My Spring Reading List!

After the heavier reading of Lent, I thought I'd like to continue some inspirational spiritual reading through the Easter season as well. 

Here's my book list!

Private and Pithy lessons from Scripture - Mother Angelica
Little Book of Life Lessons - Mother Angelica
Three to Get Married - Fulton Sheen
The Little Oratory
Diary Sister Faustina
Getting Past Perfect - Kate Wicker
The Words We Pray - Amy Welborn
Perfectly Yourself - Matthew Kelly 
Crossing the Threshold of Hope - Pope John Paul II

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Keeping memories

My sister-in-law Helen died in 1999 at the age of 45 from lung cancer. I remember going to Helen's home after the funeral for a bit of supper and fellowship with the rest of her family and friends as we shared our memories and grief.

There were photo albums around the house and I remember curling up in one of the couches with my baby and looking through Helen's pictures. One thing that really stuck with me was all of the pictures of Helen in the kitchen or dining room holding up a pie, cake, or some other dish that she looked very proud of. There were lots of them. Clearly cooking for her family was something that was very important to Helen, although I never heard her speak of it like that. But the photo album documentation spoke volumes about the importance cooking and creating good food for the family held for my sister-in-law.

I was reminded of this when I read this blogger's entry:

High Desert Hi-Jinks - Christmas Keepsake Cookbooks -
"I am working on a Christmas present for Girl 1 and Girl 2. I decided to share it with you because at the moment I can't think of anything else to blog about, amazingly enough. Oh, and because someone might like it and want to do it for their children!

I purchased two large binders, the kind that keep all your pages flat when opened, and have plastic sleeves on the outside covers. I also purchased dividers and sheet protectors. The last couple of months I have been taking pictures with my digital camera of some of my children�s favorite dishes. I download the pictures to my computer, and then put them into a document that contains the recipe for that picture. Then I decorate the borders or put on a pretty background. When I am happy with the result, then I print it.

I used the dividers to divide the cookbooks the way I think a cookbook should be divided: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Desserts, Snacks, Beverages, Meals and Fun. I place the printed recipe in a sheet protector and add it to the section it falls under. The Meals section contains lists of family traditional meals for special occasions. I spend quite a bit of time trying to remember every dish or special decoration, while planning for a traditional meal. The Meals section will help eliminate all the time wasted in trying to remember! The Fun section has recipes like homemade play dough and pinecone birdfeeders. You could add a homemade cleaning products section, or homemade herbal remedies. I�m sure each family would have their own idea of what to pass on to their children.

The cookbook is personalized with each daughters name and special picture suited to her that is placed in the plastic sleeve of the cover. While I have taken pictures of the dishes I have let one of the children "

What a great idea!

After reading this I feel a bit ashamed of myself. I tend to avoid photographs because I don't think I look good enough (trust me, for every picture of myself that I put on this blog, there were at least 50 rejects!) or I look too fat, or old, or tired blah blah blah. But I think that's a self-centered attitude to take. I think my kids will really treasure pictures of their mom in her natural habitat! So what if I don't have makeup on, or if I'm a little heavy, or wearing jeans, t-shirt and an apron! That's who I am! That's what they'll treasure. Those kinds of pictures are what made Helen's photo albums so special!!

I also think that saving these recipes give an added dimension. You are saving a memory, a visual AND a taste! Oh how I wish I had a picture of my grandmother and her Lithuanian Kugale(?) dish! I don't even know how to spell it because I never saw it written down. She just made it and we knew what to call it but there is no recipe and I can't seem to find it. That should be a lesson learned for me then huh? Document these special times and create our own heirlooms. These are things that our kids will truly treasure and pass on.