I usually try and find things on my own as well. I enjoy the challenges. I started with Ancestry.com, but when my free trial ended, I never picked up the paid service. That was a couple years ago. Recently I started looking through free services. Genealogy.com, RootsWeb, and FamilySearch.org have been my go to and I have succeeded for the most part. My mothers side has been stumping me lately. Living relatives have little info.
I have not been able to go very far with the Murphys that I am related to. My great grandmother was Carolina MurphyShe was born in 1915, I believe in New Mexico. I think I have found her parents Jose(Joe in some sources) Murphy married to Caroline(both also in NM). I have seen Carolines middle initial of F, no maiden name on some sources, but I just found one source that has a last name of Flores (could be the middle initial from the previous source), but I have not confirmed that source as it may be correct years, but I need to confirm through my living tree as to the siblings.
Im going crazy too...lol
Any further details you could give me would be helpful as well.