a peak into my culinary world
October 2015 Today was a little different than any other day. Although we had the same morning routines .. wake up, brush hair and teeth, get dressed and eat breakfast, I knew the afternoon would be filled with a lot of unknowns. I had registered and went to the local community college and had only two classes before getting my associates degree. However not knowing what to go to school for has always stopped me from continuing to finish. I had always gotten good grades (when I would attend the class) and it wasn't that I didn't care. It was that I didn't want to continue to waste money on classes I wasn't even sure I would need - depending on the career I would end up choosing. So I quit. Not once. Not twice. But several times. After we landed back in Houston from our trip to Costa Rica, I had a vision for my life and was going to do whatever it was necessary to achieve it. I took the steps to get into The Art Institute, got my ID, parking pass, uniform and knives. I was ready to go. I felt like a kid again; I felt eighteen although I knew I was almost thirty-one. Now, I know what they mean when they say age is just a number. I remember when I used to think thirty was damn near on a death bed. All I can do is laugh when my kids tell me how 'old' I am. I remember laying in bed wondering who my new friends would be, if I would like my teacher, if I would like the class. That feeling of the first day of school never gets old, no matter if you are entering first grade or college. This particular day was a little different than any other day. Although we had the same morning routines .. wake up, brush hair and teeth, get dressed and eat breakfast, I knew the afternoon would be filled with a lot of unknowns. I shuttle the kids to school and come home to get my things ready. I grab the starched white chef jacket out of the closet and throw it in the dryer in hopes of making it less stiff so I didn't stand out like such 'newbie'. After getting dressed in my chef uniform neckerchief and all, I head out the door with my backpack and knife kit. I guess I should have been nervous but I wasn't one bit. I felt a sense of pride. I was elated that I found my niche. I had only signed up for two classes that semester, not wanting to get in over my head. The first class was knife skills. I honestly loved cutting. I made two friends instantly and still to this day, keep in touch. I never missed one class and was always on time. It was not something I had to do, it was something I wanted to do. It made a world of difference from the time I attended community college. We made things like hollandaise sauce, poached eggs, chicken broth (pretty much the basics of cooking). School work would consisted of 15-20 hours a week. It wasn't hard for the most part it was just time consuming writing down recipe cards and learning things like, 'what is mirepoix?'. Cutting seemed to be just as important as the cooking. At first it was a little stressful trying to get the cuts exactly right but after a while of finally getting it, I had it down pat. I made A's in both classes. And for those who know me know I have a consistency of a B average. I wanted to study, I wanted to learn .. for me. My husband and kids were a huge support. He would often pick the kids up from school, help them with homework and start dinner all before I would get home. On the weekends I loved making new meals and trying new desserts - I felt like a mini chef in training. Each semester is eleven weeks long with one week break in between semesters. For Christmas, we had a two week break, however it so happened that we had already booked another trip to Costa Rica (prior to me starting in culinary school) in January which is during the start of the second semester. Being that I wanted to keep a good reputation in school, I emailed my chef to let him know that I would be absent the first day. And with that we were back in the air again off to discover more of Costa Rica. *For the record, I only cut my thumb and scalded my finger (cooking peanut brittle) once during the whole first semester.