Monday, March 30, 2009

Grandma's cookbook

I have had a project for a couple of years now.

My grandmother gave me an OLD cookbook, from the 30's or 40's, when her mother got her first wood-burning stove. It is crumbling, falling apart in my hands. I wanted to preserve the recipes, so for the last few years I have been copying the recipes into Microsoft Word. I'm toward the end, I only have about 4 or 5 pages left, which is good, because if it was falling apart 4 years ago, it is disintegrating now. Every time I pick it up it looses bits of paper.

I started again last night after probably a 6 or 7 month break.

I like what the book tells about my great-grandmother. She, like me, abused the pages she loved. You can tell which recipes she liked by the spills, rips and folded pages. I have completely lost 1 page, front and back, of vegetable recipes, and 1 page of cake recipes. You can also tell which pages she probably never used, they are clean and easy to read.

I only have 4 or 5 more pages of actual recipes, but at the end, probaly 20 or 25 pages, are the names and locations of the submitters to this cook book and testimonials about this cook book. I'm going to try to get that into the computer as well, because these are real women who cooked and cared for their families. These women had children and husbands, mothers and fathers. They had joy and sorrow, love and loss, and it feels like I'm reaching out to the past and briefly touching their lives. It feels as important to me to include the names and locations of these women as it is to preserve their recipes.

Last night as I was finished, I was poking around and found the total number of words, 40,000. And I'm not done yet. That's a LOT of words. No wonder it's taken me 4 years.

Plus, on a slightly avaricious note, I think I could probably get this published, and the names and locations of the submitters and testimonials would probably increase the population of people who would buy it.


sheree said...

that is SO cool! I love old stuff like that and Grandmas old cookbook could probably keep me entertained for a long while!

Manic Mother said...

Thanks for stopping in and commenting, its always nice and refreshing to meet someone like myself, I hope to see more of you!