Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Treasures lost and found

I count having ALL my cookbooks finally being in one place, and accessible - not tucked away in cupboards, as a 'found treasure'. Even though we are not yet cooking at the farm, I love looking at all my books on display beckoning me/us "Move, move, move here!".

Truth be told, I did give some cookbooks away (one I can remember had recipes using canned soup as an ingredient) so the ones I saved are the best of the best, and ones that contain recipes I look forward to cooking again. Some are new, some are old.

The whole collection is on boards from an old bookcase my husband's grandfather used for his law books plus bricks we found on the farm. Everything had to be cleaned up for re-use, but we love the flash-back to our thrifty grad school days along with the connections to both old (our family) and new (our farm).

(Photo: Diana and Dick's cookbook collection, waiting to be used!)

My oldest cookbooks that I purchased (I know they did not come from my family) are the two pictured below, both from 1971. You can tell they are well-used and well-loved.

(Photo: Diana's two oldest cookbooks)
And now just for fun, here is my all time favorite cookbook. :-)

(Photo: Diana's favorite 'cookbook')

Here are the two books that our family uses to give a blessing for our food. I have deep gratitude to my friends Kim for enlarging my understanding of the importance of locally grown food to belonging to and strengthening our community and Ruth for helping me to reconnect to blessing a meal in a way that touched my heart and soul.

(Photo: Blessings for our food - you can tell these books are also well-used and well-loved.)

Last but not least, I just love unpacking. Not only did I finally find the doo-dad I needed to transfer these photos from my camera to my computer but I also found a copy of a prayer by The Dalai Lama, which had fallen behind my file cabinet. This prayer or blessing was given to me by a wonderful woman I met at a tiny food cart when I was in Hawai'i in 2006. I love slowing down my life for a few minutes to read it and had missed doing so when it mysteriously disappeared from under its magnet on my file cabinet.

A Precious Human Life
"Every day, think as you wake up,
Today I am fortunate to have woken up,
I am alive, I have a precious human life,
I am not going to waste it.
I am going to use
All my energies to develop myself,
To expand my heart out to others,
To achieve enlightenment for
The benefit of all beings.
I am going to have kind 
Thoughts toward others,
I am not going to get angry
Or think badly about others.
I am going to benefit others
As much as I can."

~~ H.H. The XIV Dalai Lama

Lost but now found again. Ahhhhhh......... :-) Re-finding this prayer and having our cookbooks ready to go is both the balm I needed to calm me down about the seemingly overwhelming task ahead of actually moving and then getting our current house ready to list for sale (ASAP!) and also the energy I need to help get us over the finish line with these two simultaneous efforts.

We are in the final stages of this dual life. We are keeping our eye on the finish line and will hire help if we need it so that we can also enjoy the 'run-up' to our older son's wedding in just a few short months. :-) :-)

PS - Even though blogging has given me a sense of "my space" and even sanity during the controlled chaos of the past two years, I expect that my postings are going to decrease significantly over the next month as my goal is be both completely moved and have our current home 'refreshed' enough to be listed on the market by May 1.  Wish us good luck and a (relatively) quick sale for our current home. I am really, really ready to have my body, brain, and heart in just one place. :-)

"Cultivate your life - you are what you grow - inch by inch, row by row"

Diana Dyer, MS, RD


Elaine said...

I had a choice this afternoon to use some free time to write a blog post or come visit you & read your latest. I definitely made the right choice :-).

I love this post for so many reasons - the cookbooks, the rustic bookcase, the memories, the Dalai Lamai's prayer. I'm not at all surprised your oldest cookbooks are "earthy".

I will wish you luck, strength and stamina as you prepare to move and sell. I hope all goes well. (I'm sure there is a blessing for this -- I shall have to search for one.)

Nancy said...

Will miss your posts. Especially loved this one. When we moved from Michigan to South Carolina I did the same thing with all my cookbooks- put them together so I could use and see them. Good luck with the move and sell!