When I think of Julie Powell‘s project, to cook Julia Child’s recipes for 365 days, my mind cannot quite grasp how her blog efforts can even compare to writing Making Up America. Yet, the highs and lows of blogging do come to mind. Over the past year, the highlight and low light for this blog came with working at the White House and meeting the First Lady, Michelle Obama. Mrs. Obama was gracious and warm. Being surrounded by history, with the added excitement of meeting the world’s most watched woman was an experience of a lifetime. With that job came the first big interview about my work from Mary Tomer, writer for the Mrs. O website (www.mrs-o.org ), which felt like the call Julie got from the Christian Science Monitor to cook for Judith Jones (editor for Mastering the Art of French Cooking). Doesn’t sound so bad so far. Right?
Ironically, Powell nor Tomer ever met their subjects (Child and Obama), who brought them their success. Maybe that’s the beauty of admiring someone from afar. I remember a colleague warning me, “You never want to meet your Hero in person because they will always let you down.” For Julie, the dejection came when she learned that Julia did not like her blog. Although later, it was probably a nice feeling for Julie that she did receive a thank you from Julia. For me, disappointment came when the First Lady’s handlers didn’t approve of my blog’s behind-the-scenes content. Thankfully, however, I had a great experience with them for Elle the first week they were working in the West Wing. As for Mary, I imagine that she may have no qualms at this point in time. That’s good, however, there is something gained by experiencing subjugation. You dig deeper and grow as a person. You decide how it will affect you. You take control of your life’s efforts.
Motivation for readers, like you, should come from the fact that Julia Child found her direction later in life. She was 49, when her cooking shows took off on television. By her example, it is clear that it is never too late to find and follow your passion. What began as a way for Mrs. Child to learn French and how to cook, became a set of best-selling cookbooks and a Smithsonian attraction (her entire kitchen is available to view so that you feel you are there at the show). Her drive to enjoy life, while paying attention to the nitty-gritty details in her recipes, is a method of success we all can use. One missing link that Julie and Julia share is not having children. Not to fret, there are many other successful women with children, whom are worth admiring too. Kathy Smith, who is a fitness expert and motivator, is my Julia Child. She raised two daughters, while building an empire of workout routines. A life changer for my personal success, she recommends getting moving through exercise. The energy you get from daily efforts spills into every other area of your existence. Although I have never met her, she has graciously responded to my communication through Linked In and emails. Maybe it’s better that way. Outside of my family, I like to think of her as my hero. Get motivated, with a New Year’s resolution that can last you a lifetime, by viewing her website.
Ironically, Making Up America was recently invited back to work at the White House. Being out of the White House Dog House is a great feeling. Live and learn.