Over the past 25 years, I have spent a lot of time and energy researching my family history. I have discovered ancestors with fascinating names (such as Cinderella Spinks - there HAS to be a good story behind that, don't you think?) and traced one line directly back to a First Fleet convict.
I added all the information I had found to my computer, using an early version of the Family Tree Maker programme. This was before the internet was widely available and I marvelled at being able to print out family charts that showed the links between generations.
When my previous computer died last month, I thought it was a wonderful opportunity to upgrade my Family Tree Maker software. There have been many, many upgrades since I bought my first version. I received the 2010 version as a gift a couple of days ago and installed it last night.
Can you guess what I'm going to say next? Somehow, all my data had been lost. I was pretty sure it was included in my backups, but even though I hunted high and low, it is nowhere to be found. Oh no!
Luckily, I have a descendant chart of one line of my family I had printed a few years ago and I have a copy of the wonderful published book The story of John Nichols First Fleeter and five generations of his family, which includes a lot of information I contributed. So, I haven't lost the information for that line, I just have to key it all in again.
Sadly, that doesn't apply to my other line. I will need to resort to entering data from all the certificates I gathered over the years. So there's my task for 2010 - to get my records up to date, make sure the backups are safe and perhaps invest some more time in research.