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Or in other words, what have I gotten myself into? National Blog Posting Month is a challenge that I’m hoping I have enough words to fill, because there are other challenges that I haven’t done so well at 🙂

During November, I pledge to write a post each day to at least one of my three blogs. Hopefully, I can find enough inspiration to post to more than one, but realistically, I’ll only promise to post to at least one each day. Since AncesTrees is my primary blog, this is where I’ll be writing most often, which means that I’ll be trying hard to find something interesting to say about my ancestors, or genealogy, or family trees, or cemeteries or any of the dozens of tags I’ve attached to this blog. The hardest part, is of course to keep it interesting.

And I pledge to read posts from at least one other blog each day. I’m going to really enjoy this part of the challenge because there are so many fascinating people blogging about everything imaginable. In addition to learning something new each day, I’ll be seeing new styles of writing and ways of thinking! Talk about broadening my horizons, and all without leaving the comfort of my desk chair.

So thanks for hanging with me during the month of November, and if you are participating in NaBloPoMo as well, let me know and I’ll be sure to check out your blog as well.

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I’ve heard that genealogists really do see dead people and not just on Halloween 🙂

Do you search for ancestors every day of the year? You may want to check out Geneabloggers to enter the MyHeritage Halloween Contest – and qualify for great prizes – before 12 noon CDT today!!!

FGS Logo

The Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference logo is my inspiration for this prompt blog post. To me, it absolutely epitomizes the event theme, Connect.Explore.Refresh.

Connect – The trunk and intertwining branches of the family tree logo, in the form of stylized people, illustrate the way our lives, and those of our ancestors, are connected. They give new meaning to the term “the family of man.”

Explore – Representing the spirit of exploration and discovery, the leaves signify the countless hours of research, lovingly undertaken to expand our knowledge of the men, women and children who populate our family histories.

Refresh – And because everyone knows that a tree cannot grow and thrive without nourishment, the unseen element of this illustration are the roots which anchor it and provide refreshment. Our roots are our ancestors, whose lives have given us inspiration and courage, awakening in us a sense of adventure as we climb our family trees … and reach out to others, as the figures in the logo are doing, to join us on the journey.

Please make plans now to join your fellow adventurers Feb. 11-14 for the FGS and Roots Tech combined conference in Salt Lake City. Check out the schedule, the speakers and array of tracks to choose from. Whether you are just beginning to explore your roots or are looking down from the top of your family tree, this event just might be the genealogical high point of 2015 for you.

Are you going to the FGS and Roots Tech event? I’d love to know which surnames you’ll be representing and researching!

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Four months from today, on Feb. 11, 2015, the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) and Roots Tech will join together for a combined conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. This fantastic event looks like a wonderful opportunity for genealogists to learn, network and research with people who are there for similar reasons.

I’m proud to be an FGS Ambassador, getting the word out to those who follow my blog and commenting on the monthly prompts that highlight features of the conference. I look forward to learning so much from other genealogists as well.

For more information, here’s a link to Linda McCauley’s post in the FGS Voice Blog.

If you are a member of a genealogical society, please share your experiences with us. And if you’ve ever attended a genealogical conference, I’d love to hear about that, too.

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I’ve got to say I’m inspired by the camaraderie in the genealogical community. Most of those I’ve reached out to with questions about shared ancestors have responded. And they have been helpful, whether or not there is an actual family connection.

In fact, I am so impressed that I’ve decided to reach out to at least one of my GenFriends each day. If nothing else, just to keep in touch. I know we may never meet in person, but that doesn’t matter. These people are special to me.

They are the comforting souls at the other end of my message or email or phone call who understand a brick wall or an amazing discovery or double first cousins or disappearing ancestors. They just “get it.”

And I appreciate that … especially the fact that they take the time to respond, however brief. Some even go way beyond that, sending me CDs of information that I would never have guessed existed. And there are those in Find A Grave who have driven miles to document and photograph graves of my ancestors living far away from me.

For my part, I am trying to be just as good a GenFriend to other genealogists as they are to me. So if you have research questions about any of the branches on our family tree (see Word Cloud above) bring them on. I’ll try to help!

Just wondering, how do you reach out to your GenFriends?

Recently returned from our family reunion. It was the best organized one ever, with an auction full of bargains for all, games for young and old, a friendly Family Feud competition, delicious Chuck Wagon breakfast and yummy pot-luck lunch/dinner.

But the best part of all was reconnecting, sharing what’s been going on since we saw each other last year. We talked about old times, good and not so good, and looked forward to better times to come.

We talked about the our ancestors, those who have passed on, our family tree, how our branches intertwined and how love is the tie that binds us all together. The treasured photo albums were brought out and memories flowed like tears.

The old timers talked about their aches and pains, but how, actually, they are doing pretty well. The little ones ran and played and laughed and glowed like little fireflies in the dusk.

We took pictures to treasure until next year. I can hardly wait ’til then 🙂

Family Reunion WP

What a wonderful way to get past square one on my genealogy “to do” list! Amy Johnson Crow has issued a challenge: “The challenge: have one blog post each week devoted to a specific ancestor. It could be a story, a biography, a photograph, an outline of a research problem — anything that focuses on one ancestor.”

Time and energy ran out last year as I had so much requiring my attention and still only 24 hours in a day. And even though I didn’t want to give up something that had helped to jump-start my love for writing again, my little blog went by the wayside.

Ironically, as I was sorting out my New Year’s Resolutions recently, I had decided to dust it off and start having fun with genealogy once again. And so, it is with that optimistic outlook in mind, that I pledge to take better care of my family tree in 2014.

Do you have genealogy resolutions you’d like to share? Perhaps you’d like to take the 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks Challenge as well?

This summer has flown by and my good intentions to concentrate on blogging regularly are “Gone with the Wind.” Luckily, we were able to get to the family reunion in July. On the way to that, we went to Corsicana, where we made some amazing discoveries including the resting place of my husband’s second great grandfather, Louis Munson. That was quite a thrill, even though his grave had been relocated and no gravestone could be found.

We’re already planning the 2014 Munson Family Reunion, our 30th year. It should be very special, with lots of great ideas and volunteers.

Closer to home, we also attended the Ancestry Day in Texas last weekend and enjoyed seeing Crista Cowan and others from Ancestry.com. More than a thousand came for genealogy tips and tricks and to network with others who were “climbing their family trees.”

My latest efforts – working on organizing my genealogy research with a form that helps you list all the documentation you have on each ancestor. Really helpful for getting a handle on my paperwork.

Please share – what is your secret to staying organized?

Over this past weekend, we got together with members of my mother’s family for a “Beauchamp Family Lunch.” At this point, this is the closest we’ll come to a reunion, because of distance and health issues of some members. But we had such a good time! Sharing a meal, trading stories, looking at old photos, taking new ones for our tree.

And most importantly, the best result of reconnecting is renewing kinship. Time and life itself puts distance between siblings, cousins, even whole branches of the same family. It was so good to see each other, face to face, to give hugs and kisses, to make new memories to carry us on to the next time we can get together and renew our family ties.

I’d love to know: Other than through family reunions, how does your family “keep in touch?”

Memorial Day is set aside to remember those whose service to our country has given and preserved our American freedoms.

As I look at my family tree, I’m grateful for the sacrifices made by my ancestors from many lands who embraced the flag and lifestyle of their adopted country, pledging their allegiance in loyalty, and the last true measure of devotion, if necessary.

I’d like to know: Do you have a special way of showing your relatives’ military service in your family tree?