Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The State of My Genea-Progress

Here we are at the end of January. Does anyone else feel that the first month of 2012 has just zipped on by? I wonder how all of my fellow Geneabloggers are doing with their goals? Is the buddy system still working for you?

My own personal report card at the moment is: B+. I've set some specific research, writing, and organizational goals.

Writing: "The Book" - I haven't had much time to devote to this project. I have had four articles to write in the past two weeks, plus finalizing my three presentations for the upcoming RootsTech conference. Sleep has become a luxury, and I'm lucky that my husband is still talking to me. Nevertheless, I've still tried to get in at least 15 minutes of writing per day. But, I MUST do better!

Research: No progress at all since last update. Hoping to find some information at the Family History Library later this week. I've looked up the film numbers of the microfilms I want to view and have saved this list as a PDF in Evernote because I can access it from my Blackberry, my iPad or any computer.

Organizational: I've continued to purge files in my filing cabinet--spending approximately 2 hours each weekend, and sorting out books that I want to donate to the "Friends of the Library" for their spring sale.

One area I have made progress in is trying to block out any outside negative influences on my time and energy. I experienced a small setback last week, but was able to regroup and continue to focus on what I need to accomplish.

I haven't checked in with my genea-buddy in awhile. I will do that today.

Copyright, 2012, Lisa A. Alzo

Monday, January 30, 2012

Win an iPad2 with the RootsMagic Treasure Hunt

This blog is participating in the RootsMagic Treasure Hunt at RootsTech this week. They'll be giving away an iPad 2. For further details, read the announcement below. I have posted my clue/magic word somewhere on this Blog. It's not on this first page, because I didn't want to make it that easy. Good luck!

It’s been a tremendous last few months here at RootsMagic. We’ve been busy with the new releases of Personal Historian 2 and RootsMagic 5. We're also excited to participate in one of the largest genealogy events in North America- RootsTech!

We want to celebrate these momentous events with you, our loyal users! And what better way to celebrate than with a treasure hunt where you could win one of many prizes including an iPad 2!

Online Treasure Hunt

We've partnered with 15 of the best and brightest genealogy bloggers who will be reporting at the RootsTech conference. Each blogger will place one of 15 clue words on their website

From Thursday, February 2 through Wednesday, February 8, 2012, visit for a complete list of the blogs where the 15 clue words can be found. Visit each blog, collect all 15 clue words, and you could win software, prizes, or an iPad 2!

Enter at RootsTech or at Home

Once you've collected the clues there are two ways to enter. The first is at the RootsTech conference itself. Pick up an entry card at the RootsMagic booth(#224) in the Exhibit Hall. Write the clue words on the back of the card and return it to the RootsMagic booth in the Exhibit Hall by Saturday, February 4 at 1:20 pm. At that time, we will hold the prize drawings. You must be present to win.

We didn't want those who aren't able to attend RootsTech in person to feel left out so we're holding a second drawing and giving away more prizes including asecond iPad 2. To enter this drawing, visit anytime between Thursday, February 2 and midnight MST on Wednesday, February 8, 2012. Fill out the online form to be entered into the second drawing. You may enter both drawings but one entry per person, per drawing. Winners will be picked at random and notified via e-mail by Friday, February 10, 2012.

Remember, the treasure hunt doesn't begin until this Thursday. Good luck!

Disclosure: I am NOT an employee of RootsMagic and am not receiving any monetary or other compensation by participating in this event. This blog assumes no liability for the outcome of the contest.

Monday, January 09, 2012

2012 Goals: The Genea-Progress Report One Week In

It's hard to believe we're already into Week 2 of the New Year. Many of us in the genealogy community have blogged about the personal research and/or professional goals we've set for 2012, and some of us have partnered with a genea-buddy to help us reach them.

You can read about my research/writing goals in my "Twelve for '12" post. My genea-buddy is Donna Pointkouski, author of the What's Past is Prologue Blog and author/creator of The Catholic Gene Blog.

The Goals

Donna and I each broke down our goals into three main categories: Writing, Research, and Organizational (based on a similar system used by fellow Bloggers, Denise Levenick of The Family Curator, and Amy Coffin of the We Tree Blog).

I'm reporting my progress to Donna on the following:

Writing: Finish a new nonfiction book--draft by 4/1/12; final product published by the end of 2012 (big dreams here, but really want to make it happen!)

Research: 1) My paternal grandmother's brother, Mihaly Fencsak who moved to Argentina; 2) My maternal grandmother's brother Istvan Straka who stayed in Slovakia

Organizing: Purging paper files; 2) Going as paperless as possible; 3) Organizing my office.

We've set up a shared document in Google Docs (we titled it: "The Slavic Pennsylvania Gals’ 2012 Genealogy Buddy Goal Project") where we can make notes and report our progress. I this first week, we have e-mailed each other updates and even talked on the phone.

Here's how I did in my first week:

Writing: "The Book" - I have been writing for at least 30 minutes per day. Usually 15 minutes in the morning, and 15 minutes at night. Focusing now on the Preface/Introduction.

Research: I haven't made much progress yet. I hope to do some research at the Family History Library in February. I'm also working with a professional researcher based in Slovakia and need to decide where to send him next.

Organizational: I fear this task will be the most difficult because it truly seems never-ending! I have purged about six file boxes, and have made efforts to go paperless by scanning documents, arranging for electronic subscriptions for magazines, etc. when possible and switching over to e-bills and e-statements.

The Buddy System: It Works for Me

I like the accountability factor of the genea-biuddy system. I feel like I have done a pretty good job thus far. As we go further into 2012, I hope that I can keep up the pace. I really want to score a slam dunk on these goals!

So, how did you do this week? Have you made any genea-progress?

Copyright, 2012, Lisa A. Alzo

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Joining the Federation of Genealogical Societies Board of Directors

I am delighted to announce that I have been appointed to serve on the Federation of Genealogical Society's Board of Directors for 2012, and will be serving as Publications Committee chair .

Congratulations also to my fellow appointee--Sue Tolbert, who served on the FGS board in 2011.
I am really looking forward to working with Sue, and all of the other fantastic genealogists on the FGS Board. You can read the full press release over at GeneaPress.


About the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS)

The Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) was founded in 1976 and represents the members of hundreds of genealogical societies. FGS links the genealogical community by helping genealogical societies strengthen and grow through resources available online, FGS Forum magazine (filled with articles pertaining to society management and genealogical news), and Society Strategy Series papers, covering topics about effectively operating a genealogical society. FGS also links the genealogical community through its annual conference -- four days of excellent lectures, including one full day devoted to society management topics. To learn more visit
Copyright, 2012, Lisa A. Alzo