I can host a party with the best of the Southern belles, and I have more dishes and serving pieces than should be legal for one person to possess. But items to actually cook with? I’m more than lacking.
Case in point: I bought my first-ever food processor recently. Well, technically it’s chopper—more like a Junior Food Processor—but it’s in the food processing family. Currently, I have 1 medium frying pan, 3 pots, 1 cookie sheet, a toaster, and a hand mixer. Oh, and a crock pot, a casserole dish, and now a junior food processor.
But that’s it. That’s all I’ve got when it comes to the kitchen. To top it off, most of those items were bought on the cheap right after college.
As I was standing in the store aisle surrounded by all sorts of shiny kitchen items I’ve never purchased, the realization hit me:
I had been waiting to get married to stock my kitchen.
It wasn’t because of my frugality. Lord knows, I’ve spent money on other rooms in my house. It wasn’t because of my inability to cook. I watch the Food Network, and I make Pinterest-inspired recipes for parties.
No, I have been putting it off mainly because I figured I’d fill it up one day when I got married. There was no need to buy really nice (or, even moderately-priced) cookware because someday my sweet, shower-hosting friends would help a sister out.
But the reality is they might never throw that shower for me.
As I stood there in all of my thirtysomething years, I got a little fired up at myself. How did I let this slip by? And what other areas have I held back on in anticipation of marriage?
Of course I don’t think my life is incomplete because I haven’t replaced the solo frying pan I bought from Marshall’s one day when I was moving into my first post-college apartment. I mean, I have been saving myself quite a bit of money, not to mention that I’ve been steadily downsizing much of the superfluous “stuff” in my life as of late.
But the fact that I might be ignoring an entire area of my life because I’ll get to it “one day when I’m married” is not really living in the here and now.
Since the whole Junior Food Processor Moment of Enlightenment, I’ve spent some time thinking about my life and examining it to see if I had any other holding patterns. And, truth be told, I’ve come up with 3 areas where I need to get to work and quit waiting.
Project #1 :: Stock the Aforementioned Kitchen
I don’t want simply to fill the room because I have space or rack up debt buying a stainless steel Kitchen-Aid mixer to beautify the countertop, but I do want to start using more than the microwave in my kitchen. Yes, I only cook for one and there might be a plethora of leftovers, but that’s no excuse to keep cooking like I live in college. Besides, it’s not healthy either. “Stocking the kitchen” doesn’t mean just cookware, it also means having actual food in the kitchen, so I don’t eat out as often and make better eating choices.
Project #2 :: Solo Travel
Traveling with friends has been one of the greatest joys of my single life, but it wasn’t until a few years ago that I’d ever stayed in a hotel room alone, and even then, I had friends in the room next door. I’ve wanted to get away to write or for a spiritual retreat, and I’ve come very close several times, but I never quite pulled the trigger. I see those mini-trips as baby steps toward an actual vacation by myself. Not one where I drive somewhere and meet up with people I know, but one where I actually appreciate my singleness. It’s something that I want to accomplish before I get married or die, you know, whichever comes first.
Project #3 :: Grown-up Finances
I am so grateful that my dad drilled preached the importance of being debt-free and put the fear of God in us if we were to ever apply for a credit card when we were in college. And while I may justify the fact that I have zero debt and the money in my savings account as “good enough,” I know that I can be entirely too frivolous with what I’ve been given. Ryan has touted to me the goodness of You Need a Budget for over a year now, but in the back of my mind I didn’t really want to work on my budget. I was still waiting for someone to come along who could help me tighten the reins by making me feel guilty for my TOMS-inspired, one-for-one Christmas gift-buying plan: a gift for you, a gift for me. It’s time I tightened my own purse strings and started practicing better stewardship…
I’ll get right on that…after I stock the kitchen and take a trip by myself.
For me it’s the kitchen, but we all have our neglected areas. What have you been putting off until you get married?