Family History Writing Studio

Lynn Palermo of the Armchair Genealogist has put together a great resource for anyone writing their family history. The studio was inspired by her annual Family History Writing Challenge. I think the writing part is the most intimidating part of putting together a family history, so for me this is a wonderful resource. So if your like me and need some help in this area, here is some of what you will find in the Family History Writing Studio.

What’s in the Writing Studio
Workbooks – Lynn’s series of Family History Writing Workbooks are designed to build on one another. Each workbook looks at one aspect of writing your family history narratives. Filled with worksheets, they will help you apply the various elements of creative nonfiction to your own research and ancestors.
Webinars – On-demand webinars work nicely with Lynn’s workbooks. They provide exercises and examples to expand on the workbook content. They are designed for you to watch over and again at your convenience. There will also be stand-alone content, addressing a variety of needs family history writers face.
Courses – Our online courses are designed for writers who want to have a more in-depth look at a particular aspect of writing in a more intimate environment. Lessons will be delivered in a variety of formats from downloadable worksheets, workbooks, and videos. All courses include private groups and forums to bring the class together for discussions and critiques with the teacher. Classes are small to provide a more personal learning environment.
Personal Coaching – If you’re nervous about sharing in a group environment then personal coaching might be more your style. In the personal coaching section, Lynn offers a couple of options to work privately work with her, whether it be to brainstorm your story or book or for a critique of your written narrative.
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Family Tree: FamilyTreeTemplates.net

Just came across this great resource, FamilyTreeTemplates.net. They have tons of kinds of family trees in pdf format, free to download, print and fill out. Some of them are also available in DOC format for $4 that you can edit and then print. There is an amazing variety from simple two generation charts to 10 generations, with graphics and without graphics, simple fancy etc. etc. Here a just a couple of samples. Click on over and check it out.

7 generation radial family tree

family tree coloring page

family migration chart

50 Button Crafts: idea #16 – Mothers are like Buttons

Got a box or jar full of buttons carefully saved by your mother or grandmother? For 2015 I’m in search of great ways to put those buttons to use. Here is this week’s idea:

Mothers Day snuck up on me and it finally hit me a couple of days ago that it is just two weeks away. My sister hosts most of our family gatherings but Mothers Day is traditionally in my court since I’m the only one with both my mother and my mother-in-law still living. It simplifies things by having it at our house. I like to give all the mothers attending gifts so today I did some searching for a button themed gift. I’m still working on the ideas but I’m sure about part of it. I want to do some kind of wall hanging with the words “Mothers are like buttons, they hold everything together.” Here are some of the ideas I found during my research.

I’ll report back with what the finished product looks like. Hopefully next week.

It would be a good idea to document where the buttons for your project came from and any relevant stories or information about that person or family. If you are looking for more button crafts, check out my Pinterest board.

StoryCorps App: part 2

I downloaded the StoryCorps app today. It looks pretty easy to use. At first I couldn’t figure out where the questions where but then realized that when you add a new interview it automatically takes you to the list of questions. They are listed under different categories, starting with a fairly short list of “the best questions.” It is very simple to click on the questions you like to add them to your custom list. You can also make your own questions.

My Dad had is appendix removed last week so he is recovering at my sister’s house for a few weeks. I’ll be visiting him on Friday. Hopefully he will feel up to answering a few questions so I can try this app out. If not maybe I can get my Mom to talk or maybe one of my sisters.

I’ll let you know how it goes. This seems like a really great way to get family stories recorded.

Family Tree: Hand Drawn Pedigrees

family tree drawn by Marie Lynskey

In my research on family trees I came across Marie Lynskey, a calligrapher who will draw a beautiful family tree for you. She has also written a book “Family Trees: A Manual for Their Design, Layout & Display” available on Amazon. Here are a few more samples of her work. Happily Marie is available to put her talents to work for your family tree.

50 Button Crafts: idea #15 – dyed buttons

dyed button from fiberluscious

Got a box or jar full of buttons carefully saved by your mother or grandmother? For 2015 I’m in search of great ways to put those buttons to use. Here is this week’s idea:

If your button stash could use some color here is a solution: Rit Dyes. Click on the photo above for a step by step tutorial. While not all vintage buttons dye equally, if adding some color gives these buttons new life I think it is worthwhile. Have fun with this.

It would be a good idea to document where the buttons for your project came from and any relevant stories or information about that person or family. If you are looking for more button crafts, check out my Pinterest board.

Pupdate: Fable – starting her puppyhood book

Fable with a dirty nose and tongue

Fable turned 9 months old this week. We are now passed the halfway point in her time with us. I hated that I didn’t get Emma’s book done until several months after she left so I’m recommitting to do better with Fable. My plan is to write something about her each week and post it here along with photos. By the time she goes back to Guide Dogs for the Blind in about September I will have her book ready for final layout and it should be easy to get it done to send a pdf with her on the puppy truck.

Fetish or Fascinated:

Fable has this kind of fetish with grass. While she isn’t our first pup to like to eat grass her fascination goes deeper, down to the roots in fact. She doesn’t just pull up a tuft here or there. Fable focuses in one place and pulls up all the grass in that spot down to the roots. There is one area of the yard that she likes the grass best in and she also likes it best if her jolly ball is close by. I think that goes back to when she was very little. She would run out in the yard to the jolly ball and then instead of playing with it she would start pulling up grass. Fable doesn’t really eat the grass she just loves ripping it up and then shaking her head and spreading the “dead” grass everywhere. If left to her own devices in the backyard she almost always chooses to pull up grass.