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From insurance office to cooking school, one Lodi woman’s culinary dream comes true

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Posted: Thursday, July 12, 2012 4:21 pm

When I woke up on my birthday, there was a card beside the bed. Inside, I found a card to a week of boot camp at The Culinary Institute of America in St. Helena. My wonderful husband Jonathan bought me this wonderful gift for my birthday. 

It had always been a dream of mine to go to culinary school. I have been an insurance agent for 25 years, but I have always had a passion for cooking.

I have helped many of my friends plan their dinner parties, bridal showers, baby showers, menus, etc. I do all of the cooking. My friends and family always say I am a gourmet cook, but I am not. I went to boot camp at CIA and learned so much. I thought I knew quite a bit, but the knowledge I now have is unbelievable.

The culinary field is just such a wonderful career and very rewarding. I already have two parties I am going to do, with four-course gourmet dinners planned. I am doing this on the side, mostly weekends because my insurance company keeps me so busy during the week. The party I just organized included all appetizers, and everyone loved all of the dishes. My chef Sandy at the CIA said my presentations of my dishes were restaurant quality. I was so happy, and she gave me much more confidence.

I also have a group of girls that come over once a month and we all cook together, which is a lot of fun. They are always wanting me to teach them techniques I have learned.

The CIA was a dream come true for me. I am so blessed and I look forward to improving my culinary skills.

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