Making your family recipe book an heirloom for all of your kids not just one!

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Recently my mother was told she was sick and she started to ‘get her affairs in order’ so to speak.  For my mother this meant leaving her more sentimentally valued possessions to family members.  We were talking on the phone (she lives in another state) and she was telling me that she is leaving  her cookbooks in a box for me.  This didn’t surprise me as i’m the only daughter and my mother has views about ‘woman’s work’ that is very traditionally role stereotyped.  When my mother spoke about the ‘recipe books’ she wasn’t referring  to the commercially published cookbooks that comprise my cookbook collection; she has none of those.  The only published cookbook my mother owns in a ‘how to cook’ manual.  Mum was talking about her hand written recipes in an old green twine bound exercise book and another old notebook.  Despite my mum’s views about cooking being women’s work I do love to cook and I’m thrilled she’s eventually giving me her recipe books.  But the question that begs asking is how are her family recipes going to be passed down through her three son’s family lines?  Moreover, i have two daughters and how i do decide who gets my mothers recipe books…and then who gets my handwritten family recipe book that I’ve been compiling over the years since i left home?  I think I’ve found the answer so that both of my girls get my recipes in my handwriting. 

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Introducing the:


I recently bought a smartpen for uni and research data collection purposes but quite frankly the uses for this pen have to be endless!

bbqpork 2_watermarkThis pen is designed to audio record while recording the text that is written.  In this case, i only wrote out all my old recipes into the smartpen spiral bound folder; i didn’t need to audio record.

After i wrote out the recipes i uploaded them onto my computer by docking the smartpen into its dock.

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When i go to the page i have just written, it looks like this:

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When i print the recipe out it looks like this:

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Here’s the  Chinese bbq pork recipe in pdf.  Each page can be converted to pdf form which is brilliant for using them in applications.

I’ve chosen this brown-paper-bag type paper to print out the recipe books for my daughters’ books.  I really like the ‘nude’ look to it.

Eventually, when i have time, i will get the recipes heat set bound in a hard-cover book at a local printer/binder.  Each book will cost about $30 AU to get finished.  I’m even thinking of adding a bunch a blank pages for the girls to add and start their own family recipe book.

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As for me, i’m going to print out each recipe on the brown paper, then laminate each one and then put in a ring binder so that when i cook using the recipe i don’t get it all grotty.

But i guess i still have the dilemma as to who whom shall i  leave the smartpen folders!!!!!


If you would like to learn more about the smartpen you can find out more here

or here

or go to Officeworks.

6 thoughts on “Making your family recipe book an heirloom for all of your kids not just one!

  1. You can subscribe by going to the bottom left hand of the blog where you will find a “meta” box. You can subscribe by clicking on ‘entries RSS’ . Entries RSS gives you a variety of web based news readers to choose from. Hope this helps. Let me know if it works. Cheers, Su

  2. Well done Suze.

    Damn fine use of technology if you ask me.

    Have been emailing most of my recipes to the Doc jnr and Docette (Scarecrowette?) for a while now. That way they can collate and print out as required.

    My computer is voice activated and I dictate direct – I am sooo lazy that I do not want to waste time typing. LOL

    I feel it is really important to pass our recipes on to our kids (girls AND boys).

    Well done

    Love, peace and mungbeans

    Doc 😉 (yep, that Doc)

  3. Jan, there’s software you can buy that converts the written text to type text… it’s $30 US…i’m thinking of getting it eventually but i don’t need it yet.

  4. Sue,
    This is an amazing idea! I’ve been thinking about making 3 recipe books, one for me, and then one each for both kids. This would certainly save alot of work and keep it personal!
    Hope your mum is ok.

  5. Love it! That’s such a fabulous idea for your family (and a great demonstration of what the Smartpen can do).

    I hope your mum is doing well.

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