Cooking Advice Needed by Pattie Martin

Most people I know dread the start of the work week. Not me. While I love the weekend and the time I get to spend with my family, by Sunday evening I'm ready to get back into a routine.

There is, however, one thing I don't like about Mondays and that's the thought that I have to come up with dinners for the week ahead.

We often head to a restaurant on Saturday, so that means on Monday I'm faced with having to make meals the family will eat for at least the next five nights.

I'm terrible in the kitchen and I've just never enjoyed cooking. I don't know why that is. Maybe I don't have enough patience. When I open a cookbook and see a long list of ingredients in one recipe, I skip right past it. I just don't want to chop and mix for half an hour to make a meal. I guess that's why spaghetti and meatloaf end up on our table so often.

The funny thing is that I love to watch those cooking shows. "Barefoot Contessa" is my favorite. I always think that if I only had a gourmet kitchen, the high priced utensils and unlimited funds to buy fancy food like those folks on t-v, I'd like to cook...but I doubt it.

I think being a good cook is a gift. Someone who's good in the kitchen can taste something they're making and know right away what it needs..more salt, more sugar...a few more tomatoes. I just can't do that.

At first I was insulted when my husband started seasoning the food before he even tasted it, but now I know why he does it and I don't blame him. I've always said, if I won the lottery I wouldn't buy a big house or fancy car..I'd hire a personal chef.

Now I'm looking for any advice on how to make cooking more enjoyable. Do you have a cookbook that you think could help? If so, let me know what it is. Do you think a cooking class is the way to go? Any advice would be appreciated...just ask my husband and son!