What is it with Pioneer Woman that lures us in? If you’re unfamiliar, she has cookbooks, a TV show, a blog, and who knows what else. She lives on a ranch and takes pictures of cows and makes piles of money by walking us through a 30-photo-process of how to cook chili. Which we already knew how to make.
I confess to taking her ranch cookbook to the beach, even though I don’t cook at the beach. And I don’t live on a ranch. And I don’t need 17 photos to show me how to make baked ziti.
So what’s the draw?
I have a wild suggestion. Ready?
I think we want a mentor in our life.
Okay, hold on, I know she’s younger than some of you, but stick with me.
Pioneer Woman welcomes us into her down-home kitchen. She has a wonderful voice and talks to us like a friend, showing us her messy counters and teaching us to make comfort food our family or friends will love. She shows us her cows and her cute kids. We walk together through the field with a big pot of soup for the ranch hands and her husband, who she loves.
Sound like a mentoring relationship to you?
Now I know I’m far too busy to go to someone’s house and learn to make a good soup, or have a younger friend to my kitchen to hang out and cook. If I did those things, I wouldn’t have time to go online and be with someone else in her virtual kitchen and pretend she knows me like I know her! Hmmmm.
We are all hungry for relationships, aren’t we? We all want to plop down in someone’s kitchen and feel at home. Her counter is messy, but we grab a bar stool and talk about whatever: the horrors of swimsuit shopping, the outrageous dessert we had last night, a marriage issue, a question about our son’s earache.
The world we live in doesn’t make it easy to build this way. It wants to jam us up with shopping and sports leagues and work and Pinterest and working out and obsessing over paint colors (guilty.) And so what feels like it should happen naturally needs to be a bit more purposeful.
But I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately—the benefits of learning from others, the blessing of doing life together, the countless lessons that can be learned by sharing regular moments. But it’s hard for me, and I’ve been thinking about that too. So let’s stick together. My next few posts are going to wiggle into this issue a little further and invite your comments. I’d love to learn from them.
Thanks, Pioneer Woman, for letting me use you as an illustration, and I do like your chili recipe.
To the rest of you, I know there is a bit of conflict of interest here, given that I am blogging. Despite my invitation to stick with me on the next few posts, you have my delighted permission to skip them in order to invite a younger friend over to make lasagna.