Monday, February 27, 2012

Music Monday- Psychedelic Furs "Pretty in Pink"

Many people have memories associated with music. A song you heard on your first date, music that your grandparents always played, a song that made you smile, or one that made you cry. Music Monday, is a time to share those memories.

This Monday, in honor of the Oscars last night, I picked the Psychedelic Furs "Pretty in Pink." Now I have to admit that I listened to the Psychedelic Furs way before the movie "Pretty in Pink" ever came out. However, the movie maker John Hughes is responsible for making one hit movie after another in the 80's, specifically one's associated with teen angst. Some of these movies I saw with groups of friends, others I saw with dates. I still enjoy watching these movies and hearing the soundtracks. They are classics for my generation.

So when the song "Pretty in Pink" was picked for the movie I was thrilled. Although I like the original compilation of the song better, the version below shows clips from the movie. Enjoy!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Getting a Job In Genealogy?

I've had a few people ask me about the field of genealogy, and most recently a high schooler with an interest in making a career of it. Usually questions are: Can you make a career out of it? Where do you go to school for it? Then there is always the big question, how much money can I make? So I decided to blog about it. I'll tell you what I can think of, and I hope my readers can chime in with what they know.

The only university in the United States that I know of offering a bachelors degree in Family History is Brigham Young University. While getting a degree in Family History would be an added plus, I can say that there are many professional genealogists with degrees in other fields and from all walks of life. What I do urge people to look at is the Board For Certification Of Genealogists. It is important to be aware and understand the standards that a professional genealogist should be working under. As far as other educational opportunities, there are institutes, webinars, continuing education classes offered with a certificate of completion, NGS Home Study course, and conferences.

Can you make a career out being a professional genealogist? There are a number of people I know of that do. It just depends what you want to do with your career. Some do research for clients, write articles or books, lecture around the country, teach, work for genealogy based companies (think, become genealogy book sellers, or work specializing in some other niche like forensics.

Now for the questions everybody wants to know... money. Well, again it depends. This is the white elephant in the room that people will talk around, but never really address directly. With that in mind I can't give you a number figure. I just don't know. What I do know, is that there are people who are able to support their families and pay bills from working as a professional genealogist. I've never presumed to ask them how much. There are also some retired people I know that do not work as a genealogist full-time, who bring in "a little extra" and that suits them just fine.

Some of the factors to consider is where you live in the country. If you live near the D.C. area you have major archives there, which gives you an advantage. People need record pulls from those archives (NARA, DAR, etc.) all the time. Living near the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah is another busy place for a genealogist. Salt Lake is also where is based. If you have a niche or specialty that you become known for, it's another way to make money. Like I said... it depends.

So my fellow genealogy peeps, what do you have to add?

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!

Image courtesy of The Graphics Fairy

Just wanted to wish you all a very happy Valentine's Day!!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Music Monday- Whitney Houston

So many events in life involve music or have memories with music involved. Music Monday is a time to share those music memories.

It should come as no surprise that this Music Monday is about Whitney Houston. Like everybody else I was shocked to find out about her death. I can't say that I was a devoted fan of hers or that I even bought any of her albums/cds. However, I do remember when she first came on the scene with "I Wanna Dance With Somebody." I remember seeing her video several times, thinking how pretty, talented, vibrant and impossibly thin she was. The video and music are very typically 80's, with its bubbly tune, bright colors, and fashion.

Whitney would go on to make many more hits, and own the 80's as a female solo artist (in a different way than Madonna). Witnessing her personal struggles was sad and somewhat baffling. However, I prefer to remember her in the "I Wanna Dance With Somebody" video.

RIP Whitney.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Follow Friday- The Legal Genealogist

A blog that I have really enjoyed reading lately is The Legal Genealogist. Judy Russell was in Tom Jones' class with me at IGHR last June, so it's an added bonus that I know her personally too. Judy has a legal background which gives her blog a special twist. Added to that is Judy's ability to explain legalese to the non-legalese proficient person so that it makes sense. When she it explains it, I get it. If I read legal explanations in a book.... I have to read it several times, and even then I may not get it too well.

Judy has also generously offered to answer genealogy related legal questions for you. The answers so far have been interesting and enlightening. However, one post she wrote recently that got me thinking had nothing to do with legal issues, and was about DNA.

I've been thinking about DNA a lot lately. It just so happens the same week of her DNA posting I watched a dvd called, "The Human Family Tree"produced by National Geographic. It is about their Genographic Project, the human origins in Africa, and the various migration patterns. I found it fascinating as did my non-genealogist husband.

So there you go. Check out Judy's blog and if you can check out the National Geographic dvd.

Sunday, February 5, 2012


Have you ever searched for your ancestors, found them, saw what was listed for their occupation, and wondered what that was? That's what happened to me. My four times great grandmother Delila Caroline (Kirby) Risenhoover Cox Pope was married three times. Her first husband Asa Risenhoover died within a year of their first/only daughter's birth. Delila's second husband, [?] Cox died in the Civil War, and her third husband James Henry Pope was supposedly a gambler. They ended up getting a divorce.

I discovered Delila and James had divorced by the 1880 Pierce City, Lawrence County, Missouri census. The census also lists James Pope's occupation as huxter [sic]. I've never heard of this before. However, just looking at the word and saying it didn't sound very good. So I grabbed my copy of A To Zax: A Comprehensive Dictionary for Genealogists & Historians by Barbara Jean Evans. According to the book a huckster is defined as, "a traveling street peddler who was not very popular with the established town merchants." Not only did the word sound shady, but the description doesn't sound very good either. I think Delila probably made a wise choice getting out of a marriage with this one.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Not So Wordless Wednesday

My surprise Christmas gift this year was a trip to California to visit with my grandfather. It was an awesome surprise! He lives not too far from San Diego and one of the places he took me to was Pacific Beach. This was perhaps one of the coolest things I've seen. 

There is a restaurant that has two surfing wave pools on opposites sides from each other. One pool is for beginners and the other is for the more experienced. This is a photo of the more experienced. Some of the guys were doing flips, but this guy really caught my attention. He was an older man with a Santa coat on. Each time it was his turn, his style was effortless and calm. Not once did he wipe out. He gave meaning to the phrase, "Poetry in motion."