Tag Archives: resolution

My genealogy goals for 2011

2 Jan

There are lots of things I want to achieve in 2011, but time is a big issue at the moment, so I am not going to be making any bold resolutions this year because I am pretty certain that they are destined to fail.

I know that goals should be specific and measurable (and all the other letters that make up the acronym SMART) but I don’t think I have anything really specific that I feel that I am likely to even get close to achieving or that I could even stick to. I will just carry on researching and seeing which way my ancestors direct me, I am always on the look out for an interesting story or for exploring a new area.

So I am not going to make any resolutions this year, instead I am just going to say that I will try to do as much family history as possible and to the highest standard possible.


My Genealogy Goals for 2010 – How did I do?

30 Dec

About this time last year I wrote a few blog posts about what I wanted to achieve in 2010 and as we are almost at the end of 2010 (and it is a bit late to do any more about it now) I thought I ought to face the music and see if I actually achieved anything I set out to do.

The first post was 2010 to do list – sort my photos and postcards in which I described my wish to get all my photos and postcards organised and integrated into my genealogy software Family Historian.

Pass or fail? Fail – my old photos are slightly more organised on my hard drive now and I now have a process in place for recording and scanning my postcards (but only as new ones arrive) but none of the photos or postcards have been added to Family Historian.

Next up was 2010 to do list – identify my photos and my desire to put some names to the many unidentified photos in my collection and if not names then at least some dates and places.

Pass or fail? Fail – I spent a couple of months looking at one photo, which I don’t think I ever wrote about and didn’t come to any real conclusions, and that was about it. If anything I have probably added more unidentified photos to my collection, although I did manage to discover the location of one postcard this year with the help of Google Street View.

Then was 2010 to do list – spring clean my database which described several goals that I wished to achieve when it came to my database. This was largely about tidying things up, checking for errors and filling in some missing details.

Pass or fail? Undecided – I am actually still working on this at the moment, progress is slow but I am getting there.

After that came 2010 to do list – what to do with wills? in which I described the problems I have with recording all the information that can be found in a will and how I intended to overcome this.

Pass or fail? Fail – Most of the wills I have in my collection have not been fully mined for data, usually I pick out the information that interests me (names of children) and then move on to something else.

With a little irony the next post was 2010 to do list – create a proper to-do list which described my plans to create a ‘super’ to-do list, which would record everything I wanted to do with my family history.

Pass or fail? Pass – I am still using a simple text file as my to-do list and to be honest I am finding this is perfectly adequate for my needs and so simple to use and update.

Then things got specific with 2010 to do list – some actual research goals which listed several of the individuals that I wanted to pursue in 2010, this was quite a mixed bag of relatives and ancestors, all of whom seem to have had an interesting story to tell.

Pass or fail? Fail – Although I did do some work on most of these individuals I never really followed any of these stories through to their conclusion.

Finally came My New Year’s Resolution itself, to start researching my wife’s Italian ancestry. Somewhat predictably this was a major fail. I did buy a book on researching Italian family history and a kit for learning some basic Italian, but these have sat on my shelf largely untouched all year, no progress whatsoever.

In 2011 I think I will keep things a little simpler and more achievable. Most of these goals from last year are still ones I would like to achieve in 2011, but above all I need to be realistic and recognise that I don’t have the time or money (but mostly time) to do everything I want to.

My New Year’s Resolution

2 Jan

I really only have one resolution this year, aside from the ongoing promise to myself to eat less and exercise more, that is to start work on my wife’s family tree.

For many years I have been promising to work on her family tree, but have never really got started. The reason for this is that my wife is Italian, her family moved to England when she was still a child.

So when I start researching I will pretty much be straight back into Italian records, something about which I know virtually nothing. It doesn’t help that I don’t speak a word of Italian either.

A couple of years ago we joined the Anglo-Italian Family History Society, but we never really did anything about starting research. There are some quite useful resources and links on their website which I need to explore further.

So I have given myself four tasks to start with, before I actually start researching in Italian records:

  • Record everything about the family from their arrival in England.
  • Interview my mother-in-law, to try and get some details of the family back in Italy.
  • Try and learn some basic Italian (I never was very good at languages at school, but then I never had a good reason to learn then).
  • Try and understand the basic Italian record types, what information they contain and where they can be found.

I am not sure whether I shall be blogging about this, I probably will because I am now addicted to blogging and can’t help myself, but I may have to set up a separate blog, to try and keep things simple.

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