Thursday, July 3, 2008

Jamboree Day 2 Continued: The "Genes" in Genealogy

Not to beat a dead horse, but the food at the Marriott did leave something to be desired. Concession food was offered (as a concession for the parking situation, I assume), but it was a) expensive, and b) didn't look very good. We didn't try the Daily Grill restaurant, based on the reviews of some Jamboree attendees (crowded and expensive). Thankfully, there is a new (since last year) food court across the street at the Burbank Airport.

So, after the Blogger Summit, my family had a tasty lunch at every toddler's favorite restaurant: McDonald's. I'm fairly certain that my daughter will not eat any form of protein that doesn't come in nugget form. This particular McDonald's does not have a Play Place (which frankly is fine with me, as they look like germy cesspools), and it looks more like the new McDonald's Cafe's that are becoming popular.

On a side note: I have friends who swear that McDonald's has better coffee than Starbuck's. I haven't tested this theory myself, but I'm getting tempted, considering the cost of a cup of Starbuck's coffee these days, and the fact that they're planning to close 600 stores soon, probably including the ONE in my town.

But I digress.

We didn't make it back from lunch in time for the 1:30 p.m. sessions, but at 3:00 p.m. I was able to attend Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak's talk on "Trace Your Roots with DNA." I also stayed for her 4:00 p.m. talk on "Beyond Y-DNA: Your Genetic Genealogy Options." Steve Danko did an excellent write-up of both of her talks here, so there's no need for me to be redundantly repetitive. Plus, it's late, and I'm tired.

The fine folks at the FamilyTreeDNA booth.

I mentioned in my post about Jamboree Day 1 that one of my goals in attending this year's conference was to learn as much as I could about genetic genealogy. Sadly, I've had Megan's book, Trace Your Roots with DNA: Use Your DNA to Complete Your Family Tree, sitting on my nightstand for over 6 months now, and I'm only on page 101 (the excitement of raising a 2-year old doesn't leave me with much energy for reading these days). So I was very glad that there were so many sessions offered covering the various aspects of genetic genealogy.

I was also glad that Megan addressed DNA project management in her "Trace Your Roots" talk. Topics included selecting a testing company, how to recruit participants (especially the nervous type), developing a project scope, funding, and reports.

I haven't written about this before, but I currently serve as the administrator of my maiden name's DNA surname project, which I started earlier this year. My maiden name is so rare that (probably) anyone using it with the same spelling is related to me in some way. I'll write more about this project in a future post where I can go into a bit more depth.

Instead of attending a final session at 6:00 p.m., we wound up cruising the Exhibit Room again, where I visited with my good friends at the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) table. They were doing free, online searches of patriot ancestors for Jamboree attendees, and were quite busy all day! I'm guessing this had something to do with Arlene Eakle's talk on "Tracing Your Revolutionary War Ancestor" earlier in the day.

From what I heard, we missed another great evening session. Dick Eastman gave a talk on "Putting the Genes in Genealogy," which Craig Manson wrote about here.

Next year, I really must remember to attend those evening sessions. I wonder if I can get Randy Seaver to babysit???

Copyright © 2008 by Elizabeth O'Neal

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Apple said...

Sounds like a great time! I don't think I'll ever make it that far for a conference so thanks for taking me along.

Randy Seaver said...

I ate the concession food (hot dog, choc chip cookie, banana) out in the hot sun both days... for lunch.

We went out for dinner both nights - we went to Outback Steak House on Friday and Black Angus on Saturday.

It was 7:30 by the time we got back to our room from dinner, and all I did was blog and watch TV. I coulda baby-sat (I say I, because Linda was out like a lump by 8 PM it seemed) - we love the little ones...

We're in day 5 of our Lolo's summer vacation with us while her mom does her PhD work and her dad cares for the 2-month old.

Next year, we'll have to organize a bloggers dinner or something like Eastman usually does at other confabs. Or a babysitting co-op...

Thanks for the mention, and for the day summary.

Elizabeth said...

Randy - I nominate YOU to organize the bloggers dinner. Sounds like a lot of fun!

Apple - It was a great time. If you ever make it out this way, you should check it out!