Blog Housekeeping

The Splits, c.1984I feel like I’ve loved to dance forever! This isn’t really proof, as I’m about seven in this picture, but it hits on a few recent topics of conversation.

First, I still dance and I’ll be performing in a show on Saturday which is why I’ve been very quiet here on the blog for the past month or so.

Second, I recently had a chance to look at my niece’s progress report from her Preschool teacher in which she stated that she “wants to be a ballerina”—I know it’s a common “girl wish” but it’s still thrilling to hear when she takes such joy in coming to see me dance. And it makes me wonder about how the “creative gene” gets passed on.

Third, this shot was taken in a studio in the upper floor of a converted church in Haslett, Michigan—which in itself was cool!—but, coincidentally, the mother of one of my current fellow dancers has recently occupied the same space with the fabulous and inspiring small but mighty arts. For all you ladies who have been borrowing space there to make costumes… the upstairs workspace was my first dance studio.

And, yes, I can (barely) still do the splits.

Happy hunting,


Welcome all to 2013!

Another year has passed and I am thrilled to have made so much progress on various lines—largely inspired by maintaining this blog.  I have challenged myself searching out different (fabulous and informative) record types including trying DNA testing for the first time (more coming on that soon). I have hit a point where I have to use my almost non-existent German to work on one of my maternal lines (though I’m not quite out of the country yet). As for trips… it’s been mostly short hops though one was out of the country to learn more about the Alison’s and their allied families. And my professional clear has started to blend into my genealogy as I started co-teaching genealogy classes for my library. All that and I have met new friends and gotten to know some better over this endeavor.

And as I noted this time last year it’s the perfect time for a little goal-setting and I have a few in mind:

I will be doing Saturday research at the Archives of Michigan—when my job permits me—and you should too! Starting January 5th the Archives will be open 10 am – 4 pm. I have had fabulous success with the Archives and found (more often than not) that they had a resource I thought I had to travel farther to get.  If you live in the area please consider supporting the Archives efforts to increase accessibility.

My Roadtrip wish list is long and varied but I’m eyeing trips to ACPL‘s Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne, the Burton Historical Collection in Detroit, and back to Fort Wayne in the Fall for FGS 2013.

My current research focuses are Dad’s African-American line and Mom’s German ancestors—which I have come to find equally hard to research just based on regular name variations. So, in the back of my mind Arkansas or Ohio/Pennsylvania field trips are being planned as well.

Plus, I’ll continue doing a little presenting. I have been asked to continue our genealogy classes at my library and will be presenting on African American research at WMGS’s February meeting.

I’ll keep up the posts and let you all know what I’m working on.

Happy Hunting!


Given all my technical difficulties (read: user errors) between Monday and Tuesday, I’ll keep this short and try (fingers crossed) to post it on the right day.

Thank you again to all my readers and fellow researchers, as well as the fabulous speakers I’ve been able to learn from this year. I hope everyone has a fabulous Thanksgiving!

Photo: Gourd and maize decorations from Bowers Harbor Vineyards, Old Mission Peninsula, Traverse City, Michigan, October 2009

Umm… yeah, if you saw it… that last post got away from me. It will be back later.

Happy hunting,


PS. And let’s here it for logging out of WordPress while you still no what your typing.  *facepalm*

My “Hello World” post went up a year ago today (Sorry, Geneabloggers, but it’s definitely today) and it’s been a fun and bizarre, but research-rich, year. While I had hopes of making more road-trips I’ve often had to opt for short hops and learning more about my local institutions—which, mind you, are none too shabby. But this has been a good year for getting organized, connecting with family, and connecting with fellow researchers.

I want to thank all my followers, subscribers, and friends. It may seem funny to say it, but it’s so cool to know that there are people reading my posts! A special thank you to Anne at Adventures of a Kidney Donor! A blog had never crossed my mind until we got to talking about hers. Thanks so much, to the supportive, informative and fun Geneabloggers community. And they’ve heard it before but Sue, Bobbie, Kris, Jeri, and Ariana… Thank you for your continued support! And here’s to another fun and productive research year.

My parents didn’t do the big first birthday parties the way their parents or my generation seems to be stuck on (which I’m totally fine with) so I had to go back to find a good graphic.

Happy Hunting,


I am very lucky to be a descendant of American veterans who survived their various enlistments. Both my Grandfathers served during the Korean War, my uncle Mike served during the Cold war, my 3rd Great Grandfather Henry R. Massy served briefly in the Civil War as did two of his brothers, and my 7th Great Grandfather served in the Revolutionary War. And that’s leaving out the many uncles and cousins who also served or for that matter are serving now. That said I am so thankful for those who gave their life for our country and our freedom.

Happy Memorial Day!




Welcome all to 2012! I’ve taken a bit of time to reflect on my genealogy year and am doubly determined to keep this blog going as it’s had a profound effect on my research and connected and re-connected me with a group of wonderful people. And it’s the season for resolutions and while I haven’t really planned out anything yet I have a few goals to work towards:

Close to home, I hope to better utilize the Library of Michigan and the Archives of Michigan. I have had fabulous success with both institutions and I just need to keep making time to do research at the Historical Center.

The winter will see me trying to plan out spring/summer road trips… I’m currently eyeing Alison/Packer/Massy research in Ontario, trips to ACPL in Fort Wayne, and the Burton Historical Collection in Detroit. Though my travel wish list is huge and if it works better to head in other directions I’ll do it.

I’m looking forward to taking some time with the 1940 Census after it’s posted in April. I am hoping it will shed more light on my many Bradley County, Arkansas families in particular.

Also, I need to get a little more organized—something the blog is definitely helping. As I go through and decide on what to write about in the between trip and trip planning parts of the year I’m coming up with a number of questions that need answers both to further and flesh out my research.

But whatever happens, I’ll keep up the posts and let you all know what I’m working on.

Happy Hunting!


On this Thanksgiving Day I am thankful for so many things but I’ll confine my comments to my year in genealogy.

I started the year with a solid layer of dust on my research and a series of events made me rethink what was important to me in my hobbies and life in general.  One of the choices I made was to put more time into this hobby both for myself and for my family and to share as much as I can with them as I work. Hence, this blog was born. Throughout the year both leading up to this and since I started the blog I have received support, warm wishes and lovely advice from great readers I’ve never met, as well as my family and friends. Thank you all! I am also very thankful for my little cheering section—the ones I hear when I can’t decide what to write, who have inspired me with kind words and feedback. Thank you, Jeri, Bobbie, Kris, and Ariana!

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving!

Happy hunting,


I kept saying I’d do it and a friend at my library inspired me to get a move on with her enthusiasm as she became interested in researching her family. So, “Hello world!”

Give me a little time to figure out what I’m doing… but ideally this will be a place where I pull thoughts together while researching my varied family lines.

I have effectively been away from genealogy in the  past couple of years but this spring I had a couple of wake-up calls that helped me remember that this hobby of mine is one of my true passions and I’d been neglecting it to my own detriment.

Anyway, I’m back with renewed passion, a ton of leads and boxes full of information that has sat between research trips. So, in this blog I’ll be talking about sources, mulling over brickwalls, talking triumphs, and posting roadtrip diaries.

Stay tuned!!!


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