Crazy Month of May 2020 Meme: My Pandemic Experiences...

It’s been a while since I’ve taken part in a blog challenge, but good friend and blogger Pauleen (aka Cassmob) came up with one that I just had to take part in. It’s the “Crazy Month of May 2020 Meme: My Pandemic Experiences” She writes: “It occurred to me that perhaps we should have a meme which captures our response to the hopefully-once-in-a-lifetime May that we’ve just navigated….it might be a way to preserve the tip of our experiences. Remember that many blogs are being archived in Pandora so perhaps this is a way for our descendants to learn about our experiences during the covid-19 crisis.” So here’s my responses: What are you most grateful for during this covid-19 crisis? I would have to say I’m thankful that I still have a job when so many now don’t, but also that most people in my area are doing the right thing with social distancing, which of course helps stop the spread of coronavirus. What have you missed most during the full or partial lock-down? As an introvert I love being home, but just now and then it’s nice to randomly go out for a meal. So that is something I have missed. Has your hobby sustained you during this time? While not sure if you’d class it as a hobby, keeping an eye on my local wildlife (koalas and kangaroos) and enjoying them coming around, makes me happy, and is a stress reliever. But as for actual hobbies, I haven’t had time for them recently … What changes have you seen in your life over May 2020? Work is BUSY, BUSY, BUSY!!! I work in a family history business, and it has been non-stop crazy busy over the past few months. So...

Record History as it Happens...

With COVID-19 changing the world we live in, we are in a time of ‘history happening now’. I’m sure you’ve seen the suggestions about keeping a diary to record life and times of our ‘present normal’, and that is certainly a great idea. I mean low petrol prices, lack of toilet paper, only going out for necessities, closed restaurants, closed schools, closed gyms, closed entertainment venues, Anzac Day services around the country cancelled, all sporting events cancelled, even the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Then of course all the genealogy and history societies have been temporarily as well, with a number of them no embracing online seminars instead. But also don’t forget about self isolating and social distancing. I’m sure your kids or grandkids would love to read your thoughts on how you survived being cooped up at home for weeks. Maybe you got hooked on jigsaw puzzles, or decided to master making bread, or created your own vegie garden for the first time ever, or the family drove you crazy??! The list could go on. But I also know not everyone is a diary writer … so there are ways other than writing, that you can record and share “history as it happens” as well. So here I’m letting you know about a number of organisations that are wanting to “record history as it happens” but they need your input to do so. They are collecting your photographs, memories, and ephemera (some physical, some digital), all which will help document this incredible once-in-a-lifetime event that we’re currently living in. Canberra: National Library of Australia The National Library of Australia has been busy collecting web-based ephemera relating to COVID-19, by taking snapshots of websites and archiving them. You can view their collection...

Activities for the Genealogist While Self-Isolating...

Are you currently in lockdown, quarantined or self-isolating at home? Looking for some ideas to fill the day? I know that I could simply write “research” here and you’d all be happy (I would be), but for those of you who may need a break from just “research” on occasions, or don’t have the longer spurts of time required for researching, there’s plenty of useful genealogy-related activities that you can still do. Here’s a few ideas… ————————– WATCH – Webinars & Videos Webinars and videos are a fantastic way to learn in your own time, and from the comfort of your own home. There literally thousands available to watch, and that’s without going to YouTube and searching for more, and most of them are free. – Ancestry Academy – Short tutorial videos, covering Ancestry, DNA, methodology and more. – FamilySearch Webinars – Watch webinars on researching in different countries, as well a numerous general topics (organisation, DNA etc.), as well as how to master the FamilySearch website. – Legacy Family Tree Webinars – This one is a pay site, but at less than US$50/year, and access to over 1000 tutorial videos, it is SOOO worth it. But just so you know all newly added videos are free for 7 days, before they then go behind the paywall, and you will then need to pay or subscribe. – MyHeritage Education – There are a heap of webinars available covering how to use the MyHeritage website to advantage, as well as how to build a family tree, general research basics, well as DNA and health tutorials. – The National Archives (UK) – From using Discovery, to workhouse records, emigration, musters and militia, King Henry VIII, and a whole heap more. – National Library of Australia – Watch videos...

The Day the World Changed...

There has been numerous key dates over the years (or decades, and in reality centuries) which have been defining, and have changed the course of history, or life as people know it. … wars, fires, plagues, assassinations, accidents, deaths and so on. Everyone has their own “key dates” for various reasons. But for me, 14 March 2020 is that day. Why this date? Well I was on a cruise ship with a whole bunch of geniemates, on the way to Tasmania as part of the Unlock the Past genealogy cruise. But, again why? Well, it was the day that the captain of the Pacific Aria ship advised passengers, that 3 days into our 8 day cruise, we would not be going to Tasmania as planned, but instead heading straight back to Adelaide (where the ship came from). This was due to all P&O cruise ships “pausing” their operations as a precautionary measure in regards to the Coronavirus. Of course I’d heard of the Coronavirus before then, it had been in the news. But it wasn’t BIG news. But with each passing day, it certainly became so. While it began in China back in December 2019, it had reached Australia. The numbers of those infected kept rising. The deaths started happening. So the cruise ships stopped. The planes cut flights. State borders were closed. Mandatory 14 day quarantine was introduced. Pubs, clubs, gyms, even playgrounds were closed and so on. The world HAD changed … all just within a few days. “Self isolation” and “social distancing” became the new key words. Pretty much every country in the world is faced with this pandemic. But when it gets to your own country, your own area, it really hits home. Prior to leaving...