My Food Journey
It began when I was 6 years old. I remember climbing up on a chair in my parents’ kitchen and working with my mom’s clunky 1970’s KitchenAid mixer—with minimal help from my dad—to bake a cake from a mix for my mom’s birthday. I loved messing with the ingredients and making the mixer do its thing and being the master of creating something delicious. I ended up adding the oil twice and making a super greasy cake, but even still, this moment definitely sparked a love for creating food in my heart.
When I was 15, I joined 4-H. 4-H became a great way to put my cooking skills into action. Among others, I participated in the breads, food preservation, cookies, and cake decorating projects and I joined in various cooking competitions. I also participated in competition shooting sports (specifically the shotgun, rifle, and archery disciplines) so I could one day hunt for my own grassfed meat. I won many ribbons, trophies, and other prizes and had a blast while honing my cooking, baking, and marksman skills!
College took my food journey a bit further. There, I worked as a caterer and cook. I prepared all kinds of dishes for college staff and students as well as learned the workings of catering events and serving dishes in a formal setting.
My post college adventures are some of my favorite. The first of these was the chance to work at Focus on the Family in Colorado Springs. There, I was able to cook for various Christian celebrities, including James and Shirley Dobson (founder of Focus and his wife), Jim Daly (current CEO of Focus), Jason Elam (former Denver Broncos kicker), Tim Tebow (former Denver Broncos quarterback), and the members of several Christian pop bands. While at Focus, I learned tons of technique and discovered how to cook for both massive crowds and hard working individuals.
Once I met my husband and moved away from Colorado Springs, I worked briefly as a chef for Aramark. There, I was taught by a French chef who had been formally trained in Paris. This further strengthened my cooking technique as well as encouraged me to experiment more adventurously with flavor profiles.
After giving birth to my first son, I quit working in the professional world to be a stay-at-home wife and homeschooling mom, which is where I am today. This is my dream job! In addition to loving heavily on my hubby and kids, being a SAHM has opened the door to my being able to research food technique, develop my own recipes in my home kitchen, serve occasionally as a cook for a local conference, and do professional cake decorating on the side.
However, the birthing part (plus thyroid issues) has definitely taken its toll on my body! And, while I have always strove to cook healthfully, I didn’t yet have the knowledge for cooking in a way that was kind to my waistline. These two things caused me to gain quite a bit of weight.
Then, in 2013, I hit a pivotal moment.
My Trim Healthy Mama Journey
It was in 2013 that I discovered the amazing Trim Healthy Mama lifestyle! This introduced me to low glycemic living. I began to prepare healthy foods the RIGHT WAY which helped me to lose weight (currently 45 pounds and counting, on my second round; lost 75 pounds my first round!); have better nails, hair, and skin; and have a ton of energy! The more I got into doing Trim Healthy Mama and benefiting from it, the more my passion for low glycemic food grew.
It was because of Trim Healthy Mama that I decided to start this website in February 2017. I had been blogging away on my other website, MeasuringFlower.com. There, I wrote about real food and natural living. But I found myself only wanting to share recipes that I had developed–especially ones on plan. Realizing that this strayed somewhat from the natural living genre that Measuring Flower was meant to be (since it really isn’t just a food blog), I decided instead to start this blog, TJ’s Taste.
About TJ’s Taste
Here on TJ’s Taste, you’ll find tried and true low glycemic (sugar free and low carb or healthy carb) recipes that are easy to make, full of healthy ingredients, on plan with Trim Healthy Mama, often keto, family friendly, great for company, and, most importantly, DELICIOUS!
One of my favorite things to do is take old family favorites (a vast majority of which are pretty unhealthy!) or restaurant inspired dishes and transform them into THM friendly dishes that are for sure tasty. Some are pretty challenging, but once I’ve tweaked them and perfected them enough, they return to the table as family favorites–only low glycemic and healthy!