This time next week…

Jamboree Graphic 2014This time next week, I will be at the SCGS Jamboree which is being held at the Burbank Airport Marriott, June 6-8, 2014.  It is a great source of genealogical education and it is a whole lot of fun too!  I am very excited to attend and can’t wait.

A good friend is joining me at the conference this year.  She asked me what tips I could give her as a first-time attendee.  I started thinking about it and came up with a few so I decided to post my tips here and hopefully it could help others besides my friend.

#1     You will see this on most tips for attending a genealogy conference.  Bring comfortable shoes, dress is layers and drink water.  You will do a lot of walking and being comfortable and well hydrated is very important.  The temperature in each room varies and you won’t know what the temperature will be like until you get the room.  It is best to dress in layers or bring a sweater for when the room is either too hot or too cold.

#2     If the genealogical conference has an app, USE IT!  Its a great tool to help you keep track of not only your first & second choice in classes.  The app is also good for when you have friends at the conference.  Within the app, you can send a friend request to your friends and if they accept your request, you can communicate with them in getting a group together for lunch.  If you are really close with your friend or if you have family attending and you can also share your schedule with each other.  This helps you to see where this person might be at in case you need to get a hold of them or if you want to attend the same class together.  I love using this feature of the app with my daughter so that I can keep track of what classes she might be in and possibly sit with her in a class.

#3     This next tip really depends on your note taking habits.  Usually you get a syllabus book/binder free with your registration but if the organization putting on the conference is trying to cut down on costs, you might just get a CD copy instead.  I like to obtain the syllabus and mark my first and second choice in classes, then when I attend the classes, I write on the syllabus for each class itself.  It helps me to keep up with what the speaker is saying and to keep the appropriate notes  and what the speaker is saying together.  HERE IS MY TIP: If you are not able to get a printed copy of the syllabus, go into the app and on each of the classes you want to take, if there is a PDF symbol, you can email the handout to yourself, then print them before attending the conference.  You still get the syllabus for each class and to write on each of the appropriate speakers outline.  You also are helping  by not printing out every single page of the syllabus.

#4     Don’t be afraid to start up a conversation with the people sitting around you.  You might find a cousin sitting right next to you!

#5  Don’t be afraid to network with other genealogists outside of the classroom.  There are some genealogists that do get paid for the research they do, but if you meet others who are researching the same area as you, they might be helpful when you have hit a brick wall.  It is also a good idea to keep their contact information handy too.

I hope that these tips have helped you and my good friend as well.  If you have any other tips for first-time attendees to a genealogical conference, please list them in the comment section so that others can use your tips.

Happy Ancestry Hunting!

Tricia

 

SCGS Jamboree – Day One

The first day of Jamboree was fantastic!!! I went to some awesome lectures, ran into old friends, and met some new friends.

The day started very early with our arrival at the Marriott Hotel at 8am. We arrived so very early that we had to wait a few hours till the festivities got started.

My fist lecture was Pimp your iPad with Lisa Louise Cooke. It was a very informative lecture and she had a lot of tips that I could use. She gave excellent examples of apps (some free, some paid) for reading apps, audio visual apps, location based apps and more. It was at this class that I was able to get a picture with my first famous genealogy speaker!

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Me and Lisa Louise Cooke

My next and last lecture for the day was the Railroad Records and Railroad History: Methods for Tracking with Paula Stuart Warren. This was another wonderfully rich with information lecture! Ms Stuart Warren gave excellent examples of repositories that had railroad records and various diverse railroad related collections. It was a very informative lecture!

After the lectures, my daughter went to the Dodger game with her dad and I met up with other genealogist to discuss The NextGen Genealogy group.

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We took over the conference table in the lounge.

It was a fun and lively discussion and I met even more new genealogist at this event. After the meet-up, I went to dinner with Kim Cotton, Elyse Doerflinger and one of my new friends Michael Melendez. Dinner was great and afterwards I headed to the hotel bar with Kim and Elyse. This was to pass the time till my daughter returned from the Dodger game. We had a great talking about a lot of many different subjects and we enjoyed the company very much!

This was a wonderful start to the Jamboree!!!!

Up next……Day Two.

Letting go of the purse strings….its not easy.

I’m loving the Jamboree App that SCGS launched this year!  It is allowing me to let go of the purse strings a little. 

This is the second year in a row that my daughter will be accompaning me to the SCGS Jamboree.  She loved going last year and is very excited about going this year.  Two weeks ago, my baby girl turned 15, where did the time go?  For her birthday, I surprised her that not only are we going to Jamboree this year, but we have a hotel room as well!  She was very surprised and happy!  Well I downloaded the Jamboree App and it not only allows you to send friends request to others but you can also share your planned schedule with certain friends as well. 

I had my daughter download the app to her ipad mini and had her pick her classes for the three days.  Then we friended each other.  After we friended each other, we shared our schedule with each other.  I can now see the classes that my daughter selected, which ones we will be attended together, and her back up classes (in case her first ones fill up.)  This eases my mind to know where she might be at any given time in the day without being overprotective. 

Thank you SCGS Jamboree!!  This is a wonderful tool for a mother who is learning, ever so slightly, to let go of the purse strings and allow her baby chickadee to fly!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Tricia

Heading to Jamboree in Burbank, CA on Friday!

Hello everyone!  I hope that the week has been kind to everyone.  A few weeks ago, I had a wonderful time at the NGS Annual Family History Conference in Las Vegas, NV.  I wasn’t able to blog that much mainly because the hotel I stayed at (like many hotels in Vegas) didn’t offer free in-room internet and it was pricey.  Also, the internet at the conference is what allowed me to make my few posts on NGS but it couldn’t handle the number of people there wanting to use it so I got bummped off a lot!

Now that I am heading for SCGC Jamboree in Burbank tomorrow, I am prepared.  This time, I added our hotspot service to my cell phone so that when I need internet, I could have access that wouldn’t bumped me off every 20 minuets or cost an arm and a leg!  I have tested the hotspot at work (we don’t have wifi here (free or otherwise)) and it worked wonderfully! I’m also glad we added this service because now my daughter gets to “chat” with her dad at night!  So its a win-win!

If any of you readers plan on going to Jamboree in Burbank this weekend, let me know and maybe we can meet.  Hope you all have a great weekend!

Tricia

What lectures are you looking forward to attending at #NGS2013?

As time flies by and the NGS Family History Conference gets closer and closer, what lectures are you looking foreward to attending?

This is my first time at NGS Family History Conference and I am very excited for all of the lectures I plan on attending.  However, there are a few speakers that I am looking forward to.

Elizabeth Shown Mills – I know, she is a well-renowned speaker on genealogical things.  I have become a stalker, er, fan of her work and I am excited to hear a few of her lectures.

Lisa Louise Cooke -  I have been looking to learn how to use Evernote with my genealogy research and when I saw that Ms. Cooke will be conducting a lecture on it, I knew that I wanted to attend it!

Thomas W. Jones -  Even before they announced his new upcoming book to be published soon, I had a few of his lectures highlighted.  I had heard from other genealogist that he was an excelent speaker.  I am looking forward to his methodology lectures.

These are just a few of the speakers that I am looking forward to attending their lectures next week.  Who are you looking foward to hear speak next week at NGS Family History Conference?  If your not going, who would you like to see if you were able to go?  Let me know!

Tricia

My Top 10 Tips for attending a Genealogy Conference.

In two weeks from today, I will be attending the opening session of the NGS Family History Conference in Las Vegas, NV.  I am really excited because this is my very first national genealogy conference.   In the past, the national conferences were not held near me and were too far for me to attend.  I have been planning for this conference since the day they announced that it was going to be held in Las Vegas, NV.  The last time this conference was on the west coast was in California in 2004.

Now that I am 95% done with my move to our new house, I can concentrate on the trip to Vegas.  I have developed some tips for the new attendees (like me) that I thought would be helpful.  These are based on my experience in attending the local conferences in the past.

 1.            Dress comfortably and wear good walking shoes.  I just purchased a pair of flip flops that are so comfortable!  I feel like I am walking on clouds!  There is a lot of walking involved at a genealogy conference so make sure you’re as comfortable as you can be.

 2.            Bring a sweater.  It would be better to dress in layers but for me, I prefer to bring a light sweater.  The lecture rooms have a tendency to be either too warm or too cold.  For me personally, I am good if it’s too warm, but if it’s too cold, I will use my sweater.

 3.            Bring some water.  Just as an opposite of tip #2, it can also get very warm in a lecture room too. One way to combat the warmness of a room is to carry a bottle of water just in case. 

 4.            Bring items to take notes with.  Now, I ordered a printed syllabus only because my process of learning means that I take a lot of notes on the syllabus page itself.  All those who didn’t register as an early bird will just have the syllabus on a flash drive.  So if you didn’t get to order the printed syllabus, you should bring with you a form of taking notes (ipad, laptop, or pad of paper with pen.)

 5.            Arrive early for your session.  Sometimes, especially if the speaker is a popular one, the rooms will fill to capacity.  When that happens, the room will be closed to anyone who does not have a seat.  This is due to fire regulations on the capacity of the room and NGS can’t make any exceptions.  If they do, they could get in trouble with the Fire Department and/or be fined.  I am a fan of Elizabeth Shown Mills and I know that she is a popular speaker.  I plan to get to her lectures early.  I know that her lectures will fill up fast and I want to make sure to have a seat.

 6.            If you have calling cards or business cards as a genealogist, bring them.  It will help you to network with others even if you aren’t a professional genealogist.  You never know you could meet a distant cousin and want to stay in contact.  Vista print offers an inexpensive way to order personal calling cards and business cards and your order can be expedited (for a fee of course!)

7.            Network!!!  Along those same lines, collect business and personal cards from others.  You never know when you might need some help in a distant area and they could get a copy of a document for you.

 8.            Don’t be a wallflower!  If you have questions, ask the person next to you.  It’s a great way to make new friends and you could have found someone to talk to about the same genealogy interests as you do.  This comes in handy when your family is tired of hearing you talk about genealogy.

 9.            Remember to be courteous to the speaker.  Don’t take pictures, unless you ask first.  Don’t get up to leave the room in the middle of their lecture, if you can help it.  The speakers put a lot of time and effort into their lecture and more often than not, they don’t get paid enough for it. 

 10.          Have Fun!!!  Yes.  This conference is a learning experience, but there are new people to meet, vendors to see and new speakers to listen to.  Relax and enjoy it all!

 I will be there attending my list of classes, but if you see a Hispanic lady walking around with a pink purse and in flip flops, tap my shoulder and say Hi.  Or better yet, email me before the conference and we can meet for lunch.

NGS Family History Conference – Early Bird Registration to Close Soon!

Hurry and register for the 2013 NGS Family History Conference to be held in Las Vegas, Nevada on May 08-11, 2013.  You have ten more days left to register with the early bird registration fee.

The early bird registration is $195 but will only be good until March 19, 2013.  After March 20th, it goes up to $230.  This registration includes all four days of the conference and the Syllabus on a flash drive.  You can order the print version of the Syllabus for $25 more.  To register or to find out more about the 2013 NGS Family History Conference, click here.

I’m registered, are you?  Comment and let me know if your going or not.  Maybe we can meet up?

Have a fantabulous day!

Tricia

Vegas! Here I come!!!

Used with permission.

Used with permission.

Is anyone else attending the NGS Annual Conference that is scheduled to be held on May 8 – 11, 2013 in Las Vegas, NV?  Well I am and I am extremely excited about this trip!

This morning, I received some great, wonderfully, AWESOME news!  I was selected as an official blogger for this year’s NGS Annual Conference.  This is my first time as an official blogger for a conference.  I was so excited to receive the news that I immediately text my husband and daughter!  (Well I really wanted to jump up and down and scream but I think the higher-ups would have frowned upon that type of behavior in my office!  :-D)  This means that I will be bringing to you, my readers, updates and any interesting news involving the conference as I get a hold of them.  I will also be tweeting, blogging, and posting on my facebook, my google+ page, and on my LinkedIn account; all of the fun stuff and interesting tidbits that I will find out during the conference. 

After the rough last two months including the death in our family, my husband really needed a vacation away from home.  We discussed attending NGS’ Annual Conference and decided to add on a few extra days before the conference so that we can have some alone time together.  I know that my husband really needs this time away and that he is really looking forward to his golf time while I am in my classes at the conference. ;-)

So stay tuned and see what new things come next for the 2013 NGS Annual Conference in Las Vegas, Nevada!

See you in Vegas!

Tricia

Are you going?

It is exactly three weeks from the start of SCGS 2012 Jamboree today.  I am geared up and very excited to attend this year.  Not only will I be seeing my genealogy friends again, but my daughter will be attending with me this year.  It is her first time attending any genealogy conference and she is also excited for going.  I even talked her into being a guest blogger with her opinions of the conference from a 14 year-olds perspective.  We will see how she likes it.

If your on the fence about attending Jamboree this year, I highly recommend it as a great learning experience.  There are wonderful, well known, speakers in the genealogy field presenting classes such as Lisa Alzo, Elyse Doerflinger, Jean Wilcox Hibben, and Thomas MacEntee just to name a few.  There will also be an exhibitor’s hall with such noted companies as Legacy Family Tree, Inc., Ancestry.com and FamilySearch, again to just name a few.  If that doesn’t get you into the door to the conference, you will be meeting fellow genealogy researchers, family historians, genealogists and yes, even me.  

CLICK HERE FOR MORE JAMBOREE INFORMATION!!

Now that you’ve decided to go, let me know so that we can meet.  I love making new friends and meeting new people!

Tricia

Open! Open! Open!

I made it into Pro Gen 15!!  Starting tomorrow, I will embark on a focused genealogy journey to learn how to be a more professional genealogist!  I can’t wait to start.  It’s like that commercial where I am standing at the glass door looking in, saying “Open!” “Open!” “Open!”

I will post more about my experiences and assigment if and when I can.  Woo Hoo!!!  I can’t believe I made it!  Congratualtions to everyone in ProGen 15!