Thursday, December 31, 2009

When our world officially admits it’s another year older, lots of people come up with resolutions.

“I resolve to lose 90 pounds.”

“I resolve to quit smoking (I quit years ago)once and for all.”

“I resolve to win the lottery.”

Considering how many resolutions are upended by the consumption of an entire bag of Doritos in one sitting or how many gyms look like ghost towns on March 1st, it’s amazing that we go through the trouble of of making them in the first place.

Indeed, the mandate that we should all come up with some sort of New Year’s Resolution is a rule that does'nt exist.

Resolutions are good in theory, but they set people up for failure. Changing habits is hard, and the first stumbling block usually creates a wall of disappointment and shame that reinforces the negative pictures you had going into it.

I guess I’m just too lazy. Too fat. Too whatever.

Don’t get me wrong. Changing bad habits and setting goals are important. And anything worthwhile will be met with obstacles, which will need to be overcome by persistence and hard work. I just don’t think resolutions are the way to go about it.

The arrival of a new year fills me with optimism. Rather than saddle myself with a resolution that is likely to snuff it out in less than a week, I like the idea of embracing something that fuels the optimism and serves as a guide that will help me all year long. Which is why I love the idea of coming up with a word of the year. FREEDOM!

  • Freedom from debt.

  • Freedom from having to eat so much at one sitting (this is a big one).

  • Freedom from having to go buy everything techno that is new.
Some Words for you to think about for 2010 are;
I look forward to letting go of some things that have been holding me back and unloading unimportant possessions. I’m looking forward to achieving freedom from some fear and worry that has plagued me this past year, as well as experiencing the freedom I get while exercising on the treadmill and riding my bicycle. I will enjoy my Lord more, enjoy my wife more, and enjoy family more.

How about you? What do you think about this idea? Do you have a word that comes to mind for you?

Friday, December 18, 2009


John B. Shannon was the son of Samuel Shannon and Martha Bracken. Samuel was
born in Lancaster County, Pa. and was a Captain of Militia moving west to the frontier
into Washington County, Pa. John was born in Washington County April 28, 1784. He was
still an infant when the family came to Shelby County, Kentucky in 1785. Samuel's
brother William was already in Jefferson County and had made many land acquisitions in
his and Samuel's names. William had been a Captain with George Rogers Clark as the
General Conductor of Commissary supplies at Fort Pitt and into the Illinois Territory
and The Falls Of Ohio. Southwest Pennsylvania was part of Augusta Co. at that time so
William is listed as a soldier of The Va. Continental Line
Thomas and John, two more of the brothers of Samuel and William also came to Shelby
County and had been in Albemarle and Augusta County, Virginia for several years. The
father (John Sr.) had been an officer in the French and Indian War and lead colonial troops
into northern New York from Lancaster County, Pa.
John married Polly Finley, daughter of John Finley and Esther Reid of Augusta county,
Virginia on October 30, 1804 in Shelby County. John was a Sergeant in the War of 1812,
first with troops at The Battle of The Thames and later at The Seige Of New Orleans. Both
John and Polly died very young, Polly in 1811 and John in 1819, and left several young
orphan children, all being taken in by the sisters and brothers of John. Many of these same
families that were neighbors in Pennsylvania emigrated into Virginia and Kentucky together
and intermarried for the next three generations. The Shannons, Reids, Finleys, Wallaces and
My third great grandfather, Dennis Rearden, married Polly Shannon (daughter of John and
Polly) in Franklin County, Ky. on November 10, 1829. Dennis had lived in Shelby County with
his father before moving over into Franklin County.
I placed a headstone for Sgt. John Shannon in the old Shannon Cemetery on Taylorsville Rd.
on October 3, 2009 to commemorate his time served in the War of 1812. I also placed a
headstone for Capt. Samuel Shannon commemorating his time of service in The Revolution
in the Pennsylvania Militia and one for Capt. William Shannon for his time in the Revolutionary
War with the Illinois Regiment of The Virginia Continental Line. William , a bachelor was
killed by another Shelbyville resident in 1794 so is not recognized in The DAR or SAR
and does not have family.