Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

EASY Way to Fill In YOUR Family Tree!

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Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree for anyone of all ages and stages of life

FREE Fill-In Family History Tree Templates to Download

We all need roots to feel we have a foundation to grow from.  A base, such as a solid stem or trunk, to gain strength as we face challenges in life.  Branches to reach for lofty heights and extend to do good.  Our family tree helps us individually see the many talents, abilities and life-lessons we can gain as we learn about our family.

That’s why in our Learn-Practice-Become we are filling our a Family Tree for our self.  Then with our children and grandchildren if we have them. 



Do you know many of the details about your family?

What they look like, maybe when they were younger?

Do you resemble them physically?

Do you know where they were born?


WHY is this even important? 

Because as we learn about our family, we practice one of the most important responsibilities we have. That of connecting our past to the present and the future.  It helps us become our very best as we understand more about our relationships, our culture and more about the people we are related to. 


HOW can we accomplish this, or even begin?

It’s very simple!

I have created two FREE Fill In Family History Tree templates for you to choose from so you can easily ‘see’ your family!

If you choose the template with pictures, you begin by putting in your picture, name and birth date.

Then your mom’s picture and her name and birth date.

Next your dad’s picture and his birth date.

On to your mom’s mother’s picture – which would be your grandmother’s picture and her information, and so on.

See how straightforward!

One Family Tree template includes pictures as a download, one is to be pasted in or drawn in, and both are Editable/Fill-In. 


What is the purpose of a Family Tree?

It helps us learn about those who are related to us in a visual way; putting people together like a puzzle with faces, dates and understanding how we are related.

Such as these questions: 

  • Do you know your grandparents? 
  • Do you have pictures of them?
  • What information do you have for your parents?
  • Do you know when they were born or how did they meet?
  • What are your great-grandparents like? 
  • Where they are from?

These are all important bits of information that add up and can help you become a better person and understand more about yourself.


How does filling out a Family Tree help your family? 

As your children understand their relationships with the present, they feel a foundation in their life.  They connect with the past, which most often brings a stronger identity, resulting in more self confidence and resilience in their present attitude and outlook.



 Two Easy FREE Fill-In Family Tree with or without Pictures Template

Now to choose from two different Free Family Trees that I have created for you.  Each begins with the child, to the parents and then the grandparents on both sides so it isn’t overwhelming, but gets the information started and the curiosity going.

Though it shows a child in the example, it is intended for any age, and every stage of life.


A little more before getting started of  WHY family history is so important for your kids, teens and you.

I really like these quotes to help us understand why learning about our family is worthwhile and significant:

A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.” —Marcus Garvey

  • Eighty families (were interviewed), including both parents and children, to see how much they knew about their own family’s history. Among the questions: Do you know where some of your grandparents grew up? Do you know the source of your name? Do you know some of the illnesses and injuries that your parents experienced when they were younger? The result? The more children knew about the previous generations of their family, the higher their self-esteem and basically, the happier they were.  (Source:


  • In the preteen years, children whose families collaboratively discuss everyday events and family history more often have higher self-esteem and stronger self-concepts. And adolescents with a stronger knowledge of family history have more robust identities, better coping skills, and lower rates of depression and anxiety. Family storytelling can help a child grow into a teen who feels connected to the important people in their life.  (Source:


  • Many people desire to know where they come from, but a sense of belonging is especially important for children and youth. A knowledge about their family history gives children of all ages a sense of their place in the world. It can also give young people something to live up to—a legacy to respect. Family history also provides an opportunity for children and teenagers to make a meaningful contribution to something bigger than themselves. This lesson provides ideas about how to involve children and youth in family history activities. Children and youth who develop an interest in family history are more likely to participate in family history throughout their lives.  You will find a great wealth of information on this site (Source: ttps://


BECOME better by actually DOING this!:)


1- THIS FREE TEMPLATE is editable and fill-in.  Simply help your child, or do it yourself, to type in the names and dates as you find them using the editable or fill-in feature.  Print it out and glue or draw in the face of the person who’s name is below the circle.  

This can also be printed and written on the lines, without using the editable or fill-in feature. 

Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree for anyone of all ages and stages of life

2-  THIS FREE TEMPLATE WITH PICTURES is also editable and fill-in, done with Canvait does not require a paid account to use this template. 

HERE are the instructions for this 2nd style of Family Tree 


Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree for anyone of all ages and stages of life

b) HERE are the very easy detailed instructions for this Free Template with Pictures, along with the Family Tree.  It includes step-by-step instructions and pictures so you can easily make this Family Tree.


c) AND you can visit my YouTube Channel HERE where I have a video titled: Family Tree Instructional Video to walk you through these instructions!

Two types of family trees to choose from to fill-in

FREE Fill-in Family Tree instructions for anyone of all ages and stages of life


Steps To EASILY Search Your Family Tree


Step 1 –

Click HERE to go to and you will find  the area titled: FAMILY TREE


Step 2 –

Click on the title: FAMILY TREE  or HERE


Step 3 –

Type in your name and information and keep adding to the name of the nearest deceased relative.  FamilySearch will do an automatic search for the deceased person to see if that person has already been added to FamilySearch.  If they have been added previously, you just need to click “add”.  If not, you will need to create a “new” person.


Step 4 –

Once that person’s name comes up, click on that person to see information to add to it, or see what’s there!


If nothing appears then you get to start your very own Family Tree right there on Family Search if you’d like!


You can read more about Family History in my first of this series: You Learn More About Yourself By Doing This!

Another wonderful resource for Genealogy is Rachel’s beginners guide to Genealogy:


Family History is truly one of the greatest adventures of self discovery we will set out on.   

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2019

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Staying connected by sending gifts in a unique way through the mail

Did You Know You Can Send THAT In the Mail?

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Staying connected by sending gifts in a unique way through the mail

Staying in touch through the mail

Did You Know You Can Send THAT In the Mail? 

To make connections, strengthen relationships and build family foundations, this is the BEST FUN way!


Who doesn’t like to get mail that isn’t a bill –  but a treat or a gift?  EVERYONE, that’s who.

Did you know you can mail just about anything?

For example you can mail a coconut, just as it is without putting it in a box or wrapping it up – simply as it is, by either writing, or taping an address on it? Isn’t that the coolest thing ever!

Think of the possibilities.  This post is part The Lost Art of Relationships. What better way to strengthen, mend or to reach across the miles than to send a surprise to a brother, sister, mom, dad, grandchild, child, in-law, niece or nephew, aunt, uncle — you get the idea. 

Also, what a wonderful approach to softening hearts if that is needed. It’s a comfortable way of letting someone know you are thinking of them, or even starting a conversation. 

And, boy do I have some FUN ideas for you, come on and just see what I have put together.


I wanted to make sure how things would work in the mail, so to experiment, I visited the post office quite a bit.

Well, I can tell you with confidence, that you can mail pretty much anything what you can think of.

*The only restrictions I would recommend are to watch the weight and size of the item(s), because that is what makes the difference in the price.  The large dimensions or heavy weight might be a bit into your budget, so use care with that. And I know this applies in the contingent USA, not sure about outside the U.S.; you’ll have to check if outside in another country, or sending to Alaska or Hawaii.

It's In The Mail! 2

I have mailed puzzles right in their own box.

Candy in its own wrapper.

Balls – YES balls!  The larger ones at the Dollar Store. The postman was so excited. my kids reported to me, that he brought it right the door for the grand kids. 

A box of fruit snacks and fruit roll ups, as they are when purchased at the store, among many other items.It's In The Mail! 3

One thing I didn’t send, but a postal worker said they saw come through was a baseball bat.  Just the bat!  The sender had written a little note on the bat with a sharpie marker, then taped the sender and recipients address, on the bat itself.  What a cool gift!

I have some ideas for you!!!

What little girl wouldn’t love receiving ELSA or ANNA  in a bottle/container/OR the Party in Bottle you’ll see below!  How fun would that be!!!

For a toddler boy look HERE

For a teenage girl or a woman try these socks HERE

For a teenage boy or man try this HERE

This CANDY could be sent as it is

I found an inexpensive and sturdy box, lined it with fun tissue, then bubble wrap.  
It's In The Mail! 3
You can fill with cookies, brownies, peanut butter bars, whatever treat or CANDY like HERE  if you want, but make sure it is dense treat so it travels well. It's In The Mail! 3Tape it up with fun duct tape like  one of THESE which I also used to tape around the address and then shipped it off. It's In The Mail! 4

The black print tape was on a tub of cotton candy and it sailed right through.  It's In The Mail! 5The box of M&M’s didn’t squish or munch.  It's In The Mail! 6As you can see even the middle package with individual packs (the brown print) of candy made it across several states.  I wasn’t sure if it would pop since it is filled with air, but it made it just fine!  It's In The Mail! 7

This is a GREAT idea….ok…in my humble opinion, I think it’s a great idea anyway. 

Take an empty can of Pringles potato chips and wipe it out. 

Then fill it with cookies, candy or treat, part of the way up the can.It's In The Mail! 8I put a little note inside of a sandwich baggie, then tucked it inside with the cookies.It's In The Mail! 9The reason I put the note in a baggie, is so that it wouldn’t get greasy from the oils of the cookies or whatever treat was in the can, and then continued to fill up the canister.It's In The Mail! 10Next cut a piece of waxed paper and a piece of construction paper the same size as the lid to go over the cookies to cover them.  It's In The Mail! 11

Tape with fun duct tape or packing tape.  Address and send.  

It's In The Mail! 12

Look at this! I put addresses right on the toys and they made it!It's In The Mail! 13Be creative, things right in their own packing works well too.It's In The Mail! 14 Look around your house at all the different kinds of bottles or canisters you can use to send treats or gifts in.  It just needs to be sturdy.It's In The Mail! 15

New mom’s, or mom’s-to-be would be thrilled to get a gift like one of these in the mail!

It could be the Barefoot Baby Sandals, click HERE for my tutorial.

Or the Binki Clips, click HERE to see step-by-step tutorials for these useful and appreciated gifts.

It's In The Mail! 16The Christmas and holiday pails/tins work terrific for those hard to fit items.  Seal, then tape the address on the outside and away they go.   Watch for after holiday sales for plain colored tins to use any time of the year.  It's In The Mail! 17With your canister/container, you can put just about anything that abides by the post office standards.

If you have a store with the bins of candy, go get a little bit of this and that to put in your container.  It does not have to be full,  if it will not be damaged; it can rattle around while shipping and be fine, if an item that won’t be damaged of course.
It's In The Mail! 18

HUGE TIP:   I found out the hard way that if there is a coating on a ball, or a toy like this, you cannot simply tape the address on it to send. Because it will tear off the top layer when the receiver wants to take it off….oops. It's In The Mail! 19Don’t forget older boys and teen guys. 

Tool boxes or canisters can hold the duct tape they love.  How fun would it be to send a teen (IF appropriate, you know your family) the tool box with the tape and a treat with the lock on it.

THEN, send the key in a separate envelope or container!   Most like a good joke, but again, you know your family. It's In The Mail! 20A boy would love the cars coming in a fun mystery container.  What surprise this would be!It's In The Mail! 21A tween or teen girl is sometimes difficult to get a gift for.  But what about holiday themed or every day socks or booties?  They always enjoy these!  And in a clear plastic jar, or a fun type as shown above, it would make her day better!It's In The Mail! 22

If you have a huge fan of anything, such as the super hero’s (or a certain theme) YOU would certainly be their super hero with this package. 

*On Amazon I found some lunch boxes that were being discontinued or marked down like the one pictured pictured below; for example I found a Disney Frozen one HERE for super inexpensive. Just search a bit and you’ll be surprised at the fun you can have with this!It's In The Mail! 23Candy for ANYONE is always appreciated.  It's In The Mail! 24If you know someone is having a hard time, needs a pick-me-up, thinking-of-you, or just-because, here’s an idea.It's In The Mail! 25                

If you have a special girl in your life, here is an idea (*the size and shape will affect shipping)

Lay your choice of ribbon across the box you want to use. It's In The Mail! 26Then tissue on top of the ribbon.  It's In The Mail! 27 You can put anything you’d like in your special box.  I put in TuTu’s that we made on a post.  You can see the detailed EASY instructions HERE.

I added some glow sticks on top for extra fun. It's In The Mail! 28Pull the tissue up around the contents carefully and tuck it in, then the ribbons, and tie them up and give them all a curl. It's In The Mail! 29 A note on the inside to the recipients as well as the address for the mail carriers. Fun duct (as I linked to above) tape to keep it together makes it extra special. It's In The Mail! 30

 Delivery and the result—- smiles all around! It's In The Mail! 31

Would you like to send a PARTY IN A BOTTLE? 

It’s easy and I’ll show you how!
It's In The Mail! 32

First rinse out a large pop bottle and allow it to dry thoroughly.

Take off whatever of the wrapper you can, but don’t stress (you will cover it up anyway).

Make a slit of about 4″-6″ It's In The Mail! 33Cutting over where the label is, so over the glue because you will cover this area with the address anyway.It's In The Mail! 34Into the slit you just cut, stuff COLOR SHREDS HERE, confetti, WIRE GARLAND really, anything your heart desires.

Have fun, remember, you are making a PARTY in a BOTTLE!It's In The Mail! 35

Then slip the gift in, keep in mind where it is going, and if it will it melt before reaching its destination. 

If it is  hot, do not send chocolate, that is my recommendation. It's In The Mail! 36

DOUBLE LAYER the paper, by folding it over itself after printing or putting another piece on top of itself.  

Simply tape the address over the slit to cover any label that you couldn’t remove

Everyone will be amazed at how YOU took a minute to send a little MAGIC in the mail 

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2015, 2017

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today

lemon cookie topper

I Am Sorry Topper

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lemon cookie topper

lemon cookie topper

Do you need a clever way to restore a friendship or to apologize? A remedy for one of the ‘foot-in-mouth’ occurrences? This little topper for a sandwich ziplock baggie will do the trick. You can make my Lemon & White chocolate Cookies, or even fill the baggie with Lemon Head candies. Nothing feels better than extending a hand of forgiveness or regret. 

I wrote a post about harboring ill feelings and the importance of asking and giving forgiveness. Just in case it inspired you, here is a treat topper to drop off, or to hand deliver, a little ‘I’m Sorry’. Click HERE for article.

Click HERE for the recipe for delicious Lemon and White Chocolate cookies that will melt any heart and help soften any strained relationship. Lemon Topper Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2014

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Surviving the Holidays

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 Yes, they ARE coming!!!

The holidays are highly anticipated with visits from family near and far. However, it can be a challenge….ok, even down-right frustrating oftentimes.  The weeks of planning, shopping, wrapping, cooking and preparing for a ‘perfect family time’ can sometimes, actually most of the time, turn out a bit different than planned.  Hopefully this article will help you enjoy and relish your time with family and friends.


We WILL have FUN, and I mean it….Really, what are your expectations?

Don’t expect perfection from yourself or your family – it’s not reality, nor will it ever be for anyone, unless they are paid actors with a script. People are human beings with their own quirks and personalities.

Try to imagine your family as a sit-com and get a laugh of the oddities that will most certainly come up. The occasional criticism, the annoying comments, the disagreements, is all just a part of being a family. Do not ‘get into it’ with them, or fight or be mean-spirited back; just do your best to forgive, and smile. Of course if there is a serious issue, deal with it as an adult, meaning think it through, count to ten, take a long walk and breath deep to avoid lashing out, or saying something you shouldn’t that will damage relationships. This too shall pass and they will go home.

Show kindness and respect to everyone, not just those you get along with better, or family members who treat you more kindly and are more considerate. If you work on being calm, happy, loving to all,  you’re giving your best, and that makes all the difference.

Don’t over-think or over-prepare.

Over-think means to imagine up all kinds of scenarios that might come, or might not. You cannot control everyone or everything. It is just not possible.

DO think of:

  • Have your house clean before they come. Everything will go much smoother, because clutter adds to the chaos.
  • Have extra basic supplies on hand, such as extra toothbrushes (go to the local dollar store and look at the basic toiletries for ideas and for low cost to you).
  • Have your laundry all caught up and put away so that if family needs to wash clothing due to a baby blow-out, a toddler accident, or their own needs, it will be available and you won’t be stressed trying to squeeze your washing in also.
  • Paper plates, paper cups, disposable utensils will be your best friend!  Do not stress over doing all those dishes, this is a holiday for you too.
  • Have snacks on hand that are more healthy such as cheese sticks, crackers, granola bars, fruit, vegetables, fruit, bread, peanut butter, etc. for family to snack on when they get hungry. Put them in a ‘free zone’ meaning let them know they can have it whenever they would like and they don’t have to ask permission. This is particularly thoughtful for new in-laws or guests who may feel it would impose on your generosity to ask for food other than meals. But a hungry tummy makes any get together not so fun.
  • Speaking of food, it works well to label ‘do not eat’ in masking tape or on the container if it is an necessity for a certain recipe. There is nothing more uncomfortable than finding out your critical ingredient was eaten, the stores are closed or too far away, or the expense of replacing it would be too much. Embarrassing all around.
  • Consider food allergies.
  • Find out dislikes of certain foods and have a few options, such as peanut butter and bread, frozen burritos, anything simple they can prepare on their own, while not making more work for you. You may think this is going a bit overboard, but I will give you my example. I will not eat eggs of any type of preparation, so if I had the option of cereal or instant oatmeal for breakfast when eggs were the planned menu, I would really appreciate that host/hostess the mostest!
  • Do not be militant or overbearing, but do set down rules and boundaries that apply to your home.  Make them clear from the get-go.

So-and-so Drives me crazy!

Some members of the family are more social than others; do not

  • Expect everyone to participate in every single activity being offered, or even to be involved with the family much; that’s just how some are, but love ‘em just the same.
  • Have an escape plan for yourself and spouse IF it does get a bit crazy, just tell them you have to go make sure all the little fish are still in their proper tanks at the local store or that you need to go help arrange the books at the library from tallest to shortest.  It will give them the heads up you need a break, but with a sense of humor.

My Best advice:

Do tell your family of the ONE or two (but NO more than that) what the important activity, or event, to you (and spouse if it applies) that you want everyone involved in, and be clear which one it is. This could be a family picture, a dinner, a visit to see a relative, anything, but just one or two things and that’s the rule you can’t break. It is important that adult children have their own traditions to solidify them as a family unit and they may have the other side of the family who would like to see them also. This makes you happy because your main event will be attended by all, and helps family members know exactly what activity to plan on above all else. Generally they don’t want to disappoint or seem rude, they just may not know what to do to make you happy during the season.

Do NOT over-prepare:

  • Have food that can be prepared simply and quickly so you can participate in the family time and enjoy it as much as everyone else.
  • Try to have food that if it is not used, it can be stored for a future time.
  • Have things prepared to do, such as games, movies, an outing to see the holiday lights or a local attraction. BUT, do not expect everyone/anyone to do all those things. It is nice to have ideas to vote on, or choose from out of a hat.
  • If you are the one visiting relatives, chip in and help with the cooking and clean up. Do not wait to be asked, PLEASE.
  • If it is your house everyone is at, do not be shy about asking for help. It only makes you feel resentful that you are in the kitchen alone while everyone else vegges in front of the tv.

You know how an animal can sense your nervousness? Well, people are the same.   That is why it is vital that you relax, enjoy and savor the time together, whether it is for one hour or a week. Family will want to be with you, IF you enjoy being with them, and it is the most relaxed environment you can make it. Families are made up of complicated individuals, yet the holidays can be simple and fun if you work out the details the best you can ahead of time, then sit back and enjoy the wonderful ride it is.  Just think, after all the festivities, you could possibly write a best seller of all the ‘fun’ – just be sure to change the names.  

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mothers Shadow, 2013, 2014

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.

Bailey Family

Featured Family: Baileys

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Bailey Family

Bailey Family

Sometimes a family is created in a very unexpected manner, yet the Bailey’s are a prime example of sharing their love of their boys will all; including the birth parents. 

Meet The Bailey’s

Kimberly Cline and Jason Bailey married ten years ago and thought they had a general sense of where their life would take them. They dead wrong – still very blessed, but life did not bring what they had planned. After several years of marriage and multiple frustrating failed attempts at infertility treatment, the couple decided to try building their family in a non-traditional way, through adoption.

The adoption process can be tedious, slow and emotionally draining. As with most adoption agencies, to create a matching process, the Bailey’s had to complete a packet with information that was so detailed, the case worker knew them as much as they knew each other. The unique thing with the agency the Bailey’s chose to work with, is that a lot of the information from the packet is used as ‘search criteria’, and that the birth parents are the ones that choose the future parents of their child. This can create some difficulties if the young lady, or woman, only looks at specifics such as looking for extraordinarily high income, a certain height and other aspects that are not at all ‘telling’ if the couple would be loving and caring parents.

Prayer is really the most important component in making such a life altering decision. While the Bailey’s were in contact with one birth mother, they were told that they would not be chosen after all because they were too tall.  Of course they were devastated by such triviality; however, they would come to realize that this baby was not meant to be theirs, and that their little ball of energy was still on the way. After some time, the Bailey’s were very blessed with a little boy, named D.J. about a year and a half after being approved through the agency for adoption. Shortly after D.J. came into their home, Kimberly and Jason had the opportunity to foster a brother and a sister for six months. After the six months, they had to make a difficult decision; adopt these two siblings or allow a distant relative who had suddenly come forward with the request to adopt the pair. 

After weighing all possible options, praying intently and with sincerity for guidance, they decided to allow the relatives to adopt the brother and sister, with the only balm to mend their hearts was they were doing what God wanted.

The Baileys have kept in contact with the adopted parents and are happy to report that the children are thriving in their new home and doing wonderfully. Shortly after that heart wrenching experience, Jason and Kimberly were approved for adoption again, through the same agency, and remarkably a few months later they were chosen to be parents. This time, the birth-mother and child were in Ohio. Alex, who was sixteen months old, entered their life through miraculous circumstances, which can only be explained as divine intervention. D.J. is now 3 ½ and Alex is almost 3. Jason and Kimberly took the adoption process very seriously, looking into all aspects of how open to be with the birth mother (and father) and the children themselves about their adoption.

Deciding that it would be in the best interest for the boys to understand their unique arrival into their family, they Skype and even spend time with the birth parents. The Baily’s feel it is important for the boys to know how loved they are by all parties; particularly as they grow older so it is not a ‘mystery’ or ever even the slightest undertone for the boys to feel they are at a disadvantage in any way shape or form because they are adopted. The Bailey’s acknowledge very openly that God always intended for these two boys to be a part of their family and to come to them in this manner.

Kimberly and Jason give this advice:  True empathy is simply impossible for someone to exhibit in these situations, unless they have gone through fertility issues and have fought the same emotional battles that infertile couples fight daily. However, complex it is to overcome these hardships, if you use them to make you stronger, although difficult to face, they will work to your advantage. As I visited with the family,  Jason commented that when facing these hardships, a man or woman, can choose for themselves which path to go down.  To either be depressed about not being able to have their own biological children OR they can come to terms that in this sometimes cruel game of life dealt them this hand of cards.  Facing it with optimism and courage will allow us to play the best hand and make the most of it. In their situation, the clear answer was to get licensed by the state to be foster parents as well as going through the approval process for adoption for the opportunity to build their family in a unique and special way.

Kimberly (who is a second cousin to my husband) recommends embracing the opportunity to advertise yourself by putting your name and information out there in any way possible so others can pass it along. You never know how God is going to make it happen, but His ways are perfect and we just need to have the faith to walk the path intended for happiness.  Though the boys are not biologically theirs, they were always meant to be the sons of Jason and Kimberly Bailey. The following pictures are of the birth parents and the boys.  What an impressive relationship all around.Picture5 DSC_0026copyI want to thank Jason and Kimberly for taking the time to meet with me, helping me write this article and providing pictures.   Thank you to the wonderful and inspiring birth parents who were involved in this also. What an undaunted and courageous family!

Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2013

Recognize a blessing and be a blessing today.