How many hours in our lifetime do you figure are lost thanks to the chore of cooking???

Everyone, I’ve had an epiphany this evening, I’ve always hated cooking, even though everybody who has ever eaten any of my meals has quite enjoyed them, and accuses me of lying about my disdain for the art of cooking. Today while I stood at the kitchen sink, breaking into a hot flash sweat, it dawned on me. I don’t hate cooking, I despise all that happens before, and after the cooking bit.

I realized that the cooking portion actually makes me quite happy. What I don’t like is all the work that goes into preparing the meal; going to the market, bringing all my provisions home, sorting them, washing them, bagging them, putting it all away. Then, after all the time devoted to that, the decision as to what dish to make. Go back to the cupboards, and the fridge, pull out the necessary items required for the meal, chop, dice. Then it’s time to get the pots, pans, oils, everything on the stove, up and running. Veggies in this, protein in that, homemade salad dressing being whipped up in a bowl. Wash prep dishes, stir this, flip that.

Set the table. Serve the food.

My favorite part of all of it; sitting with family, loved ones, chatting and catching up about our days. I usually hang out at the end of the meal longer than necessary. 1) because it was my favorite time of the day, hearing about what our girls had gotten up to and 2) trying my damnedest to delay the inevitable. Dinner clean up. When the girls lived at home, each had a role to play. This one set, that one cleared, the other washed the dishes. But now that I’m on my own, every single step along the way to meal time falls squarely on my shoulders, and not only is it boring, but it is also lonely. I miss the activity of having the girls around the kitchen doing homework, listening to music, and chatting among themselves. Now it’s just me, three begging dogs, and a mound of dishes at the end of it all.

All these years I thought I disliked cooking, but that’s not it at all. What I truly dislike, are all the hours spent AROUND cooking that I’ll never, ever, get back. I mean think about it, the hours driving to the market, going through the market gathering all the groceries, driving home, putting it all away, then the cooking, the cleaning up…if we had to guess how many hours of our lives we spend doing “the cooking thing” how many would you figure? Today alone I spent four hours in the kitchen, just over dinner…and this is only ONE DAY, and ONE MEAL.

No wonder incredibly wealthy people have personal chefs. I always thought it was indulgent, excessive and not at all necessary. But now I’m not so sure it’s that wild, or an out there way to spend one’s money. I’ve never thought of it this way, but think of all the money I could be earning if I wasn’t spending countless hours just feeding us…I’ve tried various food delivery services, and after a while they get boring. You see I’m a foodie, I love food, and I don’t want to eat the same half a dozen things in rotation. I know there are plenty of people who live this way, but I’m not that girl. I love flavor, options, and variety. Something none of the food delivery companies I’ve encountered have. I would love nothing more than to have somebody who knows how to make flavorful, healthy foods make the meals for me, so that I could spend that time writing. Also think about how easy it would be to navigate, and entirely escape the weight gain of menopause with a personal chef. Someone with the knowledge to prepare meals that are nutritionally balanced, and delicious!?! I wonder how much personal chefs cost?? And is having one a wise way to spend money, or not???

Hmmm, hmmm, hmmm…