Nana's Recipe Box

If you look at it, it really doesn't look that special. I mean, it's a wooden box. How could this simple little wooden box be a treasure? 

Nana's Recipe Box - Ancestry Chick

Nana's Recipe Box - Ancestry Chick

Well, that's simple: this was my maternal grandmother's recipe box. And not only is it filled with all of my grandmothers--and some of my great grandmother's--recipes, but it was also handmade by my grandfather. This is the recipe box of Della Maxine (Kephart) Hammersmith, made by William Robert Hammersmith. And I'm happy to share it as part of Tuesday Treasures

Reb and Yank - Ancestry Chick

See that label inside the lid? It says, "From Yankie, To Reb." Yankie and Reb were my grandparents' nicknames for each other. He was from Pennsylvania, and she was from Oklahoma, so it was fitting. At the time that my grandfather (Pappy) made this, he also made a recipe box for my mother, which I also have. And they are indeed filled with treasures, many memories, and a few surprises. 

One special recipe that Nana shared with me when I was in 8th grade was her recipe for homemade Noodles. Hers were always delicious and I wanted to learn how to make them. So, I went over one Saturday and she showed me how to make them. 

Nana's Homemade Noodles - Ancestry Chick
This is the very recipe card that we used to make those noodles. I remember standing in her kitchen, rolling out that dough and Nana guiding me every step of the way. My noodles turned out great--but not as great as hers. After all, nothing is as great as grandmas make things. I think we made more memories that day than noodles. Memories that I truly cherish.

Then there is the family favorite, a recipe passed down through our family since the 1800's: Apple Salad.

Apple Salad - Ancestry Chick
This is not to be confused with the Apple Salad recipes that you usually see...the ones that have either mayonnaise (bleck!) or marshmallows, or both. This is a sweet and crunchy Apple Salad and so yummy. Nana always made it for Thanksgiving each year. The recipe card is very well worn, as you can see. She made it quite a lot. I have made it for many a Thanksgiving myself, in her memory. It always makes me feel like she's there with me. I made it with my mom a few times too, which was always wonderful.

There are some other things in the recipe box too, things that were put there by Nana for whatever reason and I just don't want to throw them away. One is a utility bill from one of their homes in the state of Washington. One is a newspaper bill from a home in San Diego. Another is a telephone bill from Kodiak, Alaska. And there's also a postcard from Santa Monica, California. 

Since Pappy was in the Navy, they moved around a lot. So it's nice to have these little things as a sort of time capsule of places they've been. And of course, there are many other recipes in there. Some that Nana wrote, some that her mother wrote, some written by friends, and others still just cut out of magazines or the newspaper. Every once in awhile I go through there looking for something new to make. Or just to feel the cards that her hands touched so many times. 

It's definitely a simple wooden box, but it's also so very much more. And I feel blessed to own this treasured family heirloom.