Saturday, January 21, 2012

An Idea

I had an idea early last year.  But after my mom died, the idea got put on the back burner.  The way back burner.  I had to go through a summer of learning how to breathe again, then school started and I was still healing, and that brings me to the beginning of 2012.  I am at a place now in my grief where I am crying less (which means maybe twice a day instead of ten times a day).  A place where I am ready to really try to remember and honor my mom without the stabbing pain of loss in my heart.  It's a minor throbbing now, not quite so acute as it was initially.

So you want to know my idea?  It is still in the formulating process, so I'm not sure what to really call it.  I guess the simple thing to say is I would like to write a book.  Not a novel (I'm totally not ready for that yet).  I'm thinking about writing a book that is part cookbook, part vignettes, part photography, and part grief counseling.  Let me explain.  I was going through my cookbooks one day last year trying to cull down my collection.  In the process I rediscovered my Grandma's old yellow spiral notebook with tons of her handwritten recipes throughout.  This got me thinking about all the special meals I shared with the two most influential women in my life-- my mom and my grandma.  I ended up writing down a list of the most special meals these women made for me.  From my Grandma's famous sweet and sour pork to my mom's pie crust recipe to the birthday meal my mom prepared for me every single year, I discovered that each recipe had a good story behind it.  The idea comes together in that way-- I envision a page with a recipe, a page with a story, a page with photography and then repeat.  The photography might be pictures from the past, but it could also be photos of me as I try to recreate these special meals.  Somehow through cooking and writing and sharing a meal with my own family and friends, these beautiful women's memory can live on.

Well, now the idea is out there.  Out there for all of you to know about.  I guess I just wanted to share what has been on my mind.  I have no deadline for myself, but I've got my feet wet by doing some research and writing a bit to get myself started.  I think this could also help with the healing process.  I'm sure there will be plenty more tears, but maybe by the end of it, I will be able to look at the result and smile.

6 comments:

Rachel said...

I was wondering what the cookbook idea was and I think this is an absolutely beautiful idea! You have so much to share and give and I love the recipe's I have of your moms. (i.e. the chocolate pound cake I made this weekend!!!!) What a beautiful way to honor such amazing women!!

Victoria said...

I cannot think of a better tribute to your mother and grandmother. Writing in this way would truly be a labor of love and a great vehicle for healing. There are a couple of cookbooks with a similar approach that I am familiar with that I can recommend for research: "Home Cooking" and "More Home Cooking" by Laurie Colwin which are as much a memoirs as cookbooks and "Eat This It'll Make You Feel Better" by actor Dom DeLuise which is a wonderful tribute to his Italian mother. I would be so happy to lend them to you and also I would like to offer my support in any way you may need...editing, testing, feedback, I am happy to help.

Maria Rose said...

I think that is a wonderful idea!

Susan said...

I love the idea! I can't wait to see what you come up with.

Jacquelyn said...

Love it! Can't wait to hear more about it/ read it. :)

Emily said...

Victoria, thank you so much for the encouraging words! They were just what I needed to hear! I plan on checking out the cookbooks you mentioned soon! :)