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The beginning of my blogging journey
I originally started my blog back in 2008 when I went from full-time student at Brigham Young University in Utah, to part-time student/ full-time mom to our oldest child. It was a great way for me to share recipes with my friends and I thought, maybe, I could turn this into a paying gig.
In 2010 we transitioned from being students to my husband being Active Duty Army. That same year we moved from Utah to Virginia, for initial training, and then to Savannah, Georgia where, in 2011, we welcomed our second child.
After 3 years of active duty we got out and moved to California, where we’ve been living since 2013. In 2016, we decided to move further away from Los Angeles to Ventura county, where we welcomed our third child.
The Reality of Depression
As a teenager and an adult I struggled a lot. I’ve been able to look back and recognize many of my struggles for what they were- depression. While we we lived in the South my depression really manifested as I adjusted to being in a new place, with 2 kids, and a husband who was often gone. I know that my depression will never go away completely, and that’s okay.
This is a reality that I’ve had to come to terms with as a mother. I had to figure out that what I thought I needed to do and was important, was actually causing me more harm and stress (which only exasperates the depression). The learning curve with managing my depression has been harsh and I’ve failed and struggled way more than I could ever have imagined. But, through these experiences I’ve been able to see how strong I really am, despite the struggle with depression.
While living in the South and struggling through my depression, I let my blog lapse and didn’t get back into it until 2014 when I decided I really wanted to make it a serious gig. Since then I’ve struggled off and on with all that is required to keep up a site like this. I’ve come to loathe social media and the picture perfect life that it seems is required to display. I love my life, but it is anything but picture perfect.
My kitchen is generally a mess (not to mention drab, dim, and deplorably lacking in counter space), my kids are running around screaming and arguing, and I’m trying to balance on a chair while taking pictures of a dish for the blog before I run out of light and sanity.
Although I love cooking from scratch, the reality is while juggling the chaos of being mother to three kids, I don’t have the time or the emotional strength to make every meal that way. Sometimes I realize I forgot to go to the grocery store for the third day in a row and now I have to scrounge in my kitchen for something to make for dinner.
I came to the realization that I didn’t want to shun MY reality and project this Pinterest-perfect alternate reality. So I decided to hone in my niche and stop trying to be everything to everyone. Now my focus is creating easy recipes for people like me, who are busy and overwhelmed.
I want to empower individuals to get in the kitchen and make food instead of swinging by the drive thru. I try to create recipes that are doable for the individual who feels like they aren’t a good cook because, like Chef Gusteau from Ratatouille, I do believe that anyone can cook– IF you give them the right tools and recipes.
This means that not everything needs to be made from scratch, and that sometimes pre-made ingredients are the best way to cut down on stress and just get dinner on the table. I include recipes for making individual items from scratch, but I don’t want anyone to feel like they can’t make a dish because they don’t have time to make every element from scratch.
Food should be enjoyed and not just another avenue to shame anyone. Everyone needs to start somewhere with cooking and I hope that as cooking becomes a joy and not just a chore, that can translate into greater confidence in the kitchen.
Whether you love to travel the world or can only do so through food, books, and TV you’ll find recipes here that help you explore the many flavors of the world with easy recipes that excite the tastebuds.