My intentions yesterday were good. I would take my new cookbook to MOA, meet Ree Drummond (aka The Pioneer Woman), tell her what a huge influence she is on my life, have her sign this gem: The Pioneer Woman Cooks: Recipes from an Accidental Country Girl and then be on with my day. I had seen pictures of other women in line with toddlers and babies at her other events across the country and they all still looked sane so I had no qualms about bringing my own to the book signing event. In fact the event in Little Rock looked downright sparse! So my dad and I packed up the 6-month-old and 3-year-old and hit the road. But then we got there and I saw this:
As you can see, the line snakes all the way back past the Caribou Coffee and Nine West or whatever that is. . . into infinity and beyond. I did get to see Ree though:
I pointed her out to my son and showed him the cover of the cookbook. Look Andrew, a real celebrity in person! But Ree has never felt like a celebrity to me. A friend, yes. A mentor, yes indeed- more than she will ever know since I passed on standing in line with my kids for a few hours so that I could have the chance to gush at her.
I remember about a year after we moved to Hutchinson. I still hadn’t met anyone new besides our neighbors and my students. I was starting to wonder if we had made the right decision moving away from the cities. Then I came across Ree’s blog, The Pioneer Woman and I identified. I don’t live on a cattle ranch and I’m not from L.A. but we have several other things in common like our love of all things photography-related and cooking every day. Also our children of course. I thought to myself, maybe I should start a blog! And so here I am.
It’s empowering to have followed Ree for this time to see what she has become (her cookbook is on the NY Times Best Sellers List). I like to think that any woman who sits at home with her children thinking she is just a stay-at-home-mom and will never do anything huge can look to Ree and see that life is what you make it! You can feel passionate about something and if you are compassionate enough, share it with someone for free. You never know what might come of it in the long run.
I’m sorry I didn’t have the nerve to stand in line with my kids for that long so I could meet her. But in a way it doesn’t bother me since I feel like I know her so well already from her blog. Besides, I’m thinking she’s going to have another book deal and by looking at the response she got in Minneapolis, she might be back around this way before we know it!