Friday, October 16, 2009

Why We Blog, The Value Of It All!

Blogging- a past time, a passion, a labor of love.

Blogging for me was a far off thought just about a year and a half ago, but the bug has bitten and I love the world of the blog now, especially those with great stories and photos. Blogs that teach us about our world of genealogy from the computer techniques of it all, to the ones that showcase new databases online. They all are wonderful ways to keep in touch with others who love the world of genealogy and what it has to offer. My world has broadened and I feel that I have been blessed with making new friends in the world of blogging.

At the insistence of my sister-in-law, The You Go Genealogy Girl #2, I decided to venture into the world of bloggers. She wanted to do a "partner" blog about our travels and fun times with genealogy research. Who in the world would want to read about our antics? Two silly Grannies who often act as though we don't have a brain cell between us! She insisted that I learn to blog so we both took the plunge and established our new blog, The You Go Genealogy Girls. It has been great fun and what a ride! We write about our travels to conferences, about genealogy research finds, family, give what we consider to be great tips, and most of all we have fun doing it. When we are not together, living and breathing our love of genealogy- then we write about it. We actually have followers, so we must not be the only souls who love this world! ( We actually have been nominated in Family Tree Top 40 Blogs, so check us out and above all-vote.)

For me, I love to spend time reading the new tech blogs, those that relate to the world of genealogy. If you need info, how-to tips or new research ideas, they are all available in the world of blogs. Books of course have their wonderful place but the personable tips and timely information that can be found on many of these great blogs is so valuable. Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter, Genealogy Blog, Nebraska Roots and Ramblings,and Genealogy's Star are but a few of the great information blogs that are out there. If you are not taking the time to peruse a few of these great blogs then you are missing some wonderful "free" resources that are available to genealogists and history buffs.

The question comes to mind as to why many of us have chosen to write blogs? Our human souls long to be with others or connect to other people, whether they be friends, family or even people we have never met. All those people validate our existence. Years ago our ancestors often kept daily diaries or journals to try and fulfill that need. Where would we be today without all those wonderful gems that have been preserved by families? Our knowledge of "Great Grandma Lee" would so much less exciting. Today, many of us blog for the exact same reason that our ancestors left wonderful writings. In our busy lives, we do not sit down and write in a daily diary. We will often take the time to sit and write on our computer, the journal of "our time". I write for the enjoyment of it and to leave a legacy to my children and grandchildren. If I had to journal the thoughts in a diary, it would never get done! Five minutes on the computer leaves what I hope will be a precious legacy. The frosting on the cake is when others can also enjoy what I write or learn from it. Reading the writings of others in the genealogy world of blogs is the same for me, I love the history, the wonderful personal photos, the touching stories. If I pick up a great tip in the course of things then that is a bonus. Lots of writers have the great ability to draw you into their world! Often you feel as though you are part of their family and if you can draw others in then you have done a great job! I faithfully read about 15 blogs a day, those that I don't want to miss their timely presentations. Totally, I follow 53 others, mostly genealogy but a few scrapbooking and photography. Those I get caught up on at least once a week. I have learned so many great things from my favorite blogs, many even help me with my research and thought process.

If you are a genealogist, you probably love the blogs that center around family stories. Many of these are written for the same reason that I blog, to preserve their thoughts for future generations. I love the personal and family blogs more than all the rest. As an added bonus I have learned about different areas of the country and customs of the people from reading many of these blogs. What wonderful writings have come forward from so many people, from the professional genealogist to the beginner who just wants to tell their family story. Several of my favorites that offer a lot of "family" content are: Ancestor Soup, Growing Up Genealogy, Everything's Relative, Greta's Genealogy Blog, Little Bytes of Life, and a personal favorite; Phillip Family Blog. The latter is the blog of friends whose family I grew up with throughout my childhood. We have grown apart as we have gotten older but they hold a special place in my heart and it is wonderful to keep up on their family. If you are considering the writing of a family blog, you might take the time to check out the Phillip Family Blog. It is so good and includes all the family in different ways.

What ever your reason for blogging, keep up the good work. Many of us out here in this world appreciate all that we read. It is history in the making!