I’ve just returned from the annual Marshall Family Reunion. It takes place every July in New Concord, Ohio at the Marshall home (also known as Gema’s House.) It’s a fabulous gathering of a family of foodies! We all look forward to it every year. We come together and cook, eat, drink, dance and generally catch up with each other. It’s my kind of event! David Marshall is my father-in-law and the leader of the pack when it comes to the food part of the weekend (although some of us are stepping up to take the reins these days.) Being with Dave makes me pause to think of how he’s transformed the way I think about food and especially about cooking!
Have you ever heard the saying that some people eat to live and some people live to eat? Well, I fall in to the latter category, now. I’ve always loved good food, but growing up in Texas in my family, that usually meant some form of Tex-Mex (which I still love to this day) and was the only thing I really remember my Mom cooking “from scratch.” My Mom was a mother in the 60s and she preferred the convenience of modern prepared foods, i.e. cake mixes, canned foods, Spam (seriously!), etc. We ate pretty basic stuff and my sisters and I were always part of the cooking process.
To this day, one of my favorite things is to be with a group of cooks in the kitchen – it feels like home to me. However, I would never have said I love to cook. I just love the joy and connection with people working in a kitchen together. Cooking was just one of the chores that had to be done everyday and I continued into my adult life feeling pretty much the same about it. Once I had my own home and was cooking alone, for the most part, it really lost its luster.
That all changed after I met Dave Marshall, my husband Doug’s father. Dave was the first man that I ever met that loved to cook and cooked amazing, creative food. I met him for the first time when I went to Ohio to meet Doug’s family shortly after we got together. It was Thanksgiving and he was the master of the kitchen! He was so joyful and engaged in the process and truly seemed to love all the beautiful things that he was creating with such precision. The meal was awesome and from that point on every time I was with him he would cook something amazing or he would introduce us to an amazing restaurant. Food started to change for me from something I enjoyed and used as a function of life, to something that I LOVED! Not just any old food, but really creative and beautiful food.
It sparked something in me. It got my creative juices flowing and I found that I truly loved it. I bought cookbooks, tried new recipes and new restaurants. I later fell in love with cooking shows on The Food Network and The Cooking Channel, and, of course, loved being in Geema’s kitchen in Ohio.
It is so interesting to me that I found a creative passion in my late 30s in something that I had previously not seen as creative at all. Today it enriches my life everyday and is one of my favorite creative expressions and I have Dave to thank for it. Thank you Dave! I am forever grateful!
What about you? What late blooming creative passions have you uncovered that make a difference in your life! Share with us in the blog comments and inspire us!
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