Organization is Key- Family History Scrapbooking Sunday

A little over a week ago I discovered the blog, The Scrappy Genealogist, and saw that she was looking for others to join her in an online digital scrapbooking class.  I was intrigued since I’ve not tried doing my scrapbooking on line and thought it might be a fun thing to try out.  I signed up for “Family History Class 1” taught on the Jessica Sprague website and after some initial hiccups was all ready to start with the class.  The class required that you use Adobe Photoshop, but my older version did not seem to want to work with the templates provided in the class.  At first I thought I’d have to buy some new software, but then I found that Adobe offers free 30-day trials of their products.  Yay!

I read through the first few days class instructions and then jumped right in to working on the title page for my scrapbook.  I waffled for a little while on which side of my family to focus on, but ultimately decided that my mom’s parents (Morse and Krueger) would be easier since I actually have a lot of information on them and tons of photos.  Here’s my title page so far:

Krueger-morse-blueTitlePg copy

I then started working on the timelines for use in the scrapbook.  Here’s where I became a bit overwhelmed and lost some momentum.  It was difficult to decide what facts I should include in the timeline and which to exclude.  Do I include the birth of each child? Do I include their marriage information and their children’s births?  As I began to stew on all of this I decided perhaps I needed to take a break. 

So I turned to the instructional video for Elements Organizer on the class website.  I really should have watched these first.  The video showed great information on using Elements to organize the pictures and documents by family and person.  I could definitely see the benefit of incorporating this program into my daily use to organize my files in a more visual way.  I could then click on a tag like “Shirley Krueger” and all the photos and documents associated with her would fill the screen.  Pretty cool!  Needless to say, I have grand plans to put this program to work and will probably purchase this program when my 30-day trial expires.  Though I have used Google’s Picasa in the past for organizing my photos, I’ve found it not as user friendly as the Elements organizer.  I guess you get what you pay for since Picasa is a free program.

In the next week I will continue to work on getting myself organized and work on my timelines.  Hopefully I can get a lot done early in the week so that I can move on to the next few lessons and keep up with my classmates:

Jackie Baker of Jackie’s Genealogical Journey, Jennifer Shoer of The Scrappy Genealogist, Stephanie of Corn and Cotton: My Family’s Story, Valerie Elkins of Family Cherished, and Jenna of Desperately Seeking Surnames

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