Sunday, August 28, 2016

Bullet Journaling for Genealogists

Ancestral Bookmark, 2016, privately held
by Midge Frazel

Bullet Journaling for Genealogists
You may have heard about bullet journaling from some of your non-genealogist friends. This method of keeping records, called tracking, is popular with anyone who has to manage their lives in a new way. 

Taking medications and keeping track of health related issues, event planning (like weddings or religious events) doing school or work related tasks, planting and gardening, house renovations, weight loss are some of the most common reasons to keep a Bullet Journal. Travel journals are more popular than ever and they morph into a smashbook (a kind of scrapbook) when the trip is over. Cool things are happening outside my office walls. 

Bullet Journals have their own hashtag #bujo. If you are going to blog about this, that's the tag to use.

For some time now, I have been investigating this topic with the perspective of the family historian or genealogist. I joined two Facebook groups and have collaborated with a few others on how they set up and use a research journal. Most of the people who bullet journal use calligraphy and art supplies as motivation to keep records. It keeps them engaged in their journal. I think this is helping people with organizing and planning. One size doesn't fit all.

I have been gathering some ideas in a Pinterest board. I have suggested that a well known genealogist (not me) develop a webinar on this topic and I have been sharing my ideas with that person through my development of a plan that works for me as a visual example.

As you know, I am retired but I am still an active researcher with many interests beyond genealogy. 

The bookmark shown here in this post, is a family heirloom. It belonged to my great grandparents. It was given to my grandfather, then to my mother and now it is mine. To me it was a symbol of trying not to over-do my work and not to be able remember what I was doing so I could to pick it up again where I left off. There are not enough hours in the day. I must chose wisely so I have divided my work into three notebooks. 

  • My calendar-planner (for my blogs) 
  • My research log/notebooks (my real bullet journal)
  • My list of things that don't fit neatly (like bright-shiny objects and thoughts) into the above two books.

As I sip my iced coffee, I thought you'd like to know what the Highly Caffeinated Genealogists has on her mind. 


  1. As I read this post I am drinking hot coffee. I loved reading what the Highly Caffeinated Genealogist had on her mind! Look forward to investigating more, and for the upcoming webinar also!

    1. Thanks for your comment and caring thoughts. I have my first bullet spread done!