When we first got married, I had created this unrealistic set of expectations for not only Josh, but for me as well. For example, cooking. I had never really loved to cook, I had never really been any good at it, and I honestly had never really tried to be. But I thought, when I was a wife, I was going to be Betty Crocker. I would have dinner ready & sitting beautifully on the table at least 5 nights a week. After I worked 10 or 12 hour days. Standing all day...... Life is full of these expectations. You can see this expectation I had set on myself quickly became a weight that I could not bear and it took all the fun out of cooking. Because I wasn't good at it. I had no time to try to be good at it. It was my last ditch effort to bring something to the table, literally, and it was my left over efforts from the day. Mmm, yummy I know.
My husband and I are a team. I am thankful and humbled to say that the first year and a half or so of our marriage, Josh cooked most of our dinners. Healthy, yummy dinners for both of us. His schedule allowed for more time to prep and cook for us so we weren't eating at 9 pm. I am so thankful for his willing and serving heart to step in where I wasn't able to.
When we moved, cooking came back on my mind again. I think in a way, cooking has always been something I wanted to be good at, but I had failed so many times I thought I wasn't ever going to be good at it. I have to admit, if you haven't already noticed, I can be a pretty big poor sport. I'm working on it! The deeper rooted issue I had to learn is that I wasn't failing as a wife because I couldn't always make dinner. I put that on myself, no one else but me. We can't do it all ladies! As soon as that weight had been lifted in realizing and accepting my short comings, I could let it go. I could enjoy learning to cook. Just for me.
Through the first couple weeks and months of being in a new state, unemployed for the first time in almost 9 years, I clung to house making. As we made the transition, I was able to provide a home for both me, Josh & the dogs. That was my way of serving my little family, with a warm home full of love & yummy food. I am thankful that God had placed that desire in my heart during that time of transition, my job had changed. I found myself learning to cook, and I learned that I actually liked it. And that, in fact, I am good at it.
For me, I have to plan out our 4 or 5 meals that I will be making that week for dinner. I print out or mark the recipes in the book, write down the grocery list, and go on that Sunday or Monday. Then I have to glance over the recipes so I know if anything needs to be done in advance or over night. I am terrible at reading directions, that 's part of my cooking downfall, and I have to force myself to read them all! I try to do any prep I can, if time allows, like chopping up veggies. This habit has really helped now that I am working again too!
I have been using this list because I like when that is organized into categories, but I can write in what I want, not a check list, so I don't end up running all over the store multiple times.