Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Thread of Life

Lois Barnes Pratt_edited-1

Born in a lovely, green and peaceful New York town within sight of Lake Erie, little Lois wasn’t destined for a restful, sedentary childhood.

The thread of her life would lead her to places she would never have imagined…


Her parents, as was common in the mid-1800s, had the incurable desire to move farther and ever farther West…

…and so they did.

Stops and brief homesteading along the way, threading through Ohio and Illinois…but that wasn’t far west enough…


Winding farther on and on…Lois and her three sisters traveled all across the prairie in a covered wagon, with only Mother as their guide.  Their father, a seaman, was off to the far reaches of the world…

louisa barnes pratt_edited-1

And the only lament she speaks of as a teenage girl through all of this?  The loss of a favorite chicken toward the very end of their long, hard journey!

Then finally, the Rocky Mountain West.  Finally, home…or so they thought.

A call to the seas…years spent joining their Father in his work in the Tahitian Islands…

addison pratt_edited-1

Next came years spent colonizing in California…then the thread wound them back to the Rocky Mountains….finally home to stay.

And through it all…through storms, hunger, fear, loneliness, hardship, sickness…

John, Lois and Baby Ida Pratt_edited-1 {Lois and her husband John Hunt, along with their beautiful baby girl, Ida…my 2nd great-grandmother.  1860}

…marriage and child-bearing…

…she remained gracious.  And beautiful.  And patient.  And loving….

A new page made today for my heritage album…


My life is so much calmer than that of my great-great-great grandmother’s.  No rough seas or Indian-filled prairies for me to cross with my children…and I’m ever so grateful for that.


But, the thread of my life has not finished it’s winding yet…and who knows where it will take me……………….


{background papers from Crafty Secrets’ “Creating with Vintage” CDs.  Key from the Tim Holtz collection.}



  1. Julie, what a beautiful page. I love reading about your family history, so richly embroidered with lovely photographs and words, stories. You are so blessed to have all of this. Love you lots! Hope your husband is enjoying his visit over here! xxoo

  2. good morning Julie. I love hearing about your relatives. does she had earrings on in that picture? I didnt think they wore earrings like that back then. You are so lucky to have all these pictures!
    have a great weekend

  3. Beautiful Julie! Like Lois, I too grew up in a lovely little NY town in sight of Lake Erie!

  4. How fortunate you are to have such lovely photographs to know your ancestors by!! I enjoy your family stories!

  5. Sweet Julie, no we never know where life takes us, -you made a beautiful page for your album, with one of your fantastic for mothers.

  6. so amazing that you have these photos and access to their lifes historys. Treasures.
    (was this the family that ended up in Alberta??)
    Although our lives may not be a physically perilous, we have many dangers of our own to face, so the THREAD that she laid out for her next generation of families, will be strong.

  7. Just when I think you couldn't possibly have anymore family photos to share. Wow! This is a fantastic one. And the fact that you know so much about the history of your family is incredible! Beautiful layout! Have a wonderful weekend. Tammy

  8. I love the way you tell your are a true poet and a talented artist. Thank you for sharing your family heritage with us.

  9. It's like your very own Little House on the Prairie saga! Lucky to have those incredible pictures and the story to go with them!

  10. What a lovely story & photo's & the LO is so beautiful.It must be the best vintage LO I have come across this year

  11. What a beautiful tribute :-) Its sad to see old photos and not know of their history.... and to see them discarded. I'm glad yours has a special place in your family :-)
    big hugs,

  12. Hi Julie,
    What a gorgeous heritage page. How interesting a life your Lois had. Most of our adventures pale in comparison. It is a treasure and quite rare, to have extensive vintage family photographs at your fingertips. One I know you cherish. I wish my printed images went back that far. I simply must use my imagination instead...not a difficult task, but one that can take on comical views at times. :) Your right, one doesn't know what the future will hold...maybe a move out of this country! Now that might rival your great-great-great grandmother's journey. ;)
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  13. It must be so comforting to have such a detailed heritage. I have nothing like this and I love that some thought to keep memories and pass them down. It would be so nice to know more about my distant relatives I am glad you have this and it gives you comfort xx

  14. A beautiful heritage page Julie.
    Your story reminded me of our recent camping trip to three island crossing. We visited the interpretative center there and read how most traveled the rough journey barefoot. I can't even begin to imagine how hard that must have been. Such strong people.
    hugs Lynn

  15. Such beautiful memories! I really wish I knew more about my relatives. I hope you will stop by for a visit.

  16. Such a lovely story of such a dear family is hard to believe what hardships happened back then. Hugs and hope you are enjoying you last week of August. xoxo