This is an essay submission for the essay contest here at Mom Biz Coach. Accepting submissions until Friday, Sept 2.
Whipping Up Some Inspiration With a Side of Ingenuity
By: Nancy McAveeney Chef/Owner of Daily Dish LLC
Whenever I think about the happiest moments in my life, it revolves around the kitchen table. From planning family meals to shopping and growing the best available produce to serving healthy and delicious food, I feel truly inspired. Many families today juggle with fitting the ritual of The Family Meal and all its related chores into their tight schedule. For me, it’s a labor of love. As a mother and businesswoman, I’ve skillfully managed to turn what could have been my dismal golden years into a thriving business as a personal chef. After my daughters left home I found myself still yearning to cook for a family. Then I realized I didn’t have to cook for my family.
Earlier in life I was willed to succeed for my family, I strived to care for my daughters while simultaneously helping to run the family business with my husband. Life evolved into longer hours at the office, less quality time with the kids, but many nights of whipping up something surprisingly amazing. I’m not sure how, but somewhere between all the stresses of life, my greatest achievement was establishing a signature cooking style that my husband, daughters and their friends wholeheartedly approved of. Whether it was my Vegetable Stir Fry, my Beef Stroganoff, or my Mexican Chicken Casserole, my measure of success was who wanted second helpings. Now I’ve taken the skills and the confidence that I can please all tastes and transformed it into a business!
Many of the mouths I feed enjoy my customized meals tailor made for their vegetarian, gluten free, dairy free, and other diets. I emphasize the value of a stress-free mealtime! It can be challenging to coordinate a meal for a family with conflicting dietary restrictions, but I’ve discovered that communication is key to understanding my clients’ needs. I find my work most rewarding when I rise to the occasion of pleasing the palate of the hesitant patron. I brought a sampling of my pulled chicken sandwiches to a new family once, unsure of whether or not it would meet their standards, and to my delight they asked me to make a double portion the following week!
When you have the opportunity to taste a home cooked dinner made with the most pure and wholesome ingredients, it’s a privilege nowadays. To have access to the time required in order to prepare home cooked meals is an extravagance in itself. I make that luxury a reality, and leave you with a refrigerator full of meals and a clean kitchen! I am empowered by the spices and simmering sauces and relish the challenge of any picky eater!
I have been inspired to provide lasting memories for the senses, something seldom enjoyed by families these days. I am driven by a passion to nourish and nurture and this is how I achieved success on my own terms.