Hi, I’m Elayna (Laynie as my sweet husband calls me), and I’m a foodie! I believe cooking at home can be tastier, healthier, more convenient, and more affordable than eating out. Cooking does not have to be intimidating, and any one can cook delicious flavorful meals at home.
Foodies for Generations
The love of cooking has been passed down to me through the generations. For the majority of her life, my grandmother raised 8 children on her own. She had several jobs to support the family and one of her jobs was a lunch lady. My grandmother loved to cook, especially sweets, and since money was tight, she made a majority of their food at home. She taught my dad how to cook, and they cooked together until she passed away when my dad was 19.
Growing up, my dad did a majority of the cooking in our family’s household. I became his Sous Chef in the kitchen from a very young age. In my teen years, I would help my dad meal plan and grocery shop for the weekly meals. My dad and I took turns making dinner for the family, we would rarely eat out. Our family ate our dinners together, and I always cherish those memories.
I grew to love cooking and perfecting recipes my family loved to eat. My favorite cooking show to watch is America’s Test Kitchen on PBS, and I found the times it would be on during the weekend and make sure my dad and I were done with our grocery shopping by those times so I could watch the show. Even to this day, I still record every episode and make many of their recipes. It’s a great show for anyone learning to cook!
Adulting is Hard
After I graduated college, I moved out on my own. It was a struggle to learn how to shop and cook meals for myself when I was used to feeding a family of five. I also struggled with a tight food budget of less than $100 a month. So after getting creative, I learned how to shop smarter and use the same ingredients to make several meals throughout the week.
Cooking for myself became even harder when I decided to go back to school because I was often not home for over 14 hours a day. Learning how to meal prep on the weekends was crucial for me because I did not have the money to eat out for every meal, and if I did not meal prep, I would be starting dinner at 9-o’clock every evening.
While going to school, I met my now husband. His food philosophy was, and is, very different than mine! He prefers to go out to eat for a majority of his meals, and he prefers not to cook. One day, I might convince him home-cooked food is better than anything we could find at a restaurant (with the exception of sushi).
Finishing school allowed me to find a higher paying job, so my food budget is not as limited. However, I don’t want to spend a fortune on food. Plus, I still struggle going out to eat when I can make food at home that is faster, tastier, and healthier. I hate waiting in fast-food lines, and I hate not knowing what ingredients are going into my food.
Food is a Journey
In an effort to be more healthy inside and out, I am striving to be more conscious of my food choices. Over the past two years, I tried many diets (some I loved and some I hated). As I learn more about my body, I am able to customize my food choices to lose and maintain my weight, gain mental clarity, and feel my best.
Eating many different types of food is incredibly enjoyable for me. Phasing my diet has allowed me to not feel guilty for eating certain kinds of foods, and it allows me to maintain a healthy lifestyle while enjoying foods I love.
I want to share my journey with you and help inspire you to incorporate healthier habits into your own routines. Whatever your definition of healthy is, you can always improve your food choices and develop healthier habits. Together, we can create a community of individuals who have the same goals of improving our health. Sharing ideas, meal planning tricks, an recipes will allow us to bond wherever we are!
My love language is food, and I want to share my food and love with you! This blog is a labor of love, and I appreciate your support. Thank you for stopping by and for reading!