I would always start with a circle at the bottom of the page...that was me. Then I would draw circles for my parents, and then my grandparents and then...
Inevitably I would run out of space to fit my mother's grandfather into the right spot without having to squish into my father's grandmother. [grrrrr.]
So, I'd have to pull out a fresh peice of paper and start all over again.
After a few more tries, I would manage to fit all my circles onto the one page.
But then...when I would start to fill in the spaces with names, I'd find out that even though my space was big enough to fit Carrie Lynn, the other spaces further up the branches got smaller and smaller and the names got longer and longer...Carrie Georgie Johnson Becker! [double grrrr.]
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THEN...if I tried to put dates in...forget about it! The circles with the most room were all still living and the ones requiring a "birth-death" date were too small to begin with let alone already jampacked with four or five names! [aahhhh!]
You would think the easy part of making a family tree was the drawing of the circles! Well, have I got a tool for you! An Interactive Blank Family Tree Chart and An Ancestral Chart. And they're FREE! You choose which fits your personal taste/needs. The first is a more fun depiction, allowing just enough room for names, whereas the second is a more serious, include-all-the-information type of family tree.
Also, here's A Genealogy Relationship Chart that helps sort out questions like, "If my father is cousins with my "Uncle" Joe, then what is Uncle Joe's granddaughter to me?" A very insightful little tool...especially if your children start asking you those questions.
For a great family project that's quick and FREE, go ahead and print out the fun Family Tree Chart...in fact, print one out for each member of your household and start filling out what you already know. Begin your Memoirs By: Me journey today!