Saturday, February 23, 2019

The Today Show!

Image result for the today show

One of our charts made an appearance on the NBC Today Show!  The segment featured some Ancestry researchers and a client on a recent ancestral home tour to Sicily.  It is such a neat story about the Balistreri family and the connections that were made from his family history research.  It will make you want to travel to all your ancestral homes!

Check out the clip at:

The chart we made for their family is shown near minute 3:30.  But you will want to watch the whole thing because it is so lovely to see the family's experience.  And as the reporter says at the end of the clip, "The message is, go out there, and find out about your history before, honestly, it's too late!"

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

RootsTech Specials

RootsTech Specials

If you live on our planet, I'm sure you've heard about the RootsTech conference coming up.  This is our first conference of the year and a wonderful time for us to roll out new ideas, and show off everything we do.  I hope we'll see you there.  Here are some of the amazing deals we have for you when you come visit with us:

1) Fill in the Blank Charts for only $10 ($27.95 value).  That's almost 2/3 off the regular price.  Check out all of the new 2019 styles we just launched and there might even be a few new designs special for RootsTech. 

2) Coupon For A Free Extra Copy.  Visit with one of our designers and receive a coupon for a free extra copy of any working or decorative chart you create with us by September 2019.  Our designers can help you figure out how to best display your family history research and impress your family with the amazing history you have. 

3) Buy One Get Two Free DNA Ethnicity Chart Gift Certificates.  
RootsTech Speaker
Come find us right at the front of the hall with all of the DNA testing companies.  We can now support the ethnicity estimates for MyHeritage,, and 23 and Me.  Wouldn't it be fun to show off how your ethnicity looks in all three databases?  The gift certificate sets will be available for .pdf ($20), Professional Paper ($50) and Canvas Giclee ($100).  Show off your ethnicity or give them to friends as gifts.  

I'm also speaking on Thursday at 3 on "Heirloom, Documentation or Junk: What to Keep or Toss" and then again on Friday at 4:40 on "Beautiful New 2019 Trends for Displaying Your Family History"  We love to chat with our clients about charts, and genealogy, and their family history.  I hope you can join us.  

Sunday, February 17, 2019

A visit with my friend the Photo Detective: Maureen Taylor

I'm so lucky to have Maureen Taylor for a friend--and now you can listen in as well.  Recently, we sat down for an episode of her video podcast and had a great discussion about a chart that she wants us to create for her.  We discussed various options and styles and all of ways she can display her family history for an upcoming reunion.  Take a look:

Episode 28: Charting Your Family History
Episode 28: Charting Your Family History

And if you have any photo identification needs, Maureen is the person to go to.  She has more talent and knowledge than anyone on the planet about styles and situations that might help you identify an old family photograph.  Everyone calls here the photo detective, but I call her the photo whisperer, because she is amazing.  She can pull out details and specific proofs that will help you figure out who the people are in any photo that you might have.  She's amazing.  You can book her for a photo consultation at or come see her with me at the conferences we attend this spring.  

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Annual Favorites 2019: New Designs

To finish up with our Annual Favorites list I have two new, interesting layouts.  The first one is a fan built into a tree with a classic, vintage black and white feel.  I love this chart and I think it would fit in nicely with several different kinds of decor.  No matter what your design style, we can come up with something that will add interest to your room.

Unique modern fan style
Truly, anything you can dream up, our designers can create for you.

This second chart is similar to our "branches" style chart but again, with a more updated feel.  Pretty leaves and more greys for 2019.  This one is tricky to do with descendancy information, but in this case it turned out perfectly.  Depending on how your descendancy information plots out, this style may end up being more of a bush than a tree, but we're always happy to give it a try.  And it works really well with ancestors too.  Or even ancestors and descendants combined if we add people into the roots.

New crisp descendant branches tree
These and all of the rest of the Annual Favorites for this year can be found in our gallery, with lots of other charts to give you ideas. Our talented designers can literally make your family chart ideas come to life.  When you are ready to get started, just send your information for a free consultation.  We're looking forward to creating the perfect, artistic representation of your family.  

Friday, February 15, 2019

Annual Favorites 2019: Custom Color Coding

We always have to include some amazing color coded charts in our Annual Collection.  We are the color coding specialists and color makes everything look better--not to mention more understandable.  We can color code anything: place, linage, time-frame, genetics, marriage, generation, health, DNA, research results, pioneer lines, royal lines, immigrants, soldiers, colonial Americans, different wars or branches of service, religious office, divorce, occupation.  You could use any event your ancestors might have participated in such as being a Filles du Roi, Mayflower immigrant, etc.  

You could also use color coding for research help such as whether or not a DNA test has been taken, whether the person is a match, you could include icons for proven and unproven lines, for the number of sources or images you have, for adoptive and genetic lines--you get the idea. We can go far and beyond what the current genealogy chart softwares offer.  

For the Family Reunion
One of the most common types of color coding we do, this chart is coded by the each of the children of the main couple.  Each child and their descendants are a different color, thus it is easy to find everyone at the family reunion.  This chart has only names for a condensed, clean chart of a large family.  Only six pictures illustrate their rich and varied history.

Ethnicity AND Details
One of my favorite types of color coding is by country of origin.  This color coding goes one step further showing each country's outline.  A beautiful display of a diverse heritage. Originally 24 inches wide and 42 inches tall. 

All the Immigrants Coming Down to Modern Day
Nine generations of ancestors show on this 24x36 inch fan chart showing dates and places for ancestors.  The chart starts with three siblings.  Colors and flags show each ancestor's country of origin.  

Ancestors, Descendants, Color and Descriptive Icons
This chart again starts with the three children of a couple and then traces the father's lineage.  A simple left to right chart shows of immigrants, military and specific ethnicity notes while colors correspond to a digital and paper filing system with more information. 

If you would like to create a chart with distinctive color coding according to something important in your own family history, we can do it.  Just send your ideas and information for a free consultation and one of our designers will take a look, send you feedback and then create a masterpiece just for your family.  

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Annual Favorites 2019: Blended Families

So these two charts made it on to our list because the were such a spectacular display for a blended family.  The man in the center had three wives.  The first two wives also had children from other marriages.  So while he wanted all of his children on the chart, one of the charts had the children from the first wife's subsequent marriage--for that side of the family, and the other chart had he second wife's children from a previous marriage--for that side of the family.  He was able to give each part of the family a chart that included their step-siblings.  It was really quite brilliant. 
The first blended family all blended together
When you add the flags, and especially all of the photos--including the group photos.  Both charts were truly spectacular.  He was also able to add his current wife although they don't have any children together.  A beautiful, inclusive family. 
The second blended family all blended together
So again, no matter how your family relationships are arranged, we can arrange them correctly on the chart.  It doesn't even have to be perfect in the file you send us.  When you send in your information, the designer we assign to you will send you an initial mock up and then we'll work with you, including other mock ups to move and arrange everyone exactly the way you want to display them.  Want to show the scoundrel of a son-in-law because he fathered your beautiful grandchildren?  Great, we can do that.  Want to take the scoundrel out?  No problem.  We can do that too.  In-laws and outlaws and all the ways a family blends together.  Whatever you want to look at on your wall is what we'll develop for you.  

And there's no obligation until you are happy with it.  Once you approve the design, you can click on the order link we send and place your order.  It truly will be perfect for you.  You can get started by clicking on the "get started" button on the front of our website.  Just wait until you see the perfect chart for your own family.  I promise it will be just as amazing as these two charts. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Annual Favorites 2019: Something Different

I just fall in love with all of the charts we do, but these have a special place in my heart this year.  We've done some really awesome non-traditional charts.  Some are similar to what you've seen here before, but some are of a completely different caliber.  As usual, we're always up for a new challenge.  

AKC pedigree (Isn't he the cutest?)
Apparently I've never said it on the blog before, but I think I've mentioned it a few times in lectures or on social media, I've always wanted to do a dog pedigree.  This year I finally got the chance.  And isn't this just the most adorable dog you've ever seen?  His name is Mr.Mister and he is a purebred Maltese.  Oh my goodness so much adorableness.  And if you look close, the names of his ancestors are just as adorable. We don't usually get to chart out names quite that unique on human charts.

A Royal Scottish line
While we've done direct line charts before, this one was special with the clean crisp layout and the two crests.  A beautiful way to help Dad show off his Scottish pride--directly back to Robert the Bruce.  I'm not sure, but I think this client made it on to the highly favored daughter-in-law list with this one.  We're happy to help you on to that list too.  We've got a well-used direct ladder there. 

Piano Teaching Lineage
This was another unique chart for the year showing the piano teaching lineage of this great musician.  His instructors go back to Mozart, Liszt, Beethoven, Czerny, and J.S. Bach.  The chart weaves in and out with instructors who taught multiple people (the ultimate kissing cousins chart if it had been family.)  It was a complicated one but we figured it out.  And the 27x19 canvas hangs proudly in the studio.  The pride is definitely justified on this one. 

Inspiring Military Heritage
This chart was a gift from a sister to her brother.  Wow!  Anybody would be lucky to have a sister like that right?  Going straight up the patriarchal line, this family had an amazing military heritage spanning back to the mid 1600s.  We were able to add stories, documents and a timeline along the bottom that explained everything and really brought it all together into one story.  I'm sure the 30x36 canvas was a treasured gift.

So if you want to be the hero in your family, with a traditional format or not, we can help you out.  Feel free to give us a call at 801-872-4278 and we'd be happy to discuss your ideas over the phone.  Or come find us at RootsTech in a couple of weeks (or at any of the conferences on our calendar) where you can see these amazing charts and talk to a designer in person.  We can't wait to get to work on your most fascinating ideas.