These are great questions and hopefully my answers will help not only Sue but any other genealogists who are struggling or floundering slightly. So let's take them one question at a time.How do you know who to include in a tree? Should I just include blood relatives? I currently have 2500 people in my tree and it is growing daily. I am using mostly ancestry and lan-opc.org.uk and sometimes familysearch.org to search for information. My tree is in ancestry because I can move anything I find there to my tree. I am not sure if I should transfer my tree from ancestry to somewhere else in case I opt out of ancestry. Can I transfer all pictures, ancestry records, parish records and documents if I move my tree?
Q: How do you know who to include in a tree? Should I just include blood relatives?
A: There is no right or wrong way to research your ancestry. Each genealogist must decide on what suits them, or how much time and energy they want to put into their genealogy. But there are some things to remember before you make your decision. For example it is often the case that when you are stuck on finding an ancestor's parents or some other information, searching another son or daughter may provide the solution to your brickwall.
Q: I am using mostly ancestry and lan-opc.org.uk and sometimes familysearch.org to search for information.
A: This isn't a question but I'm going to respond anyway. It seems you are searching mainly in Lancashire England. I would also suggest your branch out and use Find My Past and British Newspapers sites. They have excellent UK records.
Q: I am not sure if I should transfer my tree from ancestry to somewhere else in case I opt out of ancestry.
A: I would have a backup copy of my tree on my computer even if you never opt out of Ancestry. My suggestion would be for you to find a genealogy program you like and keep your tree there. I like Family Tree Maker but you may prefer a different program such as Legacy Family Tree, Roots Magic, etc. If you google "genealogy programs for family tree" you will see many results and can read up about each of them.
Q: Can I transfer all pictures, ancestry records, parish records and documents if I move my tree?
A: If you are moving your tree from Ancestry, the answer is "no". You will have to save (download) each document manually to your computer and save it on your hard drive. Be sure to label each file so you can easily find it again. I suggest creating a folder for each surname and putting the appropriate files in there. If you are using Family Tree Maker on your computer you can add Media Files easily to each ancestor.
Here is an example of how I create my Genealogy Folders on my computer drive:
I like to name my files as Surname_First Name_Year_Type of Record. That way the documents fall into alphabetical order and chronologically for each individual. Every genealogist has their own method that suits them.
I've given you my suggestions. Now it's time for my readers to weigh in with theirs. I'm sure there will be many different ideas and answers and I'm looking forward to reading them.