And now begins the start of a new and exciting adventure I like to call, “What the Heck Was I Thinking?!”…..
Most of you know by now that I’ve entered myself in Foodbuzz’s Project Food Blog. If you’re not familiar, it’s basically like The Next Food Network Star or Top Chef, except for food bloggers (I know what you’re thinking and yes, apparently I am insane). There are 10 challenges and over 1,800 food bloggers. This week is the first challenge. So, yeah…I’m gonna need your votes. I’m also gonna need your friends’, families’, students’, bosses’, coworkers’, pen-pals’, pets’, neighbors’, dentists’ and ex-spouses’ votes. And anyone else you can think of. If you don’t mind (don’t worry- I’ll remind you when to vote!).
So, the first Project Food Blog challenge is to describe what defines me as a food blogger and why I think I should win. When you think about it, that’s kind of a tough question. What defines me as a food blogger? Jeez, my husband, my love of opera and singing, my family, my love of food and baking?? These are all good answers but none of them are really spot-on. I guess when you get right down to it, the one thing that defines me and my blog is, well…me. Where I come from, how I got here and all of the things in my happy life that make me who I am.
In college, I was a vocal performance major. I had big plans to start my opera career in NYC after graduating. Seriously. I know it’s cliché, but that was my dream. I never cared about food or cooking. I thought women who had big families and cooked and took care of their husbands and homes were crazy. Why would they choose that life? They were missing out on their own career.
My Junior year, though, everything changed when my eyes were opened and I finally took notice of a shy, sweet guy I had grown up with. I told him I was in love with him on Thanksgiving day 2004. We were engaged 2 months later. So much for NYC. My dreams had completely changed and I was utterly and beautifully happy.
At first, when Joel and I were newly married, I still wasn’t a very good cook. I made a lot of spaghetti and “dinners-in-a-box”. Then slowly but surely, as my cooking skills improved, I started realizing, there wasn’t much that made me happier than putting a good, homemade meal on the table for my hard-working husband each night. I started taking pride in my cooking. More and more, Joel and my family and friends would comment on how good a dish was, or how rich and delicious a cake would taste. I realized that this is what I loved and was meant for. I was never meant to run off to NYC and have a busy opera career (I still sing with an opera company chorus and teach voice lessons, and that’s just enough for me). I was meant to love a gentle, sweet man and take care of his home, cook him meals, and maybe have his children someday. I had become one of those women I hated. And I was thrilled. I’m still thrilled. I love baking, cooking and having family around my table. That’s what it’s all about for me. This is where I’m meant to be. This is why I blog. Instead of just having my husband at my table, I have thousands now. I get to share my food on a daily basis with my friends, family and thousands of strangers (now friends) who share my love of cooking and eating. I love getting comments from old elementary school teachers or ladies from my hometown church telling me they loved my last recipe and are so proud of me. My recipes are nothing fancy- just simple, down-to-earth dishes that anyone can make at home. I love getting emails from readers saying thank you for a great dish, or how much they love my recipes. This is why I blog. I have pride in where I come from and I want to share it with everyone I can.
The reason I should win Project Food Blog? Well, that’s really for you to decide. Just like every other contestant here, my passion is food and cooking. Writing about my kitchen successes and disasters is therapeutic and I think I’m fairly decent at it. I love the fact that I can write a silly little post about peanut butter and jelly cupcakes (they ARE really good, though!) and thousands of people actually want to read about it…that’s pretty amazing to me. Some mean kids stole my diary once, but other than that, I don’t recall anyone ever really wanting to read something I wrote. What simply started out as a hobby has grown into a passion. I enjoy this. Tremendously. I enjoy taking pictures of my food, writing about it, sharing my experiences with you…I enjoy it all.