Family Tree

Something beautiful has been happening on Facebook for the last couple of weeks.

My sister and my cousin have started a group with the goal of having a family reunion next year. We are hoping this is the first of many reunions. Those family members that are on FB and can maneuver the site have been posting old family pictures. What’s pretty spectacular is that my great-grandfather was one of 17 siblings, so there are tons and tons of people involved in trying to make this reunion happen. Tons of pictures are being posted, wonderful memories recounted by my mom, uncle, and their cousins.

My mom has taken a family tree one of her cousins has been working on for years, and has tried to find pictures of each family member. This tree is massive, as you can imagine, so she wants to create a photo book with each “branch”, including their children and grandchildren. Here’s a small sample of what my mom is working on:


It’s amazing how after years of hearing certain names, I’m able to make connections through the images.

Here’s another one of my favorites:

Lopez-Aldana family

From left to right: My great aunts Amanda (who I’m named after), Ondina, Olga (who I called Happy when I was little, and it stuck), Queta (my Godmother), then my great-grandmother and great-grandfather lovingly known as Chicha and Chu (or La Prima and El Primo), followed by great-aunts Lulu, Mary, and my grandmother Tete. The little girl on the table? My mom, I estimate about 3 or 4 years old.

I am elated that we are so close to something tangible that I can share with my boys to show them the wonderful line of men and women they come from. I know that all those family members who are no longer with us are looking down at us and smiling, beaming with pride at the seeds of love they planted. I invite you to do the same, generations to come will be able to keep not only the memories of loved ones alive, but those wonderful old stories as well.

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