Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Why This Blog?

Okay, so I realize if you are stumbling upon this blog, you might be thinking, "here we go - another spin-off of Julie and Julia!"  And yes, it is true that this blog is about yet another girl who wants to learn how to cook.  But beyond that, I want to create a place that is relatable for all of you ladies out there who are newly married, have been married for years, or who have yet to be married, and live under the misconception that you can't cook, can't clean, can't decorate your home - basically that you are a "non-domestic" housewife (or may someday be), just like me. 

You see, I lived out most of my teens and early twenties sincerely believing that I didn't need a man in my life, that I was perfectly fine on my own, and that marriage was for those girls I had known growing up who loved to play house and whose sole ambition was to be a wife and mother.  I was VERY busy - working 40-60 hours per week, extremely involved in my church, and working toward completion of my college education.  I was content to live on take-out, ramen noodles, Easy Mac, and frozen pizza.  About two years ago, however, I stepped on a rake, smacked myself in the head, and fell in love with my best friend.  I am still not sure how that happened, but on April 5, 2008, I found myself at the altar pledging "for better or worse" to my new husband.  And something happened to me about the time we sat around opening wedding gifts - most of which were supplies for the kitchen.  Around the time I opened up my third box of pyrex dishes, I found myself wondering "what do I do with all of this stuff?"  And I got a funny little feeling in my gut - a feeling that I was scared to admit was there - a desire to learn how to cook.

I freaked out a little bit.  After all, I'm a person who avoids failure at all cost.  Usually this means I won't try something new in the first place.  However, a few weeks into my new marriage, we had some friends over and ordered a pizza.  One of my friends asked my husband if I was a good cook, and he replied, "You know, I am not expecting much.  And that's okay.  I'm content to live on frozen pizzas and macaroni and cheese for the rest of my life."  That sealed the deal.  The pressure was off.  There were no expectations to be met.  So I took a deep breath and decided I wasn't going to let my fear of failure rule me.  I was going to teach myself to cook.

Through this blog, I want to challenge that misconception and help you prove to yourself that you CAN cook... you may even be able to clean and decorate your house if you want to... you may just not be that good at it!  The fact is, we all have the ability to do these things (I mean, come on, you're not starving, are you?  Even Easy Mac is cooking!) and if the DESIRE is there, you may actually find through experimentation and trial and error that you actually are a decent cook, cleaner, and interior decorator.  Nevermind you accidentally used furniture polish on the windows last week, or that the first time you tried making brownies for company in your new oven, they caught on fire because the temperature gague in the oven was off by 200 degrees (yes, these are both things that have happened to me).  Basically, I want this to be a safe place where you can curl up with a cup of coffee and relate to my tales of victory and defeat as I learn the skills my mother never taught me, the skills that my independent "I don't-need-a-man-in-my-life-and-you-better-not-ever-expect-me-to-cook-for-him-or-clean-for-him-either" would never stoop to pay attention to as I grew up in feminist America.

That being said, I want to also preface this blog by stating that I by NO MEANS believe that women are made to cook, clean, and keep house.  I do NOT believe that this is their sole purpose or that they are defined by these tasks.  Actually, I don't even think that knowing how to do all of these things well is all that important.  BUT, for those who ever feel that twinge of desire to make a good casserole or a dessert that everyone ooohs and aaahs over at a party, I want to impart hope and inspire experimentation.  To help you consider your epic failures to be an opportunity for a good story.  To show you that you're not alone, and to inspire you to laugh at me and with me.

I am a non-domestic housewife.  And I want to invite you into my life.  Failures and all.