Monthly Archives: March 2013

For the Genealogist in all of us

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Guest post by Colter Brian.

Colter Brian is a former private investigator/photographer and now a freelance writer. When he writes, he contributes to sites such as Online Searches. Some of Colter’s hobbies include spending time in the outdoors and perfecting his pasta recipes for his toughest critics; namely his two children.

It’s true, despite our very busy lives and careers, we still long to connect with one another, especially among extended family members. Often times due to our extremely mobile society, family ties can be severed due to job opportunities as well as lifestyle choices, creating a missing piece of the family puzzle. If you are one who values family connections, history and relationships, then perhaps by heeding a few of these tips can help you grow your research and quest for missing branches from your own family tree:

Let’s look at four tips below to get those bare branches filled and on your way to success:

Libraries: One of the best places you can go to start your research is your local library, not only do they have access to thousands of records and archives, but their staff is specially trained to help out with research. Be careful though, often times at historical and university libraries, there may be a fee associated with your research request. Always ask one of the associates there how much time they can devote to your question before they may have to start billing. Just getting started in the right direction, may be all that you need to get help on locating missing ancestors.

Venture into the creepy attic or the spooky basement: No doubt, there was probably someone in your own family who was a bit of a historian. If you’ve got those cardboard boxes full of old family memorabilia, then get them out and start researching the materials that you already have. Chances are there may be items like birth announcements, newspaper articles, personal letters and other odd pieces of history that you, the genealogist extraordinaire will have to uncover.

National ArchivesGovernment Archive sites: Often times you can start your family search right in the comfort and convenience of your own home. If you have a couple of key pieces of information (i.e. first, last name and year they immigrated) you can start plugging in the names to get your search started. A site like can be that great stepping stone. Imagine finding your great-grandfather’s immigration papers and actually seeing his unique signature on your computer screen. Imagine what a day it must have been for him, one that changed the course of your family history, forever.

Background searches: Let’s say that your great-aunt was the family historian, but when you spoke with her she relayed that she gave all her research to one of her cousins, someone she has lost touch with and not spoken to for years. What to do? Not to fret. Log on and do a quick and easy background check. Chances are for a nominal fee you can locate this person in a matter of moments. A place like Online Searches will get the ball rolling.

We all come from somewhere and if you’ve always wondered about your past then there’s no time like to present to start your research. Who knows what amazing things you’ll discover about your very own family? By following these easy steps you can be on your way to discovering a richer and more fulfilling history, the one of your story.

Good luck on your family search!

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Around the Compound – Life happens, but so does death!

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I can’t believe it’s been so long since I did a post!  I’ll tell you, life has happened!  My son has been home visiting since January as he is getting ready to join the Army and will be leaving for boot camp soon and then who knows how long it will be until I see him.  So, therefore, I have been enjoying every possible minute.  We have been jumping through hoops getting him ready and paperwork filled out.  One of the things we had to do was get his braces off, and I am happy to report, no more brace face for Justin!  Isn’t he handsome?

Justin Cole, no more brace face

The Hubs is back working in the same state, so he is now home on weekends and that has been wonderful.  This past weekend, his parents came for a visit and brought his daughter and her little friend.

Here is The Hubs, and JT (Justin) working on cleaning out the coop.

The Hubs and JT

Here is my mother-in-law Glenn Reynolds, and my father-in-law Al Reynolds watching all the action around the coop.

Glenn Reynolds

Al Reynolds

Here’s my self portrait.  I love my boots, y’all!  I was taking a break.  I had raked up about six piles of feathers and rocks and other debris.

My Boots

Here is Tori, my step daughter on the right, with her friend Keena, on the left.  Sweet girls, they seem to really get along great.  We really enjoyed having them visit.

Tori and Keena

Knucklehead will be here all next week for his spring break and so we are looking forward to some good times.

I have some very exciting genealogy things coming up soon, and I can’t say anything at all about them before they happen, but please stay tuned.  April will prove to be very interesting for my family.  I don’t want to spoil anything but look for some updates on that coming up towards the end of April.

Around the compound, I’m sad to say that my chickens and guineas and turkey’s have been depleted down to 4 chickens, 2 guineas and my favorite of all Tom the Turkey.

What happened you say?  Well it starts like this….

One day, I spent the whole day gone with my parents and son, out running around doing errands.  I knew my chickens and other birds had been disappearing one by one and I could not for the life of me figure out how.  But, it seemed to be happening in the middle of the day.  So, I put my Dad’s game camera up by the coop and thank God I did.  When we came home that night, this is what I came home to.

Where's my ladies and what happened?

Tom is all walking around wondering what in the h. e. double hockey sticks has happened here?  So, I’m like freaking out and wondering what happened.  I grab the game camera and 147 pictures later, these few can tell the story.

Guineas at the Coop

Life is good, the guineas are checking out the camera wondering what is happening, the coop is covered because a snow storm is moving in the next day and everything is grand.

Chicken Dottie

Dottie is out checking for bugs around the camera, and you can see all my other little chickens milling around in the coop behind her.

What?  Where are you going Tom?

Something is up, because Tom is hauling it out of there.


Danger!  Danger!!  Is that a dog in the coop??

How long will it take to destroy this??

Sure is and he brought his brother, they are trying to figure out how long it will take them to get into the coop.

Whew, I need to rest.

Eating chickens and destroying a coop is hard work, so they needed a break.

This is hard work but we are almost done!

Let’s get this done, Bro!

Total Destruction

Maybe I will rest again!

I had to run to the store and buy all the supplies to fix the coop, and had to do it in the freezing cold and snow, and would never have gotten it done if Justin hadn’t been here to help.  It was redonk!  We had to repair wire and all.

Turns out, they were my neighbors dogs.  He couldn’t deny the damage they did, as I showed him all 147 pictures.  He kindly paid me for the materials I had to buy and since then he has given away both of the dogs.

That still doesn’t replace, Dottie, Goldie, Blackie, Rooster Cogburn, Black Mama, or Amanda .  RIP my little chickens.  The two guineas that went missing, well, they didn’t have names but I’m sure we will miss them when the ticks start coming out this year.

Anyway, I have just been enjoying my family for the past month or so, and it won’t be long until I am back in the swing of genealogy things, and making more posts, so please bear with me.

Later, y’all!

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