You could call it organized, you could call it handy, or you could call it a sickness.

See this…

Each of the notebooks in the photo above is full of recipes, recipes I’ve been cutting out of magazines like Bon Appetite, Gourmet, Chocolatier, Martha Stewart, Vegetarian Times, Living Without, etc, etc etc… since 1993.  Every so often I go through and toss some of them because I find I have duplicates.  Or I actually used one of recipes and found that it sucks, but overall the collection continues to grow.

Now, can you see that stack of paper in the upper right hand corner of the photo?  Yeah, that’s a stack of, oh I don’t know, another 50 or so recipes that I have yet to organize and put in the notebooks.  I don’t even know what’s in the stack, much less, really what’s in any of the notebooks. And what’s even more scary is that I collect a stack of recipes like this about every other month.  A sickness, like I said.

The only way these notebooks are organized is by what I call categories.  Each notebook is its own category. They are as follows:

Desserts – Cake, Desserts – Cookies, Desserts – Pies, Tarts & Tortes, Desserts – Custards/Puddings, Desserts – Ice Creams & Candies, Fruit Desserts, Vegetarian – Sides- Pastas-Rice, Salsas – Dips – Dressings, Soup & Salad, Beverages, Poultry & Beef, Seafood, Appetizers, Breakfast & Brunch, Rolls – Muffins – Breads.

As you can see I do tend to lean toward the dessert category so much so that I’ve had to split up different kinds of desserts into their own categories. What can I say, I do love to bake!

So, 14 Categories, some with more than one notebook each.  Each page within the notebook isn’t just one recipe, either.  Each page can contain many!

Here’s my thought….somehow I need to go through and actually make these recipes to figure out if I have anything really good in there and if I don’t, lets narrow down the selection!  I already  have several shelves full of cook books – which I love don’t get me wrong – but there comes a point where these three ring binders start to take over and without knowing what I even have….well it’s kind of a pain.

So, my plan of attack is this – COOK!

The initial GOAL: To use at least one recipe out of one notebook twice a week and if I can stand it (which means not eat more than a bite or two), one of those needs to be a dessert.  Look out work, you’ve got a lot of treats coming your way! And while I do this, I’ll take some pictures, share recipes and blog about each of them – letting you know if it’s a keeper or not!

If this goes as planned I’ll have a mess in these notebooks, which will mean a full reorganization process (maybe this time with table of contents and photos for every recipe), but I’m looking forward to the challenge.

So stay tuned!