Category Archives: Goals
October snuck into our lives this week. With warm temps and sunny skies it’s more like the end of August than the first fews days of fall here in Ohio, but there’s no mistaking autumn has arrived. Leaves are changing colors and the evenings are decidedly cooler. My flowers are looking a bit ragged and will soon be plucked out of their beds with the first frost. Even though it’s very warm out now autumn is in the air.
Am I sad to see summer wane? Oh no. Now don’t get me wrong I love sunny summer days with baseball games and barbeques. Summer has a delicious casualness we all love to embrace from the clothes we wear to the food we eat. It’s truly a reenergizing time of year and probably needed with winter soon on the horizon again. For me summer seems to extend through September and that’s okay. Squeezing out those last few moments of sunshine and flip flops is invigorating, but once I turn the calendar’s page to October I don’t mind what fall brings.
October is “get back to your genealogy research” month. Summer is a hiatus from research with so many other events going on. Lots of reading and fact finding gets put on the back burner but once October bursts on the scene I’m thinking cemetery and courthouse visits with to do lists and field trips. In fact October is sort of a “new year” for me genealogy-wise. I take stock of what I’ve accomplished and where I want to go with my research. (2x grandfather James Nance you’re at the top of my list. I’m looking for you!)
Ironically I didn’t realize October was Family History month until I saw several messages about it on Facebook. Here I’ve been celebrating it every October in my own way. So to all of us family historians and genealogists Happy Family History month! Happy October! May the genealogy gods smile down on us as we ramp up our research!
I’m making out my genealogy to-do list for this fall. How about you? What’s on your genealogy agenda? Please share your thoughts in the comments. You may just give us all some inspiration!
I met up with old friends Stephanie Pitcher Fishman, Jennifer Alford, Amy Johnson Crow and Shelley Bishop and met new friends Linda McCauley and Cheri Daniels. It was a fantastic experience! I’ll always remember my “first” major conference and the fun I had.
So what is my take away from this event? I learned so very much! Some classes opened my eyes to new research ideas and places to research. Even the lectures I took that covered topics I’m familiar with gave me new tips and ideas. I am always surprised how much easier it is to learn something new when it’s taught in a workshop with visuals. My only negative, if it can be called a negative, is that I learned so much! I didn’t know how I’d be able to retain it all! The excellent syllabus provided and my own notes will certainly help in that category.
A couple of months ago I asked the question: “How often would you like to see the blogs you read updated? Are you disappointed when it’s only once or twice a week?”
The topic generated several answers, some offline discussion and although not scientific, I thought the outcome interesting enough to share it with you.
Everyone that commented said they check several blogs a day and many more over a week’s time. This speaks to the quality of genealogy blogs on the web! There is a lot of educational and insightful writing being posted in the genealogy cyberworld. Readers are anxious to get it. The respondents generally agreed they found most blog posts come on Mondays and Wednesdays. A couple of replies suggested posting on other days of the week. By publishing new blog posts on days other than Monday and Wednesday the genealogy reading public would be able to enjoy fresh reading material throughout the week. Perhaps a good thought to keep in mind.
Yet the single most important idea I came away with
Now that I’m back in my regular routine I skipped through my notes to see what project I was working on. I have a desk top full of various size notes with all sorts of scribbles, but I’ll deal with that later. Right now I wanted to see what my latest, greatest idea was. It was to start a timeline on some ancestors. I wanted to put the really important events in their life together so I could study it and maybe come to some conclusions as to why they did just what they did! You may have read my post a couple of weeks ago on timelines here.
So I started out googling genealogy timelines for macs. My thought was to do a timeline with computer software so I could arrange, rearrange or add events. Neatness was a big consideration too!
It was a tough go looking for timeline templates. After looking at many, which were only for pc’s, and finding just one for my mac (@ $19.95 it was too much for this timeline novice) it occurred to me to check my own genealogy software. I know, I know. Why didn’t I do that first? Beats me! Some days I start at the end or even in the middle!
After opening my Reunion program and searching my online manual . . . Voila! There it is, the who’s and how’s of timelines. It took the afternoon to get the basics down but as you can see, ”Houston, we have a timeline!”
I choose my g-g-grandmother Rebecca Holmes Williams as my first timeline recipient. I feel such a closeness to her and wanted to understand her life a bit better. I wonder why a passel of this family moved from eastern Ohio to western Ohio during the Civil War. Why her husband, my g-g-grandfather didn’t serve in the Ohio Volunteer Infantry during the war and how she coped losing four sons as infants and toddlers. Rebecca did have three daughters live to be adults yet she buried two of them as well! My g-g-grandmother had to be quite a woman, tough as nails! I know this timeline will help me with all my questions.
I put the family’s vital information above the bar and the extenuating events of their life below it. The distinction between the two will help my see a correlation of events, I hope.
My next step is to do some hard-core research and reading. I need to find the history of Tuscarawas County, floods, droughts, fear of war spilling into their community. More info on the children and as I find something pertinent, add it to my timeline. Hopefully many “events” will also unlock answers!
So meet me back here two weeks from today. We’ll see how my project has progressed and if I’m any further in my research.
How about you? Have you started some timelines? Do you have any tips for me? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!
Hello fellow bloggers! Remember way back in January when Stephanie over at Corn and Cotton invited us to join her Motivation Monday group? Genea-bloggers were encouraged to outline their monthly goals the first Monday of each month and then take Fridays to update and share their accomplishments. It was the choice of each individual to update weekly or monthly. The purpose of the group still is to encourage each other as we pursue our goals and cheer accomplishments.
Guess what? I pretty much took February off. Now I got stuff done, but it was random. A hit or miss in getting research or organizing stuff done. You know what I mean? No real plan, so some stuff happened but a lot didn’t.
I can see flitting from one thing to another just isn’t going to work. So with some real thought and a true desire to accomplish things in my genealogy research – I have a plan! I work part-time, so I have the luxury of a couple of days a week where I should be compiling loads ancestor data. With my plan I will!
As hard as this is for me to admit, I accomplish so much more in the morning. I’d rather sleep in and roll out of bed about 9ish (wouldn’t we all?) but I’ve come to realize too, my most productive hours are in the a.m. Once 3pm rolls around I’m no good at concentrating, writing, etc. So those tasks that need me to “focus” need to be put in the morning hours and the “lighter thinking” jobs can be left for the afternoon.
*So starting this very morning I’m getting up at 5am daily. I will read/answer my email, exercise, get my bundle of joy off to school, play with twitter, eat, shower and start my workday by 8:30am.
*Then to my desk where I won’t check Facebook, but will do actual work. First putting together a research strategy for the day, that idea came from Tonia’s blog here. Then I’m thinking two hours research without self-induced interruptions. Real research! No sneak peeks of twitter or my email. Just work!
*Next a break for lunch, followed by education. I’ll put aside an hour to watch a webinar, read a couple of chapters in a book, etc.
*Finally before my bundle of joys arrives home from school, I’ll take a half-hour to organize the days research, putting papers away, clearing my desk and having a clean slate for my next off day.
I admit this schedule is just for two days a week but ohh how those days could be profitable if I only put my mind to it and stick to my plan. Wish me luck! I’m gonna need it! My next post will have this month’s specific research topics that will be worked on in the above time slots!
How about you? Do you have a schedule? Tell me how yours works and give me some tips. I’m all ears!