For those who remember a time before the internet

marie26November 7, 2007

I have a problem with paper. I have quite a few binders that are well organized with recipes I might try one day. The key words are "might try". I am going to cull these binders again and hopefully I'll be able to get rid of a bunch of them.

I now look online for recipes much more than I look in my own recipe and cookbook collections. But I can't give up years of dealing with paper even though I now use the internet.

I have put the recipes I do use mixed in with the ones I'd like to try. This was a big mistake. I'm going to pull out the "tried and true" recipes and keep them (in plastic sleeves) in a separate binder. I also have most of these in a folder in the computer as well as saved to my yahoo account. By doing this, I'll really know which new recipes I'm not pulling out to try and perhaps in the future I'll be able to just throw them all out.

Am I the only one who finds it hard to convert to a paperless society?

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I own dozens of cookbooks, from my 30-year old Joy of Cooking thru Emeril thru Peg Bracken. I have my favorite recipes marked with post it notes. I could also use the food stains on the pages as a guide,LOL. My Chicken Paprika recipe has a note in pencil "Serve with rice". My cookbooks take up a whole shelf on my bookcase. I love cooking and eating. I am always trying new recipes from the Internet and magazines (Family Circle and Women's Day, mainly). I even have a sweet pickle recipe from my Grandmother, who died in 1961.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 12:19PM
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Nah, you aren't alone. Sometimes I feel like a dinosaur. I was 40 before I got a VCR in 1988, didn't use an ATM card until the mid 90's, and don't have a dishwasher now, even though I have had in the past.

Going's a big buzz in the healthcare field. I managed a large children's dental clinic, and heard about the concept but never really saw all the ramifications of it. We did get to the point where all treatment entries normally written in a patient's chart were entered into the computer...........and the patient's chart. Talk about defeating the purpose! Approximately 3 hours a day was spent in simply filing charts and pulling charts for the next day. That works out to about 15,000 dollars a year just to manage files!!!!I no longer work there, and found a dentist that lives closer to me who is 'paperless'. Digital x-rays on the computer, all diagnosis and treatment notes on the computer, all correspondence scanned and on the computer, health history and insurance information on the computer. You get the idea. But when it really hit home was when he said "look in the business office. You don't see any charts in there". And he doesn't pay anyone to file and retrieve charts.

So the moral to this rambling is this. If you can put it on the computer, you don't have to re-file it everytime you want to use it. You can probably access it faster on the computer. You won't mis-file it. You don't have to have a binder to store it. You don't have to have a place to store the binder.

I think paper is probably the top issue for clutter, and I think of the internet as one great big file cabinet that is supremely organized for my benefit. I can easily find anything I want, and don't have to store it on paper.

You may want to toss any that are also on your computer as tried and true, and then date the others, and toss if after a year they are still untried.

Good luck.


    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 12:40PM
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Hi Marie,

I have lots of recipes to try "someday" also. For some reason, when I am looking for new recipes, I never think to look on the internet, and the idea of printing out a recipe every time I want to cook doesn't make sense to me. I don't have a computer in the kitchen, maybe that would help. But I tend to make a lot of notes on my recipes.

My system is sort of what you are describing. I have an old zippered binder (one of the kids' castoffs from when they were younger). I have it divided into sections for main dishes, desserts, bread, appetizers, etc. and ONLY put in recipes I have tried and everyone liked. I put each one in pocket protectors which makes for really easy cleanup - I'm not the neatest cook! Then in the back, I have some pocket protectors that hold multiple recipes and are labeled things like Christmas ideas, Thanksgiving ideas, pot luck ideas, etc. so that I have somewhere to put recipes that I would like to try and I can find them at a hectic time when I would not otherwise want to wade through a whole folder full of misc. recipes. This really seems to work well, and having them in a zip up binder was really great when I had to pick kids up from sports. As I sat in the car, I could look through the recipes, write down what I wanted to try, and make a shopping list with a pen & pad of paper I had in the front of the binder.

Then I still have an accordion file full of recipes that I go through every once in a while, throw a few out, pick a few to try, then get sick of looking through them and stick the whole thing back on the shelf. I try not to pick up any new recipes unless I REALLY plan to try them (not often).

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 6:09PM
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I didn't get a computer until 1998. It's still dial-up. That means I would waste a tremendous amt. of time putting recipes, grocery lists, to-do lists, etc. on the cp when I already have them in book form or in my recipe notebook. Yes, I toss recipes often, and have a separate folder for things to try. I also use a lot of scrap paper, making lists for everything. Then toss when finished.

We have a vcr, but never use it because frankly I don't have time to look at a movie - tv programs at night are enough. That's also why we don't have cable.

Dishwasher, washer, dryer, new ovens, microwave, old tvs, radios, cell phone. That's it.

Having said that, I print out everything that I think is important, or that I want to share with DH (mostly jokes), because I just don't trust the cp with protecting my genealogy that I've worked so hard on. And new things come along all the time, and then out goes the old, sometimes even becoming useless. My computer still uses those square things to save your stuff on. What good does that do now that everyone is using discs?

Of course I'm OLD. Getting a computer was a huge step, in the first place.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 6:28PM
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This afternoon, I went through 2 of the binders. I was ruthless and threw away at least 3/4 of the recipes. I did keep a few that I would have gotten rid of but they were dated from the early 70's or had notes on the paper of things happening in my life at the time. The funniest one I came across was titled "Kitty Dukakis Chopped Liver". My daughter was in the room with me as I was doing this and I asked her if she and her siblings were just going to throw all these out one day. She said she'd go through it all. I guess the way some of us keep the recipes from our parents, some of us kids will do the same.

I once lost all my recipes when my computer crashed. Even though I save them on my internet account once a year or so, I "need" to have a copy of each recipe on paper, just in case.

I still have 5 more binders to go through. This is one of those projects I've been dreading to do but it does bother me not getting it done. So, I shall continue. Maybe I'll find the recipe I lost a few years ago.

    Bookmark   November 7, 2007 at 10:05PM
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I'm in going-through-recipes mode right now too. I have found some I have been looking for :-)

My computer is old, still has Windows 95 but has been updated by DS with a new, faster hardrive because mine fried a few years ago. I want a paper copy of every recipe just in case! My dial-up is VERY slow. I enjoy looking up vegan recipes but all the pretty photos on the web sites really slow things down.

I want to make a notebook of family favorites. DS has a lot of food allergies and intolerances so I want to get all his recipes organized. If I died, none of the family would know how to make his special foods. He needs to know these recipes himself.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 8:02AM
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One of the first things I did after retirement was cull through the massive collection of recipes I thought I would want to try "someday" and then toss my little 3 x 5 recipe cards (and a few books too) by printing the recipes I knew I wanted to keep on paper (sometimes 2 - 3 recipes to a page) that I filed in a notebook. The notebook has sections like, main dishes, desserts, breads, etc. Sometimes I find a recipe on the Internet that sounds good, but to try it, I need to print it off, as I like to have it there to refer to as I cook. Pretty soon my new "condensed" recipe notebook began to look pretty stuffed, and I know I won't use every recipe in it - time to go through it again, and be pretty realistic and ruthless, as cooking is not my first love or interest! It is alot easier to find recipes I want to use, though, as it's all there in one notebook!

    Bookmark   November 12, 2007 at 9:34AM
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I have a recipe book of my "tried and true". They are hand written with a computer back-up. When I pull out a recipe I want to try, I copy it or print it, so it fits on a standard size paper and put it in a folder organized by Entree, desert, soup, and etc.

If I make it more than once, it moves over to the permanent collection.

The secret is to actually look at those folders when planning some meals !

    Bookmark   November 12, 2007 at 10:05AM
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Before my last move I sorted through a big photo album I had filed all kinds of recipes in. Tossed a lot of them, but I found some old favorites. That was a good feeling. I love the handwritten feel of a recipe card. Some day, if I ever have enough recipes that I truly feel are family favorites, I might make a small scrapbook and have a picture of the dish next to the recipe.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2007 at 8:11PM
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