I've been married to the same man for 35+ years. My 2 daughters are grown and I have 5 grandkids, 3 girs & 2 boys, all born in less than 3 years. I also had a son, he died after a car/bicycle accident when he was 12. I'm a former farm gal, and still love the outdoors. I come from a large family, for holidays it's normal for the hostess to cook for 45 or more people.
My favorite things to cook
Big meals for lots of people! I like making a variaty of things, and experimenting with new things.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Summer and fall canning and preserving. Grandma, Mom and my sisters and I would spend hours in the kitchen together, talking, laughing and having a good time despite the hard work. Grandma even taught me how to dance the Polka in the kitchen while we waited for jars in the canner. Grandma's gone now, but I still can & freeze every year, and now my daughters & grandkids get involved too. Sometimes we get together with my sisters & sisters-in-law, nieces and whoever else wants to join in and make a party out of freezing corn or making jelly, whatever is in season. All year long, when I get out a jar or package, I know I'm not only opening great food, but also great memories.
My cooking triumphs
I love it when I make a meal for a large group (I've cooked for up to 200 with little help) and everything comes out right and at the same time.
The triumph I remember most was just a small group, when as a new bride I invited my in-laws over for fried chicken. I didn't know then yet that my mother-in-law was well known for her good fried chicken. After eating mine, my father-in-law told her she should take some lessons from me. While she was a little hurt at first, after a few bites, she asked what all I did to it, it really was better than hers.
Another thing I'm proud of is that I've converted many liver & onions haters into lovers, including my husband. It took almost 10 years before he would even try it, but he even requests it now if I don't make it often enough.
My cooking tragedies
Too many to count! Chicken that was burnt outside and raw inside, steaks too tough to chew, a homemade pizza party when I forgot pizza sauce and had to make do with spaghetti sauce.