Confessions of a former food blogger

I’ve shared before on my blog that I used to be a food blogger.  I explained why I quit (potty training) and why I took a three year break from blogging.   Now that my kids are older, it’s much easier to blog.  They actually understand when I ask them to let me finish typing a thought.

true confessions - food blogging

I ran my food blog for over a year.  That’s a lot of food to take photographs of.  Lots of beautiful photos that are worthy of Pinterest.

I learned a few dirty secrets about food photography.  Some of them are fairly well known (like spraying food with oil to make it look prettier, using elmers glue in place of mayo because it’s whiter, and using dry ice to emulate steam).  But the dirtiest secrets… I have to share those.

Food bloggers have dirty kitchens.

You see carefully cropped photos that keep the pile of dirty dishes out of sight.  You see artistically created shots with fuzzy out-of-focus backgrounds that conveniently hide the grape jelly smears that their child left on the refrigerator.

Don’t believe me?  Take a look.

(this took some courage to share these, don’t hate on me)

food blogger tells all

I posted beautiful picture perfect shots of freshly canned tomatoes.  What I didn’t share with my readers was the total havoc that it created in my kitchen.

Take a better look!

These are yummy looking tomatoes, ready for canning. Makes you want to rush right out and buy a pressure canner doesn’t it.

food blogger canned tomatoes

This is what it did to my kitchen. Not exactly something you want to see pinned, is it. (PLEASE don’t pin it, pretty please!)  This was my old kitchen, before the remodel.

my kitchen after a day as a food blogger

Remember my beautiful photos of corn basil salad?

food blogger shot of slicing corn off the cob

What you didn’t see was the chaos that surrounded the photo shoot.  (Again, this is pre-remodel stuff)

food blogger reality

Shocking, isn’t it.

I’m not alone.

In a conversation with our awesome contractor for our remodel, he mentioned that he had been involved in some behind the scenes work for an HGTV show.  It’s the kind of show where they take a house and totally transform it in a weekend.

At least, that’s how it looks when I watch the show.

Behind the scenes?  The paint was still wet.  The sinks weren’t hooked up.  The curtains were held up with velcro tape.  Hot glue and duct tape were involved.  He said it took three months to finish everything after the film crew left.

Shocking, isn’t it.

I have a feeling that there are a LOT of stories like this spread all over the internet.  Have you ever looked at a perfectly organized pantry on Pinterest of Houzz and sighed deeply with desire?    Do you think they look like that all the time?  What about the perfectly decorated laundry room.  Do you think it looks like that after a two week vacation or when the whole family has just survived an intestinal bug?

So what’s the point?

Simply that we shouldn’t hold ourselves to the Pinterest standard.  Be real.  Be authentic.  Be happy.

be authentic. be real. be happy.

Care to chime in?  Are you struggling with the Pinterest standard?  How do you cope?


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Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

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  1. Thank you for posting this and being so real! I do struggle sometimes thinking everyone else is out there in beautiful homes with obedient children playing cozy board games while they cook gourmet dinners and piece together a perfect craft on the side. I know it’s not true but sometimes I forget that I am only seeing one side of it all.

    • i was thinking of you when i wrote it. i get caught up in the same trap at times. it’s easy to beat myself up because i don’t measure up to all those perfect pictures!

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