and Findagrave Launch a new mobile app

Mar 3rd, 2014 Posted in Public History | no comment »

Findagrave Launches a mobile app –  has a huge significance on the project I am working on….yet, then again, maybe it doesn’t matter much.  Either way, check it out here.

52 Ancestors: Week 9 – Solomon Shaffer

Mar 1st, 2014 Posted in Shaffer and Zirkle Descendants | no comment »

For the first blog of #52Ancestors on my new site, I thought I would try a new idea. Much of my work in school right now centers around the Shaffer cemetery in Terre Haute, Champaign county, OH. Many of my Digital Humanities blog posts will be about this cemetery, I am writing a paper that includes this cemetery, and I am about to embark on a journey to try to get this cemetery restored. So I think for the next 30-31 weeks, I will blog each week about someone buried in the Shaffer cemetery, and how they are related to each other and to me.

Shaffer Cemetery by Craig Shaffer

Shaffer Cemetery by Craig Shaffer

Last week I blogged about Noah Zirkle and I truly believe he and his wife Lydia are buried in this cemetery, and I hope to find them along this journey. It’s only fitting, then, that I start with Solomon Shaffer, as I believe the cemetery is located on what was once his land. (Waiting for a copy of the deed that will confirm this…)

Solomon Shaffer was the youngest son of Jacob Shaffer and Otillia (Odilla, Otilla) Schmid. Jacob Shaffer was born and raised in Germany, and came to America as a small boy and settled in Berks County, PA. Otillia was his third wife. They were married in PA, and at some point moved to the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia. I’ll blog about them more in depth after I finish the people in the Shaffer cemetery.

Solomon (my 4th great grandfather) was born 7 April 1791 in New Market, Shenandoah, Virginia. He was baptized in the Old Pine Church on 29 May, 1791, and his sponsors were Johannes Bord and his wife Catherine. (Source: Wust, Klaus, Old Pine Church Baptisms 1783-1828 p. 20) I don’t know much about his childhood, but I know that the Shaffer, Zirkle, and Roush families lived near each other and I hope to explore that a bit more in depth at some point. Many of the Shaffer, Zirkle, and Roush men served together during the Revolutionary War, and these three families were very tightly interwoven by marriage.

In the early part of 1800, some of these family members headed west to Ohio. Abraham Zirkle (another 4th great grandfather, mentioned here) was a pioneer in what would become German, Clark county, Ohio. Solomon married Sarah Zirkle, the daughter of Abraham’s brother George and his wife Catherine Roush. They were married in Shenandoah on 18 September 1816. On the 1820 and 1830 Shenandoah county census they were still living there. According to several sources, at some point in the mid 1800s more of the Shaffer, Zirkle, and Roush families along with friends and neighbors, packed up in their wagons and went to the Ohio wilderness. Most settled right on the border between what is today Clark and Champaign counties.

According to Early Settlers of Champaign County and Surrounding Areas Vol 1 by Pat Stickley and June Kiser of the CCGS,  Feb 2000, Zirkle Pioneers of Terre Haute:

“In 1829 David Miller with a group of Virginia families, John Good, Abram Zerkle and Soloman Shaffer came in a four horse conestoga wagon and all settled near Terre Haute. Soloman Shaffer had 100 acres within a half mile of Terre Haute just southwest of town. Abram Zerkle’s 110 acres adjoined Shaffer on the west. John Good had a quarter section just east of town which later became part of the town. There are two other Zerkles, George and Jacob, who according to deed records owned farms in the immediate neighborhood and at the same time. I am at a loss to tell whether all were brothers or father and sons. Abraham Zerkle sold one-fourth acre in 1847 for a site of the Lutheran church. There is a Zerkle cemetery on the Abram Zerkle farm and a Shaffer cemetery on the Soloman Shaffer land. Another called the Rouze cemetery adjoins the southwest part of town. This land was owned by John, Levi and James Rouze, all of it in section 25 just west of town.” (Source: -I  take this 1829 date with a grain of salt, the 1830 census still has Solomon and Sarah living in VA; and other sources say these families all moved in 1850.

Solomon and Sarah had the following children:

Helena (1818-1899)
Lydia (1820-unknown) – married Noah Zirkle
Jonathan (1822-1905)
Samuel (1824-unknown)
Reuben (1826-1908)
Rebecca (1828-1914)
Catherine (1830-unknown – she might be the Sarah Catherine buried in Shaffer cemetery, I will check that out when I get to Sarah Catherine)
Joseph (1834-1868)

There is a mention of Solomon, Sarah, and several of their children in Evan Middleton’s 1917 publication, History of Champaign County, Ohio, Its People, Industries and Institutions (Indianapolis : B.F. Bowen, 1917), found here on page 500 in his discussion of the Zerkle Lutheran Church. He stated that they left Abraham’s church and formed another church (and from his description it sounds like it was on Solomon’s property) in 1848 in “connection with the joint synod of Ohio.” Among the names he lists are Solomon and Sarah and their children Reuben, Jonathan, Samuel, and Noah and Lydia Zirkle. Because Middleton only lists first names, and many of these families named their children the same thing, I cannot be certain that the Reuben, Jonathan and Samuel are the same as the Reuben, Jonathan, and Samuel that were Solomon and Sarah’s children, but there’s a very strong likelihood that is the case. Why wouldn’t they follow their parents? At any rate, by the time of Middleton’s publication, that church had disbanded and the building was being used as a barn. Abraham Zerkle’s Lutheran church would go on until the 1980s!

Anyway, from 1840-1860, the Mad River township, Champaign County, OH censuses showed Solomon and Sarah living there and farming until Solomon passed away on 22 March, 1865. He is buried in the Shaffer cemetery. Sarah followed him in death 4 years later.

Welcome to the new site!

Mar 1st, 2014 Posted in Shaffer and Zirkle Descendants | 4 comments »

Welcome to the new location for the Shaffer and Zirkle Descendants blog. Hopefully the new format is not confusing and everyone can find it. Comments and suggestions are welcome!

Shaffer Cemetery by Craig Shaffer

Shaffer Cemetery by Craig Shaffer

New Graph (Cemetery visualization test #1)

Feb 25th, 2014 Posted in Public History | no comment »

I spent the day making a database of everyone buried in the Shaffer cemetery. Yay! So I have part of part one done. 1 cemetery, 3 different archives of who’s buried there. I imported it into NodeXL and made a chart. No idea what this is telling me, but I’ll get there. I can see that I want it to tell me something!

Graph test

GIS and the Spatial Humanities

Feb 24th, 2014 Posted in Public History | no comment »

I’ve now read several chapters of The Spatial Humanities: GIS and the Future of Humanities Scholarship. I think my synopsis so far is that GIS is a tool to create narratives from deep mapping and spatial theory. The basic differences between the sciences and the humanities create the tension in the GIS debates. Science is concerned with hard facts and numbers. The Humanities are fluid, looking at the world around us and asking questions that may not be able to be answered. That would drive a scientist nuts. So deep mapping is the creation of more complex maps, that include the idea of place and envelopes a humanist’s work with things like texts and oral histories into a map experience. Spatial humanities looks at the big picture of time, space, place. Basically, maps are more than maps in the Spatial Humanities.


Fries worldmap 1522

World map of Laurent Fries, based on the Waldseemüller map of 1513. 
[Public domain, via WikiCommons - click map for source]

Ch.9, “GIS, e-science, and the Humanities Grid” focuses on the advent of e-science and some projects that reflect the difficulties in merging the humanities and science. The author discusses the three grids in e-science and their relevance to the Humanities: the access grid (cooperative, integrative, collaborative); the computational grid (computer skills required!); and the data grid (connecting online data sets and deep web linking — most useful for humanities work).  The author also discusses place-name difficulties in linking with e-science grids. Subject is always easy to use to retrieve data, but information retrieval by location and chronology is a lot harder and needs special tools such as GIS to help with the retrieval. He discusses a couple of projects (mostly in the UK) that are doing things like creating gazetteers (a sort of geographical dictionary) using census records. Where they fall short is in the data mining. But there is potential as long as humanists become more open minded. The future includes more development of the data grid to handle these sorts of projects, open standards that allow collaboration, and changing the mindset of humanists. GIS needs to move beyond a visualization tool and become a data tool to manage information.

Visualizing and Mapping Cemeteries

Feb 23rd, 2014 Posted in Public History | no comment »

Initially I was agonizing over this project. I know what I want to do, but I don’t know how to express it exactly (even after reading the first four chapters of The Spatial Humanities: GIS and the Future of Humanities Scholarship – Bodenhamer, David; John Corrigan, and Trevor M. Harris). I found a pay site called but since it’s pay for use, I couldn’t decide whether their format is useful or not for mapping cemeteries. Supposedly they have software you can use to map any cemetery. So that didn’t help with my idea, which follows:

Eventually this is something I’d like to do on a larger scale (meaning, lots and lots of cemeteries – a big project [as opposed to the definition of scale in GISci, referred to on p. 33 of the aforementioned book]), but I will start with three cemeteries that I have spent way too much time trying to analyze and understand from far away and using only the resources I can dig up online and here and there. They all reside within a few miles of each other in the township of Mad River, Champaign county, Ohio. Two are family cemeteries and have not had burials in over 100 years, and the third is still used today. My ancestors from this county are buried between the three. One is the Zerkle Cemetery, off Coffin Station Road and Thackery. (GPS Coordinates: Latitude: 40.0428363 and Longitude: -83.8979884) The next is about 1/2 mile away, the Shaffer Cemetery, same cross streets. (GPS Coordinates: Latitude: 40.0467251 and Longitude: -83.8849324) The final cemetery is the township cemetery, Terre Haute Cemetery, off Storms Creek/55. (GPS Coordinates: Latitude: 40.0522805 and Longitude: -83.8807657).

I have lists of burials from the Shaffer and Zerkle cemeteries from the DAR, the WPA, the Champaign County Genealogical Society, Find-a-Grave, BillionGraves, FamilySearch, US GenWeb, and probably other places. For Terre Haute, I haven’t spent much time on it. It is maintained by the Mad River Township Trustees, so I assume I can acquire a list from them. If not, I know there are several of the former sources that have a listing for Terre Haute, I’d just have to take into consideration the time frame the list is from, since there are still on-going burials in the cemetery. My idea is to create a database of all these lists that first reveals differences between the lists (who’s missing, etc); and then create a map of the location of each burial ~ which will reveal (hopefully) who is missing and where there are gaps in the burials.

I wasn’t sure how to do this but then I found a website discussing a 4-H project done in Iowa for a computer company to develop cemetery mapping software. (See here for the full story and pictures. ) The kids plotted the GPS coordinates and three months later found out that was not what the company wanted. They then had to go back and start over, with the help of their county GIS coordinator. They had to create shape files, use aerial photography, and it took them 5 years to complete the first section of the cemetery.

That being said, I realized my little Ohio project is not something that 1) I can accomplish before mid March or 2) that I can accomplish unless I physically go to Ohio., because in all these cemetery lists there are no designations or coordinates for the exact locations for the burials. So for this phase of the project, I need to pick a local cemetery. My first thought was the Pioneer Cemetery in Phoenix.  I know they have been taking photographs of their cemetery – they were doing that the last time I was there – but am not certain for what purpose. I guess I can get in touch with them and propose my idea. I think that I will have to take a much smaller piece to work with to get it done in time. But as far as what this will tell me, I really don’t know, as I am not familiar with the cemetery other than I’ve been there before. I don’t know what records they might have, or whether they’d even be interested in something like this.  Second choice, if they are not interested, I thought possibly of All Faiths Memorial Park in Tucson. This will be a little harder to do, due to distance, but I thought it might be interesting to map the Our Lady of the Desert mausoleum. I’m sure THAT has never been done! But I’m pretty sure I have no idea what that would tell me. I could create a virtual tour of the mausoleum though, it’s not very big. I at least would find that interesting, as my parents are buried there; not sure if anyone else would.

Anyway, I will hopefully be working on getting the Ohio version of this project off the ground over this summer. Wish me luck.


Feb 9th, 2014 Posted in Public History | no comment »

Originally posted 2-9-14

I’ve apparently become a visual person these days. I’m increasingly finding myself drawing my notes in class, rather than outlining as I always have in the past. I’m not sure which is the better method, but I have found that for reviewing my notes, the ones with pictures tend to stick a little more than the outlines. In fact, I just drew a nice mind map for another class and it outlines the problems I am having with my project idea. I hope it will give me insight and clarity into this undertaking.

I’ve been thinking a lot about visualizations. Mostly, I am thinking about maps and all the different things you can do with them. One of the genealogists I follow, Lisa Louise Cooke, is an amazing proponent of technology and how all the technologies available to us can make our research easier. She teaches a class and has a book series on Google Earth. With Google Earth, you have the ability to (among other things) incorporate historic maps in an area that would allow you to see what happened over time in that area – where the boundaries are, what buildings were there and what is there now, etc. One of her examples was using the collection of the Sanborn maps in San Francisco. The Sanborn Insurance company had just updated their atlas collection in the fall of 1905, when the big earthquake happened in April of 1906. The fires that erupted after the earthquake destroyed over 80% of the city. Lisa showed how, by using the David Rumsey Sanborn map collection, you could overlay these maps over the current city of San Francisco and see what was there just before the fire. It’s an incredibly powerful image and I imagine how amazing it is to see where your ancestor’s blacksmith shop was that’s now a Nordstrom’s. (My example…I just made that up) I’m still not very good at doing all the things you can do with Google earth, but I did play around a little bit and was able to see exactly where my ancestors’ burial grounds are located, and when I zoomed out, I can see that the area is still farmland and not much on it. I haven’t been able to locate a map that I can use the overlay feature, but I do have a map from 1864 and I can match up the area visually looking at the two separately, I just don’t know how to make them work together.

So that being said, I was really excited to get to read a book called Graphs, Maps, and Trees by Franco Moretti. I was expecting these same kinds of concepts and ideas explored more in depth. I don’t know if that’s in there, but I sure didn’t see it. I was lost among his literary references, considering I’d never heard of, let alone read, any of the novels he mentioned. I think I understand that he was trying to map and graph the concepts of these works, but having not read them I couldn’t follow his method. I’m really hopeful we discuss this in depth in class and I can revise this blog because right now I am just confused.


Update 2-15-14

I’m still not sure I understood Moretti completely but I am pretty sure that my initial understanding of visualizations, as mentioned above, are correct. So I looked at another visualization project, called Mapping Texts: Visualizing Historical Newspapers.  I have a love-hate relationship with newspaper searching, so this was right up my alley. Andrew J. Torget, and Jon Christensen analyzed the LOC “Chronicling America”- newspapers that have been digitized. (They explored Texas) I think it’s really telling that that one of the things they looked at is the quality of the digitization. I’ve had issues with OCR in newspaper searches myself, so this was really intriguing to see what they did with it. They broke down the quality of the text so you can see the volume of “good” text they were able to get. They also mention that there needs to be ways to deal with the massive amounts of text that has been digitized. I’ve often gotten discouraged that I can’t find something, especially when it comes to my research into the Zirkle family (which can be spelled 39 different ways), and it often comes down to the search method I’ve used. This project discussed that issue, and though it doesn’t have an answer yet, maybe it will in time or will lead to someone else finding the answer. The “assessing language patterns” section was interesting – in every date range Texas was the most widely used word. It would be a good study to compare how that would match to other states…is the state name always going to be the most widely used word, and what does this say about the area or the news in general?

Digital Transformations of the Humanities

Feb 1st, 2014 Posted in Public History | no comment »

“Humanists must actively engage with, design, create, critique and hack” the environments around them in order to make sense of “who we are, where we live, and what that means.” (Digital_Humanities, p. 30)

Going digital allows historians to do the above better. “Digital” is just another tool for historians to continue their analyses of the past, just as ink, paper, the printing press and the computer were innovative new methods. Historians must be aware at all times of the dangers of the digital world – as with anything, there are advantages and disadvantages of technology, and being mindful of this is an element of a good digital historian.

Cataloging and curation are important factors to a myriad of people: digital historians, researchers – academic and lay alike, teachers, students, museum professionals and visitors, historical societies, lineal organizations, service organizations, anyone who is interested in the organization and presentation, and preservation of information and cultural artifacts that define who we are as humans. Along with this cataloging and curation goes the tagging and identification of the information of the items being presented. Proper tagging and metadata allows the information to be found quickly in the digital world, as well as relate like objects to one another.

Digital mapping is another asset of the cataloging and curation – maps create the visualization of the text, putting the person where the “action” is taking place. Many researchers are not able to be at the exact place the information they are seeking took place, and mapping and virtual collections can enable this.

Virtual gaming is something that is interesting and new to me. The idea of taking a 3D, simulated world from a game to interpret and display material is a concept that never crossed my mind. Virtual memory sites can be created and experienced from anywhere, including your living room.

But what about the dehumanizing effects of creating a game out of something of greater meaning? The case study in Digital_Humanities talks about a refugee camp experience. How do you consider the ethical and cultural sensitivities when creating this virtual world? These are the reasons for human interaction and humanists to be involved in this process, rather than computers and scientists who may or may not be aware of cultural implications for their work. But without the digital element, stories like this may never get told. Or it is showcased at a museum for x amount of time and then it goes away. The digital realm allows information to be there for everyone and stories to be told. That’s not to say the viability of museums will go away, on the contrary, an exhibit can remain far after the blockbuster show time is over.

I worked at the Museum of the Horse at the Lexington, Kentucky Horse Park during their blockbuster summer even, Imperial China: The Art of the Horse in China in 2000. (I found some stuff online about the exhibit, you can check it out here.)  It was my first experience working in a museum. What is notable about this exhibit is that it was the first time the Emperor Qin Shi Huang’s terra cotta army figures had been outside of China. And they were only exhibited at the Museum of the Horse. Since then I believe they’ve been around a bit, but in 2000 they came to our museum and were packed up and went right back to China. Anyway, the point being that there will never be an exhibit like that again, and while the website and information I found to mention this exhibit are basic, there is still this presence and anyone researching Qin Shi Huang will come across the exhibit that once was. Today the possibilities of keeping these exhibits alive and active are numerous, and there is much that could be done to re-create the summer 2000 exhibit. I can imagine a map showing the areas each artifact came from, where interactively you could click on them and learn more about the region and the item itself. Or a virtual world where you could learn about the emperor and visit his tomb virtually. Or rediscover his tomb with the archaeologists in 1974. This exhibit, like so many others, could be brought to life using digital humanities methods and practices. This is truly a great time to be in the field of history and humanities. There is so much we can be doing with the cultural artifacts and material around us to make sense of “who we are, where we live, and what that means.”

Souvenir guide, docent training manual, and work shirt from Imperial China exhibit

Souvenir guide, docent training manual, and work shirt from Imperial China exhibit

Stop: Collaborate and Listen

Jan 26th, 2014 Posted in Public History | no comment »

Good, now you too can have a Vanilla Ice song stuck in your head. I saw a post on Facebook by a clever mom using the lyrics to “Ice Ice Baby” to get her children to clean their rooms. Sadly, the sentiment was probably lost on them. At least Vanilla Ice has house flipping on his resume today, I’m sure he’ll be financially fine – in case anyone was concerned.

But this post is supposed to be about Digital Humanities. I just read The Digital Humanities Manifesto 2.0, and couldn’t help but have that one song lyric stuck in my head the whole time; which is unfortunate, because I am not and never was a fan. But I digress. The Manifesto was written by a collaboration of over a hundred people, which is exactly what the digital humanities are about.   The Manifesto states the digital humanities believe “that copyright and IP standards must be freed from the stranglehold of Capital.” An interesting comment for me to just now read, in light of recent news about “Net Neutrality” and its implications for the digital humanities, scholars, and not to mention genealogists (see article here). Digital humanities promotes a global community of researchers and scholars, which is also exactly the network in the genealogy community. The internet has facilitated the communication and ability to collaborate with and listen to others, as well as get across volumes of information in so many different forms that are continuously evolving. If Net Neutrality rulings empower the cable companies to dictate what content gets favored over others, what might the issues be for, as an example, the blog communities? Or those that share their family history with others in the hopes of connecting with someone else researching the same family, closing the distance gap? Genealogists and researchers rely heavily on their search engines to find the information they are looking for – perhaps a ruling such as this will foster the open source community to develop a search engine that can get around these limitations. But at the moment this ruling seems to go against everything the Digital Humanities Manifesto promotes. It brings back that question, “Who owns the internet?” Certainly not the cable companies/ISPs. Is the internet the last great frontier?

Image courtesy of Witthaya Phonsawat/

Image courtesy of Witthaya Phonsawat/

This controversy  is a great example of the need for public historians and the digital humanists to “seek to understand and interrogate the cultural and social impact of new technologies”  (Digital Manifesto 2.0) What is the cultural impact of the power given to ISPs to regulate the content delivered to its subscribers? Or is there one?

What about the cultural impact of this new public sphere that everyone can participate in? Scholars are no longer the only voice on a subject. Digital Humanities discussed the advent of Wikipedia, the quintessential example of an open source and creative sharing of information that embodies the digital humanities. It illustrates the issues facing the academic sphere – things will need to evolve for the classic university to remain viable! Already even knowledge sharing has opened up to the masses. You no longer need to be a degree holder to publish your knowledge – YouTube allows every Tom, Dick, and Harry to upload videos on whatever it is they know about, from car repair, to product reviews, to sharing recipes; right alongside the Harvard professor’s lecture on the Constitution. The internet has opened up a vast array of possibilities for cultural and academic pursuits. This poses the question of who owns the knowledge and who administers it and makes sure it’s right? Apparently ‘ownership’ is part of the issue surrounding the Net Neutrality controversy. But why does anyone need to own any of the internet or the content it contains? If there is concern that “just anyone” is doling out information (and I don’t know that it is a concern, it just came to mind while I was reading DH), then maybe we should look back on the so-called “correct” information we were given in grade school and high school about American history. Remember the Alamo? How about Washington and the cherry tree? Yeah. That’s what I mean.

One of the things I need to work on as I study the digital humanities is the visual aspect. I branched out on this new blog a little bit, I haven’t been using many photographs on my other blogs. But the visual – all the multimedia elements, really – is/are fundamental to the digital humanities. The possibilities for the dispersal of knowledge and data are endless in a digital environment.

"Wild Red Fox" Courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography/

“Wild Red Fox” Courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography/

"Hedgehog in a Glass" Courtesy of Sommai /

“Hedgehog in a Glass” Courtesy of Sommai /

First blog on the new site and a new year

Jan 21st, 2014 Posted in Adams and Merry Descendants, Brunner and Sommer Descendants, Public History, Shaffer and Zirkle Descendants | no comment »

Jamboree Marketing Page button    (I wish I was going to be there! But I’ll be watching the webinars! Check out their webpage!)


I just started using Feedly to organize all the blogs I follow. Not that I have time to read any of them really, but at least now I have a list so I don’t have to say every time, “Now what was so-and-so’s blog site again?” I like that it syncs to Ipad and Iphone, so now when I am riding the light rail to school I can read blog updates. (Not that my ride is long enough to do much, I usually check Facebook and Twitter then, and only get through part of either!) Hopefully Feedly sticks around longer than some of the others I have used!


This is going to be my year to get organized and figure out time management. So far I am failing miserably at the time management resolution. Getting better at the organization part, though! It’s hard when you have cute furry distractions, though.

I am hopeful that the #52Ancestors challenge will keep me on track for working on my genealogy, and in turn, because I have to blog weekly about that, I hope that it will keep me in line with all the other things I need to be doing.


I am also working on materials for my Shaffer family reunion this summer. I am not the organizer, so I really don’t know what to expect, but I plan to prepare as much family history material as I can – though I suspect many of the attendants are currently part of my Facebook family group and at least know about or follow my family blog, and there doesn’t seem to be much interest or participation until I post photos. But therein lies the problem – I really don’t HAVE any photos! I am the youngest of my generation, we moved away from the hometown, and I never lived there! We have nothing pertaining to the ancestors, and my dad is gone so I can’t ask him any questions, though even when he was alive he never liked to talk about growing up.  I don’t know who was the repository for the old family photos, and I have asked many of the cousins, but no one seems to have anything or they will “look when they have time” and there just hasn’t been time. I hope that getting together for a family reunion will spark interest and make them want to go home and find those boxes! And maybe I can follow them home and help. :)


I am also involved in the DAR. My chapter, Cactus Wren, is a busy group and I try to get involved when I can. I am on the American Indian and American History committees for my chapter, and I love getting the chance to learn something new about Native Americans. The theme I have followed so far has been Native American Women, and recently I have learned a little bit about Sarah Winnemucca, Cora Sinnard (who I had to do a lot of my own digging on!), Charlotte Edith Anderson Monture, and the Women In Military Service for America Foundation Memorial at the Capitol.They had an exhibit that featured Native American Women, and one woman featured was even our own Arizona-native Lori Piestewa.


So it’s going to be a busy year, but I think it will be fun! I am excited about my classes for this semester, and I feel like everything I am doing fits together like a puzzle – one that I have been trying to put together for several years.