Hi. I’m Amy.
I’m a wife and mom of two boys.
I worked in advertising until July 2013, when I was laid off.
I cried. I panicked. But it turned out to be a blessing in disguise.
Not because I don’t want to work, or don’t want to work in advertising. I’ve been lucky to have some great freelancing gigs, including getting to work on this spot back at my old stomping grounds.
But it’s given me a chance to pause. I have a tendency to just keep doing whatever it is I am doing, scared to make a change. And being laid off forced me to try something different.
Staying at home with my boys has been a huge adjustment. Though I’d already been a parent for 4 1/2 years, some elements of parenting seemed brand new to me. And I felt like I sucked at most of them.
It’s gotten better. Sometimes I worry that as soon as I feel settled, I’ll go back to work and have to adjust all over again. But I don’t regret the extra time I’ve had with my kids, even though I often want to run screaming from the house. I don’t regret the chance to reevaluate my career, even if eventually I end up right back where I started.
And I especially don’t regret the chance to write this blog regularly. It’s been my sanity and my salvation on my worst days. Plus, it’s reminded me how much I really love to write.
The History of Hot Breakfast
In 2008, as an effort to “get everyone up to speed with all things digital,” the agency I worked for instructed the account management folks to get accounts on Facebook and Twitter and to start a blog.
The year 2008 seems like yesterday, doesn’t it? But it could’ve been the Dark Ages for how different my life is now. I mean, in 2008 I couldn’t just check Facebook under the table if I got bored during a conversation. I didn’t have carpel tunnel in my thumb from constantly refreshing Twitter on my iPhone’s tiny screen. I didn’t have Instagram, or a camera phone for that matter, to document every sandwich I ate.
I also didn’t have kids. Well, it turned out that when I wrote my first post, I was actually at week four of that no-turning-back adventure. I just didn’t know it yet.
So my job made me start this blog. But they didn’t make me keep it up, and over the course of five years, I wrote a grand total of three posts.
Then came the layoffs, and my new endeavor as a stay at home mom.
And so you could say that my job – or, more precisely, no longer having it – really got this blog going.
Is this a cooking blog?
Not really, even though I do like to cook, LOVE to eat and often post recipes. And if I have ever cooked for you, it’s likely been breakfast food.
Then why is it called “Hot Breakfast”?
Let me answer this question with a question. Have you ever heard of a rice sock? A college roommate introduced me to it. It’s basically a poor man’s heating pad. As the name suggests, you take a big sock – tube sock, gym sock, I suppose even a sturdy knee sock would work – and fill it with uncooked rice. Tie it at the top. Put it in the microwave for a couple minutes, and voila – instant soothing for your aches and pains.
One day, probably early 2008, I was laying on the bed, nursing cramps or a sore lower back or what have you with my rice sock. This was pre-kids, so I imagine I was also watching a Law & Order marathon, pausing only to take a nap or get a pedicure or eat cookies without the fear of small children whining for one, or something equally luxurious, without the slightest comprehension of how nice my life was.
In the midst of this, my husband Pat came home, walked into the bedroom and, smelling the heated rice sock, said “Mmm. It smells like hot breakfast in here.”
It did. Like Cream of Wheat or Farina or Malt-O-Meal. And that’s the story. Pat, who isn’t big on terms of endearment, started calling me “Hot Breakfast.” I guess it sounds vaguely complimentary, if you didn’t know from its origins that it basically means “perpetually achy.”
So what DO you write about?
Anything and everything. Writing this blog has taught me a lot about myself, and I try to be transparent, even when it’s embarrassing. You can check out some posts that resonated most with readers here.
I’m finding out that I’m a bundle of contradictions:
- I like to cook and strive to eat healthily (and I haven’t eaten any meat but fish in over 17 years), but I’m a total ice cream and donut junkie. I love coffee and beer.
- I enjoy exercise – mostly running and yoga – but there have been entire years in my recent life during which I’ve barely taken a walk. I’m currently training for my second half-marathon, and loudly complaining about every step of the way.
- I love reading but it’s often crowded out for my love for TV.
- I am obsessed with deals and bargain hunting, but it’s been years since I’ve made a budget.
Also: I am a diehard Marquette University basketball fan. I love music and seeing live shows. I am a completely unskilled but notoriously demonstrative dancer. My sister is my best friend. I think naps are the greatest thing ever invented. I wish I could travel more. I have a phone full of photos I still need to print, and am still trying to figure out my DSLR.
Most of my writing time is now spent on Twitter. My tweets have been featured in “best of” lists by the Huffington Post, Chicago Tribune and Playboy (I should have explained Twitter to my dad before telling him that I was in Playboy), as well as included in these books. You can even find them in greeting card form, thanks to the awesome ladies at Sapling Press.
And even though I complain about them here regularly, I also adore my husband of almost 12 years and my two boys, 7 and 4. They blow my mind and grow my heart every day.