Thursday, September 13, 2012


Today was a day to clear off every piece of paper on my desk.  I'd show you a photograph but I lent my digital camera to a friend for a few days.  But you can imagine.  You know exactly what I mean ... all those little tiny pieces of paper and big pieces, files, photographs...

That teeny-tiny purple post-it note with a marriage date and place for paternal greatgrandparents on a page with the source details.

That list of books on New England early settlers that I want to dig into; all new-to-me books.  WorldCat tells me they are all in libraries close enough to go and read, research, and lose myself in for at least a day or three.  One in Seattle which I can check out the next time I visit my son's family and play with my 6th grandchild;  5 in Vancouver out at the University of BC - who knew?!

The notes I made from two different webinars as well as from online tips & tricks, about simple search tricks on Google e.g., using  :, ~, and more.  Wasn't I going to write that up as a possible handout for my students, with links for more tips they can find themselves at the library or online?

That partial pedigree of the GRAVES family (I'm in the line from #166 John) I printed off with specific names I particularly want to continue searching for better/more details, such as newspaper accounts.

That file of photos and letters from my second cousin once-removed that I'm supposed to be scanning and returning - in order to keep trust high in that side of the family.  She may have more treasure in her boxes.

Those scribbled notes on various scrap paper - big and small - with names, dates, places, sources, and more, reminding me to change the details on my computer tree software as well as my online tree: ORMSBEE/ORMSBY, HAYNES, JOYNER, WALTERS, HOARE, EVELETH, BUCK, HUNT, ORCUTT, among a few others.

Oh, that idea for Christmas presents - how did that get in here too?!  Hmmm, looks good.

Those jotted notes for a future history of two groups in my mother's father's family - KUHN;  plus all those GROVER BUEL/BUELL men in a row.

The email addresses of those two 2nd cousins-twice-removed in Ireland who just might be able to help me find more information on my dad's dad's dad... GILLESPIE & MORRISON.

The partial list of unique or odd or interesting given names and surnames to use in a blog post one day - ZERUBBABEL JEROME (3 of them), Elizabeth CLEVERLY, TERWILLIGER & variants, HOTCHKISS (where and how did that surname develop?),  FREELOVE MITCHELL, and a few more that catch my eye or make me smile.

And more.

Today, my desk became totally clean - I even scrubbed it after I could find the surface.  And I filed the files, scanned and filed the photographs, made a couple of files (neatly labelled) for the oddities I found that need a file of their own.  

I was on such a roll that I replaced my Black & Colour printer ink cartridges for my multi-function printer (don't you think all printers should be free? - they make enough money in ink!).  Then I finally printed off all those sheets I need for a mini-workshop I'm doing on Saturday at my writers' group.

Three cups of coffee later, a dinner of curried lentils & rice with my own home-grown string beans and tomato slices, and I'm definitely done for the day.  I think this productivity deserves a glass of wine - a bottle of which I happen to have cooling in the frig.

I'm definitely done.  I think this needs to be a weekly task.  It was a bit mind-boggling to find so many items in messy piles literally all over my desk.

- Cheers!


Leita said...

nice going, Celia. Alwayg good to be organized and tidy. Enjoy the wine!

Celia Lewis said...

Thanks Leita - of course now I already have a few notes on it of 'stuff' to finish over the weekend. Still - I feel relatively virtuous, and the wine was good!

Anonymous said...

Well done, Celia, and cheers! I need to do the same but have two desks and can't see any of the surface. Maybe later...

Celia Lewis said...

two desks-?! I might never find the surface... I have the idea that any flat surface has a magnet for paper, particularly in piles and piles and piles! Thanks for commenting. I'm still feeling virtuous - only one file (a client) and two pieces of scratch paper floating on my desk today.

Nancy said...

Great job to get it all done in one day, Celia. My table sounds like your desk but I'm afraid it will take me longer than a day to get everything sorted, organized, and all the notes put with their proper person/in their proper places. You are an inspiration!

Celia Lewis said...

Thanks Nancy - My mother had not one but two junk drawers in the kitchen, overflowing; plus a shelf piled 2 feet high (well, maybe only one foot), and every flat surface was covered- counters, tables, end tables, TV tables, etc.... I'm trying not to emulate her in this paper-piling style of storing!! Thanks for commenting - I'm quite the newby blogger and I enjoy people stopping by. As for how long it took - I moved each paper ONCE - with a pile of folders, my filing cabinet wide open, pen ready to label, stapler handy, paper clips handy, and my printer/scanner turned on. Amazing how quickly things got rolling - and my son made me coffee!

Anonymous said...

I did my two on Friday (virtuous) and even dusted with the feather duster (you don't need to move anything with a feather duster, which is cheating a bit, but that's ok) and it looks vastly improved. Did a bit of paper-organising and filing but still seem to have a lot of heaps hanging around. At least it's all on the desks neatly labelled now :-) Handling each paper only once is a great idea. Set your kitchen timer for 15 minutes and go at it - works wonders! Jo

Celia Lewis said...

Ta-da! Good for you! And the timer is so helpful too, as another way to make the task manageable. Absolutely, it's great to handle each paper only once. I walked around for 5 minutes with one paper in hand trying to figure out where it truly belonged, before I eventually found the proper home for it! Congratulations.


Family, friends, and others - I hope you enjoy these pages about our ancestors and their lives. Genealogy has become somewhat of an obsession, more than a hobby, and definitely a wonderful mystery to dig into and discover. Enjoy my writing, and contact me at celia.winky at gmail dot com if you have anything to add to the stories. ... Celia Lewis