Mary Jo Gaush

Have you ever thought about something you’d like to do, but for one reason or another, you didn’t ever do it, yet it kept popping up in your thoughts and wouldn’t leave you alone? Then, one day, the opportunity presented itself?

That happened to me a few years back after I had built my home and established myself in a full-time job. Believe it or not, I had some time on the weekends and wanted to do something different than what I was doing during the week.

One day I went to the Frederick Fair and noticed what they were offering at the food booths. I said to myself, “I can do that.

I spent a good portion of my life trying to improve upon recipes, learning to make a variety of foods for my family and enjoying the results. I felt that I would like to share my passion for making food. I looked into what I needed to do to set up a booth at the Frederick Fair. It seemed doable: submit a request; secure some insurance. And, it happened…there I was, doing what I enjoyed doing, pleasing people and sharing good food.

That wasn’t the end of it, though. One day, for some unknown reason, on the weekend of the Frederick Fair where we had our booths, the doors that were normally open between us and the exhibit area were now closed. Prior to this, people would see us when they were in the exhibit area and would come back and check us out. Now, they coudn’t see us anymore and this severely reduced shopper traffic. I said to myself, “This is not going to work.

After I had packed up my booth, I decided to go get my oil changed at the place in Hagerstown where I bought my vehicle. I was going to make the most of the day. Well, that was the best thing I could have done. As I was waiting for my car to be worked on, I was snacking on some of the goodies I had made for the fair that day. One of the salesmen wandered over and asked me where I got what I was eating. I told him that I had more in my car. He said to bring it in, and from that day on, and for the next two years, I brought the salesmen goodies every weekend. They even asked me to make meals for parties. My daughter-in-law kept telling me I should write a cookbook. But, you see, the demand kept getting bigger, and I still had this full-time job during the week. I had to make a decision: Do I want to continue making food, which I loved? Should I give up the secure future that my full-time job promised?

Well, the secure future won. I still love creating food for people to enjoy. I’m retired now, but can’t shake this thought that I should be doing something about this notion of sharing good food with people. So, the idea that my daughter-in-law put in my head has surfaced again, and who knows what might happen if I keep going in that direction. That’s what I call enjoying life. Where might life lead you, if you tried?

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