Good Reads in Life: Rooted in Tradition
“The idea really came from Shelley,” explains Whitman. “She reached out to me on social media after I had posted a few photos of myself baking with my daughter. Around that time I had posted a picture of one of my grandmother’s handwritten recipes, and had mentioned in the caption how it makes me emotional when I see her handwriting. That post truly resonated with Shelley.” Meeting up for coffee, Johnstone says, “We got to talking about our families and how growing up it was always a priority to make an effort to create a beautiful setting, even if it was the simplest meal.” Johnstone pitched that the two should collaborate on a book about family traditions and why they’re meaningful. “I loved the idea of taking things such as tablescaping and entertaining, things that can feel fun or frivolous, and just remind people why they’re special,” says Whitman.
The two began to compile their “dream list” of women they wanted to feature in the book. “We wanted an eclectic variety of women, based on where they lived and what their traditions were,” explains Whitman. “We didn’t want all of them to have the same style. What we really wanted to highlight were things that were meaningful. It didn’t matter to us what that meaningful thing was necessarily.” She continues, “For some people, it is a recipe. For others, it could be pulling out their grandmother’s china. Or maybe, it’s a game or a tradition that they do around the table. It didn’t matter to us if it was a recipe, we just wanted it to inspire other people to really stop…
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