Saturday, February 27, 2010

News from the Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society

The Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society has a couple of exciting things coming up this weekend and next. Get your radios out for the first one:

SBCGS is on the air!

"In the Public Interest"

The weekly radio local show, "In the Public Interest," hosted by Rincon Broadcasting's News & Public Affairs Director Peter Bie will feature the Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society!

The show is slated to air on February 27 and 28 on the following stations:

Saturday (Feb 27):
1:00 pm, KIST-AM 1490

Sunday (Feb 28):
6:30 am, K-LITE 101.7 FM (listen online)
8:30 am, KIST-AM 1490
5:00 pm, KTMS-AM 990
11:30 pm, KTYD 99.9 FM (listen online)

Tune In - and Tell Your Friends!
Also, next weekend the SBCGS will be featuring Drew Smith and George G. Morgan, "The Genealogy Guys," in a terrific seminar that promises something for everyone:

HOW-TO Genealogy Seminar: Something for Everyone!
featuring The Genealogy Guys!
Saturday, 6 March 2010
Goleta Presbyterian Church (behind Fairview Center)
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
(Registration begins at 8:00 AM)

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Curtis Solberg
"Seeking Connections--A Journey of Personal Discover."

Free Genealogy Guys Podcast from 3:00-4:00 pm
Open to the Public at 2:30 pm
For more information, or to register for the seminar, please visit the Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society's web site. Be sure to also check out the SBCGS Blog for news and updates about society events.

I'm really hoping to make it to next weekend's seminar, but I'm still waiting to find out if I've got a babysitter (Hubs). Maybe you'll hear me on the next "Genealogy Guys'" podcast!

Graphic above borrowed from the SBCGS.

Copyright © by Elizabeth O'Neal

Monday, February 22, 2010

My Glass is Full (But I Think I Like it That Way)

This past week has been filled with so much good news and so many changes that I just don't know how much more my heart can take! Don't get me wrong: I love, love, love good news. But I'm a "glass-half-empty" kinda gal, so I tend to get suspicious when there's what seems like an overabundance of good stuff coming my way.

My big news today - as you can see above - is that "Little Bytes of Life" has been named one of FamilyTree Magazine's "40 Best Genealogy Blogs." When I found this out this morning, you could have knocked me over with a feather. I was, and still am, stunned. Like most Oscar nominees, I felt that it was just an honor to be nominated. But... wow. I really don't know what to say except... WOW.

Maureen Taylor (one of my idols), in her article "Fab Forty," had this to say:
This former teacher named Elizabeth writes about genealogy news, lectures she's attended, how-tos (such as adding watermarks to digital photos), family stories and other topics. Clear writing, gorgeous photos and an attractive layout reminiscent of a scrapbook draws a reader in and won't let go.
There are 2 people in this house who refuse to listen to me, so it's good to know that I'm able to keep somebody interested.

When you check out the link above and see my esteemed company, you'll understand why this is such an honor. Seriously, the other 39 blogs are so outstanding, and I congratulate them all.

Many, many thanks to FamilyTree Magazine and to all who voted for this little blog. I am humbled and honored.


So what's my other good news? Well, here are a couple of highlights of the past week that I can share:

  • This past weekend was our California C.A.R. State Conference. I have been appointed (awaiting official confirmation) as the next Senior State President, and will officially be installed at the National Convention in April in Washington, DC. I'm really excited to be working with such a terrific group of kids, particularly our incoming state president, who has a wonderful project in store for the next year. I'm sure you'll be hearing more about that here, as I find it hard not to brag about the good stuff these kids do. ;-)
  • I found out last week that I was accepted to the National Institute on Genealogical Research (NIGR) in Washington, DC, in July. Now, by "accepted" I don't mean that I'm any more wonderful than any other applicant; it just means that a very smart ProGen advisor told me to send my application in pronto because applicants are admitted on a first come, first served, basis, and spots fill up quickly. But I'm nonetheless excited to be going, as it will be an intense week of all things NARA.
There's one other little thing that I can't talk about just yet... but it's very exciting (to me, anyway).


Just to give things perspective, I'll share this other thing with you. I discovered this morning that I left the power cord for my netbook at the hotel yesterday. (Right now, I'm using my glitchy 17" HP - boo, hiss - laptop in SAFE MODE, so I'm not a happy girl. I've had nothing but problems with this laptop, and have almost taken a hammer to it many times.)

So what's good about this? Nothing really, except that the hotel found my cord, and I can go get it tomorrow. Of all the times I've left power cords at hotels (and there have been many), I have NEVER had one found.



I'm going to go let all of this sink in now. That glass is looking a bit full to me, and I'm not sure what to do with it.

Copyright © by Elizabeth O'Neal

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not

"She Loves Me, She Loves Me Not: Photo of Unknown Couple" Digital image. Undated. Original photograph privately held by [NAME AND ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Benton Co., Washington. 2010.

About Wordless Wednesday.

Copyright © by Elizabeth O'Neal

Friday, February 5, 2010

Happy Reflections on a Busy Year

Things have been quiet here on "Little Bytes of Life," but they have definitely not been quiet in our household.

Those of you who are members of DAR or C.A.R. know what I'm talking about. For those of you who aren't, let me explain. This time of year is a bit like DAR/C.A.R. "tax time." It's the time of year when we report on all the activities of our particular chapter or society.


I talk about the DAR a lot here, but what many of you probably don't know about me is that I also serve as a "senior" leader (the adults are called "seniors - it has nothing to do with my advancing age, thank you) for our local society of the Children of the American Revolution (C.A.R).

What is the C.A.R.? Well, it's kind of like the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), Sons of the American Revolution (SAR), or Sons of the Revolution (S.R.), except that it's for kids, from birth to age 22. That kind of trivializes it, though.

From the National Society's web site:

C.A.R., the nation's oldest, largest, patriotic youth organization, offers membership to anyone under the age of 21, lineally descended from someone who rendered material aid to the cause of American Independence as a soldier, sailor, civil officer, or recognized patriot in one of the several Colonies or States, or of the United States.
I enjoy it because it's something I can do with my daughter. We can even drag Daddy along occasionally for some family time. As a homeschool mom, I'm always looking for educational activities for my daughter, and C.A.R. membership offers multiple opportunities for those. Kids learn about history, government, conservation, and technology, among others, and can gain leadership experience at a variety of levels.

Plus - and I'll let you in on a little secret - when it comes time to join the DAR, SAR, or S.R., a C.A.R. member in good standing (current on his/her dues) does not have to pay the application fee. This can be a substantial savings, depending on the group to which he/she is applying.

I could go on an on, extolling the virtues of C.A.R. membership, but I won't do that now. I'll save it for another post instead.


For the past couple of weeks, I've been stuck behind a computer, furiously preparing a variety of reports to brag on report about for our little group. It's always an interesting process to look back and reflect on what was accomplished during the year. Kind of like what many folks do at the end of a calendar year... except with about a ream of paper and lots of printer ink.

Why do we go to so much work every year? Well, as a group so heavily involved in historical preservation, it's important to get everything "on the record" and recorded in our history books. Annual histories are compiled and preserved by the society historians at various levels so future generations can see what was done back in good 'ol 2009.

Plus, I'd be lying if I said there weren't awards involved.

So having reflected on the past year and completed all my reports, I'd like to share a few of the things our group did last year that I enjoyed most, or am most proud of:

Attending the Sons of the American Revolution's (SAR) 27th Annual "George Washington Massing of the Colors and Salute to our Armed Forces" at Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Los Angeles. It was truly an amazing sight to see so many color guards together in one place.

Putting flags on the graves of veterans buried at the Santa Maria Cemetery in preparation for Memorial Day. This was our second year of participation. Yes, I know my kid is dragging a flag on the ground, but you can only tell an almost-3-year-old something so many times.

My little one presenting a wreath at a Memorial Day Ceremony. Mommy was very proud.

Attending the Chumash Intertribal Pow-Wow for the first time. It was a beautiful ceremony that you really have to see and hear for yourself. More photos of this event here.

Accepting a proclamation from the Mayor. The short person is my kid.

Participating in a Veterans Day parade.

Presenting a wreath during a Wreaths Across America ceremony.

But what I think I'm most excited about is our growth in membership. We gained 12 new members this past year, which nearly doubles our group in size. That may not sound like much, but with society (genealogical and lineage) membership declining all over, it's a lot! I'm so happy to have had a hand in growing our group, and I'm so proud of what they accomplished this past year.

We're looking forward to our C.A.R. State Conference, which is coming up later this month in Cambria. It's always inspiring to see the kids run their own meetings, complete with processionals, gavels, and parliamentary procedure. Each officer and state chairman gives a report, and the candidates for office must give their "campaign" speeches. An election is held, and even the littlest members get a vote (with help from Mom and Dad, of course). At the evening banquet, awards are given out, the newly-elected officers are introduced, and everyone dances the night away... at least, until curfew.

This year's conference includes a trip to Hearst Castle, a place that I haven't seen in at least 30 years. I seem to recall that it had a really big swimming pool.

To learn more about the C.A.R., visit the National Society, California State Society, or ask me.

Copyright © by Elizabeth O'Neal

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Central Coast Genealogy Calendar: February 2010

Monday, February 1
Jewish Genealogical Society of the Conejo Valley and Ventura County
7:00 - 9:00 PM
Ron Arons - "Mapping Madness"

Thursday, February 4
Monterey County Genealogical Society
7:00 PM (doors open at 6:00 PM)
Dayna Jacobs - "Record Search Pilot, Historical Books, and FamilySearchWiki"

Saturday, February 6
San Luis Obispo County Genealogical Society
All-Day Seminar Featuring Megan Smolenyak, Maureen Taylor, and Geoff Rasmussen

Tuesday, February 9
Conejo Valley Genealogical Society
7:00 - 9:00 PM
Computer Interest Group Meeting
Claude Giddings - "Digital Photography"

Tuesday, February 16
Conejo Valley Genealogical Society
6:45 - 8:45 PM - General Meeting
Topic TBA

Saturday, February 20
Ventura County Genealogical Society
1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Gena Philibert Ortega - "19th Century American Religion and Religious Records"

Saturday, February 20
Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society
Featured Speaker: Jeff Richman
9:30 - 10:15 AM - "No Longer Forgotten: The Search for Civil War Veterans at Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery"
11:00 - 12:00 PM - "Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery: Unearthing New York's Buried Treasures"

Please send me an email if you would like to have your event included in this monthly calendar series.

Copyright © by Elizabeth O'Neal