Free Book Friday: The Cat Ate My Homework


For those intrepid among you who check my blog TODAY on a SUNDAY for Free Book FRIDAY–I am finally here! Why am I late and what have I been doing? Well, the cat didn’t eat my homework but I have been DOING homework! This was social studies fair week!! (Shoot me now!) My daughter’s project is due tomorrow and she has the CUTEST PROJECT EVER because the Fabulous Cousin Sheryl took pity on us and helped out. She not only has a knack for projects, she is an office supplies slut (could we love her MORE???) and provided the project board, the glue, the paper, the family treemaker computer program, and all the talent.

My daughter’s project was (and of course the Fabulous Cousin Sheryl came up with this project title in two seconds flat): To Do or Dye: Who Am I? with the project question–Where Did I Get My Name, Morgan, on the Dye Family Tree? (My maiden name is Dye.) Her great-great-great-grandfather Abraham Dye came to what is now Roane County, West Virginia in the early 1800s in a wagon and settled on the Pocatalico River in a log cabin. He had a son named John Morgan Dye, born on July 29, 1863, thirty-nine days after West Virginia became a state. He liked to say, “I am as old as West Virginia.” His son, Romeo Napoleon Dye, died when my father was four. John Morgan Dye told my dad, “I will be your daddy now.” When I was pregnant with Morgan, my father suggested I name our daughter Morgan after his very special grandpa. And that is how she got her name! Neat project, huh? She included photos of John Morgan Dye on the project board, and with her presentation will demonstrate other photos of her playing on John Morgan Dye’s old farm just a hop, skip and a jump away from the farmhouse here.

Since we have only moved here recently, her teacher probably thinks she is an outlander and will be surprised to discover her family history here goes back 200 years. So what about you? Has anyone in your family researched your roots? It’s fun, isn’t it? Comment before a winner is selected on Monday, and one random comment will win an autographed book from my contemporary backlist!


  1. Minna says:

    At least 3 of my cousins have been doing some family research. It was very interesting to read about my mom’s side of the family from this book that one of the cousins had put together!

  2. Jennifer Yates says:

    That is very neat!

    My grandmother has been doing geneaology for years and has oodles of info about our family history on her computer, in boxes, and in notebooks. I am not sure how far back she has traced it though. We used to laugh because she would go to cemetaries and do etchings of tombstones and take pics of them. Many are really old. She used to belong to some kind of group that did geneaology.

  3. Lis says:

    My aunt on my dad’s side has been doing that for awhile now and she’s got a ton of info, including some interesting old family photos too she’s shared with us. Nothing like looking at an old photo from the 1800s and seeing a bit of family resemblence 🙂

  4. Cheryl S. says:

    There is a second cousin on my mom’s side that has loads of information she has traced. She has made copies for various relatives . . . no one touches her originals! I don’t blame her – it’s a lot of work. I’ll have to get a copy from mom. Someone on my dad’s side has done some genealogy work on his side of the family but haven’t seen that. I do know my grandpa’s father came here by boat from Germany when he was about 5 years old. My grandpa was gone before I was born so that’s about all I know for that side of the family. And, we missed you, Suzanne! 🙂 But the project looks great!

  5. Tori Lennox says:

    Very cool project! You’ll have to keep us posted on her teacher’s reaction. 🙂

    I’m the family historian in my family. It’s a lot of fun! I don’t have a family farm to move to, though.

  6. Roxanne Belue says:

    My great aunt on my mother’s side traced my family back to a member that was part of the Donner Party (something to be proud of). It seems that she survived the winter and had the first child ever born in Santa Clara County, California.

  7. Jeanette Jackson says:

    My aunt did some family research and I think she got back to the 1500’s. I think our family dates back to the Vikings (we are from Denmark) but I don’t think it’s easy to find out info that far back

  8. Joyce says:

    I have tried to do some research. At a friend’s mother’s funeral we got to talking and she got me hooked. BUT the biggest problem is that my maiden name is SMITH!!!!!!!!!!!! Gee how many Smith’s do you think came over from Ireland?:hissyfit::wall: At least my mom was german so I am having better luck on that side of the family.

  9. Michelle says:

    Genealogy is really fun. I love playing what-if and wondering about my own ancestors. :thumbsup:

  10. Caro says:

    I have an aunt who’s done a tremendous amount of family research — turns out one of my ancestors came through the Cumberland Gap with Daniel Boone, though I really like the one who tried to sell Edinburgh Castle to the English in 1560.

    On the husband’s side, Andrew Jackson threw one of his ancestors in jail during the Battle of New Orleans for saying ‘scurrilous’ things about him.

  11. Margery says:

    All I know about my family history is that we go back to Robert the Bruce. Maybe Mel Gibson was there, too … oh, wait, that was a movie:lol:

  12. Cynthia says:

    My family’s roots are in Germany….that’s all I know. 🙂 My husband, on the other hand, has researched his quite a bit and can talk about it until my eyes glaze over. LOL!

  13. Estella Kissell says:

    My family tree has been traced back to
    William Henry Harrison , an early president of the US, by my stepdaughter.
    I know some of my ancesters came from Ireland on one side and England on the other.

  14. Danica says:

    I am officially jealous! I’ve always wanted to research my family history, but have never found the time or connections to do so. I would kill for that chart (of my family, of course)

  15. Cousin Sheryl says:

    An “Office Supply Slut”? Cousin Suzanne has such a way with words! (But, I guess that is why she is the published author and I am not.) But seriously, I only have an Office Supply Fetish. Nothing makes me happier than going to Staples or Office Max to BUY COOL STUFF! Also, there is less chance of running into roosters in Staples! (LOL at the lady who “cracked up” at the rooster figurines in Walmart)
    We owe all the family geneology work to my late father-in-law, Bob, who is Suzanne’s 1st cousin once removed. Bob was housebound due to a rare spinal disorder. He spent many hours online doing research as well as phone calling relatives for information. I hope to do some research on my side of the family so that my son, Madison, will have an equal amount of knowledge of all his family.
    These Social Studies projects are a lot of hard work for us mothers! Right, Suzanne? I spent the whole last week, up till midnight every night, ensuring that Madison got his project done in time. Our students research these Social Studies projects, prepare a display of their findings and also give a 5 minute speech to the judges while standing in front of their display. The student competes in a school fair, winners go to a county-wide fair and then those winners go to the State Social Studies Fair. It is a big deal here. Do any of your states have anything similar?
    Suzanne’s daughter, Morgan, will do well with her project. She is enthusiastic about her subject matter. I had a lot of fun helping her with the project.
    Well, this is Cousin Sheryl signing out for now. I hope y’all are still using my superior shopping tips for organization and safety!!!
    I’ll let you in on a little tip…Suzanne is working hard on her next book. It is going to be GREAT!

  16. TeresaH says:

    I have a couple second cousins that have been doing genealogy for our family for years. They’ve traced it back to right around the year 1000! We are related to King Athelred (the unready, or unprepared, as he was known—my proscrastination is inherited! lol)

  17. Maureen says:

    What a great project for your daughter. No one in my family has recorded our history that I am aware of but my husband’s family has traced his maternal grandmother’s family back many years and they have created family trees and a whole written history of that family.

  18. Laurie says:

    Love the ties to Romeo Napolean Dye WOW! What a name!

    My Mom checked back on our roots… France on her dad’s side and Germany on her mom’s. My Father’s= England on his dad’s and Germany on his mom’s.