I have a pretty bad memory.  I hear people talking about thier childhood memories and I think, “Why don’t I remember mine?!”  There are photos of me at events that I do not remember.  That’s downright jarring, let me tell you.

Last night at church, we had a “Souper” Bowl event for the ladies.  Each home fellowship group was represented by a soup, one of which I made.  (Thank you, Paula Deen, for the yummy corn chowder recipe!)  It was an evening of chatting, eating and fun.  I really enjoyed myself.  The highlight of my evening though, was completely unexpected and totally awesome.

As I was chatting with some friends before we started, I glanced down at a table and saw something that brought back a flood of memories that had long been forgotten.  There, sitting on the table, was a Betty Crocker New Picture Cookbook from 1961.  It was even the binder.  Y’all have no idea how happy that cookbook made me!


I had to know who it belonged to and when I found out, I started talking to her about it.  You see, that cookbook is what started my love of cooking.  When I was home alone, I would take out that cookbook and see what I had the ingredients to make.  It’s how I learned to make substitutions (by trial and error) and started to create my own recipes.  I studied the How To section.  I read about how to be a good housewife (even though it didn’t sink in).  I learned that putting on some makeup and splashing on some cologne could not only lift MY spirits, but that of my family as well.  Seriously, it’s all in that cookbook.

As I was talking to the owner of the cookbook, I started to cry.  She asked if I was ok, and I told her I was the happiest I could possibly be at that moment.  All the happy memories of my time spent with that cookbook were fresh in my mind and I couldn’t help but smile.  Happy memories, all from a cookbook that was from an era I never knew.

I called my mom this morning to tell her about my evening and the happy memories conjured up by seeing that cookbook.  She told me she still has it, and she’s giving it to me.  Who cares if the cover is missing (from the abuse I most likely put it through)?  That’s my childhood right there, in book form.