Backing away from the ledge…

I am having an issue. As I jump into Genealogy blogging with both feet, I also need to remember my responsibilities. One of those responsibilities is to correctly show and identify where my information comes from. So far, I haven’t posted anything that I would consider super factual or important. I take a very tongue in cheek, fluffy pajamas method of life. Trust me when I say that I do actually cite all my sources, and anything in my tree that isn’t cited, is not actual information to me. I do joke about things I haven’t “proven” yet, but I don’t actual dwell on those things.

I was reading some blogs today and it struck me that I might not actually come across as a serious person. I do take my family history very seriously, fluffy pajamas aside of course. My problem is that when I began to really delve into my research, I was 18 years old. So even though I have my sources cited, they aren’t cited correctly. So that’s what I’m doing now. I’m going through one person at a time, and I’m fixing my family tree. I do have the whole tree up on and I’m fixing it as I go. If I were putting my tree up for the first time, I’d only put verified information in. The problem is when I was 18, I published it out there in the world. It was a horrible thing to do but it is what it is. The reason I haven’t taken it down is that many people have emailed me over the years about that tree. Even if I were to delete it, it’s still in’s database. I can’t get it deleted for the life of me. It was almost 8 years ago that I uploaded it there and they’ve changed formats so much that it’s a complicated process to remove it. This is the main reason I’m so hesitant to put another tree on I don’t like that people can just merge the trees and then that’s it. Your information is on someone else’s tree and they take it as 100% proven fact.

I’m hoping that when people cite my website address, it turns that accountability back to me. So this is the place people will always have to come to verify that information. I’m sure that won’t always happen. It makes me feel better to know that in case someone gets the information through another person, they can come to me and I can speak with them personally.

This is an example of something I cite as a source. My mother found this online and printed it out for me. However I have no idea where these people got their information. In fact, I don’t even list these in my family file because I don’t know if they are family.

Need I say anything? Sometimes it’s not good keeping these things around, but I do because of my previous bad experience. So now I have it in case a question ever comes up. It shouldn’t but just in case.

This however I will cite. I have an old cemetery deed for the Moore family plot in Brooklyn. We called the cemetery and verified who was buried there. So I will cite it, and then when I go to Brooklyn I will add the proper official citation. They could only verify who was there and not anything else, so I definitely need to get to Brooklyn!

This is murky ground. This along with my Webb-Taylor tree ARE cited in my tree. They are cited as Undocumented Family Records. These are the original “trees” my grandmother gave me. You can even see where she wrote in that Bartholomew Taylor was her great grandfather. These are the trees I’m currently going through and verifying with census and vital records. My problem is that now that I know more about citing sources, I see how badly I did it in the past. It makes me want to just delete all those horrible citations and start again! That’s why I need to back away from the ledge. Even if they are badly cited sources, they are still my only link to my sources. This is where my patience comes in. I don’t usually have patience, but for genealogy I have an unlimited supply. Who knew!

Wordless Wednesday: Taylors

Mary Elizabeth Taylor

Lula Margaret Applegate-Taylor

Wordless Wednesday is a Daily Blogging Topic that I got from GeneaBloggers. To participate in Wordless Wednesday simply create a post with the main focus being a photograph or image. Some people also include attribute information as to the source of the image (date, location, owner, etc.). Some have begun doing a “Not So Wordless Wednesday” with the main focus still being an image but there is a backstory to the image.

From Grandma’s Kitchen

Okay, so I told you before that when I was in eighth grade, my grandmother gave me a copy of her family tree. Well a few years after that, she also sent me a whole mess of recipes. They were in a big box and also in that box was a cookie press. I wish I still had that cookie press, but we probably lost it in the Great House Migration. Remind me to chronicle that sometime! This month the weather has been particularly nice on the weekends. I guess getting 2+ feet of snow dropped on you really clears the air so to speak. We’ve taken advantage of this weather and we’re rehabbing one of our old sheds. We’ve lived in this house for at least 20 years now (since I was 5 or so!), so we’ve collected some clutter.

I was momentarily enraptured by finding all the books I read in Elementary and Middle school. The Little House books, The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle, and The Moon Spinners. Gosh what memories those books have for me! Then as I dug deeper into the pile of ‘Kathleen Stuff’, I found it. The old binder that I had used to house those old recipes! They were by no means organized. I meant to computerize them, but alas high school got in my way. Then they somehow ended up packed away with all my old school mementos. The first thing any of us thought of when we found these recipes should have been joy at finding something you forgot you had. Instead we all piled around the binder and immediately leafed through it trying to find Grandma’s bread recipe! It’s got to be there somewhere!

There were plenty of recipes from the backs of ingredients and from magazines. I really treasure Grandma’s handwritten recipes though! We could have tried this during Thanksgiving!

I can’t even begin to tell you of the cookie recipes. I find it incredibly fate (I don’t believe in coincidence, not one bit) oriented that as I’m getting my baking love back, I find these. I was big into baking in high school. I used to bake brownies and cookies for everyone all the time. Then after high school, college classes and working full time took up all my extra energy. So I lost it. As I’ve been having some personal issues lately, I tried to get back into baking to see if it would relax me, and boy did it! So now I can throw out all those box mixes and really get into the nitty gritty!

Is anyone else getting hungry just thinking about this entry?

How hungry are you now that you’re thinking about these Triple Peanut Butter Cookies?

Back to the original point of my post, the bread recipe! We unfortunately couldn’t find it. I found a roll recipe that I think is probably what my Mom remembers as the bread recipe. I’m going to assume that’s it anyway. Unfortunately a lot of the handwritten recipes never actually said what they were! I guess I’ll have to make them to find out!

Don’t walk away disappointed! We did find Grandma’s Famous Fudge recipe. This recipe has been a bone of contention between Mom and her sisters for many years. They all try to make it but can’t quite remember how it goes. Aunt Melinda has her recipe that we all use now, but it’s not the same. So when we came across this little note, we were ecstatic!

Only to find out Grandma’s Famous Fudge was actually straight off the back of a Hershey’s Cocoa can! I’m still going to make it though! I have to know what the fuss is about. This goes to show, never be ashamed to use a recipe that’s not your own. I mean, in 50 years no one will know you took it off the back of the box!