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Starting Your Family History Journey

Okay. So you decided you want to start putting your family tree together and you have no idea where to even start, right? Well, you have come to the right place!

First of all, it is very easy to get overwhelmed with all the "shoulds" and "donts" you will come across. Don't get overwhelmed! Just relax, take a deep breathe, and enjoy the journey! I can promise you that there is not one single person (okay, maybe there are some out there) who started this journey with a perfect family tree! It takes time, patience, and persistence!

Now, lets start with a few key pointers to get you started:

The first key to starting on your Family History & Genealogy journey is to begin with yourself and what you know. Find a place to keep your information centralized and just start inputing your information. Start with yourself then work backwards (with your parents and grandparents, etc). Begin by filling in information such as birth date, marriage date, and death date - be sure to include the location for these events as well. 

Don't forget to document and cite your sources! This is a common error among newbies to Family History and Genealogy. I wish someone would have given me this advice when I first started out! It is easier to cite them in the beginning than having to go back and relocate your sources.

What program is the best to use when starting out? I do not endorse any specific genealogy software, but I suggest that you use one that is easy for you to navigate. There are many online resources for documenting and creating your family tree. If you go the route of only using an online service I would strongly recommend that you also create your tree on your own computer - you just never know what can happen!

Are you ready to get started? Remember to relax, document, and enjoy the journey!

Let me know in the comments below your favorite software you use to build your family tree. I'd love to hear from you!

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