Genealogy Do-Over: More Decisions


The series of posts I will be writing is based on the Genealogy Do-Over Workbook by Thomas MacEntee. I highly recommend it. 🙂

I have been ill for that last few days and after a lot of rest, I am finally feeling better! This means I am so far behind in all the tasks I had set myself up for this week. That’s alright though, there’s nothing like a little rest to help you get a clearer thought process!

Here are the things I’m working on this week.

1. Setting up a Research Log

I am still looking into the best way to set this up for my research. The hard part is figuring out what will work best for my research when I’m not currently researching. This will most likely change plenty as I go along but I’m probably going to start adding in responses from my form and my cousin’s information to help me get the log going. I will let you guys know what that looks like as soon as I figure it out myself!

If anyone has some research log tips, I’d love to hear them!

2. Digital Organization

The second that I decided I was going to open an empty Legacy Family Tree file, I created a problem for myself. Was I going to keep my current organization method or change it? Was I going to keep my current file name method or change it? The answer is I don’t know. I did a previous write-up on my working digital organization. That was working well for me, except for the OneNote part where I never really got it up and functional. I still want to do something with OneNote, I just don’t know how. The more I read from other researchers, the more I take in what they are doing and see that I could be more efficient in other ways.

Old System – Birth Records Folder

PROs to changing my system

  • I really like the way people use a surname to separate their files. Mine is currently setup by record. If I were to organize it by surname, I wouldn’t have to flip through folders when working on just one ancestor.
  • Starting fresh and re-organizing everything will help me make sure I have every record entered and analyzed for each person.
  • I would better be able to see which records I am missing for each person.
  • Using an alphabetical system might be easier to navigate than the random numbering sequence I had used before.
  • Greater ability to keep family groups together. You can tell from my screenshot that before everything was sorted by number. That number was given as a person was entered into my program. That means records for one family group could be thousands of records apart. If I switch to a surname based system, it would be easier to group families together.

CONs to changing my system

  • I am really used to my current system and changing could cause me a lot of confusion.
  • My numbering system is going bye-bye. It would be too hard of a process to try to keep the numbers the same. This means renaming every single digital file. (This is not necessarily a bad thing.)

I have some more things I’m working through but not quite ready to blog about yet, so you can be sure I’ll be back once I do. I’m sure hoping that when I decide what to do this time it is for the final time! I hope you all are doing great in your research endeavors. 🙂

Other posts in this series:

  1. Genealogy Do-Over or Go-Over?
  2. Genealogy Go-Over: Getting Started
  3. Genealogy Go-Over: Setting Guidelines
  4. Genealogy Go-Over: Actually Do-Over
  5. Genealogy Do-Over: Where I’m At
  6. Genealogy Do-Over: More Decisions <- You are here.
  7. Genealogy Do-Over: More Prep Work
  8. Genealogy Do-Over: My Research Toolbox


  1. Thomas MacEntee, The Genealogy Do-Over Workbook (Kindle Edition);GeneaBloggers ( : downloaded 31 December 2015), Month 2 and Month 4.

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