Three years ago, on my 28th birthday, I was handed a printout and log in information for The Kittchen, and this blog was born. So The Kittchen and I have the same birthday. Tomorrow The Kittchen turns 3 and I turn 31. I never thought that my hobby would become what it is today. It’s an enormous source of pride for me, because I took an empty website and turned it into a small business that I love.
I can’t believe the year I have had. It was a big one. Here is a look back.
One year ago today my cookbook, The Gourmet Grilled Cheese Cookbook was released. It was a fun project that I completed almost entirely on my own (a designer did the cover and a company formatted the e-book), and it has lead to regular shipments of free cheese being sent to my house. What more could I ask for?
The cookbook launch lead me to attending more events, meeting more bloggers, and after hosting some blogging events with a few friends, the Windy City Blogger Collective was born in January. It has become bigger and better than I could have possibly imagined. The WCBC members are my friends, colleagues, and a constant source of encouragement and inspiration.
In March, I started working with Home Chef and now you can get my recipes and the portioned ingredients delivered to your home. I also started to contribute to Coca-Cola’s site.
In June, I made my television debut on Frankenfood. I still can’t believe this really happened. Yes, I came in second place, but I still consider the fact that I got to introduce America to Mac and Cheese Jalapeño Poppers to be a big “win”.
Cinq, the underground dining club some friends and I started hosted a Speakeasy Soiree and a Summer Barbecue. Last week WGN came to my house and interviewed me about the Chicago underground dining scene for an upcoming story. It was pretty surreal filming a news interview in my home – I will share details on when the interview will air once I have them.
I spoke at Go Blog Social and met some of the nicest bloggers there. I filmed Frankenfood over the course of 10 days, and I traveled to Kansas City and spoke at Go Blog Social in the middle of it all. It was a crazy couple of weeks to say the least. The Go Blog Social experience lead to more speaking engagements. I was honored to be included as a panelist at the Foodseum/SoFab Institute’s CULINARIA Query 2014 along with some much bigger names in the Chicago food scene.
In June I got to spend a week home in Kennebunkport at the Kennebunkport Festival. It was a highlight of my summer and I am excited to go back in 2015.
I was lucky to attend some truly wonderful events this year. I met Mario Batali at the opening of Eataly, attended Chicago Gourmet, served as the social media correspondent for BLU at the Shedd Aquarium and Chefs’ Playground, and was invited to many remarkable restaurants.
And… on November 15th, you can see me in Better Homes & Gardens’ December Issue. My friend Jocelyn (here we are at A Charitable Confection – her annual charity event), gathered a group of her foodie friends to be featured in Better Homes and Garden’s December Issue!
Last year I celebrated my birthday in Napa, and this year I will be celebrating at Alinea, the best restaurant in America. I’m so excited to go and to tell you all about it!
I think that the best way to end this post is to share some of my favorite photos from the past year.
Huge thanks to all my blogging friends for all of their love and support, I just couldn’t image my life without you. I can’t wait to see what the next year brings!