It’s a bit late in the day, but I wanted to let you all know where I stand for the month. I have a terrible headache so this will be a quick post on what I need to finish in the next few days. Because, come next Monday I plan to be laying out the plans for March.
Research: I started looking into the Chicago Rail Co, I have a great-great uncle that died in an accident involving them and I would like to find a newspaper article giving me more details. So far, I have found nothing. The only records I have to go off of are the death certificate and the coroner’s inquest which reiterates the death record.
In the next few days, I will go through all the information I have been analyzing to make sure I have everything I need to put together a research plan for the ACPL.
Education: I completed the first assignment for ProGen 13 and want to reread the reading homework and go through the questions we will be going over on Sunday. Also, need to go and comment on everyones homework.
Writing: I completed three posts last week and have nothing ready for this week. I need to really push myself on this. I have taken on a new project that I am not ready to share yet that will probably be taking up a lot of my time. So, I need to really focus on this.
Organization: I spent time last week going through genealogy, personal and work files. I pulled out more genealogy magazines and quarterly’s that I need to file on my book shelf. I also reorganized my work files. I plan to work on my genealogy files in next month or two.
Here we are, the first week of the new year and I plan to start the year off right. At the end of last month, I wrote my 2012 Genealogy Goals, I hope to break them down month by month to make sure I come somewhere close to achieving them by the end of the year.
So, for the month of January I am going to start with two of these goals.
1. Researching my Richmond line. This is the line that I seem to make the most family connections with and I want to get it straightened out. Some say that this line goes back to Thomas Rogers of the Mayflower, so I want to reanalyze all the information I have, 1 generation at a time. I am going to start by making a chart for each generation. On this chart, I plan to mark off all of the records that I can find, such as birth, marriage, death, and census, you get the picture. This will probably take me some time to do, so I want to get on this right away.
Organization – My genealogy stuff is scattered throughout my house. Some in my bedroom, some in the living room and some in the basement. I need to get it all in one are where it will be accessible at all times. To start this project off, I am going to move all genealogy into the basement (which is where my office is). That should only take me a few hours to do. From there, I need to get all books on one book shelf. As of right now, I have a small rolling book shelf (think wooden library cart on wheels) that will be perfect to use. From here, I want to start cleaning my one file box that I have for genealogy. Each year I pull a file and it never makes it back into the box. Some are on my desk, some in my briefcase, again I am sure you get the picture. I procrastinate.
As for other things I would like to accomplish this month are making it to the Irish American Heritage Center at the end of the Month for their genealogy meeting, I am also planning to go hear Tim Pinnick speak (I think that is January 10) and then I also have planned to meet up with Jen Holik-Urban of Family History Research, for a day at the archives and another meeting about Italian ancestry. Lots planned for the month. I will be posting on Friday’s about my progress.
My genea buddy Steph has her monthly goals up here.
While reading over how many of my genealogy friends did completing their goals for 2011, I decided that in 2012 I was going to do things a bit differently. Last year, Amy Coffin of We Tree and Denise Levenick of The Family Curator got together over lunch and decided that they would set a few goals and be there for moral support throughout the year.
After I really thought about it, I decided this might actually work for me. I reached out to Stephanie of Corn and Cotton: My Family’s Story to see if she would like to do this together. We already are supporting each other throughout the month with our monthly goals, why not help throughout the year. Steph replied that she would also like to do this.
I wrote out my goals last night and sent them off to Steph to see what she thought. My goals are big and I was afraid I am biting off more than I can chew. Steph was nice enough to remind that it is what we are supposed to be doing.
So, without further ado, here are my goals for 2012.
Research – I really want to prove / disprove the Mayflower connection in my Richmond line. My only concern with this in funding the project.
Writing - Since I do not consider myself a great writer, this goal will be the hardest for me. I have been told many times by my aunt (who reads my blog faithfully) that I need to write a book on my O’Connell research. There have been a few family members who have researched this family and it remains difficult. At this point, my research has surpassed those before me, I do not feel like I have enough research on this line. There are still a few branches of the family I would like to work on.
Since the O’Connell line is out of the question for writing a book about, I have decided that this goal will go along with my goal for research. The proving / disproving the Mayflower connection is a large task and one that will need to be well documented as I research it. If I fail at researching, I fail at the writing. That is scary, to set for goals and know that if I miss in research, I miss in writing as well. If I succeed, it will be a huge thing for those that are researching this line and only have a theory at this point. I have gotten a few emails wanting to know if I have the proof (all from other family members).
Organizational – This past year when we opened out own business, the basement was turned into my office, sort of. It has never been completed for business, let alone my genealogy work. This year, I want to organize my office for genealogy as well. I need to move all my books, magazines, bins and other genealogy “stuff” into the basement and then start to get it all organized. I hope to be able to utilize Motivation Monday (on the first Monday of each month) to keep me moving in this long process.
Educational – I have signed up for ProGen and hope to start in 2012. I will be doing this with my genealogy buddy, Stephanie and our friend Laura of The Last Leaf on This Branch. Hopefully, the three of us will be able to complete this successfully with all that we have going on in our lives. Unfortunately, I will be taking a break from the classes at the National Institute of Genealogical Studies. Also in the plans is to go back to school to take my general education classes. Now that my kids are old enough to take care of themselves, it’s time for me to start working towards a degree.
Are you interested in Steph’s goals? You should be, she has many great goals she is working towards. Read about her goals here.
This afternoon, while I was going through my routine of reading email, checking facebook and looking through other family history blogs. I came across an eye opening blog on organization for bloggers. Thomas MacEntee over at Genea Bloggers does a wonderful job of keeping everyone up to date on what is going on in the genealogy world. One would never think that he will be able two find a new way to help us, but it seems that each week he puts out something new!
Last night I spent a great deal of my evening helping my son Corey, who is 17, get organized for his last year of High School. The norm for him, is to just put things down and then take a few hours to find it when he decides he needs it.
For example, this summer he spent two weeks in England. He had already been out of the country once, so we did not need to get him a passport. For months I had told him he needed to find it so that we had no problems when he leaves for England, which would be a few days after school let out. I cannot tell you about the conversations we had about him not being able to find the passport. I told him I would look through my files to see if I filed it with the other important information while he was at school (this was the last week), needless to say, we were down to days before his flight. After I searched all of my files and did not find it, I went into his room and found the passport within 1 minute. He had it on a book shelf, right over his bed. I could not believe he had it right here and could not find it! Of course, when I told him this, he told me I had it the whole time and I was playing games with him. When he did come home, I filed the passport with all other important information. We will not have this problem again.
Corey in Enlgand
Back to school organization, first we put all his notebooks, binders and folders together with the class they went to, in order of the days schedule. Then we organized a file box for his classes as well. So that once his binder was full, he could just move things into the file box. In the back of the file box, we put together files for all the colleges he plans to apply at. What a list that is! Then in the very back is a file for Misc. Colleges. I am grateful just to get these letters off of the coffee table. (I do not remember all of these letters coming when my daughter was a Senior). Corey told my basically that I “rock” when we finished this. He could not believe that we could get him so organized and ready for this important year ahead of him.
One can see that Thomas’ post hit home for me today. To spend the time organizing everyone else and not myself, unacceptable! So, I have finally created my calender for Finding Our Ancestors! I have inserted all of the upcoming carnivals, with the information for that specific carnival. Also, put in all the daily themes. My goal is to try and take some time on the weekends and get everything done for the upcoming week. As a blogger, I know I do not spend enough time on my blog. I do it all by the seat of my pants and move on from there.
As a family researcher, one of my goals for the summer was to move forward in my research. I have failed at this because I did not organize myself to be successful. Hopefully, I will be able to spend the next week or so organizing my research as well. I have completed a few simple tasks over the summer, but I could have done so much more. If anyone has any great ways they organize their research, I would love some tips on that.