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In the late 60's I attended the Culinary Institute of America. When I was in my second year I knew that a career as a professional Chef wasn't for me. My love for cooking and baking was still in me, but I didn't think that I wanted to stand in a kitchen cooking everyday. During the early years after school I opened a restaurant and a bakery The bakery was very special to be. Each cake I made was designed especially for the client, but unfortunately the greater clientèle wasn't ready to pay premium prices for an exquisite cake. It was the mid 70's and after the bakery closed I began working for Chicago's top social caterer. Within a few years I became Vice President of the firm. I love writing menus and creating new dishes, especially when I can serve large numbers of guests a dish that will taste as though it was made only for 6!. In 1993 I moved to Arizona and decided to go to college. After seven years I earned a Master's of Fine Art Degree in Fiber at Arizona State University. Now I am back in Illinois. I still love to cook, create and decorate tables, and buffets. The days before, during and after a planned dinner party are the best times. I create new food for a menu, cook, decorate, make new tablecloths and even listen to the music I want to play. My favorite things to cook I have always been in love with pastries, cakes, cookies and wonderful desserts. I wish the tortes or pastries could be calorie-free, but still I love making a whole torte just for the three of us. My heritage is Scottish, German and Italian. My German grandmother handed down incredible recipes. Her daughter, my aunt continued passing on her recipes and then there is my mother. She understood when I was 8 or 9 that I had an interest in baking and cooking. Rather than ignoring this she said, after I ruined a cake, that if I wanted to learn she would teach me how to cook and bake! Those Saturday's were special. Their recipes are like a photo album and prompt memories of smells, tastes,techniques and family! In my own personal relationship I found a whole new world in Jewish cooking. Now I love nothing more than to prepare the dishes at Passover, or make Hamentachen, Imberlach, or roast a tender Brisket.