Do You Really Need A Hot Dog Recipe?

The Awkward Life of Kelly Airhart
I grew up in a house where both my parents worked full-time jobs, and they always managed to put food on the table, but we were far from rich. My brother and I were both picky eaters, so our weekly rotating menu included things like: corn with a side of macaroni and cheese, chicken nuggets with french-fries, and occasionally spaghetti. 

As we got older, my mom tried different dishes, most of which my brother and I scoffed at. I didn't even eat hamburger patties on a bun until I was at Wendy's with my friend's family and felt embarrassed not to do it. 

I remember going to see my brother in college, and he asked if I wanted to eat out with him at a Mexican restaurant. I was in shock. My brother was always a considerably more picky than I ever was. His diet consisted mainly of Chef- Boyardee, corn, macaroni and cheese, pizza, and french-fries. The only meat I EVER saw him eat was the gross little meatballs in can pasta and the pepperoni on pizzas. But there he was ordering nachos, with cheese AND meat! What grownups we were.

It wasn't really until I got a steady boyfriend in High School that I began eating more foods out of my comfort zone. Dates and dinner with his family kind of pushed me out of my comfort zone--in a good way. And slowly over the years, I tried more and more foods.

After my first son was born, I got a job at a local Dominos and that is where I ate my first onion and bell pepper on a pizza. I remember the smell of an onion and cheese pizza someone ordered. The aroma was so sweet and savory. The person ended up cancelling the order and the pizza was offered up to the crew to eat. I tried a piece and it was like something in me awoke. Okay, maybe not that dramatic, but since then I cook almost everything with onion.

In my latest book, "The Awkward Life of Kelly Airhart," Kelly is very loosely based on me as a 6th grader and she is also very picky eater. Her mother is also a very busy mother, so there are lots of hotdog nights. 
I am not a recipe guru, and I don't have a hot dog recipe to offer up, but do you really need a hotdog recipe?

I guess I am writing this because I am thinking back to all the "homemade" meals that my mother threw together when I was growing up. A lot of them were from boxes, or were deep fried, but they always came from a place of love--from a woman who was probably deeply exhausted from dealing with a fulltime job and two picky kids. 

When I wrote, "The Awkward Life of Kelly Airhart," I tried to write from both the perspective of Kelly and her mom. I don't have a daughter, but I remember what it was like to be a young girl and being oblivious of my mother's awesomeness. My mother tried her best, and I think Kelly's mom does too.

I hope that my book is a book that mothers and daughters can enjoy together. I hope girls (or whoever) of all ages to embrace their awkward awesomeness in life.

I hope you are embracing your awkward awesomeness today too.

Sending lots of love,

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