Lessons From the Kitchen

It's been a couple months since I've posted. I had a lot of posts lined up and I was getting excited to share some holiday recipes with you when I got word that due to cancer my young, and vibrate mom only had weeks to live. Time stood still for a while and now that I'm back home I really wish it could stand still so I could grieve, process, and just heal without the constant interruptions of life. Yet, life moves on and we move with it, processing as we go. I honestly have been putting off my blog because I know my Mom won't be reading it anymore. A lot of the new recipes I was going to post were Ketogenic ones I was creating for her since she was going to visit on Thanksgiving. It's going to take some time to adjust. As much as I want her here to click my new post in her inbox and to show up at my house I see that my blog can instead honor her through living my life and teaching others all the things she taught me.

For me, blogging was something that I've wanted to do for a long time. I let fears get in the way and life moved on--quickly. Life doesn't wait for your thoughts to get in order or your dreams to all line up like you think you want them to. At some point you have to just jump in and figure it out as you go. I stopped playing the "comparison game" and just went for it when I launched this blog in June. I have a lot to learn and a looooooonnnnnngggggggg way to go. But it's a start. It's my start. As I think about it though, I realize my "start" really began a long time ago.

Ever since I could sit up I was on the kitchen counter watching my mom cook. Getting my hands in all sorts of things. Everything about the kitchen and food fascinated me and I loved working with my hands. Dressing a raw chicken? No problem. I jumped at the opportunity while my sisters squirmed with disgust. Pulling the meat off the bone once it was cooked? One of my favorite things to do-- it meant I got to get my hands dirty and sneak the ever-so-delicious tenderloin on the bottom of the roast chicken. My sisters didn't know what they were missing out on. And if you've never plucked the tenderloin off a freshly roasted chicken you don't know what you're missing out on either ;)

Here we are at Christmas time making Beef Wellington together. I was in college.

I learned how to mix and create a salad dressing just by taste and texture. And I most definitely learned how to fail. I ruined so many recipes by forgetting an ingredient, over mixing, over baking, or using the wrong substitute. So many tears were shed in that kitchen on Thunderbird Circle. But it never stopped me. My mom taught me that mistakes and accidents happen and I could learn from them and know what to do next time. She taught me that I couldn't sulk and let my mistakes get the best of me and decide to give up. Each time she called me back to the kitchen to clean up my literal mess and the mess of my teenage emotions.

For me, cooking is 32 years of family traditions and memories with my Mom, but as I think about it now I realize she taught me so much more than how to cook. She taught me to be creative, to never give up, to always grow and move forward, to learn from my mistakes, and to love people by cooking for them, hosting them at home, or teaching them how so they can have better health and enjoy life longer. Cooking is so much more than just reading a recipe or putting food on the table--it's a life time of lessons and memories created in an environment filled with hospitality and love. That's what it it is for me anyway, and I hope that all of you, even if the kitchen is a frustrating place for you, will find that it's not about perfection but about giving yourself grace and loving others in the process.

Grace and Love will take you far in life and in the kitchen if you let them. Don't compare yourselves to other people. Find your own style and your own qualities that you carry and don't push yourself down when you fail. Who was it that said you only fail if you don't get back up? They were right. You're amazing and whatever you do keep growing, keep learning, and keep loving!


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