Brain Dump Friday

I’m starting to like colorful things. Normally I go for dark colors, browns, grays, and black. I have a cup full of highlighters and Sharpies (fine tip, because the wider ones are too hard for me to manage without making a mess…because while I’m an adult, I usually have the hands of a 3-year old), and it makes me smile just to see all the pretty colors. I got a little eager when planning my availability for shows in September, and forgot about a 3-day conference, and youth group. oops. I’m tired of being under a boil order. A water main broke here in town on Wednesday morning, and we’ve been restricted ever since. I’m very tempted to drive 15 miles just to get some stupid ice. There is no ice. It’s like we suddenly live in a third-world town. If I can’t handle a few days without ice, I’ll never survive the apocalypse. You’ll have to put me out of my misery right away. It’s ok. Don’t feel guilty. You’ll want to kill me off about three hours in anyway, because I’ll be complaining a lot when there’s no ice/internet/cell phones/electricity. My husband just sent a sweet text and made my day :). I like it when he does that. I need a new game for my iPhone. Something challenging, slightly (not totally) addictive (I do have a life-sort of), and fun. I play “Flow” and I have all the updates and additions, and I’m almost done with it. Once I master all the boards, I’ll be bored with it. I’m having a calendar dilemma…not the one mentioned above, but I like monthly calendars, and I need to learn to live from a weekly calendar. I don’t want to. I want to cross my arms and stomp my feet, but no one is around to see/hear me, and the cats don’t care one way or the other as long as we feed them. I’m the only human in my house all day now. I wonder if anyone else stays home anymore? I feel like I’m the only one. My kitchen is super clean. (That’s how bored/lonely/pitiful I am) I think I will go make a snack for tonight’s Bible study. I need to blog more. I have lots to say. I miss my kids. It’s only the second day of the school year. I threaten them every summer that I will pull them out of school and homeschool them, just so I can spend more time with them. I enjoyed homeschooling for the years that we did it. Now the only result would be that they would learn, sooner rather than later, that they are both smarter than their mother. I cannot lose that advantage. It’s going to be a long year. Oh My Gosh!!! I forgot to add the school events to my calendar! I’m going to need a new one…this one is about to become too messy! I can’t look at a messy calendar…I get all kerfuzzled.  That is all.

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I Hate Spaghetti: My Pampered Chef “Testimony”

I had this idea to write up what I would like to say at shows when I’m talking about my business, why I love Pampered Chef, and why I am so proud to wear the apron. I wrote something that was OK, but I couldn’t quite get it right. Then I realized that I don’t need to find the words, I already have them. They may not be as eloquent as something I could write, but they are mine. (And there’s no memorization involved)

I’ve been married for 17 years. Over that time I have cooked…a lot. At first, it was fun. You know, it was kind-of like playing house. Sort of this dreamy world where the apartment was clean, and the kid was clean, and (hopefully) I was clean, and dinner was on the table.

Over the years, we had two kids (making a total of four), and at times we’ve had up to five jobs between us. Oh, and we’ve moved. A LOT. We currently live in our 15th house. We bought this one, so we are here to stay!

I stayed home with our kids before they went to school, and I found myself bored in the kitchen. Making macaroni and cheese, PB&J, spaghetti, and munching on graham crackers and cheerios gets old…awfully fast. I was to the point that I would have eaten my own shoes before I ate another bowl of spaghetti.

Then a friend invited me to a Pampered Chef show. I fought it at first, saying that I hated to cook, and I wasn’t interested, but I finally agreed when she said I could eat something other than spaghetti. I found a sitter, grudgingly left a number where I could be reached if someone were bleeding or on fire, and I ran out of the house.

I had SO much fun!

I ordered a few things, including the cookbook containing the recipe from that night, and was on pins and needles waiting for my new tools to arrive. (BTW…I still have that cookbook, and the Fiesta Nachos are still my favorite recipe. If you’d like a copy of it, please write your email address on the paper I handed out, and I will email it to you.) I made everything in that cookbook. TWICE. Even the recipes with the mushrooms in them. (make face)

I had so much fun at that party, that I agreed to host my own. It was great! I earned a few free items, and got a discount on a few more.

Eventually we (I) fell into the same rut. We were back to the same old thing. I would pull my PC cookbook out once in a while, but most days we were back to the standard fare. I was to the point where, once again, I hated to cook.

Fast Forward SEVEN YEARS. The kids are now 12 and 9, and their tastes have expanded greatly. My daughter was no longer a self-proclaimed vegetarian as she’d been from birth (even before that, if you want to know the truth), and while our menu was increasing, I was still finding myself miserable in the kitchen.

A friend of mine invited me to a Pampered Chef show. After the show was over, she confessed to me that I was the last person she thought would EVER come to the show. She confessed that she had only one invitation left, and she didn’t want to throw it away, so she gave it to me. You know that thing that Hollywood does in movies where the happy memories are kind-of glossy, and very colorful, and everyone is smiling too much while harps play in the background? Well, THAT was my Pampered Chef memory from all those years before. I was the first one to show up that night.

Fast Forward another FOUR YEARS. We are back in the rut. Once again, the kid’s tastes continue to change and grow, and in turn the menu has grown, but I’m still bored. So bored, in fact, that I almost NEVER cook. My husband does probably 90% of the cooking, my son does about 5%, and I…well, I know all the take-out numbers by heart. They’re even in my list of favorite contacts in my phone :(. They are listed above family. Needless to say, it’s bad.

Then one day my friend Michelle contacts me. She’s a Pampered Chef. She’s happy. She likes to cook. I think something is wrong with her.

Cue glossy memories and harps.

I agree to host a show. After the show (where I got MORE free stuff, and these AMAZING knives at HALF off!), she sent me an invitation to go to a meeting where I could learn more about starting my own business. I am now convinced she’s out of her mind, but I go. I couldn’t believe she saw something in me. Even more, I couldn’t imagine what it was. At the meeting I was overcome. Not “saxophone and frantic weeping” overcome, just that “I can’t remember parts of that night because I was so deep in thought” overcome. That might seem like a strong word, but I was. Really.

EPIPHANY!

I don’t hate cooking. I hate the same thing. I hate the mundane routine. And…I still REALLY hate spaghetti.

I was bored. I’d given up on the things that made cooking enjoyable for me. I stopped using my helpful tools. I was back to chopping and cutting and mixing the hard way.

For me, when I stopped using the tools that made it easy to cook, the tools that made making meals fun again, my Pampered Chef tools, I stopped loving it.

Cutting an onion with a dull knife on a cutting board that slides around half-hazardly on a counter top is hard. Not only do you cry because of the onion, but you also cry when the board slips and you cut off your thumb. ER bills will make you cry. That’s THREE times. Nobody wants to cry three times.

All this pain and aggravation is spared when you have something as simple as a Food Chopper. You cut the onion in half, slap it into the Food Chopper, and before you know it…chop-chop-chop…you’re done. Your onion is chopped, and you have your thumbs.

It sounds silly, but you know what I mean.

Pampered Chef makes it easier, faster, and more fun to cook. We make it easy to teach your kids how to cook. We make clean up a breeze so you can get out of the kitchen and back in the family room where you really want to be. We make the “living” part of life a little more livable.

You may love to cook. You may not. Maybe you’ve never boiled water. Maybe you started to boil water once, and when you got back to the pan, all the water magically went away. It doesn’t matter how far along you are in the culinary world. EVERYONE can be a Pampered Chef. Trust me, YOU CAN DO THIS. We can do it together. Give me a half hour of your time, meet me in a coffee shop, and then you decide. The coffee’s on me.

Oh…and I still hate spaghetti.

Brain Dump Friday

I have often wondered about eHarmony. If I signed up, and Barry signed up, would we be matched together? I’m afraid to find out. I thought it would be a fun experiment, until I (surprisingly) over-thought it. If it didn’t match us up, I’d probably never sleep again. I barely sleep now. I was going to make a treat for Bible Study tonight, but I still don’t have all the stuff. I never make a recipe the first time if I can’t get all the stuff-even if it’s a little thing. I’ll have to try it out on my family to see if it’s any good. I haven’t really ever had a sweet tooth, and I am beginning to think it’s completely gone. I’ve had a bag of Godiva Milk Salted Toffee Caramels on my desk for about 6 weeks now, and I haven’t touched it. Clearly this shows two things about me: I don’t clean off my desk often enough, and I should have gotten the dark chocolate something-or-others. Those would have been gone in a week or less. The bag is even a bit dusty. That’s just sad. They’re gonna take away my girl card any day now. I just looked at it (after I stopped choking on the dust) and four pieces is a serving. FOUR. And those four pieces are only 160 calories. Still…I don’t want them. Maybe I will bring them to Bible Study. Surely someone will want them. I’d rather have a steak. I painted my nails with a gold-ish glittery polish this morning, and with the sun shining in my window, it’s making them look all sparkly and pretty. It’s very distracting. I get stressed out shopping for school supplies, so this year the kids have to buy their own. I hope they can jump and roll out of the car as I drive by Target on my way to get a good steak.
#BrainDumpFriday

Table AND Chairs…what a concept!

We finally got a kitchen table. We’ve had one since we moved in, but we haven’t had any chairs for it, so we have just been using metal folding chairs. Those are not comfy. So the old one goes to the basement to (hopefully) become a sewing table, and the new one takes its’ place (and leaves a lot more space for the humans to roam around in the kitchen)

Here it is! It goes with my pretty red teapot, and my polka dot mixer!

I think it’s just wonderful, and soon the walls won’t be red anymore, and it will be a less overwhelming color in my kitchen. I’d like red to be the accent (pop) color, rather than the main color.

I have big ideas for the walls, too.

Stay tuned…

Baking…made better.

So.

I have this thing for polka dots. It’s not just that I like polka dots.

It’s more of an obsession.

I saw this pin on Pinterest, and I bought the dots immediately. (Even though I didn’t yet own a stand mixer.)

I’ve wanted one for years, and I knew that if I bought the dots, I’d have to finally break down and buy one. Otherwise, the money I spent on the dots would be wasted, because I’d never be able to figure out just the right thing to do with the dots. (I get overwhelmed easily)

Dave’s wife did it first, and sold me the dots, so all credit goes to her!

Here she is, the newest addition to my kitchen! Isn’t she just gorgeous???