you see.

Amidst our grief, we pray for leaders and our troops overseas.
We ask the Lord on bended knee for Peace and safety, Please.
We look forward with hope to the year 2002,
And pray for healing of our hearts and joy that comes anew.

Jarrod’s in K.C., and lucky to be working still at Sprint
We’re thankful that his job was not one of those that ‘went.”
And soon wedding bells will ring in February 2002,
When Marya and Marc tie the knot and happily say “I do.”

Norman hopes each plane he inspects is up to Cessna’s best.
Sometimes he flies with the pilots when they run their tests.
Sherry writes for the Wichita Eagle’s magazine “Active Life”
Web design, “The Mayfield Book”, Sherry has an “active life.”

May this your Merriest Christmas be,
May whatever you wish for be under your tree.
And May God hold you safely in His hand,
As you travel around our beautiful land.

Merry Christmas!
Norman, Sherry, Jarrod & Marya

My Christmas card has changed in several ways. I no longer draw the ‘sunbonnet kids’ as our family has expanded.  I now have two adorable granddaughters, and their picture sometimes graces the card’s front.

My oldest granddaughter loves to draw, and I think I will soon be asking her to draw the picture for the front of my card!

Thanks to the inspiration of my niece, I now also include a photo collage with my Christmas cards that I create on my photo software, and so we have a year of our life in word and picture for close family and friends.

Looking back through those cards, it’s easy to see just where we ‘were’ in life, and what was going on each year!

Tombstone Tuesday – Gary Neal Stocking

Sherry Stocking Kline
December 1st, 2009

472 - Gary Neal Stocking

472 - Gary Neal Stocking, buried Prairie Lawn Cemetery - Wellington, KS

Gary Stocking - 475

Gary Stocking's 1926 Street Rod - Colorado Mountain scenery - 475

Today, December 1st, would have been my brother, Gary Neal “Sox” Stocking’s 73rd birthday.

If he were still alive.

Gary Neal Stocking & His 26' T Street Rod Pick-up

Gary Neal Stocking & His 26' T Street Rod Pick-up

Gary fell ill in the spring of 2001,  just a month or two after we lost my oldest brother’s wife, Nancy Rae (Cook) Stocking  to cancer.  By the time the doctors ran a PSA test (to test for prostate cancer) it was too late, it had spread to the bones.

Two weeks after his prostate cancer diagnosis –  he was gone…

I’m sharing this today on his birthday, because prostate cancer is one of the most survivable cancers, IF you find it in time, and get treatment.

My brother was a get-things-done, take-care-of-business kind of guy. He kept everyone’s car cleaned, the oil in everyone’s car changed, the i’s dotted and the t’s crossed, except for one.   He didn’t have time to take care of his own health.   He was too busy.  I’m not sure he ever had a PSA test, until it was too late.

Gary was a car guy, and he and his wife Sharon showed their little 1926 Model T Street Rod in four states, and people came to his funeral from at least three.   In their street rods.

He was the kind of guy that could get on an elevator, say hello, visit with the folks next to him, and have everyone smiling by the time they got two floors up.  He was the kind of guy when a car guy he didn’t even know called for help in the middle of the night, he’d get in his pick-up and drive 2 hours to go help him.

He was the kind of guy you could count on…

He was older than me, and when our dad died young, he became extra protective, extra helpful.  I always knew if I had car trouble, or any kind of trouble, anywhere, and my husband couldn’t rescue me, he’d be there for me.

When he died I felt like someone had taken the training wheels off my bike before I was ready to go solo.  Whenever I got in the car to go somewhere I knew my ‘safety net’, my own personal ‘Triple A’ type rescuer was gone.

If you’re a guy – get a PSA test, before it’s too late…

I’m writing this to say ‘thank you’, to honor him, and to remind any guy reading this to get a PSA test before it’s too late.

Music Monday – Do The Pink Glove Dance

Sherry Stocking Kline
November 30, 2009

According to Facebook Friend and fellow Kansas Professional Communicator’s member, Sue Novak, this cool video was created, directed, and choreographed in Portland by Emily (MacInnes) Somer to raise breast cancer awareness.

It’s a fun video with great music and it’s for a very important cause!

In memory of my sister-in-law, Nancy Rae (Cook) Stocking, and in honor of my niece, Lisa,  a breast cancer survivor.

From Birthday Gift to Heirloom…

by Sherry Stocking Kline
November 29, 2009

How is it that something becomes an heirloom? Is it the value of the object, the age of the object, or the love inside the object and its history?

One birthday present that stands out is one that I still have. One that is destined to become a hand-me-down heirloom. And one that I still enjoy.

We were in South Dakota, my mom, dad, and I.  It would be our last vacation with my dad, but we didn’t know that then, or at least I didn’t.

We had been to Minnesota to visit family,  my Great-Aunt May Breneman Jones Willey, her son Kenneth Jones and his wife, Lois, and their family, Lawrence, Lynn, Patty, Charles, and Kenny, and we were coming back down through South Dakota, seeing the sights.

My Parents Laughed…

We visited the “dead Presidents” (Mt Rushmore) which was very impressive, went to the Passion Play (the re-enactment of Christ’s life and crucifixion), and I met a girl at the motel that night who was about my age, (soon to be eleven years old) and what was so impressive was this girl had her life already mapped out.

She told me who she was going to marry and that they were going to raise horses together.  I was so impressed (Here I was at eleven still waffling between being a jockey or an archeologist!) and hadn’t even thought yet about who I would marry and what WE would do that I told my folks all about the girl I met on the motel swing set who already knew who she was going to marry.

My parents laughed….

Mom and I Huddled Inside the Car…

The next day we traveled through the National Park where a herd of several hundred buffalo thundered across the road in front of the car right  in front of us. My mom and huddled inside the car while my dad, unafraid, in typical guy “I ain’t afraid of nothin'” fashion stood outside the car and watched.

Before we came home dad took Mom and I to the Black Hills Gold Jewelry store where the jewelry was actually being made.  Dad had promised Mom that when they went to where the Black Hills gold jewelry was made he would buy her a set.  So we went into the store where we could  see people working on the jewelry.

It took them quite awhile, looking at one necklace and then another. Mom tried on one set, and then another and I kept busy watching the workers, peering into the jewelry cases, and watching the necklace and earring fashion show between Mom and Dad.

But I Had My Sights Set on a Cowboy Hat…

Finally, they had the perfect set for Mom. Then they turned to me.  They wanted to buy me a ring for my birthday.

Uh, Oh.  My little soon-to-be  eleven year old heart had its sights set on a cowboy hat. (Did I mention that I was a tomboy?)  I just hadn’t decided if I wanted it to be black hat like the bad guys or a white hat like Roy Rogers yet, but that’s what  I wanted right then, a cowboy hat.

I didn’t have the horse to go with it, but I wanted that, too.  Mom and dad definitely  had other plans.

They wanted me (a tomboy) to pick something elegant…

So we spent some time picking out a ring. They really wanted me to get something fancy, something a little ‘elegant’.  I wasn’t then, nor am I now, ‘elegant.’

I remember them saying, “Look how much longer this ring makes your fingers look.”

I didn’t think a ring was going to help my fingers look long and ladylike too much. My fingers were short and stubby then and they’re short and stubby now.

I picked out a simple gold band with the Black Hills Gold signature pink and gold leaves on it. Simple lines. Very similar to a wedding band, but I liked it. After some time spent showing me lots of fancier rings to try to get me to pick out something larger, longer, and more elegant, they gave in and let me get the one I liked.

Landstrom's Black Hills Gold Ring

Landstrom's Black Hills Gold Ring

They chose it for one of my larger fingers, hoping I could wear it when I was grown, and they chose wisely there. I can still wear it.

It looks almost exactly like this one, except it has more than 30 years of wear. It’s plain and simple, perfect for my size 4 1/2 to 5 short little fingers. It’s still my favorite.

A little over a year later, my father was gone…

My father was only 50 when he passed away. Just a few years later, heart by-passes became standard practice, but they weren’t then.

I wonder now, if he somehow knew, that his time was getting short, and he wanted us to have these special reminders of him.

Years later, I can look at the Black Hills gold ring that we picked out that day, and remember the whole vacation, the people we met, the good times we had, and feel the love of my parents surrounding me.

12-01-09 Author’s note: After posting this article, I found the ring that was nearly like mine, and so have updated the photograph, and added the name of the ring’s creator. My dad didn’t know he was beginning a new family tradition between myself, my mother, and my children that day, but he did.

I do think he may have known his time was getting shorter as by that time he had had heart disease  for more than ten years and wanted us to have something we could remember him by. My mother, treasuring that memory purchased a cross necklace and another ring at different times in my life, all with that first gift in mind.

The Clutter Family Murders Changed The Way We Lived

by Sherry Stocking Kline
Nov 15, 2009

In 1959 The Clutter Murders Shattered Our Peaceful Life

There are times in your life when some event occurs and it changes your life in profound ways.

Fifty years ago, on November 15, 1959, when four members of the Clutter family were murdered in Holcomb, Kansas, it sent shock waves through our small community and especially in our farm home. And it changed the way our family lived and viewed the world.

We didn’t know them. In fact, we lived hours away from Holcomb. But that murder changed the way our family lived.

The Family Was Murdered for About $40.00…

What we heard on television and read in the newspaper, was that the farm family of four had been murdered for about $40.00.

I remember my parents, my dad and mom sitting at the kitchen table, faces somber, frightened looking even, and my father, saying “If people will murder a family for so little, they will do anything.”

(Later, we read that the murderers had heard in jail that the family kept a large amount of money at their home; but all we knew then was that an entire family had been brutally murdered for such a small sum.)

Murder was something that happened in far-away cities…

Murders like that were something you rarely heard of, they were something that happened in far-away large cities, not something that happened to Kansas farm families.

Up until then, our doors were never, and I mean NEVER locked, not in the daytime when we were gone, not at night when we were asleep.

Up until then, there was no need.

They were always locked at night after the Clutter murders.

Up until then, because the air conditioning we had wasn’t really that great, my folks would put beds and old Army cots out into the back yard on the hottest summer nights, and we slept under the stars.

And before the Clutter murder the only thing we worried about while sleeping outside was getting bitten by mosquitoes, and the only thing I worried about was whether the coyotes we could hear yodeling at each other in the distance would come closer.

We never felt completely safe again…

After the Clutter murders, a new fear, a new possibility had entered our lives and our minds, and that changed our lives.

The peace and safety that had been ours was gone. We never felt completely safe on the farm and we never slept in the yard under the stars again.

You can read more about the Clutter Family at the Wichita Eagle website here.

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