Saturday, July 28, 2012

GRIP 2012 Reveiw and GRIP 2013 Preview

GRIP 2012 offered four classes while GRIP 2013 will offer 6.  I believe that means that there will be room for 50-60 more students. 

GRIP 2013 (July 22-26, 2013) is offering the following classes. This information is taken from the GRIP brochure.

Intermediate Genealogy:  Tools for Digging Deeper with Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FMGS, FUGA. 

Skills for Proof with Thomas W. Jones, Ph.D., CG, CGL, FASG, FUGA, FNGS.

Bridging the 1780-1940 Gap:  From New England to the Midwest with D. Joshua Taylor, MA, MLS.

Military Records: From Cradle to Grave with Craig R. Scott, CG.

Your Immigrant Ancestors' Stories: Writing a Quality Narrative with John P. Coletta, Ph.D., FUGA.

Advanced Research Tools:  Land Records with Rick Sayre, CG and Pam Sayre, CG, CGL.

Now, aren't you going to have trouble deciding which class to take?  More details will be on the GRIP web site ( in the future.  (It may take Debbie and Elissa a little while to recover from this first one before they get everything up for 2013.)  Registration will be in February 2013. 

Cafeteria food is not my favorite.  But there was a very nice salad bar for both lunches and dinners.  Turkey sausage was offered some mornings.  I loved the steamed vegetables:  beans, carrots, and zucchini.  I also really liked the cooked spinach that was served.  And the sweet potatoes with orange were good.  The turkey for dinner one night was moist and, fortunately, there was some left over, I think, because turkey was added to the salad bar the next day.  Great!  Oh, yes.  And I can't forget to mention the desserts.  What a variety, every day. 

The LaRoche College campus is beautiful.  While there are slopes, none of them are too difficult to walk.  I didn't make it to the labyrinth this year but I hope to get there next year.   I also didn't go into the library.  The chapel is lovely as is the little garden in front of it. 

Suzanne, in the bookstore, was very helpful to me.  And the staff working around campus were all pleasant.  I never felt uneasy because the campus security was around and was visible, particularly in the evenings. 

I believe that photos of GRIPitt 2012 will be posted on the Institute web site: in the near future, so you'll be able to see some of the fun we had. 

Lastly, if any of you are hesitant to come to GRIP alone, without knowing any one, I would encourage you to come any way.  I didn't know anyone; I flew in by myself; I took a taxi to the college on Sunday (by myself).  And I went back to the airport with 2 other students.  I never ate by myself, even if I was the first one to sit down at a table.  So, don't hesitate to plan for GRIPitt 2013, even if you don't have a friend to go with you.

GRIP - Friday

First, I'm home.  With a 3 hour time difference between Pittsburgh and home, I work up VERY early this morning.  Of course, I stayed up as late as possible to watch the opening ceremony of the Olympics.  (I just love watching all of the athletes walk in and I'm always amazed at where some of the countries are located; how small they are; or how many islands make up one country, etc.) 

Friday was only a half day of classes.  I believe this was a very wise idea.  So many of us (most of us?) talked about how tired we were.  During lunch it was fun to have one last visit with all of our new friends before leaving.  I just loved the opportunity to visit with both those in my class but those other special people I met who were in other classes.  (Did anyone notice that the cafeteria noise seemed to be higher Friday lunch even though there were fewer of us in there than on Sunday night?)

Many of us in Paula's Intermediate Genealogy class also appreciated the fact that she passed out the certificates one at a time so we could more easily identify the other class members (particularly those from the other side of the room, or from the front, or back);  those we didn't have as much opportunity to get to know.

Friday morning we had classes on finding US resources to help us "cross the pond" and then probate.  Honestly, I wasn't too excited about the first one, since I am not anywhere near finding out where or when my ancestors arrived in this country, or from where.  BUT, we should never discount something too soon.  There were so many different types of records mentioned and examples shown that will help me, just because they list locations.  So what if they don't list another country?  It's a location.  That's what is important!  Thank you, Paula. 

Of course probate records are really important for all of us to look at.  We never know what other types of information will be found in these records.  This is an area of records that I have not used at all.  I'm just really need to get out of my comfort zone and jump in.

I'll write a separate post listing next year's classes and summarizing a few things about this year.  But I will say now that I am SOOO glad I went.  Thank you Debbie and Elissa, all of the instructors and all of the other students.