I told my wonderful-and-pretty-incredible husband back when we were dating that if he was (in some misguided way) under the impression that he was dating a gal who would end up staying at home raising kids, barefoot in the kitchen, then he was sadly mistaken.*
Who knew that 18 years later, I would be the stay at home mom of 3 – goes to prove you should never say never.
On one point, however, I knew what I was talking about.
I don’t belong in the kitchen.
First, I should tell you that I admittedly have a few “eating quirks”. For instance, I can’t eat any meat that looks like it did when it was alive. And I can NOT handle raw poultry that is still on the bone. I find it disgusting. I only buy boneless skinless chicken breasts. And you KNOW I don’t eat the dark meat, because there’s too much slimy stuff in that part (what is that?!).
Brace yourselves for what is next… 14 years into our marriage I have yet to cook a Thanksgiving turkey. Because I’m not rubbing on a dead turkey carcass or stuffing crap into its hind end. (Don’t judge me.)
I trim the fat off of meat like a top-notch surgeon, because I all I can think about is the fat pocket that used to be a cute round cow.
No egg yolks.. really, y’all that’s the baby chicken!
Seafood is out – for a multitude of reasons, but I blame this on those young years where my cousins and I would line up around my grandparents’ looooooong table in assembly line style to devein and pick shrimp by the dozens of pounds. Pulling the little beady-eyed heads off of shrimp was bad enough, but when my aunts or uncles (or whoever happened through room) would walk by and remind us to pull the veins out, I would about vomit. Noting my disgust, my cousins would then find entertainment in telling me that the odds and ends of slimy pieces were the shrimp’s.. well, feces. Over. Peel it, devein it and clean it, yes.. but never eat it. After all it was just alive on those shrimp boats just a few hours before and I killed it. At least it could rest in peace somewhere other than my murderous stomach. And it’s way to chewy.
My aunt used to have a large piece of land in Mississippi where they raised all sorts of animals. Some of you would call this a farm, but it wasn’t really a full-fledged farm. They did, however raise rabbits and turkeys for a while. When we would leave our city life behind for a visit, I LOVED hanging around the rabbit pins. They were so very cute. I wanted to have rabbits at our house, too. Then my cousins told me that they would EAT the rabbits. What the hell?! My mom is lucky that I didn’t break them all out of their pins and stow them away in our car to save them.
During my teenage years, I recall eating at an Asian restaurant with a lot of my extended family.. where my Uncle ordered some insane soup that came with a whole — intact — fish head on top of it. I was sitting directly across from him and the freaking beady little fish eyes were staring right at me – wide open. I could only envision that it died with its eyes that wide open. No fish for me. And quite frankly, this is also why a trip to China or Japan in no way interests me.
… And then there was the time we pulled up at another aunt and uncle’s house, welcomed by a cute Bambi-looking deer hanging upside down from a tree in the beautiful front yard, with blood dripping out of its mouth. — When I protested they talked about how they were about to skin it so they could have it prepped for meat! These are people that can afford to go to the store and buy meat that someone else has already prepared, now mind you. They just did this for fun?! NO. Maybe I should just go ahead and become a vegetarian. Oh, yeah, and all you people who post your (and your kids’) hunting accomplishments on your Facebook page? You gross me out. (But I’m not judging you.)
When I was young and would try to cook with my mom, I remember repeatedly screwing up the measuring of ingredients and then her frantically trying to figure out how to salvage the dinner I destroyed. Yeah. That about put the nail in the coffin of my cooking interest.
Honestly.. why do women have a strange fascination with aprons? I have never found one necessary or useful. Most likely because the majority of the meals I make have been prepared by someone else – usually with names like Kraft, Betty Crocker, or Perdue. I just mix and heat, at best.
Now, there are a few things that I actually do make. Hummus: Easy. Hamburger Stroganoff: Also easy. Potato Salad: Really simple – just throw everything you have in the fridge in there. Red Beans and rice.. to be completely honest, I can’t make rice unless it’s boil in the bag OR I have assistance of a rice cooker. And my one and only baked good that doesn’t come from a box? Hershey Bar pie.
But aside from those few, my kids don’t know the difference between some Pillsbury cinnamon rolls out of those cans and homemade ones. Really I don’t think they know that the home-made part is an option.. the dough just magically appears in the cans.
Speaking of cans.. I cut my finger on one just a few short months ago. A can of green beans. Of course this domestic achievement happened on a night when I didn’t have time to do anything about the cut – you know why, right? Because of the 4,000 activities my kids are involved in. (see here) And since I didn’t have time to wait a million hours at the Urgent Care facility on that night, I ended up being scolded in the E.R. the next day because I didn’t get there in time for the stitches I needed.. with this as my parting gift:
Because that’s just how I roll.
And not too long before the can-cutting moment of glory, I burned my arm on the oven while taking out a pan of biscuits which I slaved over (read: I took them out of a bag in the freezer and sprayed the bottom of the pan prior to slapping them on the pan, placing it in the oven, and setting the timer.)
Oh, then there is the topic of my timers. So… it would probably seem that with the low skill level required for the type of “cooking” I do, one could never mess it up, right? Wrong. I HAVE to set a timer or it’s over. I am amazed at those cooking shows where people can have 4 different things going at once and know just when it’s time to take something off the heat. Not me. I’ve burned dinner twice in the last two months. Once because there was no timer to remind me to stir the red beans. After that sad catastrophe I was a stickler for setting timers to keep my child-induced ADD from winning out over an edible meal. However, I underestimated its power one night when I was so distracted by all the things running through my head that I apparently turned off the timer without realizing I had done it. — Dinner? Sushi take out.
June Cleaver, I am not.
No Stepford Wife here. (Just go ahead and insinuate such a thing and watch me lose my cool.)
What is the name of that book.. the “ UN-domestic Goddess”. Had to have been written about me.
Lucky for me, my husband’s expectations of his stay at home wife do not include being a Domestic Goddess. He’s just happy he doesn’t ever have to step foot in Wal-Mart of Target – or worry about whether we have toilet paper.
And even luckier, he actually enjoys cooking! When he has the energy to do so, he gladly takes over the reins in the kitchen. MY HERO! Back when I was working full-time, we had a standing agreement that whoever cooked didn’t have to do the dishes. I would rather do the dishes than cook.. any day of the week.
But the good news? I cook anyway (most of the time). And I’ve gotten pretty comfortable with the fact that it isn’t a gift of mine. I actually feel good at the end of the day when I have pushed through my displeasure of being in the kitchen and put a meal on the table for my family. No matter how little skill it took to prepare it OR how many sacrifices of person and property that had to be offered up in doing so.
But I still won’t be wearing any aprons.
* (When I told other people this, they would always say something along the lines of, “Oh, you’ll learn how to cook.” Whatever, people. I don’t WANT to learn.)