Thursday, June 10, 2010

Come see us in sunny CA

Life is a highway, I wanna ride it all night long.
If you're goin my way, I wanna ride it all night long.
--Rascal Flatts

Crank up the tunes. It's conference season again.

We're on the road again. Life is sweet. While not as inventive as the RootsMagic Guys, I do still have a couple of pictures for you for as hint about where we are going. I have sweet family history there--so it's like I'm going home. I've talked about this before. I don't have to go quite as far as Lisa Alzo (she's in Slovakia and slept in her great-grandfather's house last night. I'm so excited for her. I'm sure she'll be blogging about it when she gets back.)

7878 Naylor Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90045. That's where my mother grew up. And that's where I spent the best part of my summers as a child. We'd leave poor Dad working and take off for long stretches of the summer to my Maternal Grandparent's house. I learned to rollerskate on the bumpy sidewalk out in front. We watched Winnie the Pooh videos in the back bedroom, and there is not a sound I would love more to hear today than my grandfather singing "yo ho yo ho a pirate's life for me" again.

Mom was the ultimate beach babe. She went to summer school so that she and her friends could walk to the beach afterward. My best claim to fame has always been that Mom went to high school with the Turtles and sang in accapella choir with them. Beach Boys music is our family soundtrack but when I told Mom I was going to write about her Gidget days she said "whatever." Yeah. She's still got some Gidget in her.
My grandparents moved from there in 1989, but I can still smell the jasmine outside the kitchen window, wonder what the can of hominy was in the pantry, taste the bottled water that was delivered once a week, and feel Grandpa's favorite coconut cookies that stayed soft in the humidity. I even remember the zip code though I often can't remember my phone number.

One of the four generations who've ridden the Santa Monica Pier Carousel.
Today though, we have new great memories of LA. It is the site of the Southern California Genealogy Society Conference every June which has become a mecca for the blogger community. I get to see all the wonderful friends that I talk to on facebook, twitter, genealogywise and the blogs. It is alot like a family reunion, catching up with people you don't get to see enough.

I am doing 3 classes. If you are around the So. Cal area I'd love to see you at the Burbank Marriott. I'm teaching How to Interest Your Family In Their Family History from 3-4pm on Friday. Digital Archiving from 8:30-9:30 Saturday morning, and Easy Online Genealogy Chart Creation with Family ChArtist from 2-3 on Sunday. And of course Kim and I will be at the booth too. Come say Hi.

Lisa Louise Cooke sent me this too:
Hi Janet,

Hope you're doing great. I just wanted to send you a quick note and see if you would be wiling to let your readers know about the free live Genealogy Gems Podcast <> we'll be presenting at Jamboree on Sat. June 12 at 1:00 in the Pavilion. I've got some great guests lined up:
  • Maureen Taylor, the Photo Detective
  • Suzanne Russo Adams, Ancestry talking about her research on Who Do You Think You Are?
  • Chris Haley
I put together a 2 minute video at

We're going to be giving away lots of very cool prizes throughout the show too!

And Daniel Horowitz is back on his West Coast Genealogy Tour II. You can
learn the latest technology developments going on at My Heritage and receive a FREE copy of the software "Family Tree Builder" at his lectures.

It's going to be a blast. I'll keep you posted with pictures and such.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Another FamilySearch award for Generation Maps

While I was too exhausted to write much after BYU and NGS (5 lectures in two days and 2 booths and 3 conferences in the overlapping 5 days) there is one thing I MUST tell you about. We are one of the very few companies now to hold TWO (count 'em TWO) FamilySearch software awards. Press release follows.

News Release - Header

For Immediate Release

19 May 2010

2010 FamilySearch Software Award Recipients Announced

SALT LAKE CITY—Recipients of the 2010 FamilySearch Software Awards were announced at the FamilySearch Developers Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. The 14 recipients were recognized for their outstanding and innovative work in advancing products and technologies that integrate with FamilySearch’s emerging suite of products and services.

The annual FamilySearch Software Awards has been established to encourage and recognize software development that benefits the growing demands and needs of family history consumers. “The awards formally recognize the software achievements of those developers and companies that are making important contributions to the family history and genealogy industry,” said Gordon Clarke, FamilySearch developer services product manager.

The Best New Product awards were given to applicants in different platform categories. Products with specific features deemed important to the growth of the industry received the Best New Feature award. Community Player awards recognized individuals who have made exceptional contributions to the software developer community.

The following recipients were announced and awards presented at the FamilySearch Developers Conference:

Best New Product Awards

· The MagiKey for the “Best New Windows” product

· Arcalife for the “Best New Web site”

· MobileTree for “Best New Mobile” product

· FamilyInsight for “Best New Macintosh” product

Best New Feature Awards

· OurFamilogy for “Best Research” feature

· SharingTime for “Best Collaboration” feature

· Genetree for “Best DNA” feature

· Ancestral Hunt for the “Best Geo-Mapping” feature

· FamilyPursuit for the “Best Groups” feature

· Photoloom for the “Best Media” feature

· FamilyChArtist for the “Best Print” feature

· AppleTree for the “Best Celebrity Tree” feature

Community Player Awards

· Gaylon Finlay, Incline Software, “Bug Hunter” award

· Michael Booth and Bruce Buzbee, Roots Magic, “Trailblazer” award

FamilySearch International is the largest genealogy organization in the world. Millions of people use FamilySearch records, resources, and services to learn more about their family history. To help in this great pursuit, FamilySearch has been actively gathering, preserving, and sharing genealogical records worldwide for over 100 years. FamilySearch is a nonprofit organization sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Patrons can access FamilySearch services and resources free online at or through over 4,600 family history centers in 132 countries, including the main Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Catching up

Well apparently I'm a binge blogger lately. It's all Sheri Fenley's fault. At NGS she happened to show me that she hadn't posted for a while and I thought, "Well if the great Shirley has her quiet moments, I probably should too." You have to watch out for us blondes. LOL. Now I need a picture of a bottle of ketchup like the Ancestry Insider uses.

Really, it was a mixture of doing some writing (articles and the start of a book (!?!)), doing some reading (below), some minor health problems (just annoying), not to mention the exhaustion of doing the BYU and NGS conferences back to back. A great time was had by all, and we're all rested up and back on track. And of course Generation Maps is busy as usual. If you haven't gotten your family reunion chart in to us for this summer, be sure to get it in soon. It's already shaping up to be a great season.

Among other things, I read Elizabeth Shown Mills historical fiction work Isle of Canes. I haven't looked at how other reviewers treated it, but I was extremely impressed. I don't know that the writing flowed all that terribly well, but it was an impressive example of professional genealogy work. Though it was a work of fiction, you could tell the massive amounts of research that had gone into the book. She knew the people, she knew the neighbors, she knew all the surrounding information and she knew it well enough to make you care deeply about these people. It was a beautiful, heart-wrenching story. Amazing book and incredible genealogy investigation.

I've also been working on UGA projects. Here is a quick update on some of those:

1)SLIG registration opens June 10th

Get in on the ground floor. Registration for the 2011 Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy opens at 9 AM MST Thursday, June 10, 2010 online at Some of the country’s best genealogical educators are gathering to help you gain expertise in a flash with small class sizes and hands-on research. Whether you are a beginner or are looking for advanced skills, you can’t afford to miss this wonderful opportunity to learn from the experts. Register early as all class are expected to fill to capacity.

The 2011 Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy will be held 10-14 Jan 2011 at the downtown Radisson Hotel located at 215 West South Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah. Registration is $320 before 30 October 2010, thereafter $345. UGA members can use the coupon “SLIG2011” before October 30th for the member pricing of $280. All coupons used by members will be verified by membership staff. Registration includes course materials, an orientation breakfast and the Friday night banquet. Evening classes and additional dinner tickets are extra.

Courses for 2011 include:

  • American Records and Research: Focusing on Localities with Paula Stuart-Warren, CG
  • NEHGS part1 --New England and New York with D. Joshua Taylor
  • Irish Family History Research with David Ouimette, CG
  • Research of France and her Former Colonies with Earl Charvet
  • Researching in Washington, DC, without Leaving Home with Rick and Pam Sayre, CG, CGL
  • Professional Paths and Income in Genealogy with Kory Meyerink, MLS, AG, FUGA
  • Internet Tools & Techniques with Barbara Renick
  • Producing a Quality Family Narrative with John Philip Colletta, Ph.D., FUGA
  • Advanced Methodology with Thomas W. Jones, Ph.D., CG, CGL, FASG, FUGA
  • Accreditation and Certification with Apryl Cox, AG and Connie Lenzen, CG
  • Problem Solving with Judith Hansen, MLS, AG
and 2)Hold the date. Mark your calendar October 15th 2010 for our UGA membership meeting and open house gala. This banquet will launch our 40th anniversary renaissance year with the first meeting of our new virtual chapter so plan to attend online even if you can’t be in Salt Lake City. Along with dinner and a speaker, there will be displays and discussions about our new Speaker’s Bureau, the new Intermediate Genealogist Education Program, and our new chapter initiatives as well as many other activities to launch us into the next steps in UGA’s history. More information will be forthcoming.