When WABC-TV News anchor, Bill Ritter, (photo above) announced weeks ago that he was going to lead a conversation with author Allison Gilbert about her new book, “Passed and Present: Keeping Memories of Loved Ones Alive,” I wrote the entry into my calendar. Since I became Chef Paula to honor my dad’s memory for the last 11 1/2 years, because he was such a big foodie, I knew I had to be there in the audience to learn how others are moving forward.

Last night at the Mid-Manhattan Library, New York Public Library (NYPL), we gathered to hear this important conversation, to soak up ideas so we can preserve these memories in positive and proactive ways like taking grandma’s written recipe and having it glazed onto a serving dish or grandpa’s ties can be made into a quilt. There are over 85 ideas in this book that can turn items into treasured keepsakes. Even if you may not be crafty yourself, the book includes resources to companies that can complete the projects for you.

Bill Ritter did an incredible job leading the discussion, sharing some of his personal stories, and even infused a little humor into this delicate topic by calling the book, “Death for Dummies.” In addition to talking about the book, Allison Gilbert passed around some “show and tell” keepsakes she had made for her beloved family members, artfully fielded questions, and autographed books.

If you are interested in buying the book, so you can honor your loved ones, use the amazon link to the right (image of the book).  You can also read a few sample chapters there.

Happy Cooking,

Paula Gottlieb Herman

Passed and Present

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