Nellie Sosami Vereecken Lillibridge Wadsworth

If you know me at all you know that I am really motivated by family and family history. My family is soo important and passing knowledge of my family down, connecting generations, is very important to me. It is my faith that families are eternal and as such we should know them because they certainly know us. Basically if it has to do with family, family history, gardening or saving money...I'm all about it.

In the last few years I've inherited a few of my grandmothers cookbooks. When my parents were out here for Noah's birth they brought me two more. The first thing that I've noticed about my grandmothers cookbooks is how much they wrote in them. If they tried a recipe they noted if they liked it. If they altered a recipe they noted it. It has been fun to see their thoughts on things. There is something about seeing someones handwrititng to help you feel like you know someone...something that our digital society is missing. I've decided to write in my cookbooks more.

The most recent cookbook I got was a typical Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook. It is the cookbook that seems to be a staple in cookbook cupboards all over the country. I have it in my you? This simple standard cookbook was bulging at the seems and falling apart from use and reference. Pages were falling out and others were reinforced by tape and white round stickers. My first thought was "Man this is falling apart. Why didn't she just get a new one?" I guess regardless of my frugal tenancies I remain a product of my throw away generation. I'm sure the thought never crossed her mind to get a new one when she could salvage the one she had. But also she had written so much in this one. It had become hers in every way. She would loose that if she got a new one. It was shocking to see mine next to hers. I was embarrassed that I'd used mine so little when she'd wasted and worn out hers in creating for her family.
As I thumbed through the cookbook looking at her notes and loose handwritten recipe cards within the pages. Some of the recipe cards contained recipes from relatives living and passed on and others written numerous times to ensure a handy copy when she needed it. Others that I'd called her to get from her and that she spent so much time with me on the phone telling me different tricks and tips for the perfect whatever. These are the kinds of things she wrote in her cookbooks. I thought about how cooking is something that most women do and how it connects us as women to each other, the common daily experience. The family history, connecting generations bells were ringing. I thought "How cool would it be to do a Julie and Julia thing by making all the recipes in my grandmothers cookbook that she wrote on and recipes that she made numerous copies of and blog about them? Come to know my grandmothers better by cooking the same recipes they did." But my next immediate thought was "Where will find the time to do that with a newborn?" and dismissed it. But the thought just wouldn't let me go. I found myself at the store buying things that the recipes I'd seen in the cookbook called for. So here's my thought. I know that my sisters at least have gotten cookbooks as well and perhaps some of my cousins have too so I thought that I could start a blog and then invite my sisters and cousins ( and aunts and mom?) to contribute to it as they do the same with their cookbooks. If they choose not to then it will be a blog that will have posts that will be few and far between. So here we go. A journey to familiarity with my family through food. ( I also kept thinking of catchy (ok ok...corny) little titles for my blog)
Pauline Violet Williams Streeter

Here we go!!!

I can't believe that my baby is already 1 month old(same day of the week too). He's getting so big too. We've decided that he's an old soul. A contemplative happy old soul.

We see this look soo much. I can't tell you how many pictures I have of him looking like this but at the same time we've already gotten some awake smiles from this little guy too. We just can't wait to get to know him better!

We were so lucky to have Derek's parents come down to play with Hyrum while we were at the hospital and to ease the transition of a new addition. It was a MAJOR load off my mind that we wouldn't have to leave Hyrum at a friends house in the middle of the night for 7 hours or more. I was so glad that he was able to be in his own house with Grandma all to himself.

As she always does grandma came bearing gifts. First and foremost was a new train. The train they brought down last October had been loved to death and was beyond repair. Hyrum insisted that Papa ( my dad ) would fix it. So my mother in law went in search for a new train to spare my dad having to do the same when in fact the train couldn't be fixed.
Not only was it a new train but it was Caterpillar train with diggers on the flat bed cars. She also brought a bag of Derek's old toys for Hyrum to discover.
He especially loved the Spiderman action figure he found.
She also brought a little house and tunnel play area for Hyrum to explore.
She was probably regretting that a little when he had her crawl through the tunnel too.
We are so blessed to have Derek's parents live so close (relatively).

Unfortunately they had to leave the day after we got home from the hospital with Noah. Luckily Derek had taken that week off so we relaxed and bonded.

My boys have a family hug

Momma & Hyrum: Best friends

Dad and Hyrum: Best friends

Noah and Hyrum: Best friends

This is what happens when Hyrum decides you need to give Noah a kiss. He'll insist upon it!

The next Sunday evening my parent's arrived. We let Hyrum stay up to greet them ( an hour and a half after his bedtime) and the first thing he said when the door opened was "Make Popcorn!" I'd told Hyrum when he was asking to make popcorn for the third night in a row that we would make popcorn when Mema and Papa got here. This little boy doesn't forget.

Most of my parents time here is a blur of sleeplessness. They were so good to send me off to sleep whenever they could get me to go. I probably should have taken them up on the offers more often but I don't get to see them too often so I wanted to spend as much time with them as I could. I didn't take nearly enough pictures but I did take a few.
Papa and his namesake ( they got him that shirt that says"I'm nuts about Grandpa")
Mema was a favorite with Hyrum when they were here
Partly because she played the Wii with him. They boxed and Hyrum got a little upset when Grandma kept going down. As it turned out she had his controller and he had hers.
Hyrum introduced them to "Defend your Castle". They got really invested in defending the castle.

And as always we did a lot of house changes while they were here as well. The first order of business was changing the knobs in the kitchen quickly followed by changing the light fixture over the sink. All the boys helped with this one. But my dad having torn his rotator cuff did more instructing than doing which was good for both of them.
They also finished the project they started in October by putting a light in the pantry but not just any old light. This light turns on when the door is opened and turns off when the door closes. Now we just need to make sure the door closes all the way when we're done in there. It is sooo nice.
My mom braved the cold and pruned my roses and in doing so started to see wasps outside ( yeah already!!). So it was decided that the mysterious poles in the back patio needed to go as they became little wasp motels throughout the summer last year.
They actually went down really fast and we were left wondering why in the world we hadn't done this sooner. When we get around to repouring the cement it will look perfect.

At first I was terrified about brining a baby into the world in the midst of the flu season especially with the advent of the H1N1 virus. But with that fizzleing. RSV became the threat. It's a bad year for it too. But I really wanted my parents to be here when we blessed Noah and also wanted them to be here to help. So blessing Noah earlier than I originally wanted to or do it without my parents were my choices. I decided I wanted my parents here more than I was afraid of germs. But my plan was to sit in the lobby until they called for him walk him in hand him to Derek and then take him home immediately afterward.

Noah looked fabulous in his blessing outfit. He's bigger than Hyrum so he filled it out a bit more than Hyrum had and he wasn't nearly as upset about it. All the pictures we have of Hyrum in his blessing outfit were blurry because he was screaming and flailing. But Noah was serene.
We dressed Hyrum in something special too so he wouldn't feel left out. My boys looked smashing.
Have I mentioned how much Hyrum likes Noah and how much he likes him to grab his finger.
Little man did great! Didn't cry or blow out during his blessing ( Hyrum did both) My mom and I franticly wrote down what we could of his blessing to compare notes afterwards and Noah and I left after sacrament to rest and breathe clean air. :) At his two week appointment the doctor scared me even more about RSV so I'm so glad that he's been blessed.
We have been too!