{a day in the life} Eat Your Heart Out

Today’s “a day in the life” feature is Stephie of Eat Your Heart Out. Stephie’s energy and enthusiasm for food and life translates through her blog and makes it so fun to read.  

Enjoy learning more about Stephie!

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Tell me about yourself and how you started food blogging.

I started reading food blogs during my senior year of college (my roommates thought I was nuts). Once I was living on my own, I kind of needed a “project” to keep me occupied in the evenings after work, so I decided to start my own food blog. I had been doing a lot of cooking and baking and had been sharing almost everything I made on Facebook anyway, so a blog seemed like a logical next step. I never imagined that anyone besides my mom and my best friend would read it, but, well, here we are – a year and half later and still going strong!

Take me through your day.  SS6

Due to an inconsistent work schedule and the fact that I live on my own, I don’t really have much of a “regular” routine. My days off are almost always spent cranking out and photographing as many recipes as possible for the blog, but a typical work day might look something like this (hang onto your hats, this gets really exciting):

  • 8:30 am: Wake up. You know how in Cinderella she wakes up singing and chirpy and laughing with the birds and whatnot? Yeah, that’s not me.
  • 8:45 am: Grab some breakfast – likely some homemade toast, or a quick bowl of cereal and a grapefruit.
  • 9:00 am: Get ready for work, probably while listening to a podcast.
  • 9:45 am: Realize I should have already left for work. Commence rushing around like a maniac to find my shoes, grab my lunch, and fly out the door.
  • 10:00 am: Get to work. Serve up that coffee with the best of ‘em.
  • 6:00 pm: Leave work smelling like a giant coffee bean. Head to the gym.
  • 6:15 pm: Get to the gym and get my sweat on. Depending on the day, this might be a long workout with my trainer. Otherwise, it will probably be a quick cardio workout followed up with some quick arms and abs.
  • 7:30 pm: Leave the gym.
  • 7:45 pm: Get home. Pull together a quick dinner – quite likely some leftovers, because it is a truly glamorous life I live. Most likely wash the dishes I’ve been piling into my sink for the last day and a half…most likely.
  • 8:30 pm: Shower, get ready for bed.
  • 9 pm: Curl up with my laptop to catch up on my blog reading. Perhaps edit some photos or put the finishing touches on the next day’s post. If I’m lucky, I’ll get to crack open a book and just read for fun!
  • 11 pm: At the point, my brain is likely shutting down but my body doesn’t want to fall asleep, so I’ll likely watch something on Netflix or Hulu.
  • Midnight: Sleep!

What is your one must-have kitchen tool or gadget?

As much as I truly, deeply love my Kitchen Aid mixer, and as often as I use my food processor or my Dutch oven, the tool I know I use the most would be my favorite wooden spoon. There is just rarely a kitchen situation in which I don’t end up using it at some point.

What is your favorite part of your day? Why?

My evenings! At that point work is over, and while I might have some blog “work” to do, that’s something I enjoy! Evenings are my time to myself. Well, aside from snuggling with my cats. {Cat lady alert!}

What is your LEAST favorite part of the day? Why?

Mornings. I just really, truly am not a morning person. I like being able to wake up slowly and on my own terms. Having to respond to an alarm clock and race around like a chicken with my head chopped off is just not something I will ever enjoy.

If you could choose one room in your house to spend the WHOLE day in, which room would it be? Why? 

I feel like this might be a cop-out, but…my kitchen! Granted, my current kitchen literally has about 9 square feet of floor space, and not much more to offer in the way of counter space, so things can get a little on the cramped side, but I still love spending my days off in there. Although it is nice when I can spend a day cooking in my mother’s roomy, roomy kitchen. ;-)

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If you could choose one room in your house to remodel (on an unlimited budget!) which room would it be and why?

…The kitchen! (Too obvious?) Although, given an unlimited budget, I would no longer be renting and could afford to buy a place that had a big, spacious kitchen and a gorgeous library room as well. Just sayin’.

 

If you had to choose one place to travel to every year over and over, where would it be? Why? Have you been there before?

When I was in college I spent a semester studying abroad in Spain. I actually had a dream recently that I went back there and, in my dream, I literally spent almost the entire time crying because I was so happy to be back (turns out I’m ridiculous even in my dreams). I have a “family” there from studying abroad that I would love to see again, and the food, music, climate, people…I could list things for a year…make it just the most wonderful place. I could definitely travel there every year.

What is your favorite cookbook?

Currently I really love the Joy the Baker Cookbook or The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook. I really enjoy cookbooks that not only contain beautiful photos of the food, but also contain great stories about the recipes. I will sit and read them like novels before bed.

What recipe on your blog are you most proud of?

I’m sorry…you want me to choose my favorite child? I think right now it might be my Brown Sugar Fig Pop Tarts – every now and again I come up with a recipe that is so good, I totally surprise myself. This was one of those recipes! Ask me next week and I’ll probably have a different answer, though.

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What recipe on your blog do your readers seem to love most?

People have gone bonkers for my Cream Cheese Ranch Roll-Ups! They are a crazy good, crazy easy appetizer that everyone seems to love – really, make more than you think you’ll need, because they’ll be gone before you know it! Readers seem to really love that.!

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What have you learned since you began blogging?

Food and writing are where my real passions lie, and are what I want to be doing with my life and career. Now, as I write this, do I have any idea how to make that happen? Nope. But I know that I want to figure it out. Also, there is such an incredible community in the {food} blog world that I didn’t even know existed! I have made such great friendships that I would never have had if not for blogging, and for that I am so, so thankful.

What have you found to be the most challenging part of blogging?

I feel like this gets said a lot, but it is true: It is really hard not to get caught up in the “numbers”. How many pageviews am I getting? How many followers do I have? How many comments did this post get? How much time am I spending on the blog every day? The list goes on. Having a full time job definitely keeps me from spending as much time growing the blog as I would like, but also at some point I have to take a step back and realize that spending every second of my free time on social media is doing more harm than good. Sure, it might grow those “numbers”, but at what price? Sacrificing spending time with my family and friends? Not getting to do something else that benefits me personally, such as reading a book or going to the gym? Finding that balance and then maintaining it – and ignoring those “humblebrags” from other bloggers about their own numbers – is definitely the biggest challenge.

Do you have any advice for someone who is interested in cooking or food blogging?

If you’re just starting out in the kitchen, cooking is not as hard as it seems, I promise! Just get in the kitchen and give it a try. And don’t be afraid of or discouraged by recipes that don’t work out the way you hoped – even the most experienced cooks have bad days! The same idea goes for blogging – if it is something you feel like you’d like to try, give it a go! If you decide it’s not for you, that’s ok, but it might turn out to be something you really love. Not every day, every recipe, every post will be easy, but hearing from a reader that they tried and loved one of your recipes? Totally makes it all worth it.

Who would you like to see featured here in the future? 

I have so many friends that I would love to see here, it’s hard to choose just one or two! I would definitely love to see my girl Stef from Sarcastic Cooking; I also love Julia from The Roasted Root and would love to know what a day in her life is like!

Is there anything else you would like to tell the world about yourself?

I’m only half as nutty in real life as I seem on paper (er…web page). Just don’t go asking any of my friends or family to corroborate that. ;-)

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Thanks Stephie! Loved learning more about you.
Find more of Stephie on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

When you make a recipe from my site tag it with #RachelCooks!
I love to see what you're creating!

12 comments

  1. Looks great!! Thank you so much for featuring me, Rachel! It was fun! :-)

  2. yay! I loved reading this! My favorite crazy cat lady! :)

  3. What a cute interview. I can totally relate to chirpy mornings.

  4. Girl after my own heart, cat ladyness and hatred of mornings and all. :) Thanks for sharing!

  5. Eeeeeeeeeee I love Stephie, she is def one of my best blog buddies! I loved getting to read this interview, just makes me adore her even more :D

  6. Thanks for the shout out Steph! This was so fun to read. I second Christina’s sentiments, you are my favorite crazy cat lady!

  7. Cute interview! ;) I’ll go have myself a little look at Miss Stephie’s blog. ;)

  8. Yaaaay! I love me some Stephie Swope! Thanks for having her on your site – I love her blog and enjoyed reading all of her responses to your great interview questions! :) Very fun indeed!

  9. I love this series. I must be living under a foodie rock as this one is new to me. So happy to meet Stephie and get to know her. I love the scalloped wood in her kitchen, and her canisters. Off to snoop around her blog.

  10. Pingback: Broccoli and Bacon Beer Cheese Dip - Rachel Cooks

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