“If I knew then what I know now, I would have…” regret in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, or in a Facebook status or note.

To my lasting regret, this week’s SNGF is an easy one to state and an impossible one to fix.

My biggest genealogical regret is not talking to my grandparents when I had the chance. I always liked history, so I recall asking my grandparents about various historical events, like Lindbergh’s transatlantic flight. (My grandmother said everyone in her apartment building came out in the hall banging pots with spoons when word came that Lindbergh had landed safely.)

But did I ever ask them about family? I did not. Nothing about their parents or the towns they came from in Europe or what their childhoods were like in Chicago. Nothing. And I could have so easily. I have a few stories, of course, that got handed down, like my paternal grandfather being baptized in Norwegian in a church in Chicago or my maternal grandmother delivering every morning the buttonholes she and her mother had made as pieceworkers the night before.

But it’s nothing like it could have been. I’d give almost anything to to be able to really talk to them. I’d even be happy if my genealogical regret were fixable, like needing to rescan photographs or standardize sources and citations. So that’s my biggest regret and one I undoubtedly share with a lot of other genealogists.