Getting Past Binder Chaos / Confusion

BindersIt’s week two of ‘Finally Get Organized‘ and I sort of ‘freaked out’ about the binder portion of the assignment. The task was to create a binder for 4 generations along my dad’s line starting with me as a child. Simple enough since I already had binders — until I started overthinking the task. That’s when the ‘freaking out’ started:

  • 4 generations of stuff won’t fit in one binder
  • do I get my own binder — No — I’m supposed to go in my dad’s binder — but his binder is already full
  • what happens to my mom’s stuff? Do I ‘kick it out’ of my dad’s binder?

When I quit ‘sweating the details’ and actually started going thru the binders and making sure everything was in order within the binder, I found that I was making progress even though I didn’t exactly follow directions.

  • I left my stuff in it’s own binder [and left each of my brother’s in their own binders] since there is no way it will fit in a binder with my father.
  • Took the pictures of my mom out of my dad’s binder for now and placed them in the binder of family pictures that still needs organized — i.e. kicked her out of the binder
  • Left my grandmother’s stuff in my grandfather’s binder for now — am waiting for further assignments that will deal with the female lines.

I’ve had these family notebooks since starting researching the family in the late 1970s. As I obtained more and more documents, I had to separate the generations into their own notebooks. [Pictured is my binder on top, my dad’s on the bottom left and my grandfather’s on the bottom right.]

One of the things I discovered thru this week’s tasks was that my documentation needed to be cleaned up. Until about a year ago, I was a Master Genealogist user. Within Master Genealogist, I had entered a lot of ‘events’ and had documentation for most of those events. That documentation was built on templates based on Elizabeth Shown Mills’ work. However, I had not updated or modified those templates to the level of Evidence Explained. When I converted my data over to RootsMagic, all of that documentation transferred over. Unfortunately, some of my sources don’t have enough info or properly formatted info to produce footnotes of value. I hadn’t discovered this problem until I printed the family group sheets for the binders.

Not only do I need to cleanup some of the documentation but I need to add the media to the sources. Fortunately, I have already scanned the notebooks on my dad’s line thru my great-grandfather! Unfortunately, bursting at the seams notebooks means lots of events and equally lots of documentation needing media attached.

One of the great pluses of this week’s assignment was forcing myself to take the time to document procedures. Besides writing the intros, I’ve documented where RootsMagic stores everything. I’ve also documented my backup plan – both local and in the cloud. I still need to work on the codicil to our will since the recommended format is more detailed than what we included in our wills.

Thank you Dear Myrtle for causing all of my chaos/confusion this week! I look forward to next week’s challenge.