Sunday, February 11, 2018
Another Counting Day
It's busy weeks such as this one that remind me why I decided to draw up a research accountability plan for myself—and remind me that I might not be far from being pushed over the line where I'll start sounding like some of my friends who mourn not having had the time to research their own family for far longer than they'd like. It may be "good to be queen," as my friend and genealogical society predecessor Sheri Fenley insists about stepping into the role of president for my local society, but I simply cannot turn into the type of society board member who is so busy helping others research their family tree that there is no time left for my own. Thus, as much as I hate to take the time to do that research tally every two weeks, I owe it to myself to have that constant reminder. Even if I only add ten names to the biweekly count, that's ten more names than some of my more busy friends have been able to add—a somber reminder.
All that to say I'm afraid this has been a lackluster two weeks for my own research. I managed to add twenty seven to my mother's tree and seventy six to my mother-in-law's tree. That means my mom's tree now has 12,029 and my mother-in-law's tree has 14, 177. You won't be much surprised to learn both the dads' trees saw zero progress for the past two weeks.
Because the results from those holiday DNA sales are still getting rolled out, we saw a sizeable increase on our DNA matches—well, at almost all the testing sites. I gained twenty eight matches at AncestryDNA and a whopping sixty eight at Family Tree DNA. That means my match totals are now up to 884 and 2,751, respectively. My husband's matches were up sixteen at Ancestry and thirty four at FTDNA, where his totals are now at 451 and 1,746.
And then there are the ever-decreasing numbers at 23andMe.
What's new for this week is the addition of DNA results for both our tests at MyHeritage. My husband—who already knew he would find a match with his niece and her son at MyHeritage—now has 2,201 matches to explore. I, astoundingly, have an inconceivable 3,280.
One thing that was refreshingly different about this past week was a message received in my Ancestry inbox. It's a rare cousin who takes the time to get in touch, but one member of my father-in-law's family reached out to get in touch. We've been carrying on a lengthy discussion—first steps in getting oriented to each other's respective family trees—and are delighted to realize that the connection is real. This particular branch of the family is my husband's Tully line, the one which led us on a chase up a mountain in County Tipperary, Ireland, a few years ago. It seems I've connected with more like-minded researchers from this family line than any of the others I've worked on in this lifelong quest. It's always exciting to connect with distant cousins, so this new DNA match has been a delight to discover.
I guess it's connections like this that encourage me to keep at the grunt work of tending to those tree branches, carefully pruning them to insure that supporting documentation is in place. This exercise in research accountability does help to keep the work going forward, even when I feel discouraged that I'm not making "enough" progress.