Monday, December 29, 2014

Genealogy Do-Over: Week 1

Week 1 begins in a few days! I carved out some time to put some plans to paper. I may add/edit through week 1 as I review my progress.

Week 1 – 2-8 January 2015
  • Setting Previous Research Aside
    • Use records ordered/purchased as needed.
    • Otherwise do not refer to old research notes.
  • Preparing to Research
    • Cleaned my desk!
    • Created a new master family tree file in RootsMagic 7.
    • Learn more about the features in RM 7, especially creating citations.
    • Prepare my research binder - to keep me organized and in one place.
    • Prepare my resource binder, to include lists, tools, maps, etc. (I created this many years ago and will review for updates).
    • Review book - Crash Course in Family History by Paul Larsen. I ordered and received this book a week or two before Thomas announced GenDoOver!
    • Evernote - learn to use it (finally).
    • Personal genealogy library - review the books I have and create a Library Thing catalog. (Wow... I'd forgotten about some of the great books/resources I have). 
    • Research log - reviewed and updated.
    • Create new digital genealogy folders (when I transfer my old computer contents to my new computer this week).
    • Re-sort my paper files. Purge as needed. (Why did I think it was a good idea to merge them?) Maternal: Howard/Smith & Snell/Holmes. Paternal: Stafford/Benton & Sawyer/Crumpler.
  • Establishing Base Practices and Guidelines
    • Consistency: 
      • File naming (digital).
      • Document naming (digital).
      • Research methodology of each person (research log/resource checklist).
      • Scan & File as I go... do NOT allow a holding bin.
    • Collect, analyze and enter data in RootsMagic.
    • Record negative search results.
    • Cite my sources (properly).
    • Create to-do list for follow-up research.
    • No branch hopping! Stay focused.
    • BLOG (and share).
George Washington Stafford Photo
George Washington Stafford
Paternal Great Grandfather ~ Brick Wall 

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Back to Normal

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My research has sat dormant for more than 5 years while I waited for things to get "back to normal". I've since realized that isn't possible. With each life event "normal" takes on a new look. I've decided that I need to schedule time for my blogging and genealogy research.

With this plan in mind for 2015, feeling as if I was starting over since I've been out of touch far too long, I was (secretly) happy that so many others felt somewhat the same as we all jumped on board with Thomas for the big Genealogy Do-Over starting next week.

It is still overwhelming when I think about it as a whole... so, I won't.

I hope you'll stop by in 2015.

research files
Paper files in our basement storm room

Find all the details here: Genealogy Do-Over

Sunday, January 5, 2014

52 Ancestors: Sara Snell Stafford

As I begin to share 52 of my ancestors over the next 52 weeks I begin with my sweet Mama. 

Oh, how I miss you, Mama! You are free from sickness and pain. For that I am grateful. Until we meet again.

When I started this blog my very first post was for Mama. 

In another post I shared this, from her funeral:
I will cherish every day I was blessed to have Mama. Her hands tenderly cared for me. Her kisses healed my pain. Her hugs calmed my fears. Her voice was a melody in my ear. Nothing compares to a mother’s love. It guided me through life in my early years and waited in the wings in my adult years. Mama has left us for a little while but her love will always be with us. Close your eyes and open your heart and there you will find her.
In 2012 I installed a Memory Medallion on her headstone. I need to update and add to the data and check it the next time I'm home for a visit.

New Year ~ Fresh Start

I've missed research, genealogy and blogging and plan to change that in 2014. I feel like I'll be starting over even though this will be my 15th year of researching my family. I didn't get this blog off the ground, before having to take a break to handle aging parent needs, and hope to make it a place where I can connect with others that share my family lines.

Don't forget to take a cemetery walk with me over at

I need to spend some time getting my blog reading list re-created in Feedly, so if you have a genealogy or cemetery blog please leave me a link in the comments.

I'm going to accept the challenge, found over at No Story Too Small,  ( to blog about 52 ancestors over the next 52 weeks. I will post that a little later this evening. I knew right away the first one would be for my sweet Mama. Next month will be 5 years since she stepped into eternity and my heart aches like it was this morning. Oh, how I miss her.

by Amy Johnson Crow