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Tune in for the best information, innovation & inspiration to help you grow your family tree!

Oct 9, 2013

In this episode you will meet other listeners who are getting the word out about their family history through blogging as well as give you some genealogy blogging pointers,and I will introduce you to one of my first “Favorite Genealogy Gems”

Look who I ran into in Detroit: Steve Luxenberg, author of "Annie's Ghosts"

Cruise with Lisa
It’s always a joy for me to get to get out and about and meet so many of you in person. And, have I got an amazing event to tell you about where we can get together in person, talk genealogy and experience the joy of travel! I’ve just signed on with Unlock the Past Cruises for their 2014 British Isles Cruise.

Presenters page


  • day 1 – depart Tilbury, London – 6pm (boarding from 12.30pm)
  • day 2 – at sea
  • day 3 – Invergordon, Scotland – 7.30am-10pm
  • day 4 – Kirkwall, Orkney Islands – 7am-6pm
  • day 5 – Stornoway, Outer Hebrides – 7.30am-10pm (transfer to shore by tender)
  • day 6 – Tobermory, Isle of Mull – 7.30am-4pm (transfer to shore by tender)
  • day 7 – Dublin, Ireland – 8am-5.45pm
  • day 8 – St Mary’s, Isles of Scilly - 9am-6pm (transfer to shore by tender)
  • day 9 – St Peter Port, Guernsey - 7.30am-6pm (transfer to shore by tender)
  • day 10 – Honfleur, France –  9am-5pm
  • day 11 – arrive Tilbury, London – 9am

You’ll have around 40 topics to choose from, held mostly in the evening so there will be loads of time to explore the landscape.

My understanding is that this cruise is filling up very quickly so if you’re interested be sure and click the links above for more details.


Brand New in the Genealogy Gems Store

Evernote for Windows for Genealogists Quick Reference Guide

“a nice easy to grab and use laminated cheat sheet that can instantly answer your most important questions and give you easy ways to use Evernote more quickly and efficiently.

Evernote is certainly the fastest-growing note-taking technology out there, so it is no wonder that it is incredibly popular with genealogists. But there is so much packed in to it that I notice that many genealogists aren’t taking full advantage. Keep this handy cheat sheet close at hand and you’ll have everything you need.

This four page laminated guide includes:

  • A Getting Started Checklist
  • Quick Key Break Out Boxes – packed with keystrokes to speed up your use of Evernote
  • Specialized Note-taking Actions
  • How to Get the Most Out of Clipping
  • Tips for Maneuvering the Desktop Client
  • Genealogical Organization Recommendations
  • Little Known Search Strategies
  • Specialized Genealogy Focused Techniques such as Source Citation Tips, Clipping Recommendations, and Using Reminders
  • Evernote Premium vs. Free Comparison

Also available for UK, Canada or Australia shipping


Genealogy News:

ANCESTRY.COM and FamilySearch recently announced that they have made an agreement to jointly make a billion global records available online over the next five years by digitizing, indexing and publishing the records from the FamilySearch vault. expects to invest more than $60 million alongside thousands of hours of volunteer efforts facilitated by FamilySearch. 

The companies also announced in early 2013 an additional project where they plan to publish 140 million U.S. Wills & Probate images and indexes over the next three years—creating a national database of wills and other probate documents spanning 1800-1930 online for the very first time.


Daughter Receives WWII Soldier Father's Letter Decades Later

Watch the Video:



In this episode we celebrate listeners who are sharing their family history through blogging:

New Blogger Keith is a Son of a Swift

I have run a personal family history site for the past five years and now, based on your advice, launched my own genealogy blog. I already had a tumblr account, so I started (Son of Swift is a translation of my name from the original Gaelic, O'Seibhleain).  Thanks for the great idea and I will continue to listen as I conduct my research into the future.”


Chris is Now Blogging 
 “OK listening to the folks in your latest podcasts convinced me. I started my own genealogy blog last month. So far there's not a lot of "traffic" but I've gotten good reviews from the family members…Hoping you have some tips in mind for a future podcast...sort of a maintaining a blog for the long run -tips and tricks type thing. Take a look and let me know what you think. LOVE the podcast.”


Follow up from Chris:

“After getting my feet wet, I decided to join GENEABLOGGERS network at  . Wow. My first goal was realized just after that. I found another blogger who is a "double cousin" through two different branches of my family. Thanks so much for your advice.”


Margaret is on a Family Album Journey

“I started my blog a couple of years ago, but I decided to really blog regularly back in May.  I'm using the photos in my Davis ancestors' family albums from the 1880s as a springboard for my blog posts.  They lived in Savannah, so I'm really focusing a lot on Savannah history and the photographers there.  It's been fun.  I took a break when I went on a family vacation in July, so I'm struggling to get back in the rhythm of posting.   I tend to do a lot of research just for my posts, so it can take a lot of time, but I love it! Thanks for the inspiration and all the great information.”

Wayne Uses Blogging to Discover Genealogy
“I have started a new blog about genealogy. It is a place where I can tell stories, relate experiences and pass along tips discovered while doing research on my family; through volunteer activities, including as an Online Parish Clerk; and from projects completed as a genealogical consultant. The first post is in place and I have many more in preparation."

Premium Member Sandy is Digging into her Family Roots
“I am a new blogger, on your last podcast you said to email a link to our blogs. I watched your videos to get me started. i do have fun with it. I hope you like it.” Sandy’s blog has been featuring a series of letters home written during World War II."

Steve is Poking Around the Past
“On September 1st I finally managed to get my family history blog started, and I'd like to invite you to take a look. I call it Poking Around in the Past, and I gave you a mention (link) in my first post.”

From Gloria who describes herself as “A Die Hard Fan”
“I have a blog but haven’t really dedicated it to genealogy although it ties in sometimes as I use it for building my platform for my upcoming adoption memoir. Feel free to take a look at Family Links Matter. I put together a Facebook group page—The Groton, MA LONGLEY line—and family members post and share info, pictures, and a lot more. I met a third cousin and her daughter, several 7th cousins, and more. It’s a great resource for all of  us. Check it out Groton MA line LONGLEY


Lisa’s Blogging Tips
Include great visuals – old photos, public domain images, etc. Your readers will enjoy them and they may help in your blog’s Google search results ranking.

Give your readers an easy way to subscribe by email
Give it a try by subscribing to the Genealogy Gems Blog through email using

Instructions for Subscribing to a blog via email: (feel free to add these to your blog)

  1. Look for the orange RSS button to get the feed address for a blog or podcast.
  2. Copy the RSS feed address for the blog
    Example: The Genealogy Gems blog the feed is
  3. Go to
  4. Paste  the blog feed URL in the “Feed” field on the Blogtrottr website
  5. In the next field type in your email address
  6. Select how often you want to receive the email notifications of new posts
  7. Click the orange “Feed Me” button
  8. Emails of new posts will now be delivered to your email address as requested

Let your readers know that the service is available to them by adding a Text Widget to the side bar of your blog with the above instructions and a link to Blogtrottr.

Try assigning themes to your blogging days. It can help you get a jump start on writing, as well as help you determine which areas are your favorites that you may want to focus on my more in the future as your “niche.”

Check out Geneabloggers at for genealogy blogging support and theme ideas.

Break up long posts into several posts. They are easier for you to publish, and easier for your readers to consume.

Collect blogging ideas in Evernote. Set up a notebook called “Blogging Ideas” and tags for your various subject areas such as:

  • Family lines / surnames such as  “Johnson Family”
  • Location based subjects such as “Texas History”
  • Focus areas such as  “Memoirs”, “Old Photos” etc.

Learn everything you need to know about using Evernote for genealogy by becoming a Genealogy Gems Premium Member. In addition to over 100 exclusive Premium episodes, membership includes my one hour Evernote class video, and the Evernote instructional mini-series. 

Get the Evernote for Windows for Genealogists Quick Reference Guide in the Genealogy Gems Store


GEM:  Lisa’s Favorite Genealogy Gems (Just in time for Christmas!): Espy Frames by Jen Garrett

As I get older, I find myself tiring of the same old gift giving every year. You know how it is – we all have too much stuff, and what we become more and more interested in is that which will last, and have a lasting impression on our family and those we love.

So as I travel throughout the year I keep my eyes peeled for things that really stand out – items that are truly Genealogy Gems. Wonderful products that I want for my own home and family, and ones I think that you will appreciate and enjoy as well. So I’ve decided that Lisa is going to have her Favorite Genealogy Gems.  And the first one that I want to introduce you to today are Espy Frames by Jen Garrett.

I will never forget taking my annual walk through the Ohio Genealogical Society Conference exhibit hall this last year. I really didn’t expect to see anything earth shattering or new. But when I reached the end of the first row and turned the corner I was instantly mesmerized by what I saw.

Laid out across a long table, and hanging on the walls behind it were the more glorious and spectacular frames I had ever seen. Most were large thick frames around mirrors, but a few encompassed vintage photos. But they had three very important things in common. They all were dripping with vintage gems, jewels, charms, buttons and antiques. They were all one-of-a-kind pieces of art, and each one told a very unique story.  Oh, and they had one more important thing in common. They were all created by Jen Garrett.

In this gem segment of the podcast I want to introduce you to Jen. She is a very special lady, which an incredible talent for story telling through these incredible art frames. I hope you come away with is that there are new and creative ways to help tell you ancestors story.

I have a very special hand tinted photo from the 1930s of my beloved Grandma Alfreda Burkett in her nursing cap, taken the day she graduated from nursing school. She looks so young, and beautiful and full of excitement for her new career, which would last for over 50 years.  I’ve waited to hang that photo in my home because I knew it deserved a special frame, and I’ve just never found one that did it justice. The frame that I bought that day, absolutely does it justice. It’s covered in vintage items from that era, all with a medical theme

Exclusive Collection Hand Selected by Lisa
I noticed it right away because the frame held a photo from that same era of another young nurse. She has been replaced with Grandma Burkett’s photo, and this framed piece is now, truly, a family heirloom. It hangs in my Genealogy Gems office, and it will be handed down for generations to come.

Jen’s frames are an investment well worth making. And if you would like to acquire one of these very special frames you will find an exclusive collection now in the Genealogy Gems website store, just in time for the holidays.

The frames are all truly incredible works of art!

Even if you aren’t interested in purchasing a frame, may I encourage you to just go and window shop. You’ll be inspired. And once a frame I this collection has been purchased it’s gone forever, because they really are one-of-a-kind.

Be sure to click on them to see the enlarged view. The photos don’t do the frames justice, but the larger images will give you a taste of all of the incredible and intricate details in them. On a PC you can hold the Control key and plus the plus key (+) to zoom in even further. Enjoy!

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