Week 1 – 2-8 January 2015

This is the outline for the first week of the Genealogy Do-Over challenge.  Thomas published the document this morning and I will continue to update this post as I understand the assignments. I think of these posts as my Do-Over Process notebook.

Setting Previous Research Aside

All The Stuff on the PC: I created a new Genealogy Do-Over  folder. Right now the only thing in there are the notes for this blog.

Genealogy Do-Over1 300pxThe source materials that started my genealogy research are my Grandfather’s papers and Mother’s Family Tree Book. Since then I have acquired digital images of the church records for two villages in Romania. Those records are not readily available through other sources. Those are safe and warm in my cabinet, along with the spiral notebooks from the past few years where I have recorded my research with varying degrees of discipline.

The images from FamilySearch films and  emails from relatives  are saved to my PC, along with tons of I-Dont-Know-What in the OLD Genealogy folder.  I can pretend it’s not there until I figure out a good filing and naming strategy for photos and documents. Then  I’ll be digging out and resorting files  from all over my PC.

The BIG thing that I am setting aside is my current Legacy v7 database. Just going to leave it alone and start my family tree all over in Legacy 8.0.  I’m psyched about that.

Preparing to Research – I like Thomas’ list of things required to do research. For me, it’s a spiral notebook, a Sharpie pen, and a spreadsheet. Those are the pieces that have worked well. It’s the next step that needs more discipline.

Establishing Base Practices and Guidelines

Process: I have been reading the comments on the Do-Over FFB page and following some of the blogs. And thinking a lot about how I work, what works and what doesn’t. Here’s my current thinking on a new process.

The things I need when I sit down to genealogy research:

  1. My research plan – which I am going to try putting in WorkFlowy so it’s always available.
  2. Notebook and sharpie pen.
  3. Pinterest to save the images I find on FamilySearch, my usual online source, or wherever I am lucky enough to find things.
  4. Excel spreadsheet to record my findings. Lately I have been working on research that will be the basis for my one-name study, going through the entire microfilm for the ancestral village in Slovakia. I have different sheets for  the BMD records.
  5. The last big piece – a research log. Still working on a good plan for this. I have tried various formats and the one that I am most likely to stick with is my trusty spiral notebook. The downside of it is that it isn’t indexed or readily searchable.
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