And by “flourish” I mean…

Scrapbooking is a form of art that I can wrap my head around and understand, unlike sewing (knots, I’m looking at you!).  I was not tooting my own horn as if I am an expert, but I am experienced and learning more every day!  I’m getting ready to place my first order for items to update tools I already own and looking at my calendar to carve out some time to hold a “crop.”

What’s a “crop”?  It’s where other people interested in scrapping get together and work on their albums.  They can bring their own supplies or use mine.  They can try out tools of mine to see if it’s something they’d like to add to their own stash.  Maybe pick up some new papers!  Paper Buffet, anyone?  More about that later.

I was thinking more about how scrapbooking relates to genealogy and another thought came to mind.  While scrapbooking, we are creating and saving memories for our future generations.  I would give anything for a scrap of information about my relatives who immigrated from Ireland and lived out the rest of their days in Cincinnati but nary a scrap to be found.  I guess it’s about leaving your legacy, accomplishments, failures, the good and the bad, what makes you YOU.  Put your thoughts down in your own handwriting next to a picture of yourself in an album that will stand the test of time and be there 200 years from now.

Struggling

That’s right, I’ve been struggling to find a way to merge my passion for family history challenges and my creative side.  Since you all know my background regarding my love for genealogy, let me explain my “creative side.”

My creative side is paper-based.  I like working with paper art.  I can’t draw; I’m not great at fiber arts…but, with paper, I flourish.  Ideas spring to mind, mixing colors and patterns with pictures, bringing memories to life to last, well, forever.  About 15 years ago, I was putting together Creative Memories (CM) scrapbooks…loved their books and products.  Loved them so much that even my then-husband even bought tools at the time so we could create books together.  Time for scrapbooking fell to the wayside with the raising of our sons and working full-time and my MT career taking off, as well as my newfound interest in genealogy.

Now, I’ve been yearning for some say to join the two together.  Regarding CM, they had had financial issues in the recent past, and I thought they had gone bankrupt.  I knew Archiver’s had closed.  I do have a Cricut machine and supplies with which to make cards, but that is a bit different.  On the off-chance, I did a Google search for Creative Memories.  Lo and behold, they are alive and well!

I dusted off all my old CM tools, which still work just fine, and gathered all my paper supplies.  I then scoured their website and took the plunge.  I am now a Creative Memories Advisor!  My next step is to update my tools and supplies and begin scheduling workshops.  I have literally 300+ photos from three events that I want to print and put into scrapbooks so I’m good there.  I do have to learn more about digital scrapbooking, which is now part of CM.

If you are interested in learning more about CM, check out my site.

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Where I am not struggling is with my genealogy life!  I have since become the Assistant Director at the historical society where I put in 13.5 hours/week.  I have been researching some really interesting genealogical situations and have created a digital newsletter for the society, as well as helping create our newest exhibit.

ECIGA is going great…we have 15 members so far for 2018 and have a lot of great stuff on the schedule for this year.  We are using our portable scanner and laptop to scan in record sets from east-central Indiana that are not digitized anywhere yet.  We will have a booth at the 2018 FGS Annual Conference in Fort Wayne, Indiana…come say hi!

In April, I’ll be attending the Indiana Genealogical Society Annual Conference…looking forward to that meeting and learning more!  In May, I’ll be going to the Indiana DAR State Conference where I will have the opportunity to meet our President General…how exciting is that?  Also, in May, my local DAR chapter and the historical society are partnering together to present 100 Years of the Red Poppy: A World War I Commemorative Event for the community.

I have a lot on my plate for 2018, all of which I am thoroughly excited about.  Genealogy is very important to me, as is preserving those memories for generations to come.  I can help you learn your history and then preserve it!

I Did It!

I *finally* fixed that typo on my home page!!!  “Challenger” is gone; challenge is in its rightful place (if you’ve been following me for awhile you’ll understand).

And, I did finally resign from my medical transcription job.  Today, as a matter of fact.  Am I retired from the career as a whole?  Who knows what the future holds at this point.

Well, I do know a little of what my future holds and that is my new position as Assistant Director at the Henry County Historical Society!!  I am beyond thrilled to work for the Museum.  Not only do I get to work there, but I also will still be able to volunteer!  Not having my part-time day job opens up more hours for me to help out at the Museum.  Our major project starting after the holidays is utilizing our PastPerfect software.  INVENTORY PARTY!  I will also be holding a monthly after-hours meeting at the Museum where I combine a DAR Museum program with items in our Civil War era collection, preparing a World War I commemorative event, and, of course, keeping up with social media and some trivia (2018 will be My Name Is Henry County).

Along with working/volunteering at the Museum, I will also be ramping up my genealogical research consulting business as much as possible and doing a little artsy genealogy too.

I have to admit that in my old age I’ve become more and more assertive.  The position I’ve earned at the Museum was not previously a position.  I asked that it be created for me so I could resign from my day job and devote more hours at the Museum.  Never in my life would I have dreamed I’d do something so gutsy.  This is the type of job where you think to yourself “they pay me to do this?”  Honestly, if I was independently wealthy, they would not have to pay me to work there.  I love how I’ve combined my love of local history with my passion for genealogy and will have the ability to help and share with others who are on their journey.

Check back here for tales from a small house museum historical society genealogical junkie!

Twists and Turns!

Life is full of them! And a twist and turn are in my very near future.

As of Monday, December 11, I will be available full-time to conduct genealogical research. Plus, I’m adding another side venture, a combination of paper craft and pedigree chart. I’m working on building my website for that and will share here when it’s ready.

I’ve been insanely busy this year with volunteering at the local historical society, my local DAR chapter, and my genealogical society. Plus, I’m attempting to write an article about my Abbott ancestors for the IN Genealogical Society. Whew! I visit a local assisted living facility once a month and help residents with their online family trees on FamilySearch.org.

I also tried making a dream catcher…epic fail! I’ve tried needle felting. Nice way to get out some aggression by punching a super sharp needle into wool roving to create cute 3D objects.

I am on the waiting list for an upcoming ProGen class. Excitedly awaiting that!

As for medical transcription, my career in that is ending soon. Bittersweet. End of an era, for sure!

Watch for hopefully more frequent updates here!

Return of the Erin Condren LifePlanner!

Affiliate Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive 7% if you make a purchase using this link.

Remember this post? Or this one?  Those are about my Erin Condren planners.  I’m also the proud owner of a third planner!  Just as I predicted in my first post, these planners work very well with doing genealogy research, keeping organized, and taking notes.  I have purchased Erin Condren products for the past 3 years and am extremely pleased with the quality.  I plan on continuing to use this company for my planner needs.

  <–My third planner with my updated name on the front, “A. Kaye Ford.”

My third planner is actually an 8.5″ x 11″ notebook.  I added three dividers to it, each with four months, and I added a small monthly calendar to the front using a CoilClip Connector.  There are literally too many really cool and useful items at Erin Condren…markers, bookmarks, phone cases, art, stickers…with a strong emphasis on teachers and empowering women and girls.  Not to mention some awesome and diverse designs that you can interchange! I love that idea! I’m pretty hip on the diamond theme above but sometimes I just feel like a pink flamingo, you know?

<–Added CoilClip Connector to the black coil in my third planner; I stuck the monthly calendar on it.

<–Glimpse at my planning.

I have a pouch connected to the coil in the back of my planner to hold all my stickers and markers and extras.

If you love to shop for school supplies, this is your jam to the nth level! And, it’s time to start thinking about 2018 already!  I believe I’ll order a couple new covers and snap in a new calendar and keep on a’planning! Click the banner below to check out ErinCondren.com


Affiliate Disclosure: Again, by clicking the link and purchasing any product I may receive 7% compensation.

More Decisions…

I really need to take a deep breath and collect my thoughts on an upcoming decision.  I may have an opportunity to do something I’m passionate about, and, if I’m good at it, it could be my job until the end of my time.

And it’s not medical transcription.  I would finally be able to leave MT behind.  Bittersweet.

This opportunity would be full-time hours with part-time pay, and I’m fine with that.  This opportunity would also move me out of my comfort zone.  I’ll have to be fine with that.  This opportunity would require a lot of learning, and I’m fine with that.  This opportunity might come sooner than I expected.

Deep breaths!