August is an excellent month to tackle certain genealogy projects. It’s too hot to do much outside, the kids are out of school, and the holiday season with its cooler weather is approaching. These things open up a world of opportunities to do some interesting and important things with your genealogy research. Do yourself and your loved ones a favor and use August to work on these ten “must-do” genealogy projects. You’ll be so glad you did, and you will be so much farther ahead with your research when you’re done with them.
1. Organize Your Photos
The hot days of August are perfect for sitting in a nice, cool house and finally getting those family photos organized. It’s a project that is easy to put off for long periods of time, even years. Using the lazy, super-hot days of August to finally do it is ideal. You’ve got the time to do it, and the perfect motivation, so get moving and get on it.
Making decorative family trees for certain branches of your family with your kids is a great way to keep them occupied in the waning weeks of summer vacation when they’re getting bored. They get to learn more about their family history while they’re at it, so it’s a win for everyone.
This is something else you can do with the kids. It’s a perfect way to get them to visit older relatives and get to know them, and they can learn more family history and see how to interview someone properly during the experience.
While the kids are out of school, it is a perfect time to take them on a genealogy vacation. Go somewhere your ancestors used to live, explore it together, learn about the history of the place and how your ancestors may have lived, and do some research into your family in the local record repositories.
5. Do a Genealogy Scrapbook
Get all those documents, clippings, and photos together that you can form into a theme, and put together some scrapbooks detailing the history of various branches of your family.
If you’ve been meaning to write your family history down in book form for publication or just for the family to read, the heat of August is a perfect time to stay indoors and do it.
7. Start Research on a New Branch
If there’s a branch of your family you’ve been neglecting in your research, this month is a perfect time to begin working on it. Learning new information is always motivational.
8. Make Genealogically Themed Christmas Gifts
Get a jump on the holiday season by making genealogy-themed gifts for all of your family members. You won’t have as much shopping to do later, and you’ll have a bevy of meaningful gifts for everyone.
9. Try Making Some Old Family Recipes
If you have old family recipe cards or cookbooks and you haven’t tried the recipes, use this month as the time to try them and serve them to your family. Imagine and talk about how your ancestors must have lived based on the foods they ate while you’re doing it.
10. Catch Up on Your Genealogical Reading
There are usually books on family history, genealogical research techniques, and local history most genealogists have on their list of things to read. This is a perfect time to read a few of them and get them off your list.