I am not a fan of “fresh starts” to be honest. As it always sounds like everything else I did before wasn’t good enough or has to be “re-done”.
So I am not taking a fresh start – but a start nevertheless.
I thought about what this word means to me. It could be the person who got me into genealogy – who started it all. Or I could start over in my research. Or start with a new branch of my family tree. Or else.
I will take a much smaller step, as I decided to start researching again. This might confuse some of you and you might ask “but what else have you done?”.
2017 was a very busy year for me. I was travelling a lot, attending events, getting on stage as a speaker, moderator or panelist. Not only in genealogy. And although I did a lot of genealogical work and research for my presentations, I didn’t really work a lot on my own family tree starting Q3/2017.
And this is what I would like to change. But instead of setting a big goal I will do baby-steps. I will “touch the treadmill” as my good friend John Stepper puts it in is book “Working Out Loud”.
I decided to join another challenge – 30×30 by Janine Adams. It means spending at least 30 minutes for 30 days with your genealogy.
And within that challenge I set myself two goals.
Sources Sources Sources
I admit it. I don’t always do what I preach. If you ever attended one of my presentations, you will hear me talking about sources a lot. How important they are, how well we have to maintain them. But I have to admit: I started to getting lazy with my sources. Don’t get me wrong, all of the facts in my tree are sourced but not really in a way that a third person would know WHERE to find the data. Not a good idea.
So, goal number one? Work through my sources, remove duplicates and include detailed data a third person could work with.
In 2017 my aunt promised to hand over a family file binder with tons of documents. Unfortunately, her daughter (who is not interested in family history at all) objected with the argument “what happens to it when Barbara will be dead?” as I don’t have children. And did I mention that I am 44 years old? I am not really planning with my death yet. But she has a son and her view is that there would be at least one more generation which could show interest in our family history – how discriminating!
But well, coming back to my second point: meta data. I took the file binder and had most of it professionally scanned. Which means I have roughly 200 pictures, images and documents in a virtual archive. Without meta data or description. That has to change!
So, goal number two? Work through the Schmidt file binder scans and provide meta data and descriptions.
That is my start. What is yours?