Thursday, January 26, 2023


I had a rest from searching for ancestors over the holidays and concentrated on living family 

Earlier this month we gathered with our 16 descendants and some of their partners for a family holiday in the snow in Hokkaido, Japan.

We were so fortunate to spend a week together. It was especially lovely to see our grandchildren catching up and enjoying their time together. They all enjoyed their time in the snow and indoors.

With our four children

With our twelve grandchildren

Monday, January 23, 2023

My Cousin Tim

I got to know my cousin, Tim,  yesterday.

Jill and her first cousin Tim

Back in 2014 I wrote a post about my Aunty Mary in which I mentioned a child she had borne and given up. I knew nothing of Tim's existence until Mary's funeral in 1997 when the Minister acknowledged Mary's son in the congregation. What a bombshell! 

It was such a shock that I neglected to get Tim's contact details.

As an only child with close relatives thin on the ground I have been wanting to find Tim and welcome him into the family fold for the past 25 years.

Since 1997 I have been hoping that one day Tim would seek out members of his biological family. On Friday evening Tim, who is now in his fifties, and his wife were googling Mary's name and came across Mary's name with two Living children mentioned in my online tree. 

When I was checking my email on Saturday morning I got this message:

 "Proposed Change: Duncan Mary Olive (I99)

Tree: GeniAus Family Tree

Description: I am number 2, living Male"

Tim had found me!

During the course of the day we exchanged emails and then had a very emotional 'phone call when we arranged to meet up the following day for lunch at our home.

Meeting Tim, his beautiful wife and two of their children was an awesome but emotionally draining experience. I learnt about Tim's childhood that was no bed of roses, I was so sad that he didn't have the opportunity to meet our dear grandmother Ethel and the extended family. 

It was little compensation but I was pleased I could send Tim away with a cache of photos of his mother and her family, some stories and contact details for another cousin. I am so pleased that I have recorded many of these stories on this blog and that Tim and his children will be able to absorb them at their leisure. I can't make up for all those missing years but I will do my darndest to use my skills to help Tim and his family learn about their heritage.

I thank Tim and family for spending time and so graciously accepting us yesterday and Tim for his willingness to do a DNA test. I look forward to our further meetings.

 I know that Aunty Mary would be so proud of the man Tim has become today. 

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Accentuate the Positive 2022 - The Responses

Thanks to the wonderful genies who have supported this exercise. 

I have recently returned from a family holiday to Japan where all of our descendants and their partners joined us for a cool time at Disney and up in the snow in Hokkaido. On my return I was delighted to find more responses to this challenge.

I feel that I may have missed some posts along the way - please let me know of any omissions. If you fancy some reflection I'm always happy to receive new contributions to add to this list as documents, in emails or in blog posts. See:

Please enjoy these inspirational posts from our genimates.

Alex from Family Tree Frog

Anne from Anne's Family History

Bobbie on the GSQ Blog

Jane from The Janeologist

Kerrie Anne from Steely Genes

Lilian from Lilian's Tree

Linda from Empty Branches on the Family Tree


Margaret from Kiwi Nomad

Sammi from Lyfelynes

Shauna   Diary of an Australian Genealogist

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Guest Post: Accentuate the Positive Geneameme 2022

Thanks to Lynn who, although she doesn't have a genealogy blog, sent me a contribution for the 2022 Accentuate the Positive Geneameme. 

I was delighted to be able to host Lynn's contribution on the GeniAus blog. I found several items I need to chase up in this post.

Accentuate the Positive Geneameme 2022 from Lynn McAlister UE (

A new software package or web application I embraced was ... I joined Mastodon, where I’ve made new connections with genealogists all over the world (and some of those I knew from elsewhere on line).

A new genealogy/history book that sparked my interest was ... Sarah Abrevaya Stein, Family Papers: A Sephardic Journey through the Twentieth Century.

In 2022 I finally met ... my tribe! I now have a word for what I do: “Genohistory” (described by Donna Cox Baker as “that spot in the road where genealogy and history meet”).

I progressed my DNA research by ... finally testing my husband’s parents! We’ve been trying to sort out my father-in-law’s paternity for years!

An informative journal or newspaper article I found was ... J├╝rgen Eichhoff, “Types of German Surname Changes in America”, in The Report 43: A Journal of German-American History, vol. XLIII (1996), pp. 23-35 ( › php › report05 › articles › pdfs ›report43.pdf).

The best value I got for my genealogy dollars was ... the 15-week Boston University certificate course. It gave me a chance to test my skills against advanced methodology and be assessed by professionals, and I have a new confidence that I actually do know what I’m doing.

A DNA discovery I made was ... the identity of my husband’s previously unidentified grandfather.

A fabulous event I attended was ... APG’s 2022 Conference. Not only were there numerous useful and interesting sessions, but the networking was surprisingly good for an online conference, and I also won a doorprize of four classes from the NIGS.

I'm happy I splashed out and purchased ... Patrick Hanks, ed., Dictionary of American Family Names (3 vols.) and Henry Z Jones, Palatine Families of New York (2 vols.). Also several volumes of Kevan Hansen’s Map Guides to German Parish Records. All three excellent and useful resources.

I got the most joy from ... interacting with genealogy colleagues at online conferences, in the Boston University groups, and especially in the Ontario APG group.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...