Not quite a chef

I learned a new skill today. 

I can now slice up a watermelon–and it doesn’t look like I’ve hacked it with a sword!

My cooking skills are slowly developing…

(Anyone can learn how to slice up fruits and veggies pretty fast.)

Planning out menus and such does not come easily to me. Honestly, I’ve kept my meals simple enough to be sitting down and eating within 30 minutes. 

But I have a crock pot now, so I want to utilize it and make yummy foods that just need to be reheated. 

Pretty sure that when I have kids they will spend a lot of time with me learning how to cook.

Assuming that I figure it out myself…

I didn’t pay attention to that growing up and, if I had an opportunity to go back in time, that’s one thing I would change. 

Learning to cook while you’re young is much easier than figuring it out later. 

Trouble on Aisle 9

Ever have to make a guess about an item on a shopping list? 

It can be tough….

Sliced olives or whole olives???? The note only says olives!!!!

Shopping for someone else, especially someone you don’t know very well, is tough. I struggle with second guessing and even resort to asking random shoppers for advice.

Excuse me. Can I ask  you a quick question? If you saw olives on the grocery list, (here’s what we’re making)do you think the olives would need to be whole or sliced? 

I’ve been known to call someone 3 times from the grocery store.

This is why I prefer a list that has ALL of the specifics. Buy that kind and this brand and in that color if they have it. The more details I’m given the better. 

If there’s any way I can snap a picture of the item, that’s even better.

Yes, I am the girl in Aisle 9 holding up a picture of the thing you’re looking at on the shelf. Don’t judge me! 

I realize this is a trivial matter. Buying the wrong kind of olives will not result in fatality. The only thing that can go wrong is your recipe is messed up.

But going back to the store….that just stinks, okay? Having to return an item requires a long walk of shame or, even worse, you hear this: 

Well, that’s not what I wanted, but I can just take it back next week. Thanks for trying. 

Thanks for trying sounds like this to me: 

How could you mess this up?!?

This week alone I’ve run to the store 3-5 times to pick up supplies at work.

Now you know the battle I’ve been facing.

Grocery store angst is a real thing.

 

 

 

Culinary Adventures 

Cooking is not my super power. 

 I am still figuring out how to navigate grocery stores and meal planning. 

By no means am I suffering from malnourishment, but it’s easy to fall into the “just eat a bowl of cereal or a sandwich” trap. 

Thankfully, my friend Sheri owns a restaurant and she’s helping me out with ideas. 

I know the best cooks didn’t start out as masters, so I truly believe there is hope for me yet. 

If nothing else, my goal is to not be a wife who burns everything to a crisp. 

Why not start learning now when I’m the only one who will eat a burned dinner if there’s a culinary disaster?

I also want to start a recipe box…

I think it will be cool to see how many recipes I collect as the years go by. 

I know several ladies who have recipe cards over 20 years old!

Simple gifts

What’s the best meal you ever had?

Was it a complicated, picture worthy affair? Or was it simpler fare with a close friend or family member?

I remember this one meal with a close relative. He diced up hot dog wieners and put them in a pan with tomato paste, a dash of garlic powder, and some Italian seasoning. 

That was it.

 He stirred it up, got it warm, and dished it out generously on our plates. 

I felt like a queen. Life was going good for this 9 year old! 

I “learned” a new recipe and spent the evening enjoying myself and the time with my relative. 

How many times do we agonize over big, fancy meals? 

How many times do we stress out over minor issues, berating and belittling our family in the process?

There’s nothing wrong with great food, but missing out on the important moments is not worth the exchange. 

The things we attach a memory to are quite small. 

Filet mignon on vacation might be overlooked while cheese and crackers on Tuesday is precious. 


Thanksgiving is a week away. 

Cook up a feast! 

Eat yourself silly. 

Clean up later if a fun opportunity presents itself afterward. 

Just don’t stress out over the inconsequential elements of the celebration. 

Remember: It’s the simple moments of intentionality that make the holidays special–not a gourmet meal. 

My Latest Endeavor

The big news is that my baby brother, Samuel Courage Holliman, has arrived! He’s a month old and cute as a button.

His arrival has meant a shift in household chores and responsibilities. Normal life was paused in order to give mama and baby time to settle in and rest up. We’re now trying to get everyone back on track with homeschool and work.

The biggest change for me during this time has been my new assignment: Cooking.

That’s right. I’m learning how to cook.

For those of you who know me well this might come as a shock. And I’m sure you can imagine how comical it might be when I, who knows next to nothing about cooking, gets to following a recipe.

 As part of my culinary education, breakfast and dinner during the week are my responsibility.

Not to mention that this new job involves menu planning and inventory (shopping lists for grocery runs).

I want to take this moment to salute all mothers and grandmothers. The task of making and planning meals is a big one! After I sat down and wrote out my first menu and shopping list, I was mentally exhausted. Anyone who says being a mom is a no-brainer job has never written out a shopping list.

In all seriousness, I’m learning the importance of wives and mothers who work hard every day to make their homes a safe, hospitable environment.

 All of that said, my cooking lessons are starting to pay off. Sure, there’s been a few mishaps along the way, but my family is very gracious. My wariness of the kitchen is starting to fade.

Cookbooks are my new best friends and I’m even thinking of getting a Pinterest account for recipe ideas.

Also, this time in the kitchen will improve the chances that my future husband will not starve when we get married.  

Question: What’s your latest endeavor? And how is it challenging your thinking?