Sunday, March 5, 2017

Just Practicing...

Once you have an established account and have put in your basic information how do you start finding new names?  This video is a step by step process in using both and Family Search resources to find new names, and enter in correct information.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Don't Let History Die, Create Living Histories

When my mother died a few years ago it came incredibly sudden.  It was something we never saw coming.  If it were not for the fact that in the past 10 years I had been gathering a living history from her we could have forever lost information for her that is vital in figuring out her family tree.  We started doing living histories when my abuelita informed us she had a different last name than what she had gone by her whole life one week short of dying.

Creating living histories are easy.  Here are some ideas:

  • Start your own journal!  To start pick up two journals, one can be like your large plates where you write about your daily ins and outs.  The second journal can be for special insight into your life.  You can pick special life events to include in your journal, write down your testimony, or share insight into your feelings.  These days digital journals are incredibly more convenient for others to later read.  Consider doing it online and printing it out or creating a blog.
  • Start an Adult Memory Jar or you can do one for your children or for yourself.  They also make great gifts for loved ones.  This is something my mother did for me before she passed.  I gave her the jar at Christmas on my mission and when she died I discovered she had taken the time to do most questions.  They contain about 300 prompts that you can quickly paste into a notebook and give a few sentences in response to each question.   Go to this website, Adult Journal in a Jar, for more ideas on how to do it.  It's easier than you might think.

  •  Use a digital voice or video recorder.  Using a digital voice recorder to interview your family members or yourself is a wonderful way not only to preserve family history but also their voice or if use a video camera you will have their entire likeness preserved.  It is important after an interview to type up a transcript of what was said that way if things become lost you will still have that written record.  For ideas for interview questions go to this Deseret News Article for more information.

  • One of the first LDS traditions I came across was the love of scrapbooking.  Scrapbooks can be wonderful journals.  Recently my mother in law just created large books out her 20 years of scrapbooking.  (There will be several large books for each family of when she finishes her project).  This is a great idea and with the invent of digital scrapbooks and digital pictures these books are easy to make.  Just make sure to caption everything so that there is a record of who people are.

    • Blogging and other forms of social media such as Instagram and Facebook are fast and easy for our fast lifestyle.  Many of us use these outlets and are wonderful for keeping in touch with others and reaching out to family and friends who are far away.  Please consider that if you are using one of these mediums that mediums change often (anyone on MySpace still).  Consider using mediums such as My Social Book to print out your social media posts every year.  That way precious memories are never lost.

    • Finally remember it is never too early to get your children involved.  In my husband's family the kids had special boxes where they put the best of the best from their school year in a tupperware box.  Another thing I learned was to often do art at home recording their foot and hand prints.  For more Journaling ideas for kids check out Creative Kids Journals.

    Monday, February 27, 2017

    How to Get an Free LDS Account on

    All LDS Members, Including Youth, Can Now Get Free Access to FamilySearch Partner Websites

    All members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, as well as LDS youth ages 13-17, can now create their own personal accounts with Ancestry.comfindmypast, and MyHeritage.
    These resources are helping Church members find more ancestors needing temple ordinances.
    To sign up for your personal accounts:
    1. Click the button below for the account you wish to register for. You can choose all three, but you must follow the same steps and register for one at a time. After you click the button, you will immediately be asked to sign in to
    2. Once you have signed in to, you will be guided to create an account for the website you selected. Each account is unique and requires its own registration.
    3. Once you have successfully entered your information, you’ll be taken to the site you’ve selected to create your account. Or, if you already have an existing account with one of these websites, you can convert your existing subscription to a free account.
    To get started login to  Or watch the following YouTube Video...

    Wednesday, August 24, 2016

    Youth Computer Scavenger Challenge for September and October

    Youth Computer Scavenger Hunt
    Any youth who earns 500 points by the ward Halloween party will earn a very fun prize from our prize basket!  Whoever earns the most points will earn the grand prize and it will be awesome!

    1.    Create your Family Search login (10 points)

    2.    Help someone else to create a Family Search login (25 points)

    3.    Fill out "My Family" booklet (25 points)

    4.    Print out your genealogy fan and put it on your bedroom wall (20 points)

    5.    Consult one on one with of our ward consultants on new ways to find names on your particular lines (40 points):
    ·      Ward Family History Youth Consultant Sister Hakes in class or call (575) 621 6584
    ·      Ward Consultants Brother and Sister Saddler during class

    6.    Train someone else to fill out their information on (75 points)

    7.    With your parents help (they must create a log in At the same time) create your own account that you can use in family history class (75 points)

    8.    Go to the and read any article and publish a comment (20 points)

    9.    On the site look at August 24, 2016 post “Youth Projects” and complete any one of the projects for (100 points)  if you complete more than 1 project than you will earn (50 extra points) for each additional project.

    10.  Make a “meme” using an ancestor’s photo and post it (50 points)

    11.  Take a family name to the temple and do their baptism and confirmation (100 points).  if you complete more than 1 project than you will earn (50 extra points) for each additional name.

    12. Have your parents or someone else take each name that you have had baptized and confirmed and have them complete the initiatory, endowment and if applicable sealing (150 points), for each additional name you will earn (75 extra points)

    13.  Add ancestor’s photos to their profile in Family Search (10 points per picture posted)

    14. Add stories to an ancestor’s profile in Family Search (30 points per story posted)

    15.  Add documents to an ancestor’s profile in Family Search (30 points per document posted)

    16.  Interview grandparents, and great grandparents about their life and document it in their family search (50 points per family member)

    17.  Go through the “Quick Training” section on Family Search for indexing (45 points)

    18.  Find and Finish an indexing project (75 points)

    19.  Visit and find a “cousin” that needs temple work (75 points)

    20.  Check in with one of the ward’s family history consultants and show your progress for candy (20 points)

    4 Fun Ways to Make Family History Come to Life

    This is a repost of the Official Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Blog.  All rights reserved.

    Know Who’s Who

    One of the easiest ways to get started with family history is simply to know who’s who, and a decorative family tree is a great way to do that. The Family Tree Printable Keepsake pulls names from your FamilySearch account and automatically creates your family tree in the design of your choice. It will help you customize your keepsake tree even if you haven’t done family history before or don’t have a FamilySearch account. Print it, hang it, and let the names of your ancestors intrigue and beckon you.

    Play 20 Questions

    Small, engaging activities are also terrific ways of getting started with family history, and they make perfect ideas for Primary, youth, and family time. Get to know your family better by asking questions about their lives. What did your grandpa study at the university? Was grandpa grandma’s first love? Where did your parents meet? Do you know the story about that time your dad skipped school and was chased by the truancy officer? Ask the questions, and record and save the answers.
    For question ideas, download the sheet below and play the game at mealtime, during a Sunday phone call to family, or at an upcoming family home evening.

    Step 3: Share Results as a Group
    Once everyone’s completed the quiz, have each person score how many “Yes” answers they got on the scale. Allow each person to share one question he or she answered “No” to with the group, and if other family members are present, ask if they know the answer. If no family members are present or if no one knows the answer, challenge them to find the answers and then save what they learn on FamilySearch.

    Step 4: Enter Information in FamilySearch
    Allow time to write down the answers to the questions and upload the answers to FamilySearch so that present and future family members can learn more about family stories.

    Step 5: Invitation
    Invite participants to seek more information about any questions that were answered “No.” Encourage them to learn more stories about their family, to keep these stories recorded on FamilySearch, and to share these stories with others.
    Knowing about your ancestors will ground you (and your kids) in goodness.

    Play "What’s in a Name?"

    • Find out what your name means and why it’s yours. How did your parents choose your given name? Are you named after an ancestor? Does your surname indicate an ancestor’s occupation? Does it suggest a country or culture of origin?  Ancestry is a great resource for surname information. For instance, I already knew that my maiden name, Duncan, is Scottish, but I learned that it means “brown-haired chieftain.” And baby name books tell me that my given name, Hadley, is also Scottish and means “fields of heather.” This must be why I cry whenever I hear bagpipes!

    See? Family history isn’t fuddy-duddy, it’s FUN—and it brings blessings. Telling stories leads to seeking more information, which leads to sharing the blessings of the temple with those we’ve come to care about. Meanwhile, we (and our children) grow more closely connected emotionally, feel more gratitude for each other, increase our desire to relate successfully, and improve our ability to turn away from all kinds of temptations.

    Stephen W. Owen, Young Men general president, told the 2016 Family Discovery Day audience that family history and temple activities strengthen youth and “help keep them on an eternal perspective and help them become resilient through their earthly trials.”

    “You can increase in love and help your family heal, going in both directions—toward your ancestors and toward your posterity,” he said.

    Family history activities are for everyone, in every stage of life: decorative memorials, simple games and activities, research and temple work—it all counts! And it will all invite the Spirit into our lives, blessing past and future generations, as well as ourselves, right here, today.

    Youth Projects

    Ideas for Young Men and Young Women projects that can help inspire a love for the work*

    1. Plan a "Family Tradition" activity.  Discover the joy of family history through traditions such as stories, art, dance, food, and music.  Interview a grandparent, parent, uncle, aunt, or other close relative to discover how a tradition was started in their family. If they don’t have a tradition, invite them to consider one they would like to start as a family. Invite the girls in your class to share a tradition by preparing a story, food, art, dance, or song. You could also Invite family or ward members to be the audience. Take photos of the traditions. Consider creating stories about how these traditions were created and share them and the photos in Family Tree on

    2. Invite special guests from within the ward family to an activity.  Ask them to share life stories, their testimonies and displays of their life. You could ask questions and learn from their life experiences.

    3. Plan a night where each young woman displays  memories, history, recipes with the item made up for tasting, etc.  You could wear an article of clothing from your ancestor such as a hat, apron, etc.

    4. Plan and host a "Technology Night."  Help those in the ward who may be uncomfortable with technology preserve their family history.  Ask ward members to gather old family photos, newspaper articles, obituaries, etc.   Consider pairing one youth with each person. Scan photos, take digital photos of prints, or go to the local family history center to scan the photos. Upload the information you find to Photos and Stories at, tag the people in the photos and stories, and connect them to Family Tree.

    5. You could post a map of the world outside the bishop’s office. Ask ward members to put a flag showing where their ancestors are from. Give rewards to those who participate. To get a reward they would have to:
       . Be able to trace their roots the furthest from Utah
       . Include entire family in family research and posting on the map
       . Load information into Family Tree after gathering their information

    6. Request the patriarchal blessing of an ancestor (such as a great grandparent).  After reading it, write in your journal promises and warnings given to that ancestor.  Record how this could help you in your own life.

    7. Create "Family History Jars" for parents or grandparents.  Encourage them to record their life stories.

    8. In order to keep the Sabbath Day holy, learn how and do indexing.  See

    9. Read and record promises from the scriptures and modern day leaders about the blessings of family records.  Create your own plan of how you want to participate in family history.

    10. Have a "Morph" night.  Each young woman and leader could take their photo and morph it into that of an ancestor.  Post the pictures around the room and have each guess who the picture is of.

    11. Plan to do baptisms at the Temple with names you have researched from your own family tree, or that you have discovered through indexing.  Print the cards and plan the Temple day.  Ask endowed adults to complete the Temple work for you once the baptisms have been done.

    12.  Visit with your living relatives to learn as much information about your family history as possible. Then complete a pedigree chart of your family and list the temple ordinances that have been completed for each person.

    13.  Select a gospel principle you would like to understand better (for example, faith, repentance, charity, eternal families (family history), or baptismal covenants). Read scriptures and the words of latter-day prophets that relate to the principle. Prepare a five-minute talk on the subject and give the talk in a sacrament meeting, in a Young Women meeting, to your family, or to your class. Record in your journal how you can apply this gospel principle in your life.

    14. Teach a lesson about service in family home evening or in another setting. Use pictures, music, examples, or demonstrations in your lesson. You may want to use the manual Teaching, No Greater Call as a resource.  (The service could include extended search for ancestors and doing their temple work as a family.  Include quotes from latter-day Apostles about the blessings and promises of doing family history.)

    15.  List the issues, trends, and problems that weaken the family. Read the First Presidency message, “The Family: A Proclamation to the World”, and the section on family in For the Strength of Youth. Then research in the Church magazines the counsel of those whom we sustain as prophets, seers, and revelators. Write in your journal your plan to strengthen your present family and the values and traditions you want to establish with your future family.  (Research stories from ancestors and record/discuss ways they strengthened their family.  Record stories and pictures on Family Search.)

    *These projects can be incorporated into the Duty of God and Young Women's in Excellence Programs

    Creating an LDS Account on Family Search

    Create an LDS Account

    1. Go to the website

    2. Click on “Sign in with LDS Account”.

    3. Under the "Sign in" button, click on “Register for an LDS Account”.

    4. Click on “Register as a Member”.

    5. Enter your date of birth and membership record number.  A member of the bishopric can look up your membership record number in LDS Tools if you can’t find it there yourself.

    6. Enter your first name and last name in the boxes provided.

    7. Enter your User Name.  This is a unique name which you supply.  I suggest your first and last names as one word with no spaces and no caps, but if you have a favorite user name which you use for other applications, feel free.  If someone else in the system is already using that exact name, the system will tell you to try something else.

    8. Record your user name somewhere where you won’t forget it.

    9. Enter a password.  This is also something you supply and must be unique.  I suggest something that has no meaning, so someone can’t figure it out based on what they know about you, so you MUST record it somewhere, along with your user name, in a safe place in case you can’t remember it later on.  It’s your entrance key into the system, and recovering a forgotten one is kind of a big deal.  It should be at least 8 characters long and contain both letters and numbers, and some of the letters should be upper case.

    10. Record your password somewhere where you won’t forget it.

    11. You will use this user name and password each time you log into Family Tree.

    12. Check your gender, male or female, and pick your country from the list.

    13. Enter your email address in the recovery options section.

    Check the box that says you’ve read and agree with the privacy policy.

    Click on the Register button.