In January 2012, I wouldn't have recognized my current self.  But isn't that how these stories always start?

From the moment I had a say over what I would put in my mouth until January 2012, 'picky eater' was my M.O.  I was the vegetarian who didn't like vegetables.  "What do you eat, then?" people would ask.  Chocolate, cheese, and carbs.  Obviously.  As a child, when my dad would serve steamed spinach for dinner, I would march off to my bedroom and return to the table wearing my pair of hot pink nose plugs (intended for swimming lessons, not as a domestic eveningwear accessory).  Even in my attempts to lessen the pain of consuming such a repugnant vegetable by cutting off my sense of smell, I would place the warm, wilted greens in my mouth, chew, pretend to wipe my mouth with a napkin, and then spit them out--thinking that my parents didn't have a clue.  I reveled in the Sunday afternoons when I would come home to one of my top 10 favorite foods: a fresh, steamy pot of Kraft Mac & Cheese.  (Ironically enough, I now would place this in the category of 'food-like substance'; my dismay over this revelation is pretty precisely summed up by this guy's dramatic reading of the ingredients list.)

With this history, it is no wonder that my newfound passion for (okay...verging on obsession with) quality, seasonal whole foods--including vegetables!--is a bit baffling to me.  While I cannot comprehend how I came to burst with excitement over the difference a sprinkling of fresh herbs can make in a salad or spend a week experimenting with as many ways to prepare beets as I could imagine, I have come to embrace it.  This blog--the metaphorical putting of pen to paper, documenting my cooking adventures, and sharing them publicly--is a daunting yet exciting step in that process.

Thanks for coming along for the ride.