As I mentioned on the home page of this website, I have been working on my family’s genealogy for at least 10 years now, but I didn’t get really serious about it until this past year. I’m not sure I can point to this as the reason, but I think the loss of both my parents played a large part in my turn toward the tree.  After caring for them for so many years, I felt  unmoored with their departures. My sense of family felt disconnected. We were a small family. My father was an only child, and my mother had one brother who died several years before her, leaving only one son.  I made an effort to  better know the cousins that I already had relationships with, and I started looking at that research again. The DNA tests I did on my parents were yielding emails from people wanting to know how we were related and I realized I needed to figure out how to interpret all of that.

I’m not going to go into an explanation of how to analyze DNA but in order to make sense of your connections, you need to learn how to “triangulate” which is a technical term for figuring out which common ancestor your new DNA cousin matches. So in order to do that, I started asking my known cousins to DNA test as well. Most were pretty open to the idea. A few declined but that was cool. I ended up with at least two on each grandparent’s lineage. And I was in business. I paid the fees to several other research websites and began in earnest working on building out my tree.

In July of 2017, I attended the annual IAJGS conference held in Orlando. After years of going to industry conferences, this was my first dedicated genealogy conference. I felt like I was clearly out of my depth. But it was a great opportunity to meet many of the people I had been communicating with online and figure out what I needed to focus on. I also met Max Heffler who asked why I wasn’t involved in the Houston GHJGS. Cut to the chase and six months later,  I am now the President of the society. I’m not going to bore you with the details on how that happened.

I’m excited about having this website and blogging again. I used to be a regular blogger on my business website until it seemed I kept talking about the same things over and over and didn’t have more to add to that conversation. It’s good to have this new conversation and talk about what I am passionate about.

1 Comment

  1. Carol Karp says:

    Stefani I am so impressed with what you have done here. I can relate to so much. By the time I got interested both my parents were gone. The aunts that were still alive told me very little but it was my fault in not asking the right questions and getting facts instead of stories.

    You are to be commended for what you are doing. In my small way I am keeping part of my family history alive. Most of the family I’ve found are appreciative but that’s about as far as it goes.
    Keep up your blog. It’s fascinating. Carol

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