Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Organizing Recipes

My ultimate goal is to have a completed scrapbook full of all our household favorite recipes by this Christmas. I think it's a great way to preserve those precious meals that have brought joy to my family, and hopefully will recreate memories of meals past for years to come. Not to mention, it's a great gift idea.

However, right now I'm a far cry away from my ultimate goal. Right now, I'm still in the planning stages. We have a lot of tried and true favorite meals, but I personally don't think they're enough to make an entire scrapbook. So, I've been scouring magazines and the Internet looking for new stuff to add.

I've found some wonderful additions by doing this, but what was left with was less than desirable. I had files all over my desktop, a couple hundred bookmarked sites, over 200 emails (from recipe groups I'd joined) cluttering up my mailbox, and papers scattered everywhere around my kitchen.

My solution; I got myself two handy little magazine holders (or you can make your own, using cereal boxes), that I store on top of my refrigerator. One for Tried and True Recipes (T&T), the other for Gotta Try Recipes (GT). Now, when I find something online, I'll print the recipe out, and it goes in my GT box. After I've tried the recipe, I decide if it's a contender for the scrapbook or not. If it is, it goes in the T&T box. If not, it gets tossed (which more often than not, is the case). And the best part now is when I toss that piece of paper, the recipe is really gone. I don't still have a copy of it saved somewhere on my computer sucking up valuable space, waiting for me to stumble upon it at some later date.

I try to go through my T&T box once every couple months. The recipes in there, that I know have been tried out a few times then get entered into the computer for the scrapbook (and safe keeping), and the other ones that I feel I need to try "just one more time" to be sure, go back in the T&T box.

After I've sorted through the box, I then make sure that the recipes that are left get added into our weekly menu during the upcoming weeks. If it's still a contender, back in the T&T box it goes, to be added to my scrapbook database in the weeks to come.

This system has saved me so much time and so much headache. Now, I don't have to worry about running across a recipe on the computer and wondering if we've tried it or not. My Menu Planning Mondays go much smoother now, and my house isn't being overrun with magazine clippings and scraps of paper any longer.

And that works for me!

For more Works For Me Wednesday ideas check out Rocks in my Dryer.


Michelle said...

I had been wondering what to do with all those files -- and I think your idea would work for me too! Thanks for sharing it!

Rona's Home Page said...

This is a terrific organizing tip.