I will finish this series off with a sincere gratitude for my spouse, Seth. He’s the ultimate in being supportive of my genealogy obsession. He supports me, not only financially, but with helping out with the kids when I want to take off on a genealogy adventure. Sometimes, when he gets to come along on those adventures, he’ll be my microfilm fetcher, reader or scanner, or my tombstone spotter. He’s always accommodating when it comes to taking a side trip to visit a far flung cemetery or repository. He also helped build the aforementioned home office (and didn’t once demand a “man cave”), moved many books, shelves, desks, filing cabinets and office supplies to and fro. He also let me pick the bright colors we painted on the walls.
Overall, he is the best genealogy husband a girl could ask for! I love you honey!
It was only 10 years in the making. We moved into our house in 2003. It had an unfinished basement and we had a young family. My husband and his father got to work finishing the basement. On one side it has a creative studio space, TV/Family room, several closets and a bathroom. On the other … the new home office! It has two U-shaped desks that sit next to each other so my husband and I can work together. We also, finally, got 3 bookshelves for our books that have been in boxes since we moved in, 10 years ago. All of my Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, poetry, Shakespeare and other literature books and his sci-fi/fantasy collections finally see the light again.
All of my genealogy books and files have a home! My dog has a little nest and I have a heater to take the chill off of the basement environment. We have two big windows that do let in a lot of light for a basement, so it is not a dark and gloomy as some basements.
I have plenty of room to spread my projects out (I usually have several going at the same time) and my husband has his own section that can be as messy as he likes and it’s not in our living room any longer!
So thank you hubby and father-in-law for all of the work over the years!
I am continually grateful for the education opportunities that are available to me on the state level, national level and online. I am also thankful for the teachers, educators, lecturers and mentors who give their time to bring those opportunities to me (and everyone else who benefits, too). I know I wouldn’t be where I am today in the field if it hadn’t been for some really excellent examples who have stood at a podium and unleashed their wisdom upon a group of eager students or those who take time to talk to me (and others) personally about genealogy-related topics.
Those who have “gone before” taking the time to teach those of us coming next is one of the best parts of the genealogical community. A big thank you to all of those who have gone before and are “up there” at the podium (or writing books and articles, or teaching webinars, or leading small study groups). You’ve been a great influence on me!
I don’t know about you, but I am in love with coffee. I am so grateful for coffee and how it impacts my genealogical research. I come from a long line of coffee drinkers so I am sure it runs in the gene pool! I am especially grateful for peppermint mochas. Plain coffee (with cream and sugar) is an excellent treat for next to the computer in the chilly Colorado winters. Also because it keeps me awake at night when I get on a research roll or get me going in the morning after a long night of working. Coffee is a fun way to meet up with friends and fellow genealogists! Coffee is a treat beyond the cup, it brings people together and helps create memories!
In my last post I expressed by gratitude for the Internet, however, I am also thankful for technology in a more broad sense. In ten seconds, I can scan an aging photograph, have a copy on my computer and in another 10 seconds, I can send it to a distant cousin who may have never seen the photo. I am grateful for technologies like my scanner, computer, large monitor, smartphone with camera, iPad (with Kindle app), as well as software such as Reunion, Evernote, Google, WordPress, Photoshop, iChat, Skype, and so on.
The speed with which I can research, collect and manipulate data and share with others is astounding. Stop and look around your office, look at the apps on your smartphone, look at the Applications folder on your computer and just try to fathom how cool it all is, how utterly life-changing technology has been over the last 20 years!
I am super-grateful for my technology! How about you?
I don’t know how we ever got along before the Internet. (Well, I do, but it was a slow process!) I am so grateful at the speed with which I can communicate with my family, friends, colleagues and clients. I am grateful that I can attend a Webinar and brush up on a topic without having to drive a long distance or paying a large fee. I am grateful that I can research late into the night in my bunny slippers and jim-jams. I am especially grateful for the wonderful “cousins” and friends I’ve made almost exclusively because of the Internet. I mean I know that Josh Taylor’s dog is a dachshund named Twix and that Dear Myrtle has adorable grand kids, that Footnote Maven writes incredibly entertaining stories about her cat (Monkey Kitty) and dog (Bullet). I have since been able to connect with many of my Internet friends and various conferences and institutes. I am also grateful that the Internet allows me to close the distance between me and my ancestors, not only through research but with sharing and collaborating with other researchers.
In short, the Internet has closed the time and space gap between me and the rest of the world, and I am grateful!
November being the month of Thanksgiving, I thought I would share some of my genealogy-related gratitude, things I’m thankful for in terms of my genealogical life. We all have things we are grateful for in all facets of our lives and it’s a good idea to recount those once in a while. I know I tend to get bogged down by the what’s-going-wrong that I forget what-went-right. Every once in a while it is a good idea to take an inventory.
Gratitude is the practice of being grateful, of making yourself (and others) aware of just how good you have it. Research has shown (and Buddhists have known for centuries) that practicing gratitude daily is one surefire way to eliminate the blahs, to find happiness. By focusing on what we have (genealogically speaking – photographs, diaries, bibles, original records of any kind) instead of what we don’t have (birth dates, marriage records, identities of the next generation), we can be happy with what we’ve accomplished.
I know that I have become frustrated with my research results from time to time and have sunken into a pit of “I’m a terrible researcher. Maybe I should go flip burgers.” We all have research that does not give us the answers we want. We all have brick walls, burned courthouses, missing records, relatives with tight lips and grips who don’t want to share and unsatisfied clients.
Every once in a while I have to stop myself and look back at what I have done, what I have found, where I have been to appreciate what I have going forward. Sometimes a trip down “memory lane” is all that’s needed to refresh, revitalize our genealogical attitude! So this month, get ready to see some of my gratitudes, maybe they are similar to some of your own!