Growing Up Grilled Cheese

My mom didn’t cook.

She wasn’t  crafty and creative like all the moms of today. She was Mom, plain and simple. Mom, who knew little about cooking. Mom, who had a song for every moment. Mom, who never had a bad day. Mom, who limped slightly when she walked and forgot names immediately after you introduced someone to her. Mom, who had Post-It notes everywhere. Mom,who was still recovering from a month long coma she endured when I was 5 years old (MUCH more on all of this another time).

So, dinner was typically 1 of 3 things: TV dinners, boxed mac and cheese, or Eggs. Yep. Granted, this was after the afternoon snack of Doritos with Kraft Singles melted on top and a swig of Mountain Dew. We’re talking quality nutritional meals here, kids.

It was no wonder I grew up not knowing how to cook. To me, scrambled eggs were difficult. And, I’m not going to lie… they still are. Why waste time with that whole scrambling step? My eggs always come out one way: Eggs over done.

When I first moved out of the dorms and into an apartment in college, I refused to give up my hot pot and had trouble filling my fridge (Who needs that much room?!).  I had trouble touching raw meat (don’t they make gloves for that part?).

Enter Trader Joes and Southern Living. I quickly learned that there are foods that don’t come in boxes and I needed to capitalize on the fact that I actually had a kitchen!

10 years and lots of experimenting later, I still don’t quite have it down pat, BUT I’m learning.

Mom meant well. And she made a mean macaroni (adding bacon = GENIUS!). Without mom, I’d never be able to distinguish the difference between Filet Mignon and frozen Salisbury Steak. Without Mom, I’d never learn the quickest way to make grilled cheese sandwiches (toaster, microwave, voila!). And without Mom, I wouldn’t be ok with those long days when it is absolutely 100% necessary to have cereal for dinner.



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