Who am I? My name is Jennifer Nicole (Trahan) Sepulvado. I am a 31-year-old accountant living in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. I married the love of my life, Cade, on July 23, 2011, in Raleigh, North Carolina. We don't have any children yet, but we do have two very cute and cuddly cats named Callie and Charlie. I grew up in southwest Louisiana, just across the border from Texas, as the oldest child in a family of three children. I have a younger sister, Kathleen, and a younger brother, Justin. I also have a very cute niece, Violet, age 1 1/2, and one surprise niece or nephew on the way. He or she should arrive in late October/early November. Violet is named after our maternal grandmother, the late Violet (Currie) Pemberton Drouillard.
Because I love my family so much, my other great love is my family history research. I officially began my genealogy research when I was about 12 years old. However, I think that I was born a genealogist. I remember staying with my paternal grandparents when my parents took an anniversary trip when I was about 10 or 11 years old. I asked my grandmother lots of questions about her parents and grandparents. When I was around 6 or 7 years old, every time I went to my maternal grandparents' house, I always wrote down a list of all my first cousins (there were nearly twenty of them) and their birth dates. My grandmother was always so proud and would always show off the list when she went to Michigan on trips to visit my aunts and uncles.
So when I was about 12 years old, my paternal grandmother asked me if I wanted to visit the local genealogy library with her in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Before we visited, we put together a pedigree chart with all of the info my paternal grandmother knew about her parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents. She had several boxes of documents she had inherited from her parents. The boxes included obituaries, death certificates, marriage certificates, photos, letters, Bible pages, etc. I also visited my maternal grandmother to get info from her about her family and my maternal grandfather's family.
At the library, we found a lot of information on my paternal grandfather's family, as they were the only line that had been in Louisiana for more than a few decades. My paternal grandmother was from Oklahoma, while my maternal grandparents were from Michigan. We found a treasure trove of information in a series of books titled Southwest Louisiana Records. These were abstracts of Catholic church records from the 1700s to the early 1900s. I was able to trace my paternal line back to the immigrant ancestor.
I have been hooked ever since. There have been times where I've stopped doing research for a period of 6 months or more, but I always seem to return to it. I've come a long way in my knowledge and research techniques since that visit to the library. Back when I first started, the Internet was not yet being used for genealogy research. It's amazing the amount of records I have found for my other lines using the Internet. It's also amazing how many unsourced family trees I took as Gospel truth when I first started using the Internet for genealogy research in college. My biggest accomplishment has been properly citing sources. When I first started researching, I didn't cite my sources, since my primary source was the series of books with the church record abstracts. Now I ALWAYS cite my sources.