Life Planners~Part 2 and Prompt #157

I’ve talked about life planners before and thought I’d post an update.  I’m still using the Erin Condren products (no plug here, just like her stuff).  Except instead of an actual life planner, I “built” a more personalized notebook to use for 2016-17.

It’s an 8.5″ x 11″ notebook (so it’s a bit bigger) with a personalized cover, a calendar in the front, and then fun notebook pages.  I bought 3 personalized dividers (historical society, ECIGA, and Life/Citation) to divide the notebook pages.  All I need calendar-wise is a monthly view (not weekly and daily).  With the amount of social media I’m suddenly involved in, I needed a way to keep track of what to post and when to post it, content to post, etc.  The calendar pages were marked with the month and lines for days, but I had to put on the stickers for the corresponding days, which was fine. Makes it totally customizable to when you want to begin using it, whatever year!  The cost was equivalent to a Life Planner.

planner Peek at June!

Prompt #157: What I Would Tell My 9-Year-Old Self

Your maternal grandfather is a photographer…he’s made one room of his house a darkroom.  By the time you come along, he doesn’t use the room anymore, but it still has that darkroom smell.  Plus a lot of negatives.  Get in there and secure those negatives!  And any pictures you find around his house!  Also, check the bookshelves in the living room for an old Bible.  He hand-copied information from a Bible of his grandfather; where that Bible is now, who knows.  But you might salvage it if you just explore those shelves!  What you don’t realize is he was very interested in family history and actually had a lot of it there.  You just need to poke around a bit.  It’s nearly 36 years later and it’s untelling what happened to it all.

Preparing for a trip on June 8 to Fort Wayne to see Dr. John Philip Colletta speak! Excited about what I’ll learn.  He’ll be covering breaking through brick walls, passenger lists, and naturalization records.  I’ve been helping my DAR chapter registrar with some prospective members so the brick wall techniques will come in handy!  Since I’ve been a DAR member now for about 15 months I’ve been thinking about joining one of the national committees, probably lineage research, my forte!

FFF~Week #24

My most sincere apologies for being absent lately.  I’ve been working hard on laying the groundwork for the new society (writing bylaws! creating a newsletter! planning a year’s worth of meetings!) and also I’ve begun writing some of my BCG Certification reports (not officially “on-the-clock” yet).  Plus, doing research for First Families of Ohio since learning my 4th-great-grandparents were in Ohio prior to 1820 (James A. Fowler and Elizabeth Devore in Butler County, OH) and doing research on my 4th-great-grandmother Ailesann (Dyer) McGuire, born in Indiana in 1811.

This week marks the change from paternal 2nd-greats to maternal 2nd-greats!

Ancestor: My maternal 2nd-great-grandfather (Amos Benton Ballard)


  1. Born on 24 February 1840 in Henry County, Indiana, on the Aaron Ballard farm in Jefferson Township.
  2. Was exempt from the 1862 Civil War draft due to a “heart condition.”
  3. Was a teacher, preacher, doctor, and dentist.
  4. Was married 3 times: Hester Ann Cripe, Olive Carver, and Hannah Katherine “Kate” Hanby.
  5. Graduated in 1873 from the Cincinnati College of Medicine and Surgery.

amoskate Amos Benton Ballard and Hannah Katherine Hanby, taken possibly around the time they married