12 July 2015

Organization: Family Recipes

Two years ago, I set up a binder system to organize my recipe mess. After living with this system for awhile, I can say unequivocally that I absolutely love it. The binders make it easy to find the recipes I use most often and organize new ones that I print or tear out of magazines. As you probably know from reading my blog, I'm not a great cook, but I do want my recipes to be organized and accessible!

If you're interested in more information, check out this post for a look at where I started with my recipe organization two years ago. This post shows how the project progressed. And here's a post about how I set up the binders with sheet protectors and recipe card sleeves.

So back to today's subject! Over the weekend, I finally tackled the humongous pile of recipes from my two grandmas which I've found in sorting through the boxes in our basement. (I forgot to take a "before" picture of the stacks of recipes, but trust me: There were TONS!)  Both of my grandmas were good cooks, each one with her own specialties. I treasure their recipes!

As I was working on this project, I really put my recipe system to the test. Happily, I was able to incorporate most of their handwritten recipes into my binders. Each of my grandmas kept spiral notebooks, too, which I left intact and just placed on the shelf.
As I worked on this project, I decided to expand the space I have devoted to recipes, which allows more room for the extra books I brought home from my parents' house. I took the opportunity to donate a few recipe books that I no longer need and set aside several that belong to our daughter, whenever she is ready for them.

As a side note, I noticed that I have an incredible number of recipes for cookies, cakes, and desserts. This is rather ironic, because I almost never make cookies, cakes, or desserts! But if I ever decide to do so, I'm very well-equipped! :)

In addition to the binders, I still have a lot of recipe books which I use from time to time. Many have special significance to me so I plan to keep them for the time being!

 I kept my mom's old recipe "file" intact, just the way she used it. Although she was a very good cook, Mom was notoriously awful at organizing her recipes. This was a running joke at our house. When I was growing up, I made several attempts to organize her recipes, which you can see when you dig through her recipe tin. But nothing ever stuck! Eventually she wrote her favorites in a spiral notebook. But there are some wonderful recipes in this tin, if you're willing to hunt for them!
 I'm happy I finally took the time to get my recipes (except for my mom's, of course!) under control. It's a good feeling to know that all of my recipes are in one place, organized and ready when I need them. Now maybe I'll be able to channel some culinary skill from my two grandmas! :)

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