I, too, enjoyed your story David. Very sweet.
Growing up, my best friend in high school was and still is 100% Armenian. Her family and their meals. My gosh, I'd get invited to dinner at all costs, such wonderful food.
My inspiration was a quiet time in my grand parents kitchen where as a little very young girl, I'd sit for hours and watch the two of them in the kitchen prepare our family's meal. There was quiet there, grandma afraid to speak I often times thought, as grandpa had a harsh edge and grandma was meek.
Maybe it's associating creating with quiet which in turn I translate as a stress free zone and one where I am instantly calmed down. Almost like therapy too.
My love of knives/kitchenware/cookware/gadgets/stoves/ovens/peppermills/olive oil bottles and a large butlers pantry, they all fascinate me.
The challange of coming up with something totally odd, to me, is a big smile creator too. Example:
Dinner tonight, gorgeous pork chops > but I couldn't leave it there.
got out the jar of homemade pesto from my gardens' basil, the moutarde I brought home from Paris, PD's house seasoning that I now make in batches to divy out to each of the kids too, and "sugar". < just because I felt that with all those other flavors, maybe the chops needed a touch of sweet to counterbalance. They're marrying now and will be grilled on the GF for dinner. The noodles I made for this nights dinner are the same kind of dumb story. No rhyme or reason that I added the ingreds I did to them, but I was experimenting with odd additives [and just tasting them] they are so good and really shouldn't be.
Like others have said, it takes your mind off of a bad day at work, or a stupid boss or coworker that you'd like to smack, like the two I just got done working with
. Maybe it's taking negative energy and applying it to something positive, who knows.