Kitchen Adventures: A Guest Post

So I think it’s safe to say I won’t actually have posted 31 times in my 31 Days Series. I felt very…shaky this weekend. I was a little stressed and jittery and just needed a few days away from the screens. I needed to step back, take a deep breath and simply remind myself that I can.

I can do this.

I can survive this (adoption paperwork).

I can step away if I need to.

It felt so good.

Today, I get one more day to breathe. I’m going to let Shay talk to you instead. Shay and I “met” over the phone about a month ago when I did a bit of social media consulting for her. She has taken the advice I had to offer and run with it and I couldn’t be more impressed.

Shay is pretty newly married (she’s been married a year *sigh*) and, well she’s just adorable. This post made me laugh out loud because, um…I was so there. No joke, I once turned the wrong burner on on our stove…the burner with a tupperware of cookies on top of it.

Have you ever tried to get melted plastic off of an electric burner?

(hint: it’s impossible)

Shay is sharing her own kitchen adventures and what she’s learned in this first year of cooking for two. Make her feel welcome, will you?

Hi there, I’m Shay, popping over from The Pocket Buzz to join Kelli for 31 Days of Believing I Can. Last month, my husband Adam and I celebrated our one year anniversary. It was a great year, and as you can imagine, we both learned a lot about ourselves and each other.

Before getting married, I’d been at college and on my own for about six years, so I’ve had some time to experiment in the kitchen. The reality of it is, though, Adam is a better cook. It comes more naturally to him; thankfully we make a great team. And in the last year, our kitchen has produced some great meals (mostly his doing), and it’s also produced some great memories.

For example, to celebrate Adam’s birthday I decorated the house and made french toast from scratch. The decorating part, I seem to have a handle on. The cooking part…not so much. I turned around for one split second and the dish towel sitting nearby somehow leaped into the gas burners on the stove and caught fire.

How’s that for birthday candles?

I was really trying to out-do myself for this birthday and make an angel food cake (his fave). What I didn’t realize about this particular cake is that it rises quite a bit. As in…they can nearly double in size when you don’t have an Angel food cake pan. Now I know. And to this day, we still have a bit of angel food cake batter in our oven.

Last week, we made lasagna to take to a friend. It’s a tried-and-true family recipe of Adam’s that’s beyond delicious. As I went to put it in the fridge, something came crashing down on me. Unbeknownst to me, there was a huge glass serving bowl sitting precariously on top of the fridge. (Mind you, I had set it up there.) It hit me on the head and fell to the floor. I was in shock and Adam was just glad it wasn’t the lasagna. I had a good headache after that one.

Now, enter Pinterest–where thousands of people post anything and everything. My saving grace has been the recipes with photos, and often step-by-step instructions. Finally, I just decided that if I wanted to be a better cook, I was just going to have to cook. And recipes on Pinterest helped me see that I could.

It’s been a journey. And I still have mess ups. But now I have a whole repertoire of recipes that we go back to again and again. It’s also given me the guts to try new things. I just have one piece of advice: before you cook for a family gathering, make sure you’ve tried the recipe at least once. Otherwise you may end up with only once-baked-potato casserole instead of a twice-baked one.

Trust me–it’s not nearly as good.

If you’re not on Pinterest yet, I’d highly recommend it. One thing I wish I’d done to start with is to be make my categories more specific. Instead of just a Foody board, I now have a Breakfast Board, one just for Sweet Treats, and an Actually Made This board for the recipes we’ve really tried.

And if you want to trust this kitchen-novice to give you some recipes, here are a few that have worked really well for us:

Crock pot Chicken Tacos Three Ingredients + a Crock pot = my kind of meal (we actually served this for a mexican dinner with friends. It was a hit.)

White Chicken Chili is great for a cold day. It makes great leftovers, too. (We served this as an afternoon snack on Christmas Eve last year. Success.)

French Dip Sandwiches are also made in the crock pot. These were a hit, too.

Thanks for humoring me today and letting me share my kitchen stories. Surely I’m not alone. Here’s to another year of continuing to learn that I can, in fact, cook!

Take some time to hop on over to Shay’s blog, The Pocket Buzz, where she shares all her techy tips and tricks and gives you a heads up on some great deals! You can also follow her on Pinterest where, clearly, amazing recipes await you.

And if you’re interested in consulting with me on how to grow your blog and your social media presence, or if you would like to guest post on Minivans Are Hot (indeed), feel free to shoot me an email! kellistuart00 (at) hotmail (dot) com.