Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A year in review


2009 is coming to end in what seems to be speedy fashion. A year that has passed with the blink of an eye, 2009 has been a great year. This year was the birth of my first child, a surprise in a daughter, and a bit of a scare in a daughter! She is the most amazing jewel a man could ever ask for. I have found fatherhood extremely fun and rewarding. It has brought me a sense of caring and patience much needed and much appreciated.

As the months flew by I watched her change from infant to a little person, with quite the personality and flare for adventure. We call her a diva, princess, miss attitude, and our little actress for being oh so dramatic! If only time would just slow down. I cannot believe it has been a year!

Professionally was a strange year. Started off slow, with only a few events and happenings. Then all my focus shifted into the outdoor commercial kitchen. Taking 3-4 months out my life to complete the project was so fun and rewarding, but I made no money in the process and failed to cook as much as I should have. All with the knowledge that it would pay off.

The open house yielded some 100 people almost, all to observe our work and enjoy good food and company. The place became an instant hit and once complete, events sold like wildfires!

A new relationship was made in Beth Daane. Beth of Danne Photography and I established an amazing working relationship. Her amazing food photography sent my ability to market myself through the roof. I tell her she is a good luck charm. Her eye for photography and passion for her craft is equal to my own for food. I love it! I was able to start a new website thanks to having some fantastic photography around! www.pajoscatering.com

I started going public. Doing events such as the Lincoln Showcase, where we stopped everyone in their tracks and had a line for days. We really made people think about food in a new way and they enjoyed every minute of it. So many contacts were made and great people were met as a result. My following has grown.

Got involved with the arts, a truly fun opportunity where people could appreciate my artistic eye. A lot of fun!

Finished the year with the run of Holiday parties that was great. Busy as ever, working far too hard for the pay and sleeping far too little and enjoying every minute of it. Being able to still create the food I think is appropriate and amazing, This is passion!

Turned 30 this year. Wow. OMG scary as ever. Why? I generally love my bday and we party for weeks in celebration of its arrival to the point that Angie gets sick of it! JK. Kinda. But this year was different. Being a Father? Working harder? Struggles financially? What is it? The thought of my mortal self? Future health issues? Holy cow I am still young aren't I? It came with me kicking and screaming along the way and I celebrated a fantastic bday. All my friends and family were there to support me and I loved it! Then it went and a sense of calming overcame me. Good, finally this is what I need.

But now this sense of urgency has overcome me. I am 30. I have not accomplished what I wanted to by now. I love every thing about my personal life and would not change a thing. But professionally, I need to get moving. I have a 5 year goal. A ten year goal. A one year goal. I need to get busy and hustle hard to get myself out there. I have been cooking and love it, know it is what I want to do. I have been training and overcoming successfully the hardest of challenges I can find. And I am good at it. People respond to it.

Now to settle down with the Family, remember the year and enjoy each other. Embrace the meaning of the Holidays, the relationships we have with our Friends and family, to be thankful. I love the Holidays.

My 2010 will be something for the books. I plan to do something unheard of by a young Chef that never had any schooling, formal training, never worked with the Top Chefs of this country. For being self made this is pretty great and I am very proud. Keep your eyes and ears open because here I come people, ready or not!

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