family

My Ancestry DNA Experience

I have always wanted to know where my family came from. My family has a weird history…

My mom had a good guess of her family’s history but not much from her father’s side. She believes she is Irish and Cherokee Indian. My dad had a Russian sounding surname but his family was from Puerto Rico. There was some drama when he was born in the 1930’s and his father’s side of the family disowned them. I have no clue about his mother’s side of the family.

So when my husband bought my my DNA kit for my birthday, I was ecstatic. I decided I should document what I know and what my experience is… so here we go….

Day 1:

My husband forwarded me an email with a login for ancestry.com. He bought me a DNA kit for my birthday. ~SO EXCITED~

Now I sit and wait for my kit to arrive.

With the purchase of the kit, I get a 14-day trial of the mid-level Ancestry online service, which includes access to certificates and documents to help me get started on my family tree. I immediately begin searching for family that I know of, by name.

Day 2 – 5:

I continue working on my tree. I find a lot of family members and information on my mom’s side. I find plenty of relatives but no supporting documentation of them being Irish or Cherokee. I have gone back 4 generations and they have all lived in the same town during this time.

My dad’s side is a little more complicated. I can find his parents and then roadblock.

I find familysearch.org and try my luck there. OMG I find my paternal great-grandparents!!! Bingo! This website had the marriage certificate information for my dad’s parents. On the certificate they listed their parents name. Finally I’m getting somewhere.

Day 6:

My DNA kit arrives!!!!! It looks simple enough… Don’t eat or drink for at least 30 minutes, spit… a lot….. into the tube, seal it into a baggie, mail back. Ok. I got this.

Day 7:

Kit is in the mail!!

Day 11:

Ancestry sent an email notification thanks they received my kit and it should be precessed within 6-8 weeks. I’m hoping for sooner.

Day 40:

Received an email that the lab has begun processing my kit and I should have my results in 2-4 weeks. The anticipation!! Lol.

Day 48:

The results are in!!

In total, it took 48 days from the day that the kit was ordered until the delivery of the results.

Did the results arrive in time?

Yes. Originally, I was notified that it would take a total of 6-8 weeks. The results arrived within that time. It took awhile for the lab to get to my sample, but once the testing began, the results were available earlier than expected.

Was the report easy to read?

Yes. You receive a detailed report with a pie chart. The report is an Ethnicity Estimate with percentages of where your ancestors were from, based on your DNA. The report is broken down into two parts: the higher percentages of matching DNA and the “low confidence” regions. The low confidence regions in my report are 2% match and under. This doesn’t sound like much but, for me, it’s over 10% of my ancestry. And, although the 10% is spread out over about 7-8 countries, all of the countries are in Africa. I think that’s pretty significant since the countries are all in one region.

Can you print a detailed report?

Ancestry gives you the option to print out the report but you cannot print the low confidence regions, which added up to over 10% of my ancestry.

You have the option of receiving a list of possible relatives that have used Ancestry’s services (you can opt out of this service). I opted in and Ancestry had over 1000 4th cousins or closer. I didn’t go to all of the profiles, only those related within 3 degrees. It’s interesting to see how the families branched out (pun intended) throughout the tree.

Next I will try 23andMe and write a comparison.

Have you tried Ancestry or 23andMe? Leave me a comment below and let me know your experience.

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