August 01, 2016

Hi, I’m Susan Booton. This is my stuff.

Ivor Andrew’s Stuff Series explains who we are and what makes us go. Today, Susan Booton, project manager, shares 12 of her favorite things.

1: My grandmother taught me to bake, which is a memory I cherish. When she passed away in 2004, she handed down her cookbooks to me, some which date back to the 1930s. The books pictured in 1 and 2 are part of that collection, and I use them to this day.

2: My favorite part of the books? They were put together by a group of women for a church fundraiser in the small town of Ceresco, Nebraska. They’re so rare that if you Google “ceresco covenant cookery” you’ll be pointed not to the books, but to the church’s website. In the earlier editions of the books, many of the recipes list the ingredients and then just say something like, “Combine ingredients and bake in a warm oven until done.” They all just knew what to do!

3: Our oldest son was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome when he was 4 years old. The book Look Me In The Eye by John Elder Robison is a phenomenal look inside the life of a person with Asperger’s. It was an immense help in understanding how our son experiences his life.

4: My two boys (Graham and Ian) keep our house in various states of motion and mayhem. LEGO is a huge part of our household, and the pieces are EVERYWHERE. Little landmines waiting to unleash hell on bare feet.

5 and 6: Leashes for the two furballs who keep me sane. My walks with Odie and Millie offer a brief respite from the chaos of raising two boys. I try to walk the dogs at least 5 times a week. Good therapy for all of us!

7: I’m passionate about rescuing animals. I keep the magnet for The Puppy Mill Project on my car in the hopes that it will help someone consider rescuing a dog instead of buying one from a pet store.

8. I love listening to music, especially the lyrics. My husband finds it weird that I can sit and listen to an entire album in one sitting, reading the lyrics as I listen. I have yet to figure out why that’s weird!

9: Graham and Ian each made a pinch pot when they were in first grade. Sturdy and useful. I keep them on the kitchen windowsill and use them every day.

10. The shoes I use on my walks with Odie and Millie. I’ve logged a whole lot of miles in them. I should also note that I hate sandals. In summer, trainers like these are the only acceptable shoes to wear with shorts.

11. I love when my boys complete a LEGO project. When they do, I whisk it away for display. Much more difficult to step on that way.

12. My grandmother’s sifter, which she passed down to me as well. She didn’t just give me baking knowledge, but ways to apply it!