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Christmas Shopping: 12 Must-Have Genealogy Toys

Perhaps “Must-Have” is a little harsh, because after all, most of us would be very happy just to be surrounded with our family on Christmas Day. However, if your spouse, children or grandchildren are looking for that special genealogy gift, feel free to send them this list.

If you have arrived here because your at a loss at what to get the genealogist on your list, you've come to the right place.

Listed below, in my opinion, are the latest and hottest toys you could get the family historian in your life this Christmas season.  How did they make the cut, simple, many of them are on my own Christmas list. So I’ve got you covered when it comes to purchasing your favourite genealogist a little something special.

Should you choose to purchase them through this blog, I will make a small commission on these items. However, many are on this list because I believe in the product and use it myself, or have it on my own Christmas list and therefore still endorse it as a great product, otherwise it I wouldn’t be on this list.

1. Flip-Pal Scanner – this one is on my wish list, I been following the many crafts my fellow bloggers have been doing, it’s only convinced me more then ever I need…..correction would love to have this little device.  I hate scanning, the Flip-Pal will help me breathe new life into my scanning projects.  It’s a “must-have” this holiday season.

2.Flip UltraHD Video Camera - Black, 8 GB, 2 Hours (3rd Generation) NEWEST MODEL  I would love to have a small video camera for recording family interviews, family gatherings and reunions. I also might use it for some projects for this blog. I’ve seen The Flip in action and I love the ease of use and the portability.

3.Canon EOS Rebel T3  - every historian needs a camera. You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars but buy one in your price range. I know a lot of cell phones have cameras in them. However, one of the problems I have been coming across, those phones produce lower quality pictures. Pictures not fit for scanning and printing in a book. If you use your pictures to produce books or calendars you will fine cellphone pictures just won’t cut it. Invest in a reasonable camera.

4.Evidence Explained:Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace 2nd Edition – on my list last year and a must have for the genealogist in your life. At this point I’m going to encourage giving any book to a genealogist, we love books. However Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills is well….let’s just call it the bible for genealogists. So if your favourite genealogist doesn’t have it, you won’t go wrong here by putting this one under the tree. Kindle Gift Card  – if your family historian is a Kindle lover, then you can still give him or her a book, with Kindle Gift Cards. They can apply them to their Kindle account and choose and download their books to their Kindle.

6.Moleskine Journal – want to go old school consider a moleskin journal. Journals are great tools to encourage daily journaling or family history note taking. Even with all the fancy gadgets available to us today, I still love a nice moleskin journal.

7.Family Tree Maker Platinum 2012 – love my Family Tee Maker and I’m hoping for the 2012 version in my stocking.  There are many great software programs out there, this is my personal favourite, but if your genealogist has another favourite, there are plenty to choose from here.

8.Sony Ericsson Smartphone Camera,  I don’t have a smartphone, more like a dumb phone, but man I understand the benefit, and hoping Santa will upgrade me this year. Of course, there are many choices, this is only one of many.

9.Kindle Fire – a big fan of the Kindle, I’ve owned one for over a year. I think you don’t have to be a genealogist to understand the many benefits. The best part about the Kindle Fire besides the convenience and carrying your library with you... the price! At $199.00, it’s the hottest item this Christmas.

10. Ancestry subscription – always the gold standard, if your family historian is just getting started, this is the perfect gift. A little pricey but guaranteed hours and hours of fun.

11. Buy Scrivener for Windows (Regular Licence) - If your family historian has plans to write their family history this year, or if they have any kind of writing project on the go, then consider the Scrivener program. I love mine, I use it daily, a simple download, reasonable price and it’s available for both PC and Mac users.

12. Sony Digital Flash Voice Recorder - I preach this all the time when I blog about interviewing family members. Best tool you could have is a recorder. I have a Sony and it has been very reliable.

Need some stocking stuffer ideas: Don’t forget to load up your favourite genealogist on picture frames, photo boxes, albums, SD cards and USB flash drives.You can find many of these items and more in the The Genealogist's Store. When buying through this store you support The Armchair Genealogist blog.

What "must-have” genealogy toy are on your wish list?