It’s that time of year again, time for my ‘End of Year Report’, time to see if I managed to stay on course with my Genealogy Goals, or see if I ended up being side tracked chasing ‘shiny objects’ and lost momentum with my research?
So let’s first take a look at my genealogy Goals for 2020, they can be found here.
My Genealogy Report on the first six months of the year can be found here.
This blog will cover from the middle of the year, until the end, so lets see how I got on.
I would say that the second half was a lot slower and steadier than the first half. The first half of the year I smashed through lots of my ‘Genealogy Goals’ for 2020 and made excellent progress on lots of different fronts, including some new things that I hadn’t planned or foreseen, when I made the original goals back in 2019. I would say the last six months have been more of a consolidation period.
The biggest outside influence, that has stopped me making progress on several fronts, has been the Covid Crisis, which has totally reshaped everyone’s life in 2020. Therefore my intended trips to Dublin and Gallipoli have been put on hold again. These will now be added to my Genealogy Goals for 2021. Sometimes, for unexpected reasons, something prevents us from achieving a particular goal. I have found that it’s no good dwelling over something that you can’t influence, you just have to forget that and move on.
So let’s see how the remainder of my ‘Genealogy Goals’ faired.
My blog has continued to grow and I have seen steady progress in the second part of the year. At the half way point in the year I had approximately 17,000 views for the year and that has almost doubled, I am already over 33,000 views for the year so far and over 500 followers and I am truly grateful for each and everyone of you and thank you for your continued support.
This year I had made it a goal to finally organise my Family History Photograph collection and made excellent progress in the first half of the year, with this project, see below.
For various reasons, progress on this front has stalled, I have certainly lost the early momentum that I had built up and this will definitely be added to my Goals list for 2021. It’s a long term project, but I certainly lost my way with this, mid-year.
I did manage to resist the urge to over subscribe to Genealogy Subscription sites this year, a big failing of mine, in previous years. I managed to stick to the two main websites, Ancestry and Find My Past, although I might add another website to my Goals for 2021!
I promised myself that I would listen to more podcasts and webinars this year and I have delivered in a big way with podcasts. I have listened to lots of different podcasts this year, not all Genealogy based and have grown to love listening to podcasts more and more. Without doubt my favourite podcast is still the Airing Cupboard, you can find a link here.
The next item, has without doubt, been the highlight of my year and my Genealogy Journey so far. To become the host of the ‘Dear Paul’ column for Family Tree Magazine was a dream come true. It’s been an incredible year and I have thoroughly enjoyed writing the column and reading all the wonderful stories and snippets of Genealogy Miscellany, that has been sent in, over the course of the year. This has been a real privilige and I am extremely grateful for the opportunity.
I have also enjoyed another successful year as one of the co-hosts on Tuesday Night’s #AncestryHour on Twitter. This is a weekly Genealogy fun packed hour, starting at 7pm and caters for all levels of experience, from beginner to Professional. It’s a great place to share your Genealogy news, gossip, tips, blogs etc and to ask any questions, why not stop by one week and give it a try? This is something that I am both honoured and proud to be a part of.
I am also a Moderator on a wonderful friendly Family History Forum called Family Tree Forum, the link to the site is here.
If you are looking for a helpful and friendly online family history community to join, then I highly recommend it, why not give it a try?
My DNA progress has been almost non-existent during the latter part of the year, mainly due to time constraints. With so many things on the go, including my blog, I just haven’t had the time to focus on any DNA work, sadly something always has to give and for me, it’s been my DNA progress.
This year has also seen another one of my biggest achievements, I have completed Amy Johnson Crow’s wonderful #52 Ancestors challenge! I have not missed one single week and have managed to write a blog on everyone of the prompts! I was absolutely determined to complete this task after failing previously. If you haven’t done this challenge yourself then I would urge you to give it a go in 2021, all the relevant information can be found on Amy’s website here.
I have also started work on a couple of large research projects, as part of my own Family Tree, although these have been time consuming, the fruits of this labour will probably not come to light until well into 2021 and I’m not quite sure yet how to present this, so watch this space is the advice for this!
I also managed to write a couple of hints and tips blogs for Family Tree Magazine on the big two subscription sites, Ancestry and FindMyPast, the links are here.
One last massive success this year, has been the Framing of my 2 x Great-Grandfather, John Edwin barnes, WW1 Medals, that has been another wonderful highlight for me.
So overall a very active year, far more progress made in the first 6 months of the year, than the second, the last six months has been more about consolidation and steady progress rather than “shout from the rooftops” success every week.
I would safely say, this year has been the most productive and the most pleasing for many different reasons. It’s not all about the ‘big wins’, it’s making progress and most of all having fun that counts.
I am so thankful and grateful to so many people within the wonderful Genealogy Community, far too many to mention you all individually! You bring smiles, wisdom, encouragement, help and make this Hobby such a pleasure to be a part of. Thank you, each and every one of you.
Here’s to a fun packed 2021 and here’s to finally meeting up again and getting the “Genealogy Band” back together again!