Monday, December 27, 2010

Every time an old person dies it is as if a library has burnt down.
— African proverb

I first heard this quote used in relation to Alzheimer disease a few weeks ago, and it has stuck with me since. It captures one aspect of the disease — certain priceless history, lost forever. But unfortunately Alzheimer's is so much worse than that. I've come to realize this as I've watched my grandmother live with it for the past few years.

But rather than dwell on sad thoughts this holiday season, I preserved a tiny part of what is left of a library of recipes, both classic and contemporary, in cookbook form to give as gifts to family members. And, I am not alone in this — lots of cooks are being remembered through their recipes. (For once a New York Times trend I can get behind.)

I loved the idea of making a cookbook of my grandmother's handwritten recipes from the minute I thought of it, and luckily I found software that made the process incredibly simple. 

The book was made with my scanner (of course) and the Blurb Bookify™ online bookmaking tool — the best and most affordable system I've used. (And that means a lot coming from a publishing geek who has put together more than her share of photobooks over the years.) I haven't found another product with the level of functionality or user-friendly interface that Blurb offers, and the print quality of the finished books is excellent.

Let me know what you think of the book, and if you decide to make one of your own.




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