My 3 Words for 2014

Thanks to Chris Brogan, CEO of Human Business Works, I adopted a new tradition last year that involves choosing 3 words that would be the action steps I take in my genealogy endeavors for the year. My 3 Words for 2013 were — First. Proof. Publish. 

What went well in 2013?

  • I was very successful in creating those “First” experiences here at Claiming Kin! Adding the “New Here?” page to my blog definitely made everyone who surfed in feel welcomed into the family and given a reason to stick around and connect with me. Therefore the engagements and discussions I had with newly found cousins (online and offline) and visiting researchers who thought the lives of my ancestors were fairly intriguing enough to want to know more about them was — PHENOMENAL!
  • Providing valid “Proof” of my family connections in my research process and citing my sources (APA Style) definitely played a major part in why I had active engagements and discussions here throughout the year!

What didn’t go well in 2013?

  • I didn’t get to “Publish” the eBooks I wanted to. BUT, one of my eBooks for “the beginning genealogy hobbyist” is in progress now. If all goes well, the e-book will be ready Fall 2014 . . . woo-hoo!

My 3 Words for 2014 are:

Serendipity.

I believe Lawrence Block, a popular American crime writer, said it best when he penned —

Serendipity. Look for something, find something else, and realize that what you’ve found is more suited to your needs than what you thought you were looking for.”

I cannot begin to list all the “unexpected” discoveries I made about one ancestor while searching for another last year. Therefore, I want more of those experiences! But for that to happen, I must remember NOT to make assumptions about any of the resources and records available, online or offline, because I don’t believe my slave ancestors would be found in them. I must explore ALL resources and records with no preconceived ideas about what I will, or won’t, find in them. Genealogy, in a nut-shell, is problem-solving work. So as I go about reconstructing the lives and identities of my ancestors this year (and beyond), I want some serendipity thrown in there for good measure . . . for without it there would be no cool surprises waiting for me along the way!

Collaboration.

Slave Ancestry is challenging work and to fully understand the process requires that I have knowledge about the African Diaspora and the slave experience in America! One thing my association with the African American Genealogy & Slave Ancestry Research Group (AAGSAR) has taught me is how necessary “active” collaboration with like-minded researchers is to my slave research success! Collaborating in this grassroots group has allowed me to help some incredible new family historians with their research, as well as, learn strategies for moving my slave ancestry work “back” beyond the 1870 census. AAGSAR is an interactive genealogy community I’m proud to belong to and more collaboration at this level is a MUST for me!

DNA.

I believe the time has come for me to learn how to use my DNA data (and my brother’s recent Y-DNA data) to expand my family research! There has been a lot written about genetic genealogy last year; a number of  advancements in this area of study has made it possible for me to decide if I’m related to others with the same surname and to identify my geographic/ethnic ancestral origin. But my real inspiration for wanting to learn how to use my DNA data comes from closely observing the family connections AAGSAR members Kristin Williams, True Lewis, Maurice BellTeresa Vega, and others in the group have blogged about because of DNA testing.  I want to learn as much as I can about this field so that I can use my results to enhance my experience with relatives. Yes indeed! I’m ready for all my genetic testing has to offer!

Have you set some genealogy goals for yourself this year? Yes?! No?! Feel inspired to choose *three* words that would help focus your goals and efforts with your family research this year? If yes, what three words would you choose? Let me know your thoughts, but most of all Happy Ancestor Hunting to you this year!

Follow Friday: DNAeXPlained, Your Genetic Genealogist, and Haplogroup

It’s Follow Friday and today I recommend three of my favorite “go-to” bloggers for understanding DNA, genetic genealogy and haplogroups. Check them out!

DNAeXplained: Discovering Your Ancestors – one Gene at a Time – is the excellent blog of Roberta Estes, a professional scientist and business owner for 25+ years, as well as, an obsessed genealogist since 1978. She manages over 20 surname projects and is the founder of the Lost Colony DNA research projects.  Her niche is Native American Heritage and minority admixture. I discovered Roberta’s blog and website after I got my mtDNA results back from FamilyTreeDNA in 2012. After trying to make sense of my report, I knew right away I was going to need some help and her article, “Mitochondrial DNA Results – What Do They Mean and What Do I Do With Them?” was an excellent start!

Your Genetic Genealogist with CeCe Moore is a wonderful treat for she makes genetics — a complicated subject — very easy to understand! Cece is one BUSY independent professional genetic genealogist! She is the Lead Ancestry Ambassador for 23andMe, Moderator for the ISOGG DNA Newbie List and Administrator for the ISOGG Wikipedia, Regional Coordinator for Southern California’s International Society of Genetic Genealogy, and much, much more! Her expertise is in assisting others in understanding Autosomal DNA testing products such as 23andMe’s Relative Finder, FTDNA’s Family Finder and Ancestry.com’s AncestryDNA. Her niche is in Adoption DNA and Adoption genealogy. 

Haplogroup – Finding Your Ancestry Through Your Genes – is the new blog of Rebekah Canada, who fell in love with genealogy at the age of seven. According to her blog’s bio, her love for genealogy “…began with a family history written by one of her maternal cousins. Over the months and many bags of pogan ginger cookies, she fell in love with the women of Colonial New England.” Her expertise is in the area of personal genealogy, minority population heritage, personal genomics education, and project administration best practices. What I enjoy most about Rebekah is — she has a “heart” of a teacher! Her 29 June 2013 post titled, “Soloma’s Daughters – Your Ancestor’s mtDNA and Who Has It offers wonderful step-by-step instructions on how to use our mtDNA Full Sequence Understanding Results and apply it to any working genealogy projects we have to verify our female line.

Press Release: Gene By Gene Signs Agreement with MD Anderson Cancer Center

Gene By Gene, LtdIf you’ve ever purchased a DNA kit from Family Tree DNA, then Gene By Gene, Ltd is the company that provides that test through their Family Tree DNA division. This company was the first to offer genetic genealogy testing to consumers over a decade ago. I’m especially impressed with the fact that their prestigious instruction and training in molecular genetic technology is the reason for their new alliance with one of our nation’s top Cancer Centers — University of Texas MD Anderson. So read the press release and share the news!

HOUSTON, April 23, 2013 — /PRNewswire/ — Gene By Gene, Ltd., the Houston-based genomics and genetics testing company, announced that it has signed an agreement with the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to become one of its affiliated clinical laboratories.

Under the agreement, scientists at Gene By Gene’s Genomic Research Center will provide the clinical phase instruction, training and supervision required for students in the Molecular Genetic Technology Program, one of eight undergraduate programs offered through MD Anderson’s School of Health Professions.

“We’re delighted to partner with Gene By Gene, with its long and pioneering history in the field of genomics,” said Program Director, Peter Hu, Ph.D., with the School of Health Professions. “Gene By Gene’s sequencing, next-generation sequencing and microarray laboratory will provide the top level of experience and training that we want all our molecular students to attain.”

Gene By Gene’s Genomic Research Center is a CLIA registered lab which has processed more than 5 million discrete DNA tests from more than 700,000 individuals and organizations globally. It is now one of only 36 laboratories in the United States, including the Yale University School of Medicine and the Baylor College of Medicine, to achieve this prestigious affiliation.

“We’re very proud to be able to share our laboratory and expertise with MD Anderson’s School of Health Professions,” said Gene By Gene President Bennett Greenspan. “It’s an honor to be among the select few companies and institutions that are invited to affiliate with this prestigious institution. In addition, this is a wonderful opportunity for Gene By Gene to continue investing in the next generation of leaders in genomic and genetic science, and we’re thrilled to welcome the first students to our Genomics Research Center this May.”

About Gene By Gene, Ltd.

Founded in 2000, Gene By Gene, Ltd. provides reliable DNA testing to a wide range of consumer and institutional customers through its four divisions focusing on ancestry, health, research and paternity. Gene By Gene provides DNA tests through its Family Tree DNA division, which pioneered the concept of direct-to-consumer testing in the field of genetic genealogy more than a decade ago. Gene by Gene is CLIA registered and through its clinical-health division DNA Traits offers regulated diagnostic tests. DNA DTC is the Research Use Only (RUO) division serving both direct-to-consumer and institutional clients worldwide. Gene By Gene offers AABB certified relationship tests through its paternity testing division, DNA Findings. The privately held company is headquartered in Houston, which is also home to its state-of-the-art Genomics Research Center.

Media Contact: Kate Croft for Gene By Gene, Ltd. Casteel Schoenborn 888-609-8351 croft@csirfirm.com

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Source Citation:

Gene Gene, LTD. (2013, April 23). Gene By Gene Signs Agreement with MD Anderson Cancer Center. The Sacramento Bee. Retrieved April 23, 2013, from http://www.sacbee.com/2013/04/23/5364311/gene-by-gene-signs-agreement-with.html

National DNA Day 2013!

National DNA Day 2013 is finally here and students, teachers, and the public world-wide will spend time learning more about genetics and genomics! This celebration commemorates the completion of the Human Genome Project in April 2003, and marks one of the greatest scientific discoveries of all time — DNA’s double helix. In celebration of this monumental event, FamilyTreeDNA is offering an AWESOME deal on one of the their popular male DNA tests — the Y-DNA 12 test for just $49 (click the banner for more information below)!

Family Tree DNA Y-DNA 12 Deal

Click banner above to learn more and to order your Y-DNA 12 test today!

Other Family Tree DNA deals for you to also consider:

Full MtDNA Sequence (FMS)…. $189; Upgrades to FMS….$129
Y-DNA37 (new and add-on)…. $119
Y-DNA67 (new and add-on)…. $199
Y-DNA37 + Full MtDNA Sequence…. $308
Y-DNA12 + FF…. $218
Y-DNA37 + FF…. $288
Y-DNA67 + FF…. $368
Family Finder…. $169
Family Finder + Full MtDNA Sequence…. $358
SuperDNA….$388 (Y-67 + FMS)
Comprehensive DNA…. $557 (Y-67 + FMS + FF) 

The sale began last night April 18th, at 6PM CDT and will end at 11:59PM CDT on Monday April 22nd. All orders must be placed and paid for by the end of the sale to receive the promotional price. There will be no need for a coupon – all prices will be automatically adjusted on the website.  To get started, click here to order!

It’s National DNA Day 2012!

DNA Day 2012

Well if you haven’t heard, it’s National DNA Day — a day for students, teachers, and the public (attention genealogists) to learn more about genetics and genomics!

This day commemorates the completion of the Human Genome Project in April 2003, and the discovery of DNA’s double helix. In celebration of this event, FamilyTreeDNA is offering a sale on their DNA test products. Nearly every test they offer will be on sale for three days and this includes upgrades to DNA tests that were not during last year’s sale! The sale begins on Thursday April 19, 2012 and will conclude at 11:59PM on Saturday April 21, 2012. There will be no need for a coupon – all prices will be automatically adjusted at the website.

Remember, all orders must be in and paid for by 11:59PM on Saturday April 21, 2012 to receive this offer! For more information about this special FamilyTreeDNA Sale and to order your Family Tree DNA Kit, visit http://www.familytreedna.com