Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Works for Me Wednesday

I have put this off for a year. Of course it has been a very hectic year. But Shannon's Backwards WFMW Edition is a great opportunity to get some help.

Last summer I was charged with the task of creating a website for my very large, extended family. I have aunts, uncles and cousins around the world, and we need to have a user-friendly website that will help us all stay connected. It will also be used to help us plan our reunion.

I welcome any recommendations for hosting, web page templates, etc. I would like it to include a feature, such as a message board, so everyone could have the opportunity to make comments regarding various family issues. I may want to also have the option of implementing a security feature so the site or at least certain pages on the site are password protected. Another plus would be the option of allowing family members to upload pictures.

I have got to do something very soon or else I may get demoted as communications chair.


TransitionGirl said...

For hosting, I recommend GoDaddy. it's inexpensive and it has all the features you'll need. Total control too.

For designs, there are tons of open source web designs out there. One site is: . You can just download the files and adapt them to your needs.

For message board, if you wanna host it on your plan, you can install the php Bulletin board: instructions on how to install are on there.

If you want members to upload pictures, easiest to have a photoblog like flickr that can give multiple people permissions. For security feature, there are several codes you can use, some free. here's a free one:

If you need any help, feel free to contact me. :)

Kim said...

Our family just created a website on shutterfly. You can post pics and add password for protection and add messages. It is very simple to use and you can send emails to everyone at once to let them know you have entered more pics, etc.

We like it because it is very simple to use!

Jen @ Mommay's Mayhem said...

What about going to and creating it on there? It has all those features you listed. If you have a domain, I'm sure you could point it to your network on there. =)

Anonymous said...

we have an ancestry website on msn groups. It has worked well. They have message boards and a place for photos.

Grace said...

Try creating a google group. I *think* because you have a blogger account, you already have a google log-in, but at any rate, it's free!

You can do all the things you listed--creating discussions, including pictures, and everything like that.

Here's a link to information about it:

Rene said...

We use It has a calendar, news, picture, family tree, links, recipe section. Its easy to use, costs $30/year, very worth it. Have everyone chip in a dollar a year if cost is an issue or have different parts of the family host it each year. We use it so the computer illiterates of our family can join in. Its password protected so you dont have to worry about weirdos getting on your site. Definitely an easy site to use. Give it a try, they will give you your first month free.

Anonymous said...

You could always start a new blog - my extended family has a 'secret' blog on Blogger that we use to post pictures, updates, and hold conversations via the comments. Everyone involved would need an account, then just add them as blog writers and make the whole blog private.

And, its free. The Google Groups thing I imagine would be similar, but I've never tried that. And we did have a message board hosted on our own website once as well, but it was too much work for me to maintain it for the use it received. I'd go cheap and easy if I were you, it helps avoid grey hairs! Plus if you've ever had to try to explain to your mom how to create a message board account or troubleshoot her cookie problem... well just try to avoid it, if possible. ;)

So, private blog with all family members added as participants in writing it. Works for me!

Richelle said...

I'm sure it is similar to the MSN and Google groups that have been mentioned, but I have used Yahoo Groups for things like that. There is a message board that all the messages are emailed out to everyone, and there is a place to store pictures.
My extended family also uses, which was mentioned already.