I’m hoping people will join me in Julie Goucher’s “The Book of Me” prompts. Julie Goucher of the Anglers Rest blog will be posting monthly prompts, during 2018, encouraging our creative thought process. Join some or all her prompts, privately or on social media. Your choice. #BookofMe2018
Who or what inspires me?
My off the head response was, the love and support of my family. That is true, but not the whole story.
I think who or what inspires you is more about what you are doing at the time.
In childhood, during the 1960’s, I wanted to be like Olympic Ice skaters Carol Heiss and Peggy Fleming. That was until a severe injury caused during practice on the frozen marshes of Saugus, Massachusetts ended that dream. I turned my attentions baseball and Rico Petrocelli. It didn’t matter to me that I was a girl. I never saw myself as a gender, but a person. I paid for many broken windows in my Saugus neighborhood, chasing that dream. By the time I entered high school in Pembroke, New Hampshire, I came up against my first true sense that being a girl mattered (at least in the schools mind.) I was told no girls allowed in baseball or golf. Softball was for girls, but not for me, I was too small and fragile. I may have looked fragile at 4 feet 9 inches and if I was lucky 90 pounds, trust me I wasn’t. I spent my summers working on my uncle and aunt’s farm and junk yard. My interested were being pulled in two directions, to be like Florence Nightingale or teach English like my favorite English teacher, Frank Jewett. Mr. Jewett knew how to capture your attention by using music to teach Iambic Pentameter. Music to William Shakespeare, who knew.
Throughout this whole time my love of family stories and history never left me. I loved the time with my Great Aunt Carrie [Lulu Carrie Stearns Perkins,] listening to her stories about her rural life in Sutton; about who we were related to, like Queen Victoria. [I haven’t found that lineage, yet.] I was able to trace the Stearns lineage to the Winthrop Fleet 1630 arrival.
Aunt Carrie would say, “We have deep roots in this county, girl. You are from founding families of this town. Be proud of where you came from. We are the salt of the earth. Farmers from way back. That may not mean much to some, that doesn’t matter, girl. We lived, had a family and made do with what we have. If you do nothing else but love and have a family, you have achieved something. You keep the family going.” I was able to trace the Nelson lineage to the early years of Perrystown, now known as Sutton, New Hampshire, and even back to my ancestor, Thomas Nelson’s, arrival in the colonies about 1640 to Rowley, Massachusetts.
That love of family and family history continues to this day. Aunt Carrie, my parents, Nelson Stearns and Shirley Pease Stearns, and my Aunt Eleanor Stearns Duncan, are no longer living to assist me through our history. Their stories, love and support still support me with their strong sense of FAMILY that that gave me.
All keep me inspired to continue the journey of my family story.
Now, back to my original thought. My true inspirations is the love and support of my family. I would not still be here today without my husband, Michael D. Butka; daughter, Tyna M. Butka; son Michael J. Butka and the my siblings; Vickie M. Stearns Levesque Junkins, Marjorie R. Stearns Stevenson, Eleanor A. Stearns, Susan R. Stearns Aeschliman, Nelson N. Stearns and their families. their love, support, strength and constant reminder that I AM LOVED. It is that love and inspiration that carries me through each day of life’s challenges.
Sources for this are my personal thoughts. Links to genealogy and DNA links are connected to those named.
I’m hoping people will join me in Julie Goucher’s “The Book of Me” prompts. Julie Goucher of the Anglers Rest blog will be posting monthly prompts, during 2018, encouraging our creative thought process. Join some or all her prompts, privately or on social media. Your choice.
What do I enjoy? Immediately family, friends, Genealogy, reading and Bingo came to mind. That is fine, but very generic. I decided to write about what I enjoyed in the decades of my life. Our interest change. Writing about what interest me today does not give you a glimpse of how I became me. Our interests develop who we are, as much as family, friends, co-workers, our environment, our world does.
When we are children our interest evolve around our family, friends, school and play. We really don’t concern ourselves with world events, unless it directly affects us. My Dad served in the Korean Conflict. He was stationed in Osan, South Korea. My parents were married before he joined the Army. I was born in the mid 1950’s. I remember none of this.
I remember playing with cousins, by the lake at my Uncle Art’s house. Visiting cousins in the White Mountains of New Hampshire at my Uncle Fred’s. Visiting my Aunt’s Carrie and Aunt Eleanor. Going fishing with my Dad, boating, swimming, picnicking and feeling the love of my family.
WOW, the 1960’s! This is the decade that really started me becoming who I am today. The family trips to aunts, cousins, weekend picnicking, boating, fishing, were definitely a part of my 1960’s. That family love and time spent together felt like a cocoon of safety. Nothing can hurt us. We moved around many times through the years, for my father’s job. He was a mechanic by trade. He was a barter of his services at times. Money was tight, but we never felt deprived.
My interest at this time was, fishing, boating, and working alongside my father planting potatoes at my Aunt Carrie’s in Sutton, New Hampshire. I would work in the junk yard during the summer, helping my father get parts for his service station. During the school year I would work at his service station, pumping gas, changing tires, oil and learning how cars worked. Many summers I camped at my Aunts house, helping out, and playing cards, Canasta or Whisk, into the night. I would play checkers with my Uncles Mark and Wilson or with my cousins Ernest and Clint. Uncle Mark’s second cousin was the world known checker player and writer, Lyman Marshal Stearns. So checkers was a game we were taught very young. It was while we were playing cards and checkers that my PASSION, for family stories and family history began. I loved listening to the stories. I enjoyed learning about my family and where we came from. I’m not sure I believed all those stories. That may be why in later years, I made it my job to disprove them, hoping to prove them.
Many moves, many changing of friends, many new interest were developed. I was a tomboy. You probably already figured that out with my working alongside my father. I loved baseball, fishing, cars (I even helped build a dune buggy and raced it at the track,) and I learned how to use and care for guns. I’m not a fan of guns. I’m glad I know how if I ever needed to use it to live by, but I much rather capture the animals with a camera.
Cross Country skiing, ice skating and sledding were my winter time entertainment. Skating on the marshes of Saugus, Massachusetts at my Aunt Eleanor’s. Going to the local skating rink in Wakefield, Massachusetts; cross country skiing in Sutton, New Hampshire; sledding off the new construction of Route 1, Lynn Massachusetts, are memories I remember with thoughts like…
What was I thinking, sledding into midair that high up, skiing alone in the woods when they are searching for dead bodies in the junk yard, or did I really just skate on the marsh backwards and fall? (Stitches were needed for that last one in a place you don’t want to know about.) I mention these tidbits because they changed my interest to other areas. 4-H became my new interest. I participated in the local agriculture fairs. I entered baked goods, canning, jams and jellies, quilting and photography. My first Blue Ribbon was for Blueberry Muffins at the Topsfield State Fair in Topsfield Massachusetts. During the summers I traveled with my father to the state fairs, serving soft served ice cream. Dad had one of those trucks you would wait to hear that jingle in your neighborhood. [This was when we moved in with my Aunt Eleanor, my cousins Lilly and Jean, became influences of my new interest. (Our home in Maine burned. We lost everything.)]
Music was a large part of my 1960’s. At my Aunt Carrie’s the harmonica, spoons and washboard were the instruments of choice. At my Uncle Fred’s and our home the guitar was the musical instrument. You can tell that country music was a strong influence in our family. I loved going to the local ranches to listen to my mother and her friend, Florence Martin, sing and Yodel. Circle 9 Ranch in Epson, New Hampshire was visited frequently.
When we met Gene Maltais, in 1969, our music became a little more Rock-A-Billy. More about that in the next decade.
Television turn from black and white to color. I watched Lawrence Welk, Art Linkletter, Uncle Bob, Captain Kangaroo, Romper Room, Superman, The Green Hornet and Batman. Sundays included church, Davie and Goliath.
I end the decade with thoughts of getting my driver’s license, working for someone other than my father, caring for my family, entering- yet another school and changes happened in the world. The word “fear” truly entered my conscious. I lost loved ones, the world lost JFK, blackouts, and modern times are fast approaching. I’m starting to be more involved in the world and its happenings. The end of playing is becoming a time of working.
The decade of adult changes. Graduation from high school, college, marriage and the birth of my first child. This short sentence gives you a glimpse of how my entertainment change in the 1970’s decade. I go from a school girl to a mother.
The seventies start with independent driving. My friends and I would take drives in the surrounding area. I usually had one or more of my siblings with me. I’m a caregiver for them when my mother worked alongside my father at the service station in Pembroke New Hampshire. The seventies is the first time we lived in the same place for longer than 2 years. The luxury of having friends to do things with was a treat. In the past my family were my traveling companions and “playmates.”
They still are. My family will always be my core of entertainment, love and support. The family members changed through the years; death and births caused those changes. The sense of family never left my soul.
4-H is replaced with Rainbow Girls, Library Club and Dramatic Arts. Hiking, is added to swimming, boating and fishing. Family Sunday Drives “to find a dirt road,” (aka, visiting the aunts,) continues. I love those drives with my family, watching the clouds for animal, faces, and shapes. Playing the Alphabet license plate games with my younger siblings, playing canasta with my aunts, stopping for ice cream in New London (for us kids) and for fired clams in Boscowen, New Hampshire (for Mom) were a must do.
Music changing more to Ricky Nelson, Everly Brothers, the Beatles (Lilly’s influence,) and of course the old staples with Mom, Flo and Gene. Johnny Cash, yodeling, Gene Maltais and Jerry Lee Lewis. Once I met and married my husband my music was broaden to include, Rock and Roll, a little disco and heavy metal. I’m still not a fan of the heavy metal. Give me the late fifties, the sixties and early seventies classic and I’m happy.
I didn’t watch much television in the seventies. When I did it was usually history, movie, and some sitcoms like Doggie Howser, M.D., Ben Casey, ER, or Marcus Welby. Do you notice a theme here? I was never one to race home for a certain time to watch television. My time in school, work, church and societies I joined kept me very busy. I was learning the joy of working and earning money. Later seventies my time was spent being a wife and mother. I will admit that when Luke & Laura were on General Hospital, I did watch. General Hospital was a show I watched with my mother.
The Luke and Laura fad happened around the same time as I was put on bedrest with my first child. I had miscarried once already, I wasn’t taking a chance and not follow the doctor’s orders. My husband even had his hair done in an afro.
Movies became a bigger part of life after I met my husband. He worked at a movie theater. My younger years of movie going was with the family to the drive in movies. My mother loved Elvis Presley. His movie was shown second because of his hip movements were too suggestive. I always slept through the first movie (kid’s movie) and woke up just in time for the second. Who know I was such a rebel?
I leave the 1970’s as a graduate from nursing school, married, starting life in a new home, yes moving again, my husband, Michael; my daughter, Tyna and second child on the way, (my son, Michael.)
My entertainment in the eighties was family gatherings, movies, music, some television, reading, board games and children’s activities. During this time I played the wife and mother role; doing more things that my family loved to do. I loved being part of that interaction. We moved again in the mid-eighties. We moved back to my home state of New Hampshire. I was home. Yes, home is where the family is, yet New Hampshire is always that place that when I enter its borders a calm, comfort envelops me. I can be me. My entertainment now became Girls Scouts, Boy Scouts, teaching CPR, safety and making new friends. This may not sound like entertainment. It is what I loved to do. To teach, participate, learn new things with the ones I love. What greater joy can there be, than just enjoying life.
We continued the tradition of Sunday drives my father started in my childhood. We would tell the stories of our youth, to our children. Show them where we lived, worked, and played.
In the later part of the 1980’s hiking and camping became a large part of our family activities.. My friend Linda introduce me to Bingo. I would go weekly with her. She was the lucky one. I just loved the company.
My love of family stories, history and where we came from needed to be recorded. Scrapbooking the family photos, taken over the years, began. Writing the stories down into my diaries and interviewing my mother of our family history became more important after my father and father-in-law died in 1987 &1988. I grew up with those stories, but never taken the time to record them.
So I leave the eighties passionate about family lore once again. I will record the stories past and present for the future.
A time of transitioning for my children. They will leave our home by the end of the decade. Our entertainment didn’t change that much from the eighties. Trivia Games, hiking, camping, Sunday drives, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, Little league, movies, scrapbooking and bingo were our entertainment.
We added Canoe Team Mom in there. I was the chase car for the Girl Scout Canoe Team. Memorial Day weekend was the General Clinton Canoe Regatta in Bainbridge, New York. A weekend of canoeing, County Fair and camping. It was a fifteen miles canoe rally race. Every five miles the paddlers were switched. I was the driver that drove along the race cheering the paddlers on and swapping them out for the next leg. Lots of mud, smiles, laughter, fair games, and camping excitement.
Cross Country meets, track meets and many baseball games kept us entertained. Family game night, usually trivia games at this point, was a night where the teenagers challenged the parents. I held my own back then.
I proceed to the next decade as a couple, Michael and June. Our children both graduated high school. Our daughter, Tyna entered college, our son Michael, entered the Air Force.
This decade brings many changes in how I entertain myself.
Entertainment as a couple is more about the quiet times together. Listening to music, going to the movies, reading, date night continues (even through there are no children in the house,) scrapbooking has turned digital, bingo has exploded. There many more places to attend. Bingo in a church hall has grown to Bingo Halls with nightly games and even twice on the weekends. My passion for bingo is about the giving to charities. If you go there planning on winning every time, you will be disappointed. Go there for the socialization with friends and giving to the charity makes for a happy night out. Of course, when you win, the night of entertainment is even sweeter.
A decade of health challenges, making those evenings out more of a treat. The time with your husband and family are precious and priceless. This is the decade my mother died, my husband’s brother died. I was dealing with cancer and mini strokes. There were days that listening to music, especially the songs from my youth, brought comfort. The strength to watch television, go to a movie or even read was a challenge.
My passion for photography grow during this time. I was the one that usually wasn’t in family photographs. I was taking them. I graduated from film photography to digital. I entered photography contest, traveled with my husband to photograph my home state of New Hampshire, and New England. If it captured my eye, I needed to photograph it.
I end this decade, alive, passionate about photography, family history, and learning more about social media, you-tube and webinars.
Wow! Who knew that social media and webinars could take over your life? My son introduced me to Facebook. This would be my way of communicating with him while he was stationed overseas I started a personal page and a page that I called, Where in the State is Mom. The second page was about my travels, trivia and a way for my son to feel part of my life and not feel so homesick. My passion for family, photography, traveling and trivia all rolled into one package.
My entertainment became more sedentary in nature, due to my physical limitations. I’m thankful for my passion of reading and family history. It allows me to entertain myself, while still feeling productive.
Genealogy Webinars are now all the rage. DearMyrtle and Legacy Family Tree Webinars have kept me well entertained. I’m learning how to best research, find sources, cite those sources, for my family tree. Learning about how DNA can support your paper trail findings and break through that brick wall, is a Happy Dance all on its own.
I still listen to music, watch television, date night with my husband, travel to visit family, and go out with my friends to play bingo. Most of my time is watching the webinars and learning, researching my family and cuddling up next to Ninja Buddy, my dog.
Over the years my entertainment changed, as did my life. My core entertainment did not change. Doing things with family, friends and being passionate about what you’re doing is what is important. Just enjoy who you do those things with throughout your life. Friends and family will change over the years; stay true to yourself, enjoy life.
I’m not an experienced DNA researcher, even though I had my first DNA test done five years ago. It is only recently that I fine-tuned my approach to matches. When I first started I only worked with those matches with trees. It was a good way to get your feet wet and practice researching how the matches and the PAPER trail to our common ancestor work.
I read [and still do] anything I can get my hands on about DNA. I’ve joined Facebook pages offering tips and a DNA Special Interest Group at the local library. [You will fine links to these under sources]
I start my DNA research by looking for any new matches. Usually the closet matches are at the top of the page.
View all DNA matches
Click on New matches 3. Choose the newest match. Enter into the Excel Worksheet [You can use a notebook, instead. The important thing is to track your research.]4. Enter the Predicated Relationship, centimorgans and DNA Segments. If it list the Common Ancestor/s enter them and the relationship to you. If not listed leave that blank until known.
5. Don’t worry if there is no tree Click on the matches’ names, then click shared matches.
6. Hopefully other people will show up. I then check my Excel spreadsheet to see if they match someone I already entered; See who the Common ancestor was. This gives me an idea of what line of my Ancestor Member Tree to look at.
7. If you are not ready to work without a tree, go to the next person with a tree. You should see a list of common names and a pedigree chart. REMEMBER THESE ARE HINTS, you still need to view the paper trail for both your cousin match and your line.8. If you are lucky sometimes Ancestry already gives you a hint to the Common Shared Ancestor. 9. Remember these are hints, you must make sure the paper trail matches both sides. I look for birth, death, and marriage records. If those are not enough to prove hints to the relationships I look at Find A Grave [Caution Find A Grave is a hint,] for each generation. Using Find A grave sometimes gives you another person to look at that has the record hint you need. I do use census records to get additional clues, especially for locations, time frames and family groupings to rule out/in that they are the same person as in my line. [There were 4 Jacob Chases in the Newbury/Warner/Hopkinton area with the same Christian names in each family unit. Look for the one that matches your unit that is unique.]
10. I click on each shared name until I get a match or close time frame match.11. I compared it with my surnames in my tree It looks like I have a generation or two separation here. I clicked on John and found the father’s name George Lane About 1612-4 June 1689. My Ancestry tree list shows a George 1613-1689. A possible match and my place to start my
12. I click on view full tree [the green square upper right] go to George Lane. I also open in a separate window my AMT for George Lane. Lots of great HINTS. Time to verify the paper trail for each generation.
13. I keep my DNA match hint open in a separate window to refer back to when needed for each generation.
14. When I have verified or disproven the relationship I post it in my Excel Worksheet (#3). I use the spreadsheet shown in #10 to confirm the relationship. Yes, Ancestry gives my relationship to the common ancestor. I still like to check out my work. This makes me list each generation again on both sides.
Happy DNA match climbing.
Resources to seek out: Here is just a few free options. There are many other options both Free and for a Fee. I did add the “Genetic Genealogy in Practice” workbook. If you are going to spend money it is worth the price, in my opinion.
Dear MyrtleFinally Get Organized has us concentrating on our first five generations. She posted a five generation chart from J Paul Hawthrone, who created the Excel spreadsheet. Taking up the challenge, I created my own five generations birth location chart.
My Parents and I were all born in New Hampshire. My father’s lineage for the next three generations were all born in New Hampshire. My mother’s maternal line were all born in Maine. My mother’s paternal line were born in Maine except for one birth in Maryland and one in New Hampshire.
You can see that I am strongly rooted in New England.
Finally Getting Organized with Dear Myrtle’s – Update
January has been a very busy month both Genealogy-wise and home commitments. Some weeks getting organized was harder to stay on task than others. Here is a summary of my first month progress with some personal feedback. I will post the links to Dear Myrtle’s weekly Checklist and my blog post links.
I was ahead of the game in week one. I completed most of the requirements in December; just ordering a few last minutes supplies. You can read about my progress on my blog Damegussie Genealogy Rants- Organized, Me? It might happen in 2016.
I like Dear Myrtle have both paper and digital copies of my work. I do have a strategy for backing up my data; reducing my paper files to keeping only original documents and decluttering my e-mails, too. I use a surname/maiden file backed up on my desk top, on-line tree and a copy sent monthly off site to my sister. That way there is always a back no older than one month if all other backups are lost. One can never predict the future, so like Girls Scouts and Boy Scout you should always be prepared.
Dear Myrtle speaks about the importance of cloud storage I’m using Google drive and Dropbox for my backups. I did win a Backblaze door prize, a year ago, at my local genealogical Society meeting. My husband chose not to put it onto my computer. He did feel comfortable using Google drive and Dropbox. I do have iCloud that that is used more for our smart phone photos. I already met my maximum allowed on the free program.
I use Legacy, FTM 2014, currently learning how to use Roots Magic 8 four my genealogy management programs I will continue using family tree maker 2014 is my primary program. I have been using Family Tree Maker since 2002 and more consistently since 2014.
I have my first five generations of direct ancestors completed as per challenge of dear Myrtle a year ago. I am now working on feeling in the lateral family lines for the first three generations. I have done so in regards to basic information so that I now have the siblings, their spouses, their children, and date of birth, marriage dates, and death dates if appropriate. This will be continued as more information is found for each new family member. It is a never-ending process and building your family tree.
I have both three ring binders and digital file folders for all generations that include: family group sheet, any documents, and images of censuses. Photographs of importance. My confession is I had already done this in the past year with Thomas MacEntee’s genealogy Do Over/Go Over. Thomas now has a printed version available. Just click on his name for the link.
I scanned photos on a weekly basis for all generations that I come in contact with. Reviewing my old files weekly. Sometimes just 15 minutes in the morning scanning any new photos digitally to each surname/maiden name. This will be an ongoing process. I have received new photos from relatives that I never knew before existed. I’ve even blogged about finding a photo of me as a child with my parents that I had never seen before.
I have also created memory books yearly for the family, some are specific events, some are an overview of the year, and others are about my progress from the past year. The past year projects are social books from my Facebook and blog to print in regards to my Damegussie blogs. My family is not so much into the digital family history or family tree program; they just want the story.
My genealogy will has been completed. My daughter will be taking over my work. Her statement was I will do like you did I will keep it safe until I have the time in retirement continue on your work. Knowing my daughter, Tyna Butka, she will be adding little books of around along the way. My photos and other documents have been an archival safe containers since I first heard about them in the late 1980s early 1900s. It’s nice having a librarian as a friend.
Transcribing everything is the Key! I continue transcribing any documents that I find in my possession, stories I remember, even as this blog talks about the artifacts need to be transcribed, so that future generations know the importance of a ring, a dining needle, or even a little skeleton key. Yes six skeleton key or even a railroad tie may have a story behind it I have written about both in my Damegussie blog over the years. I transcribed any documents into my family tree maker 2014 program, my Microsoft Word program for the person, and save a digital image of what I am transcribing. I follow basically the same set up that dear Myrtle describes in her January 17-23, 2016 blog post.
Finally getting organized week 24 to 31st of January 2016 was another easy week for me. I have been a beta indexer Familysearch.org for about a year now. I browse any records more often than using an index. That’s how I learned there were no indexes when I first started using the Internet. An index does help find your ancestors more easily. Not all records have been index to date, volunteers are working daily to increase the numbers which is why it is important to be a volunteer indexer. I continue to update my records on my siblings their families as added or loss, both in digital and family datasheet binders.
What did I learn? I learned a great deal about my sister’s husband side of the family, my husband’s cousins, and even was surprised to find more information on myself on the Internet than I thought was out there. Yes myself. When you are researching it’s just as important to research oneself, as well as, the rest of your family. You never know what you will find.
A good example all something I found out about my dad, which I blogged about, was the name of the young man that accidentally my dad while hunting in the woods. His name was Luis M. Putney. I found that through myheritage.com in a newspaper article about a Waltham young man with charges being brought against him for abandonment. Don’t just look in the town where your family or ancestors lived. Look elsewhere as well. Elizabeth Shown Mills said it best, the F.A.N principle; friends, associates and neighbors. You never know how they are related or intersect your life.
I’ve given you links to not only dear Myrtle’s finally getting organized checklist so that you may follow along and do your own getting organized. I’ve also given you the links to what I blogged about. It is another source, another way of backing up the information of your family and ancestors in your family tree. I find my families reading more of my stories, then they did of my genealogy blogs.
Check out your family stats. It is fun to see what months they were born, their zodiac sign or what year (century) they were born in.
They want to hear about the child that died and you still remember; the day your father/grandfather was shot; the first wedding ring of your mom/aunt/grandmother; or maybe even about a ceramic lower and white cat sitting on the shelf of your aunt carries home when you were a little kid that you weren’t allowed to touch. Why couldn’t you touch the May ask, it was a urinal. Yes a urinal for my uncle Wilson. Now I’ve made you smile. Go find your stories and transcribed them for future generations and make them smile.
In the photograph above you see my Wedding rings and diamond. The original wedding band is too small for me to wear. It was a handcrafted wedding band made out of silver in the hammered look by my roommate at the time, (I wish I could remember her name,) Inside is inscribed “78 JS MB.” In 1978 June Stearns married Michael Butka. Would my descendant save a silver ring without knowing the history behind it? Maybe not. Most wedding bands are gold or platinum.
My other wedding band is not inscribed. It was a 10th Anniversary (1988) gift from my husband, Michael Daniel Butka. It is a Platinum band with the hammered look in the center. I did not wear diamonds at that time in my life. My work made it awkward to wear raised jewelry with the rubber gloves. I wanted to maintain the integrity of the gloves for my nursing duties.
The heart shaped diamond was a gift from my husband in November 2015. He felt I deserved a diamond after all these years. I told him I rather have a laptop. I got brought. I love my ring because he wanted to give it to me. I never thought I would really care about a diamond.
Michael Daniel Butka and June Lee Stearns were married 29 April 1978 at a Justice of Peace in Kittery, York, Maine. Our attendants were Michael’s brother, Stephen Butka and my sister, Marjorie Rae Stearns-Stevenson. We had our reception at our apartment on Sagamore Court, Portsmouth, Rockingham, New Hampshire. Our family was in attendance with a pot luck meal, fountain style homemade wedding cake by my sister, Vickie Mae Stearns Levesque, standing on a fountain. The wedding will be blog about in April on our 38th anniversary. I will also transcribe my marriage record at that time.
I choose today to write about my wedding rings for a special reason. My first date with my husband was on 23 Jan 1978. We went to the movie “The Goodbye Girl” and dinner at the Asia Restaurant on Dover Point Road, Dover New Hampshire. It looks like it is no longer at that location. Mike and I will need to take a ride and check it out on his day off.
This blog is in answer to Dear Myrtle’s 2016 Participant Forms. Her form is for anyone that wants to be consider for her random monthly drawing. I’m a winner already by just participating. A surprise bonus is always a welcome gift.
Her questions made me stop and think. To review my habits, good and bad. In doing so, it made me really consider the approach, BEST FOR MY RESEARCH, that I’m using or plan on using in the future.
I decided that using the K.I.S.S. method of Keeping It Simple and Straightforward is best for me. I have tried different research logs and Do-Over’s (Thomas MacEntee, Dear Myrtle and Cousin Russ and The Organized Genealogist) suggestions over the past year. I opened my mind to new ideas and ways to research. There was many trails and errors. I’m not a technical type of person. Learning new computer programs is a major challenge for me, especially if someone is not sitting beside me showing me Step-By-Step.
I finding that keeping a Microsoft Word Document Folder for each person that includes my research notes, links, conclusions and records is the easiest way to keep me on task. I still keep an Excel worksheet for links; where I need to research, for what I did research and Books to review, as a backup. I’m slowly transferring my paper files to my Surname Folders on my computer. The folder includes images, the Microsoft word document and other records needed or collected for my research. When transferring the paper files to digital format, I’m reviewing my Family Tree Program file, for the person I’m working one, at the same time. Slow and Steady goals is my approach.
When I started my research, back in the 1970’s, I did everything on paper and index cards. I did, eventually, start to keep links and my thoughts in Microsoft Word. Printing paper form for my files.
Participate in Webinars that improve my genealogical research and organization,
I’m sure over the course of the next year I will being adding new things to review and decide if they are what is best for me.
I want to keep it simple for me. If I’m not comfortable with something, after giving it the old college try, I will move on to the next option-old or new.
What is your Biggest Genealogy Challenge?
Staying on task and recording my research is my biggest challenge. It’s still a challenge not to follow the Bright Shiny Objects. Having the excel worksheet to record the links or books to research later helps keep me on task. I strongly believe the K.I.S.S. method I have chosen will help keep me on task. Ask me in a year if I still agree.