Quick Tips


Summer is almost here, School is almost out, and life gets busy~

But don’t forget to document little times,as well as the big times:

Here is my Family Genealogy page on Pinterest:


Great ideas by many people!


Calling all Clarkes


Are you a descendant of Benjamin Clarke / Clark who came to America about 1682/83 ?

Here is a great place to start a journey:Pinterest website

NJ06May2013 (78)

What photos can you add? Where has your journey taken you?

More to help you find who or what you are looking for


More Help for your Search


Genealogy Raodshow on PBS, the webpage has a lot of helpful links for you.

Just one more resource to help you find your own family discoveries.

One Mistake After Another


One Mistake After Another

mistake 1 – very little preparation before the week

mistake 2 – pack the morning of the flight, leaving slippers at home

mistake 3 – pack chargers in a separate bag from the electronics

mistake 4- change seats on plane, now you have an aisle seat and can’t see out the window or get to visit with your spouse

mistake 5 – don’t make hard copies [written down on paper] of phone numbers or addresses or itinerary

mistake 6 – don’t set time and meet up place with spouse – rely on cell phones to be working

mistake 7 – don’t stay put at cousins, so if dying phone battery dies, you at least have a meeting place

mistake 8 – don’t have anyone’s phone numbers memorized

mistake 9 – drive in the general direction of where you think you should go, but can’t see out because the fog has set in and the night is getting dark early because of the fog

mistake 10 – don’t take photos of cousins while together

mistake 11 – again, later in the day, don’t take photos of other cousin while together

mistake 12 – don’t bring medicine for dry air conditions while sleeping

One Joy After Another

Joy 1 – have a really great time with grandchildren over the weekend for 3 Kings Day early

Joy 2 – know that the homestead will be cared for by reliable neighbor while visiting family

Joy 3 – instead of spouse leaving on business trip, you get to go and get to visit relatives while there

Joy 4 – get to ride on a twin prop airplane, fly through the clouds and have a beautiful view over the clouds

Joy 5 – good weather – no rain or snowing or ice on takeoff or arrival

Joy 6 – change seats and sit next to a wonderful young man making it a very enjoyable flight

Joy 7 – separate rental cars so one has the freedom to visit relatives and places during the week

Joy 8 – being able to drive a pretty blue vehicle to visit family and be in a place I love and enjoy

Joy 9 – finding and visiting relatives and spending time together in person

Joy 10 – driving back to the airport area and being able to use a phone book with a map to locate where I was and which direction to go from there

Joy 11 – driving to a gas station to get a map and use a phone and the 20 year old at the counter being so helpful and courteous and letting me use his own personal cell phone to call long distance to the only number I have written down. Then when no answer there, letting me make a long distance phone call again to the only number I could remember.

Joy 12 – our daughter answering her phone with an unknown number calling her

Joy 13 – our daughter being able to call her dad to tell him where I am

Joy 14 – the young 20 year old letting me call my daughter again to know she got in contact with her dad

Joy 15 – my spouse knowing where I was

Joy 16 – realizing I had packed all that I needed

Joy 17 – comfortable, warm, clean place to stay

Joy 18 – meeting another cousin and spending time together

Joy 19 – discovering a new historical site to visit

Joy 20 – kindness of strangers

Joy 21 – being able to return kindness to other strangers

Joy 22 – electricity, for warmth and light and refrigeration and plug-ins for all those electronic devices.

Joy 23 – honey and lemon tea to soothe a dry throat and nose [steam from the tea as you sip/drink it]

Joy 24 – having dinner with my spouse and breakfast and getting to spend the work week together

Joy 25 – taking a short evening stroll with my spouse

Joy 26 – Being Thankful 1- that I can trust in God so no matter what happens He will take care of me 2- for a really great day and all that I have to look forward to.

Forms of water and the changes is makes on all it encounters

I really like this blog #TheDailyPost to start the New Year with.Take the forms of water and apply that same thought process to your family, to your own life, to the lives of your ancestors. How are they the same, how are they different. Who followed the same paths? What are the deep rivers in your family, what are the breaks? Ice gets in the cracks of rocks and breaks them apart, how has that changed your family tree?

I once heard that water is the one entity that can change anything, What are your thoughts?

Ice, Water, Steam

For this week’s writing challenge, take on the theme of H2O. What does it mean to be the same thing, in different forms?

Know thyself. A common axiom, it’s a phrase that can carry many meanings, ranging from know who you are to know your place in the universe. Each and every one of us can attest to the journey of getting to know the person you are deep down inside, when no one is looking. The person who sings to the radio at the top of her lungs, to the person who travels the world to both find and forget. We’re complex creatures.

Who you are may change or take on different forms at varying times. Just like water is still water, whether it’s solid, liquid, or gaseous, you are still yourself, whether you’re in the middle of a career change or identity shift. Hey, even dying your hair pink is just a different variation of you.

Your multifaceted self

For this week’s writing challenge, take on the theme of H2O. What does it mean to be the same thing, in different forms? As a child, you may have been the class clown, but also an expert at math. As an adult, you excel at your work in the social sciences, but you’re still an artist, a sports fanatic, a film connoisseur, and so much more.

Especially as we come into the new year, examining who you’ve been over the past year, what’s worked and what hasn’t helps build the foundation for what’s to come. So in this week’s theme, let’s get started with:

  • Play on the rule of threes. Are the past, present, and future versions of ourselves similar to the different forms of water? Tell us about what’s stayed the same as you’ve changed.
  • Tell us about one of the forms of yourself, whether they be concurrent, a previous version of yourself, or one that is yet to be.
  • If the past, present, and future are the trifecta of time, explore the possibilities. Is time linear, does it overlap, or does it repeat in an endless loop?
  • The New Year is a time for self-reflection and improvement. Write about the future self you’re going to develop over the next year, or years.

Respond in a New Post

Eat Pie First


   cake and pastry display

I was thinking about one time when our kids were young, we went on a cross country trip. There was this one particularly long stretch of road on a very sunny day. It was a two lane road and in the distance we could see the freeway and what looked like a little town. As we got closer we saw a gas station and restaurant, pretty big place and most welcoming. We went inside ordered water and pie and then went to the restroom to wash up and refresh after the long drive. piece of chocolate cake with cherry and strawberryWe went back to our seat and ate our pie and then ordered our meal. All the while there was this lady across from us in another booth that kept looking over at us. When the meal was nearly done, one of the kids had to use the restroom again. We headed there and this woman also headed that way. When we washed our hands the woman kept acting like she wanted to say something and finally she did. I thought, oh boy, here it comes, she is going to talk about what misbehaved kids we have and so on, but No. Surprisingly she said, My mother would never give us desert first, but you did and your kids ate it and then they ate all their dinner. I am so impressed and what well behaved kids they are too.

Well, that isn’t what I was expecting at all!

wineglass and napkin in restaurantAnother time when we went to a restaurant on a different family trip, there was hardly anyone in the restaurant, and we asked for a separate table for the kids. The wait staff looked horrified and said we can’t do that, and we said, it is okay they are well behaved and we do it whenever we go out to eat. They said they had to ask the manager and the manager told them that they would do it, but if the kids caused problems or misbehaved, we would have to all sit at one table. hmm, we thought, what kind of kids do they usually get here?.

The kids sat at their own table, next to ours of course, and when it came time to order their food, the waiter kept asking us if it was okay they ordered this item or that item and my husband finally said to let them order what they want, it is okay, they know that if they order it and don’t eat it, they have to pay for it and next time we order for them. He said okay. They got their food, wait staff kept looking around the corners and watching them. We weren’t concerned, we knew our kids and their behavior. When we were all done, a few of the wait staff came over and complimented us on the kids and how surprised they were that the kids did so well at their own table. The next vacation we took and stopped by this same restaurant, we weren’t even questioned when asking for two tables.

vanilla_coffeeBut several times we have been complimented on how well our kids behaved in the restaurants.

My husband and I always try to repay the kindness and compliment parents when their kids have behaved well in restaurants or other such busy public places.

Why am I telling this here, on a genealogy blog? It is important to share stories with your family, even if it is to remind the kids, grandkids, or nieces and nephews about their childhood. Then ask them what they remember about that time. It also gives me a chance to write it down- for them- for later.

(Thank you to J.R.Watkins at https://www.jrwatkins.com/ for the use of the photos)

2 Blogs in One


2 Blogs in One



Simple Steps: How to organize your family information on your computer


Hand Me Downs: Those things that were handed down from your ancestors to you and now you are handing them down to your descendants


Simple Steps:

I am going to start with an example:

First Folder_Genealogy

                Second Folder_Lastname (you could put 4 if you are researching 4 names, such as both of your grandparents)

                                Third Folder_(Where the information was found, but don’t get too many)


                                                Worldwide Web



                                                Contact person that helps a lot

                                                genealogy website you use often

Naming the file_Datefirst, then the title of the information:

                keep it simple


                                2014January31_LastnameFirstname(for a photo)

(Another suggestion for photos is to also put it in MSWord, put the information about the photo below the photo -who or what the photo is about, when it was taken, where it was taken, the circumstances that were going on while the photo was being taken. If it is a studio photo, maybe it was a day the whole family got together just to get photos taken)

That really should be all you need. Perhaps you can come up with



Hand Me Downs

                I was at my daughters family home and noticed how wonderful it was to see items that belonged to my grandparents and my parents and me that I had handed down to her. It was a really an amazing feeling I had, totally unexpected.

                One thing that is understandable, but is a little frustrating, is all that family information from the ‘family steamer trunk’, that got divided amongst the children and now is handed down and separated to their children and so on. I have seen how things were lost or tossed or misplaced, many that are never to be seen again, after they were divided up.

                If the time has not happened for you to be dividing such items up that is good. Perhaps you can designate one family member that will keep all the info together (everyone can gets copies of it). There is usually a reason why certain envelopes and photos and documents are kept together in one rubber band and another is kept in a small box and another in an unmarked envelope. This is important to find out why they are together, perhaps it has to do with a certain place, or event, or family.

                If your elders are still around, that is wonderful! Perhaps you could take a couple of days and ask them if it would be okay to go over some of the photos and letters and documents together. So that there won’t be any confusion about them later. (This may take a few days or a couple of months or so).

                Big manila envelopes work well for many items. The information on the outside of the envelopes should include the year(s) the info is about, what family it is for, and if it is all from the same place, where it is from. Go through a few items at a time. Don’t get overwhelmed keep it simple and enjoyable as possible.

                Write on the back of photos, on the sides of the frames if they are paper, who is in the photo and what family they belong to. Writing Jane Doe’s family may not be enough, especially if there are 5 generations of Jane Doe Families! Also the year the photo was taken will help a lot in keeping which generation it belongs too.

                This same process will work for letters. If they don’t have envelopes, put them in one that is big enough to not bend or tear the paper. Then write on the envelope what year, who wrote it and to whom it was written and a brief 2 or 3 word description of what it is about, Civil war, lawyer, estate, family, you get the idea.

                What about material items? If you can write the same type of information on a paper and put it in an envelope and put it in the item, that is good. If it is too small, and you want to display the item, perhaps those heavy paper tags with strings on them will work. Write the information on the tag, then attach the string part to the item. Perhaps you will have to put a piece of tape on the item with the information on the tape. How about taking a photo of the item, putting the photo on a blank piece of paper and writing the information next to it. You could use a spiral notebook for this, or a binder, or a folder. You may have to get creative here.

We have covered much information today. Remember to Breath, relax and enjoy your family – present and past.