Thankful Thursday

pumpkin-151743_640Today is Thanksgiving here in the U.S.  Here are some of the things I’m thankful for (in no particular order):

  • a sense of humor
  • coffee
  • family
  • friends (both virtual and IRL)
  • friends and family with a sense of humor
  • career shifts
  • colored markers and highlighters
  • ambition
  • spelling AND grammar
  • the ability to read cursive writing
  • logic
  • Success Team
  • post-it notes
  • an open mind
  • resilience
  • that Honey BooBoo is canceled
  • that WDYTYA is not
  • learning
  • chocolate
  • living in a country where I have the right to an opinion
  • a paycheck
  • that my cats are entertained by crumpled paper
  • that I am entertained by my cats and crumpled paper
  • that my ancestors survived so I could be here, writing this list

What are you thankful for?


Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved

My Evernote To-Do List

In my life-long quest to become organized, one of the goals I set for myself was to consolidate all my random genealogy to-do lists into one.  My first thought was just to use the To-Do List feature in my RootsMagic program.  While that is a very useful tool, it just wasn’t working for me.

I thought about creating a spreadsheet, but that seemed like overkill.  Plus, I wanted my list to be accessible no matter where I was.


Then I started looking at Evernote.  I found a series of blog posts about using Evernote for genealogy by Colleen Green and Shannon Thomas.  Know what I discovered? Evernote has CHECKBOXES!  Yes, please.

The first thing I did (because it was the most important) was to create an icon for my to-do lists.  I noticed that Shannon used one for her research logs, and I wanted something other than a tag to identify a note as a to-do list.  So I created an icon for my to-do lists … and while I was at it, I went ahead and created one for my research logs and research plans.  I just copy and paste this little icon at the bottom of each note.  Since it’s the only image in the note, it shows up as the thumbnail on the list.

note list capture

Then it was time to get serious and create my to-do lists.  The first list I created was a “general” list – one that holds all the items that are not person-specific – such as “make a list of relatives who were in the military.”  I systematically went through the to-do lists I already made in RootsMagic and transferred them to Evernote, creating a new note for each person, and creating surname, place name, and repository tags along the way.  I’ll use those later when I’m ready to check some things off – then I can click on the “Vanderburgh” tag to pull up all the to-do items for my trip to Evansville.

Once I copied over all the to-do items from RootsMagic, I went through my blog posts – one by one – and added all the things I said I needed to do (which never actually made it onto a to-do list).  Ironically, one of the items I came across was a goal I made for myself back in 2011 that said “keep a to-do list in one place …” so, I guess I can (finally) check that one off!

All told, I have 59 separate to-do lists now, and I’m sure that list will grow – if I ever get the chance to actually work on my genealogy again.  But because all of my notes have been appropriately tagged with surnames, places, and repositories, I can find all the ones I need with one click.  The best part?  I have access to my to-do lists from my phone, my tablet, my laptop, or any desktop computer.

Where do you keep your to-do lists?


Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved

Sunday’s Obituary: Lucile F. (Stiker) Crowe

The name of the newspaper and date of this obituary are unknown.  However, it likely appeared in the Indianapolis Star in June 1969.

Lucile F Crowe obituaryMrs. Harold Crowe

Funeral services for Mrs. Lucile F. Crowe, 65, West Pleasant Run Parkway, South Drive, will be held at 8:30 a.m. Thursday in G. H. Herrmann South East Street Funeral home and at 9 a.m. in Sacred Heart Catholic Church, of which she was a member, burial will be in Calvary Cemetery.

Mrs. Crowe, who died Monday in St. Francis Hospital, was a native of Mt. Vernon (Inc.) and lived in Indianapolis 49 years.

Before her retirement in 1965, she was a saleslady for L. S. Ayers & Co. for 15 years.

Survivors include the husband, Harold Crowe Sr.; two daughters, Mrs. Jeannette Hall of Carmel and Mrs. Mary Gallagher of Miami, Fla.; two sons, Harold Crowe Jr. of Indianapolis and Charles W. Crowe of Cincinnati; two sisters, Mrs. Vera Call of Evansville and Mrs. Lillian Hanes of Dahlgren, Ill; three brothers, Frank and Eugene Stiker of Evansville and Justin Stiker of Indianapolis; 19 grandchildren and six great grandchildren.


Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved

Surname Saturday: Diefenbach


Surname Origins

According to the Internet Surname Database, the Diefenbach surname has not been researched.  I feel fairly certain that its origins are in the area of Germany.  Variations include Deifenbach, Tiefenbach, Diefenbacker, Diepenbecker, Deefenbach, just to name a few (not including all the odd ones I found while looking for this family in the census).

Surname in my Tree

My closest Diefenbach ancestor is my 3rd great grandmother, Maria Theresa Diefenbach.  The line goes back to her father, George Philip Diefenbach (1820-1903), and his father George P. Diefenbach (1791-1870).


It is unknown where George P. Diefenbach was born, but it was likely the area of Prussia.  He married a woman named Catherine around 1818 and they had at least two children – Elizabeth and George Philip.  The family immigrated to the United States between 1820 and 1840.  They eventually settled in Evansville, Vanderburgh, Indiana.  George Philip married Louisiana Buttz on March 4, 1843, and they had 12 children.  They resided in Evansville for the remainder of their lives.  George Phillip died in 1903 from an accidental drowning, and Louisiana died 8 years later from heart disease.  The couple are buried in Diefenbach Cemetery.  Their oldest daughter, and my 3rd great grandmother, Marie Theresa married Anton Heerdink in 1863.  She died on July 13, 1878 from tuberculosis.  Anton died a year later on July 24, 1879.of “acute extreme melancholia” while an inmate in the Central State Hospital for the Insane, leaving behind their 7 children, ranging in age from 3 to 14.  He had been involuntarily committed by the court only 4 months prior.

Future Research

I know very little about the elder Diefenbachs (such as their immigration and naturalization information, how he accidental drowning occurred, etc.), but feel like I really should explore Marie Theresa’s life a little more before going back any farther.  I will be traveling to Evansville in the next two weeks to obtain court records and visit cemeteries, and to see what other nuggets I can dig up about this family!  Of particular interest to me are any guardianship records for Anton’s children, along with any court records related to Anton’s involuntary commitment to the asylum.


Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved


Today is World Hello Day.  The whole idea is to promote world peace (something I think we can all agree is sorely needed these days).  You can participate by greeting ten people.  I figure I’ll reach that many, and then some.

I will start by saying hello in all the native languages of my (known) ancestors:

France  Salut!



Germany  Guten Tag!



Netherlands  Dag!



Ireland  Dia duit!



Quebec  Bonjour!



United States  Hello!


That didn’t hurt at all!  You try!


Do we share any ancestors?
Please email me at lostancestors [at] gmail [dot] com

Copyright 2014 - Are My Roots Showing? All rights reserved