Thursday, June 5, 2008
Family Cookbook - One Slice at a Time
Several years ago, before it became fashionable or even practicable, to use a computer program to keep our at our fingertips, my sister and I decided we should put together a cookbook. From conception to birth it was a of and long, long hours of sorting, typing, editing, editing, editing!
The idea was received with great anticipation and cooperation from all of our family, "Give us several of your favorite and we will be responsible for putting a cookbook together and see that everyone gets a copy."
Recipes began to pour in from all directions - North, South, East and West. Not that we are scattered in too many directions that far from Texas, but we did have members sending from as far away as North Carolina, Alabama, Oklahoma, and Missouri. Before we knew it we had a stack of handwritten and typed that seemed to spill over the top of the desk to the floor and several feet out into the room. My sister was responsible for calling or sending emails to verify ingredients or quantities or give someone a gentle reminder that, "Yes, we do need your recipes, Aunt Bea, what would our Family Cookbook be without your favorite pecan pie?"
I busily began to enter the into my computer, using the only computer program that I was familiar with - WordPerfect. And I was VERY loyal - adamantly proclaiming that WordPerfect was the best and only program worth using. Little did I know then how I would regret using WordPerfect for our cookbook.
I don't remember what year the idea of a cookbook actually took root, but it took several years and many inquiries from members as to its whereabouts to finally bear fruit - no pun intended! To begin with my sister and I both are perfectionists in certain areas of our lives. We couldn't seem to leave well enough alone as we edited, cut, rewrote, and edited some more. The would seemingly be coming along great and then someone would want to include another one of their recipes, or they just found Aunt Nancy's peach cobbler written in her own hand, and it just had to be included. In retrospect we should have set a limit, but how do you tell Aunt Bea or Aunt Nancy why her favorites were not in the final book?
With all the changes and our dedication to "perfection," so to speak, time was slipping away - further away from our promised delivery - every day. Then with my insistence on using WordPerfect instead of Word, disaster was lurking just around the corner.
My computer died. Now I think my is a computer genius. He had suggested that I my on CD. Thank goodness for that. But when we got a computer, guess what it didn't have. That's right - WordPerfect! I don't remember exactly WHY I couldn't convert my WordPerfect files and have them formatted the way I wanted, but I eventually had to open them in Word and let the formatting do whatever it wanted to do, and then slowly and methodically redo the pages one at a time. I'm sure there was something I wasn't doing properly, but I was very frazzled by that time, and I just did the only thing I knew how to do.
We finally began to see a light at the end of the tunnel. The was being printed at last - on my printer, of course. My took reams of 24# bright white paper around the corner to Staples to be cut into 5 ½ x 8 ½ sheets. My printer was spitting the pages out faster than I could check to make sure the pages were backed up with the proper pages! You see, I insisted on a Table of Contents and an Index. What self-respecting cookbook editor wouldn't? It took nearly as long to print the thing as it did to get it prepared and ready to print. After we had collated the pages and printed a front and back cover we had the cover laminated and the cookbook spiral bound at a local print and copy shop.
My sister thought it would be a great idea to include a Memorial to those members who were no longer with us. Each of them had a that we included and the Memorial was placed on the same page with that recipe. We published additional three years later because there were and other members who had not gotten a cookbook and asked us to "please" print them one. By that time there were other beloved members who had gone to be with their Lord and Savior so their names and Memorials were included in the edition.
We included a list of contributors as well as the Memorials. Favorite sayings were scattered throughout the cookbook. They were taken from a Autograph Book that had belonged to the Mother of a cousin in Oklahoma. Her graciously gave us permission to use the sayings. One of my favorites is "Don't faster than your Angel can fly."
We have all enjoyed our cookbook and I can say with assurance it is one that nearly everyone uses more than any other. The cookbook is a source of enjoyment and comfort. Comfort when we see the names and of our loved ones who are no longer here and comfort in all the "comfort foods" found on the book's pages.
My sometimes call and ask why a certain is not in "our cookbook". Then there is always that little nagging thought in my head that it would be nice to print a 2nd treasure but I think my of 40+ years might be strained a bit if I took on another task such as the last one.
I heartily recommend taking on a such as this with your members or friends. It will be one you will not soon forget. I still have my copy on CD in Word and the WordPerfect copy is lurking around somewhere laughing at me!
Also published by Judy Shubert at Associated Content।
When you arise in the morning, give thanks for the morning light, for your life and strength. Give thanks for your food, and the joy of living. If you see no reason for giving thanks, the fault lies with yourself.
All posts on this blog Copyright 2015 by Judy Shubert