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    In every family, someone ends up with “the stuff.” It is the goal of The Family Curator to inspire, enlighten, and encourage other family curators in their efforts to preserve and share their own family treasures.

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    How to Archive Family Keepsakes Blog Book Tour Giveaways

    Announcing Giveaways for Week One of the How to Archive Family Keepsakes Blog Book Tour

    What would a book tour be without prizes? It's easy to enter the contest, and you could win! I've teamed up with The Practical Archivist, Sally Jacobs, to offer two great archival kits and copies of my book to the lucky winners. One name will be drawn on Saturday, 19 January 2013 and a second name selected on Saturday, 26 January 2013 to win the archival kits. Runners up can win free print or digital PDF copies of my book.

    These kits are a perfect start to organizing and preserving your genealogy heirlooms. The Week 1 Giveaway Photo Kit includes an archival photo storage box and paper envelopes and sleeves to protect your precious photographs. A different kit will be offered as the Week 2 Giveaway; stay tuned for more details.

    Week 1 Giveaway

    Family Photo Kit with How to Archive Family Keepsakes print edition

    2012FASK LPK

    Archival Photo Kit

    Perfect for loose photos you've been storing in a shoebox, random drawer or bag. It's also a great place for all those single photos sent to you in letters that you have no idea what to do with. Also a perfect storage space for photos you rescued from The Chemical Sandwich of Doom. The envelopes include plenty of space to write notes, which is a great idea because seeing photos from the past always sparks memories. The shortest pencil is better than the longest memory.

    This kit includes an attractive tan box (PAT passed) that can hold prints up to 5x7" upright. You also get 25 paper envelopes that can store multiple prints AND 25 paper sleeves that hold a single photograph each. Storage for up to 1,000 photos 5x7" and smaller. Prints must be 4x6" or smaller to fit in envelopes, sleeves hold up to 5x7-inches.

    2012FASK LPKenv

    Dimensions: Box is 5.5 x 7.5 x 12" Envelopes are 4.81 x 7.25" and sleeves are 5.5 x 7.38" Colors: Box is tan, metal edges are black, envelopes are eggshell and white. Qty: 1 box + 50 envelopes.

    Week 1 Giveaway Runners-Up

    • How to Archive Family Keepsakes print edition
    • How to Archive Family Keepsakes ebook PDF edition

    It's Easy to Enter the Giveaway

    To register your name in the drawing, simply leave a comment to the Blog Tour Post hosted at one of the official tour blogs during the week. Comments posted to Host Blogs on January 10-18 will be eligible to win the Week 1 Photo Kit. Comments posted to Host Blogs on January 20-25, 2013 will be eligible to win the Week 2 Kit. Names will be collected each week from the Tour Blogs.

    Each blog tour post comment gives you one chance to win; one entry per post, please. Leave a comment at each stop on the blog tour and increase your chances of winning. The lucky winners will be announced each Saturday during the tour at The Family Curator.


    We're Off. . . on the How to Archive Family Keepsakes Blog Book Tour

    Get ready for a virtual book tour January 10-26, 2013 featuring author posts, interviews, excerpts and giveaways for my new book How to Archive Family Keepsakes: Learn How to Preserve Family Photos, Memorabilia & Genealogy Records

    The tour kicks off Friday, Janaury 11 with Meet & Greet the Author at, hosted by blogger Thomas MacEntee, and continues each day for the next two weeks with stops at fourteen different genealogy blogs. 

    You will be able to sample tips from the book with book excerpts and downloads, learn more about preserving heirlooms and digitizing your records from guest posts, and hear and read exclusive interviews with the author (me!). In addition, proceeds from book sales during the tour will help fund the 2013 Student Genealogy Grant founded in 2010 in honor of Suzanne Winsor Freeman.

    WIN a Free Book or Archive Kit

    Weekly Giveaways will feature copies of How to Archive Family Keepsakes in paperback and ebook editions, and an ARCHIVE KIT and BOOK package that includes a copy of How to Archive Family Keepsakes and archival storage products from The Practical Archivist. 

    It’s easy to enter the weekly giveaway: Simply leave a comment to the Blog Tour Post hosted at one of the official tour blogs. 

    Each blog tour post comment gives you one chance to win; one entry per post, please. Leave a comment at each stop on the blog tour and increase your chances of winning. The lucky names will be announced each Saturday during the tour at The Family Curator.

    Random winners will also be selected from social media comments on Twitter #keepsakebooktour, FaceBook, and Google+.

    The complete tour schedule will be updated daily with permalinks on the Archive Keepsakes Tour Book Page. My special thanks goes to each of the Blog Tour Hosts for their hospitality and enthusiasm for this new project:

    Archive Keepsakes Blog Tour Hosts
    (a virtual round of applause...)

    Thomas MacEntee, Geneabloggers

    Lisa Louise Cooke, Genealogy Gems Podcast Blog

    Denise Olson, Moultrie Creek

    Caroline Pointer, 4 Your Family Story

    Lorine McGinnis Schultze, Olive Tree Genealogy

    Lynn Palermo, The Armchair Genealogist

    footnoteMaven, Shades of the Departed

    Dr. Bill Smith, Dr. Bill Tells Ancestor Stories

    Sally Jacobs, Practical Archivist

    Terri Connell , The In-Depth Genealogist

    Gena Philibert-Ortega, Food. Family. Ephemera.

    Pat Richley-Erickson, Dear Myrtle

    Miriam J. Robbins, AnceStories

    Dan Hiestand, The Houstory Hearth

    And, on the subject of "Thanks". . .  I loved every minute of writing this book, especially because of the cheering section --  genealogy friends whose support is the back-story to How to Archive Family Keepsakes. It was tough to tackle the project on the eve of family heartbreak, but your encouragement made it all worthwhile. In case you missed the book's acknowlegement page, please know that you have my heartfelt appreciation:

    Special Thanks to Special Friends

    Amy Coffin
, We Tree

    Lisa Louise Cooke, Genealogy Gems Podcast Blog

    Elyse Doerflinger, Elyse’s Genealogy Blog

    Allison Dolan, Publisher, Family Tree Magazine

    Sheri Fenley, The Educated Genealogist

    Midge Frazel, Granite in My Blood

    Diane Haddad, Family Tree Magazine Genealogy Insider

    Nancy Hendrickson, Writer, Coach

     A.C. Ivory, Genealogist

    Sally Jacobs, The Practical Archivist

    Judy Lucey
, NEHGS Archivist

    Thomas MacEntee
, Hi-Def Genealogy

    Craig Manson, GeneaBlogie

    Jackie Musser, Family Tree Editor

    Denise Olson, Moultrie Creek Books

    Kerry Scott, Clue Wagon

    Randy Seaver, Genea-Musings

    Maureen Taylor, Maureen Taylor, Photo Expert

    footnoteMaven, footnoteMaven


    Join the fun

    Tweet the Tour with hashtag #keepsakebooktour

    Share comments and links on FaceBook, Google+ and Goodreads


    Genetic Genealogist Barbara (Joan) Miller Mourned

    The genealogy community is mourning the loss of a talented and generous colleague, Joan Miller, after learning of death Friday, 4 January 2013 in Calgary, Canada.

    Joan was keenly interested in applications for DNA in genealogical research, and as used her experience as a  medical research technician at the University of Calgary to further her genealogy projects. She was also an accomplished speaker and active in several genealogical societies, as well as creator and blogger of the popular Luxegen Genealogy and Family History Blog.


    2010 GeneaBloggers Welcome Bag assembly night
    (from left) Denise, George, Thomas, Joan, Reg, Amy, Suzanne.

    I had the pleasure of working with Joan for the 2010 Geneabloggers Welcome Bag project at the SCGS Jamboree. With Amy Coffin and Thomas MacEntee, we solicited and coordinated contributions to the bloggers' swag bags and met up at my home in Pasadena to pack bags for the conference. Joan's husband Reg joined in with Thomas' friend George, my mom Suzanne, and the "committee" to make quick work of the task so we could move on to a more relaxing patio dinner. Joan joined Amy for an encore of the project in 2011 with Reg's assistance once more.

    Joan's huge grin and ready Canadian wit made her a friend to all who met her. I was in awe of her skill in deftly encouraging her husband, Reg, to become a genealogist in his own right. Whether attending Jamboree, or Roots Tech where I met up with them in 2011, Joan and Reg were a team. And with their recent retirements, they were looking forward to conference-hopping in their new caravan motor home and family history searches throughout the continent.

    Reg and Joan Miller, 2011 SCGS Jamboree

    When she spoke of her home and family, Joan's voice grew warm and proud. She was especially happy to see her adult son and daughter happy with family and careers, and she enjoyed a lighter side of home life with the family cat.

    Joan will be greatly missed by all who knew her. My heartfelt condolences go out to her family and friends.

    The Obituary for Barbara (Joan) Miller is available at the Leader-Post 


    Top Posts and Search Terms for 2012


    Organizing and scanning seem to be at the top of the list for popular content in 2012. Does this mean we want to get organized or we are just looking to refine our current system? And what about scanning documents and photos? Have we figured it out yet? I hope these posts helped!

    Four Tried and True Systems for Organizing Genealogy Research

    Whether To Scan or Photograph Old Documents

    Streamlined Scanning With a Genealogy Photo Workflow

    I enjoy Amy Coffin's monthly Fun with Search Terms. Reading her posts always moves me to check out my own. Here are some that come up over and over at The Family Curator:

    usha, usha holkar, usha devi holkar -- Presumably these result from the series of posts I wrote about my mother's friendship with Princess Usha Holkar, The Maharani of Indore India.

    Princess Diaries: Looking for Answers in the 1940 US Census

    Happy Birthday Princess Usha from your friend Susie Brown

    It's the Holiday Season at Princess Usha's Orange County Palace

    organizing genealogy files -- see popular posts above

    fish eye salad -- It must be difficult to find a good recipe for this delectable dish. Be sure to bookmark

    Feeling Adventurous? Mom's Recipe for Fish Eye Salad

    Thanks, Jenna, for the inspiration from your Review of Blog Stats for 2012 to pause and look back at the year. We'll be looking ahead soon enough!


    Making "Order Out of Chaos" on Treasure Chest Thursday


    Are you trying to manage family keepsakes scattered througout your home? How can you make sure your family treasures aren't thrown out with the trash?

    Beth asks in the Family Curator Forum, "I have collected things over the years from various people and generally it was an item at a time. In addition, I have become the keeper of the stuff for both my family and my husband's family, and I love the stuff, but it's taking over my life and home!... Do you have any ideas on how to roundup the treasures and contain them?"

    She's right! These heirlooms tend to become mixed in with our own belongings, and their significance can easily become lost.

    Long before I inherited the contents of my Grandmother Arline's trunk, I received individual items that she enjoyed and treasured -- a bone china salt and pepper set, a handpainted dish, the head and shoulders of a porcelain doll. Over the years, they were mixed in with my own stuff, and more recently were joined by things from my mom's and aunt's homes. Is it better to keep things together by owner, or mix them in with your own things? 

    How do you organize, preserve, and document individual keepsakes stored or displayed throughout your house?

    Read more and join the discussion here.

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