Yesterday I spent more than eight hours working on my genealogy research. I'm kind of like that--when I get involved in something I have laser focus to the point of forgetting to eat and even forgetting the time. So far it has been fairly fascinating. Besides finding out a couple of family secrets (both of my grandparents were married to other people before they got married which no one ever talked about), I found out yesterday that my fifth great grandparents had six kids but four of them died in one year from scarlet fever (that gave me goose bumps...how horrible!). Then I looked up the history of the time and the area and found that there were three "pandemic" type outbreaks of scarlet fever in the 1800s. So this research is fascinating and it also exemplifies how random life can be. I am the result of one of my fifth great grandparent's two kids who lived--plus the myriad other decisions people made like where they ended up living and who they met then in turn married...it's kind of mind-blowing when you think about it.
On a financial note, genealogy is a good, inexpensive hobby on one hand--much information is now available online--but on the other hand, ordering birth, death, and marriage certificates is expensive!