This period of exploration then led into a period of writing about the family for a Writing Family History Class at the local Senior Center. Ahh, I thought this will help me get it all together. WRONG! Now I had the tree, some printed out 'proof', a new collection of digital photos to add to my stories. How to keep these organized became a new questions. I had folders with the documents I had found. Should I put them in folders by family names? Good idea. This good idea meant I know had paper folders of the printed sheets; digital family name folders with the scanned papers safely inside, and photo folders, also by family name with the images used for each of the stories. Ahhh! I thought to myself, you have done a great job! Wrong again, I soon found out, as the information grew, as cousins entered that collection which got bigger and bigger. Along the way I started going to cemeteries to find family headstones. Another question for organization. Shall I put these in family folders, digital photo folders, specific cemetery folders? Better put them in each so I can find them. So that began to grow and grow and GROW. And suddenly I found I had a lot of info but could nothing that went together so that could quickly find what I needed. AHHH! but a new collection began to come along... the census collection. Now I had many census pages printed for each family; different years, different places as families moved, grew, and married.
Suddenly new problems appeared as I tried to learn more about this new world of genealogy; subscribing to genealogy blogs, attending genealogy workshops and organization meetings, and discovered the power of the webinar world. How to keep these handouts organized so I would know how to refer back to each as needed. Being an early techie-user I was interested in all the resources available online. Think that helped? You know the answer, I think. The answer is yes and no.
I had already created my own organization. Now I also had Evernote. I was trying to keep the blogs and other genealogy online resources in their own folders in my email AND begin to get things I needed into Evernote. At this moment that Evernote is on the way to being the most organized. I have created a new email address and have almost caught up with getting everything moved to that new address. Whew! But the rest........
|Folders Under Genealogy|
In January of 2016 I thought I had found a solution. I started Thomas MacEntee's 2016 Do-Over. It was indeed the beginning of the right track. The first month assignment was to truly start over. I began by checking every piece of information I had to find what was missing. I have really not gotten beyond that point and am still moving forward, bit by bit, I have found all the 'official' documents I have collected. As part of the process Thomas provided an outstanding spreadsheet we could use to show what documents we already have. I was horrified by the duplicates I had. Clearly I had not kept careful records and often re-searched for information I had already found. Believe me, that is NOT the meaning of research!! I am placing hard copies into notebooks, but only after entering them in the spreadsheet. This has been very time consuming. Especially because I have also continued searching. I know. I know. Not the way to do it. But at least I am moving forward.
I am at a standstill moment right now. I have new information to put into the spreadsheet. I am committed to getting caught up with what I have. I am committed to being a better researcher; one with a plan and clear direction. One of the ways I hope to stay on track is to keep you readers informed of my progress. It is almost the end of April, 2017. During May I am going to make filling in the spreadsheet my main goal. I hope be the end of May I can give you a positive report on catching up. Hope you all have found good ways to stay on track. Perhaps you will even share a few those ideas with me.