23 July 2009

To Do Lists

I have "to do" lists for everything. Groceries, cleaning, research, errands, books I want to get... the list could go on and on forever. I'm just a "to do" list sort of person. Sometimes I forget that I have a to do list for some projects. Other times I have multiple lists for each part of the project.

Of course for those of you who don't use lists, well then this may all sound silly. BUT, those of you who like me do use lists you understand right?

Mark swears that when I awaken in the morning there is a ticker tape to do list running across the middle of my forehead. It sets the pace for my day, drives him crazy.

Seriously though, I am continually amazed at the number of people I meet who don't use a to do list in their genealogy research. A list of books, maps, newspapers and other "sources" that one needs to check for their ancestors, but can't do it right this instant.

I have a to do list for each repository that I visit on a regular basis. For example, I have a to do list for Ft Wayne (Aka Allen County public library), as well as for libraries in other places that I might be visiting in the near future. I find myself constantly updating, adding & deleting from my to do list based on my every day research. I even have a to do list for Ancestry.com - for days when I am just too brain dead to think, I can open up that to do list and get busy!

No more wandering around the library wondering what to do next. Having my to do list in my genealogy software makes it easy to generate a to do list, save it to my flash/thumb drive and go to my hotel's business center and print off my list. Talk about traveling lite! Now if only finding the answers to all my brick walls was this easy!

So tell me - do you make to do lists for YOUR genealogy?

Genealogy To Do lists - a very good thing!

Happy Researching!


TennLady said...

You know I do! Can't live without it.

Gini said...

I do have genealogy "to do lists" I even use a dry erase pen on my mirror in the bathroom, works great! As I am getting ready for work in the morning, it seems to be the time I think of things to do the most. I keep a "fine" dry erase marker in my medicine cabinet right next to my toothpaste or what not and when I think of something I need to do I write it out. I then transfer it to paper. I haven't got as far as to do it on my computer, I need to have it in my hands or I am afraid I won't use it! I carry a Franklin Covey planner with me, I journal, make to do lists and many other things there, yup I am with you on the list fettish! Great post, thank you for sharing!

Tracy said...

I set up an Excel spreadsheet with a sheet for every surname that I am researching. At the top I list all of the items "to do" and when the task is accomplished I just cut and paste it lower down on the sheet so I can see what I've already done. I note the date next to letters I've sent etc. so I can better track when I should be receiving a response. I couldn't function without "to do" lists in my genealogy or just my everyday tasks.

Karen Packard Rhodes said...

I do have a genealogy "to do" list which right now is two legal-pad pages long, for things to search at various repositories in two counties and online. Can't live without lists!