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Growing up and making mistakes

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I don’t have all the answers.

And I used to think this was a bad thing.

But I’m learning that it’s okay to not have the answers all the time. I have to remind the perfectionist in me that it is perfectly normal to feel uncertain and apprehensive about the future, and it is certainly okay to admit you’re unsure about something.

It doesn’t make you any less of a person, no matter what society may tell you.

katie job

(Smile; it makes people think you’re up to something!)

I meant to publish this right after the post on my big decision.

Then I got distracted by other posts I wanted to publish. (I blame the chocolate!) So this is a little late; but the subject matter is perpetually relevant, and therefore I wanted to go ahead and post it anyway.

When I grow up…

What do you want to be when you grow up?

Children so easily answer this question. “Oh, I will be a doctor, a lawyer, a teacher.” There’s no wrong answer when you’re a kid. Even if you say you want to be a dinosaur, people will just laugh and think it’s cute.

Not so cute when you’re 24.

When I started college, I had no clue what I wanted to “be” in terms of a job. My parents and teachers assured me this was perfectly normal; I’d figure it out. But junior year loomed and still: no clue. I was raking up quite a few Spanish and English Lit courses… maybe I could be an editor? Or a teacher? The only problem was, as much as I excelled in these classes, my heart wasn’t in it.

(I wrote more about my college experience here: My college story.)

I had no passion! I’d look at people who loved their jobs and wonder (in despair!) if it was just not in the cards for me. “Am I destined to spend my life doing something I don’t enjoy? What’s wrong with me that I have no interests?!”

Then came the blog.

I initially started blogging, when I went off to college in Philadelphia (Bryn Mawr), to keep in touch with my friends back in Texas. (Anyone remember when MySpace and Xanga were big?) Then I discovered the food-blog community, and I finally found my passion!

my blogs f

Writing, recipe testing, and even my photography

The point of sharing my story is to reassure those of you who feel like I did that it really is okay to have no idea what your future holds. Things have a way of working out. That’s not to say I believe in fate, and I definitely don’t think a person should sit back and just let things unfold. Be proactive; get out there and immerse yourself in life! Try new things, do activities that scare you, step outside your comfort zone.

Don’t be afraid to make a mistake.

Mistakes are the best way to learn. As Thomas Edison said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10000 ways that won’t work.”

Sometimes something you think was a mistake or bad luck will turn out to be a good thing, years later. You never know at the time, because people can’t predict the future. (I don’t care what those fortune tellers say.)

Sure, it’s good to be prepared. But you don’t want to worry so much about planning for the future that you forget to enjoy the present!

Question of the Day:

Did you always know what you wanted to “be” when you grew up?

Or did it take some time to figure it out? Maybe you’re still trying to figure it out? If you are still searching, try to remember that life is not so much about who you will be in the future as it is about who you are “being” right now.

Katie is the baker, photographer, and author of the popular blog Chocolate-Covered Katie. Her favorite food is chocolate, and she believes in eating a balanced diet that includes dessert every single day. More about Katie—> 

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  1. Meredith Bessey says:

    I went through many possible career choices while I was growing up; maybe I wanted to be a teacher, an architect, a brain surgeon? Then I got to university and discovered psychology, and thought I’d discovered my passion. Now I’m getting more and more into nutrition and yoga, and am contemplating whether I should pursue a graduate degree in nutrition and teach yoga, or continue on the path I’m already on and pursue clinical psychology training. So many questions! Hence the reason I’ve decided to take a year off after my undergrad to think all these things through!

  2. In third grade, I wrote a little “paper” saying that I want to be a teacher. Between then and now.. I went through a gazillion other things that I wanted to be. But – I am now a teacher. I guess that the 8 year old Caitlin knew what she was talkin’ about!

  3. Kate says:

    I think its crazy to expect to know what you want to do with your life at 18. I was lucky to have an idea but as ive gone through college my passions have evolved! Im so excited to see you following your dreams.

    1. Emma says:

      Ahhhhgreed! There’s a world of opportunities out there. I find that school, for so many of us, just gets in the way… at least that was what it was like for me. I was a creative kid, and am still a creative grown-up-kid 😉
      There’s so much for people to figure out nowadays- so many options. 18 isn’t enough time with everything else going on for those first years of life!

  4. Since I was 4, I wanted to be a doctor. Wanted. But after my 2+6+6=14 years of education, I’m not sure I want to do it anymore. I have to face the truth that I HATE studying and I’m not exactly an academic- oriented person. After 14 years of ‘knowing’ what I wanted to be when I grow up, right before the year I need to choose my career path, suddenly not knowing the direction of my life… feels so… wrong! Maybe I should ‘not be afraid to make a mistake’, and follow my real dreams, like you did. I guess the only thing to know that something is a mistake is to make the mistake. :-)

  5. Erin says:

    i can honestly say that i have no idea what/who i want to be. i’ve gone from wanting to be a baker to a vet, to a psycologist to a journalist. all i know is that writing is my passion and one day i will have a published novel. i’m also so interested in holistic medicine (natural remedies without drugs and stuff) but it’s a job with no benefits that insurance won’t cover. =(
    and katie, have you ever considered writing a cook book? chocolate covered vegan? i feel like with your amazing recipes and quirky personality it would be a huge hit =)!

    1. I am working on a cookbook! It’s in the very early stages though… but there will be one someday!!! :)

      1. Michaela says:

        wohoo!! Katie, I can´t WAIT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! best news ever!! You should see all the scribbled pages that I got in my cookbook with handwritten recipes… Yours are overflowing!! I take some time once in a while to write them down nicely, but I always add more and sometimes it´s hard to keep up. Good luck! I honestly cannot wait!

      2. Erin says:

        ahh i’m so excited! You better come to long island and have a book signing (preferably some chocolate should be provided at the signing 😉 )

      3. ashley says:

        Is it available yet? I just noticed the date was 17 AUG 2011 (a year ago) when you said you’re finishing up.

      4. No lol the process can actually take years. But it IS getting there, and I will update when it’s available!

  6. Rachel says:

    I’ve known since I was a little kid exactly what I wanted to be. Now I’m about to get my PhD in it, but I feel a little weird that I let a little child dictate my life’s direction! I like it, but I am totally unsure that there isn’t something out there I’d love more.

  7. Rachel W says:

    thank you katie, that was very inspirational. I am almost 23 and still not sure what I want to do in life yet, and have been stressing about it lately. So, this post came at a perfect time! Thanks for the reassurance that it is going to be ok and that everything always DOES work out somehow, we just have to stay positive :)

  8. Nichole says:

    I love this post. When I was little, I wanted to be a veterinarian, but this dream kind of faded in high school. The problem is, i have so many interests/things i enjoy doing, i can’t pick just one. Right now my life seems very uncertain, as i’m going into senior year of college as a biochem major, but wanting to go to grad school for physics..and having no clue what kind of career i could get with either of these degrees. The big problem is, most people who like physics go on to be engineers, but there are a million different kinds of engineering..and i can’t just pick one. i have big problems with decisions…but i’m sure it’ll work out in the end.

  9. When I grow up, I want to be YOU :)

    Haha I wanted to be a pop star when I was a kid! Somehow with my tone-deaf singing, I don’t think that one will pan out! 😛 But whatever I end up doing, I want to be as PASSIONATE about it as you are!!! <3

  10. Brittany says:

    I’m so glad you posted this, I finally feel like I’m not the only one! Most of my friends had an idea of what they wanted to do since they were little and I always thought what is wrong with me? I’m a sophomore in college and I STILL don’t know. I’m trying business but my passion is really health and fitness but I always figured I would never make enough money. I still don’t know what I want to do, but thanks for posting this :)

  11. Katie Westbrook says:

    I completely relate to this! I wanted to be a marine scientist for 10 years, but when college actually came around turns out my combined passions of natural sciences and being hands on goes great with physical therapy, something I never considered before! It’s so inspirational that you have such an inspirational success story.
    And you really have a talent for it, I always get a chuckle from your jokes haha.
    P.S. When people ask me what I want to be when I grow up I STILL say mermaid 😉

    1. That’s a good one! I so wish I had thought of that to tell people when they ALWAYS asked when I was in high school!

      1. Katie Westbrook says:

        Haha I got it from my mom, she told people she was either going to be a mermaid or a princess. She says her job now is temporary…

  12. Vanessa N says:

    I started college with no idea what I wanted to do. I took a number of sociology classes and loved them so I got my Bachelor’s in sociology. In case you weren’t aware, there are not many jobs for someone with a sociology degree. Last year, I enrolled in a graduate program for school counseling (this is all while working full-time as a paralegal). Didn’t really like that either. Now I’m 27 and still have no idea what I want to do! I’m still working as a paralegal and would like to look into nutrition and/or personal training. The problem is, the older you get, the more bills you have – so starting in a new field (entry-level) and/or taking on more student loans is much scarier. I’m sure I’ll figure out eventually :) And although I don’t love my job, I make sure to enjoy all of my free time!

  13. Jenny says:

    I wanted to be a veterinarian when I was little… A pretty realistic dream for a child, huh? I wanted to save all of the animals in the world, heh heh. I have my mom’s love of animals to thank for my own love of animals! But now, I’m in university and struggling with what I want to be, too. I love science. But I’m a business student. Bluh?! When someone talks to me about business, it’s like my interest and passion fizzes out and dies like a put-out firecracker, hah. Science? Ohgosh, I could ramble on forever about the latest scientific developments, especially in the naturopathic field or the traditional medical one.

    I’ve got perfectionistic tendencies, too, so it took a while to realise what you have pointed out about failures in this post: they’re not really failures, but ways you didn’t succeed.

    Thanks for this post! Well-written and really gets you thinking. I love your usual upbeat recipe posts and stories, of course, but these sorts of post are fantastic, too, in that you really have a way with words — well, written ones in this case but spoken, as well, I’m sure. :)

    [P.S. – Careful when blurring out photos in Photoshop to put subjects [food] in focus! I’ve done it to compensate for the fact that I’m not using a (D)SLR, but you have to keep stuff that’s in the same *field* as the subject in focus as well, like the front part of that blue ribbon in the second photo here. 😉 Don’t know if I’m making sense… and not trying to be critical! Hopefully this sounds like constructive criticism and not blaming or anything…]

    1. Thanks, Jenny! That’s actually an old photo from a few months ago… nowadays I try to blur more with my camera as opposed to photoshop. But I never knew just how far you’re supposed to take it before you stop. I always appreciate constructive criticism; if you ever have more, please feel free to leave it. I really do want to learn, but I don’t have time to take a class right now. So any help is always welcome ;).

  14. You’ve given me such a boost of confidence lately with ideas about the future. People ask me a lot what I’m going to do next year after school, and I’m fine right now saying I’m not sure because I’m pushing myself in the direction of my passions now instead of what I think I “should” do to fit into a mold of society. One of my favorite quotes is, “Somewhere along the line we seemed to have confused comfort with happiness.”- Dean Karnazeas. I love that– it reminds me to push myself out of my comfort zone and take risks because that can ultimately lead to a fulfilled and happy life!

  15. Right now I am 24 and working a 9-5 desk job in the field in which I got my degree in: finance. I basically did what was expected of me…go to college and get a job in whatever I was studying. But, this is not for me and I feel a bit stuck and unsure of what exactly is for me. I make good money doing what I do so going back to school for something else would be costly for me and my husband and a HUGE risk. My goal in the next five years is to find out what my passion is and then take that RISK. Without risk there is no reward… but, I just need to find that “passion” first!

    Congrats on finding your passion!

  16. When I was growing up, I always wanted to be a teacher – ever since I was about 5 that’s what I’d say. I did my degree in education studies – still on track – but then in my second year of university I had my daughter. I still completed my 3 years at uni to get my degree, but career plans were put on hold.

    I’ve since had my son as well – daughter is 5 and he is 1.5. Now when people ask me what I want to be, I just don’t know. I love being a Mum and helping my children grow, but once they’re both at school? Lots of my friends have become teachers whilst I’ve been having children, and it’s kind of put me off the profession! I still believe the good sides of the job, but there are so many things my friends complain about, plus there are hardly any teaching jobs near where I live.

    So this very long ramble is to say that I used to be certain about what I wanted to be, but now, except for being a mum, I have no idea! Toby still has 1.5 years until he starts part-time pre-school, and 3 years til full-time school, so hopefully I still have a while to figure something out!

    I’m so happy you found your passions in food and photography, I love reading your blog and getting lots of yummy ideas! 😀

    1. My mom didn’t find her life’s calling until after my sister and I were both in high school and she went back to teach special ed! :)

  17. Jen says:

    I have a few possibilities in mind, but overall, I’m still trying to figure myself out. I have an incredible fiance and an amazingly supportive family, so I know that I’ll always have help and encouragement along the way. My mom compares life to a river. She tells me it can veer off into a lot of different directions, and sometimes you don’t know where you’re going to end up. Go with the flow! I agree with you on the idea that life seems to work itself out over time. Mine always has.

  18. I’m glad you found something you love!! I’m 23 and in grad school and I’m still not sure what I want to do. But I am passionate about blogging!! I thought I wanted to leave my PhD program, but I know I’ll be disappointed in myself if I start and don’t finish, so I’m going to persevere and try to finish as soon as I can. Then, who knows?? Don’t worry, you’re not the only one!

    1. Genevieve says:

      reading through these comments, yours sounded very familiar! I have gone through the same doubts about my PhD program, as I am still not sure what I want to do with it. But I’ve also decided to stay with it and see what happens…meanwhile, I am becoming more passionate about the blogging world too!

      1. Completely off-topic… but I can’t leave a comment on your site b/c I don’t have a google or wp account. Hopefully you’ll see it here!

        On your latest post: Oh my goodness, thank you so much! I saw your beautiful photo on findingvegan and it just brightened my day so much!!
        Your blog is adorable! :) :)

      2. Genevieve says:

        Thanks, I’m so happy to hear that from you – you’ve just brightened my day now too!

        And thanks for pointing out the issue with my comments options – I’ve changed it now!

  19. Moni'sMeals says:

    I feel most people don’t quite know what they want to do or say are actually doing it. It takes soul searching for sure! I am super lucky in the fact that I love my job and I am my own boss. It took years to get to that place though. I also love cooking and baking and I know I am building something out of that too.
    The best way to look at life for me is, I would rather TRY and Fail then play it safe my whole life… (like many people do, that I know at least). :)
    Here is to going for it! Go CCK. :)

  20. VegAlexandra says:

    Wow, Katie, what a great time to post this! The school year starts in a minor five days, and I was just stressing about how much stress it will be to pull straight A’s again, since I have even more challenging classes.
    But, you rescued me!
    The thing is, I have a strong desire to become a veterinarian, and I know that requires a ton of work. So I feel like one poor grade will send my dreams down the drain!
    But I haven’t been thinking about the present whatsoever; I swear my brain is stuck in a time warp to the future and won’t return no matter the situation.
    But…. I think this post is pushing it back to today, August 17, 2011.
    THANK YOU! 😀

    1. Aww yay lol… and good luck!!! Definitely, passion trumps hard work. And it sounds like you have the passion!

  21. PBnJ Fam says:

    I just told someone yesterday… I don’t know what I want to be when I “grow-up”… and they gave me a weird look (I am almost 30 and have a 3 year old)… I did the college thing, got 2 degrees, worked really hard in my career and then decided I wanted to be a mom. Your words of wisdom are resonating in my mind right now “life is about being who you are right now…” I love it! It couldn’t have hit home more… I am a MOM, and a WIFE… that is who I am! SO many people define themselves by their career… I decided I am not going to that! What I decide to do for work from here on out is just that… work… There are a few who get to do what they love for work, and I applaud them – because that is a part of who they are! But from now on… I don’t want to worry about what I am going to be when I “grow up” because I already am something!!

  22. I always said I wanted to be a teacher when I was younger! I started college as an English major, but switched to English education my second semester. Now, I teach 10th & 11th graders!

  23. Anna Crouch says:

    I totally remember xanga!!!! I had one too….man. Those were the days :)

    When I was young I always wanted to be a veteranarian. Then I wanted to be a writer. Then an administrative assistant (EWW, what was I thinking? Worked the job for a few years and hated it). But ever since my junior year of High School, I wanted to be a Nutritionist or a Registered Dietitian. That was 6 years ago and I STILL want to pursue nutrition. Thus, I’m headed back to school this fall to earn my BA in Nutrition Science! I think I want to major in Dietetics, but also maybe minor in Sports Nutrition.

  24. Oh MySpace…I remember having a MySpace-Deleting party when Facebook came around!

    When I went to college, I wanted to be a lawyer. Then I wanted to do non-profits. Then I wanted to move overseas. Now at 23, I have NO idea what I’ll “do”…but I know I’m the happiest I’ve ever been!

  25. Amanda says:

    When I was a kid, I wanted to be a teacher, chemist, or artist. As I got older and progressed though junior and senior high school, the choices narrowed down to teacher, because I was good with kids, or scientist, because I loved science class.
    When we covered the Immune System in grade 11 biology, I excelled at it and thought it would be cool to study it in university. However, up until my junior year in university I was still occasionally debating being a teacher instead. I decided that I could pursue a career in science and work with kids on the side (as a Girl Guide leader volunteer), while it would be hard to be a teacher and do science experiments on the side.
    I’m still loving being a scientist, and after three years of working as one and a year of grad school, I’m still so happy it’s the path I have chosen. And yes… I still study the immune system! I work on T cells, which are the “serial killers” that target and eliminate infected cells!

  26. Yes and no…I studied English Lit and I knew I always wanted to do something in that area but that I didn’t want to teach high school. I went to graduate school to do a Masters Degree thinking that I’d go on to do a PHD but then I decided to be a librarian. And I love it! :)

  27. Gosh figuring out what you want to do when you grow up is such a challenge! I’m 24 and finally figuring out what I want to do… Now it’s just getting there :)

  28. I got my undergrad degree in Biochemistry (after changing my major 4 times), then somehow learned about dietetics… it took awhile, but I eventually found my path, and I think being a dietitian is the perfect job for me.

  29. Leah says:

    I’m still a kid, and I tell people, “when I grow up, I want to be taller,” or, “when I grow up, I want to be an adult.” But really, I should say “if,” because I don’t really mind parents worrying about bills or driving me everywhere, and they don’t mind as long as I’m polite when I tell them we ran out of chocolate in record time and need more.

  30. Becky says:

    Wow, just read my life story, complete with Spanish and English Lit stuff. It’s NOT cute to have no career choice made when you’re 24, that’s why I’ve finally decided life will be a lot easier if I become what my 6-year-old self wanted to be when she grew up: a mommy cat.

  31. Cassandra says:

    Katie, your openness, honesty and awesome recipes are so inspiring! I’m even working on creating a college vegan blog of my own. :) Thanks so much for leading the way!

  32. Jennifer says:

    Oh did I need this today! I’m in the midst of writing my dissertation proposal and have been rather discouraged by the whole thing these past few days. I love the research part of things but having to tell other people what I am doing (or going to do) is really, really annoying and incredibly difficult.

    Anyway, I certainly did not say at 5 years old that I was going to be a college professor, but by the time I was in college, I knew that I wanted to study theology and there is not terribly much you can do with that! And, the weird little bit of medieval English history that I study…..believe me no one saw that coming! I started grad school five years ago having never even heard of the group that I am writing a dissertation about.

  33. I’m totally still searching and I’m 25. I taught high school for 2 years, now I’m changing gears and pursuing a career in photography!

  34. Melissa says:

    Don’t you worry Katie–I’m 31 and still figuring it out. And you know what? That’s ok!

    When I was a little girl, I used to say that I wanted to be a hair stylist so I could get my money right away. 😉 That, or Connie Chung. Yes, I wanted to be Connie Chung. Not a news anchor, but the actual person. Oh dear . . .

  35. Jennyb says:

    This post strikes such a chord with me right now, having had a stressful day trying to sort out college stuff.
    Between the ages of 13 & about 16 my dream was to be in musical theatre, but my more realistic thought was to be an interpreter, my top grades were in languages (German, French & English followed by English Lit & Latin) but i soon discovered that my confidence let me down, however there was always the back up of being a translator – so doing it on paper instead.

    But from age 17 after years of ill health i developed an interest in first aid & decided i wanted to be a Paramedic. Fast fowards 8 years & due to more ill health my plans have been delayed, the bigger problem with that is the entry route into this career has now changed & about 95% is via Uni. For which i’d need to go to college first. Question is do i give on that dream that just seems to keep getting further away?

    But as you say Katie we should focus on the present too & whats happening now. I need to keep reminding myself how far i’ve come to get to where i am now & try not to stress too much.

    Wow that was a little intense – sorry. i think i better go make a hot chocolate.

  36. Jeffie says:

    When I was little I wanted to be a veterinarian/artist/chef. Later on down the road I had to learn the hard way of what I really wanted. I realized math was not my forte and how much I loved science & art. Which wasn’t so bad because that’s what growing up is all about! I found that you can combine the things you love with your studies. That’s why I’ve been studying nutrition/culinary and freelance in photography & painting. The key is find out whatever makes you happy and stick with it.

  37. Heather says:

    I am still figuring out who I want to be when I grow up!

    My first degree was in Environmental Sciences and now I am planning to go back for a Master’s in Counselling Psychology because I have realized that my passion is working with people!

  38. Nikki says:

    I am so proud of you for not giving up until you found your passion! I always knew I wanted to be a teacher, but it wasn’t until high school that my passion for students and children with special needs began. I am now working for a degree in special education and cannot wait to begin working in the field!

  39. Hannah S-Q says:

    This is lovely. Congrats on your Big Decision, by the way. I’m happy for you. Regardless of what happens you’re living life according to how you want it and with courage, which is really what life SHOULD be about.

    One thing I’ve noted in general is that people tend to not appreciate the lovely people they ARE and want to define themselves by a career or other status marker. So I love that you didn’t fall into that trap and used your love of food and blogging to propel you forward!

    I’m 32 and my thoughts about life/career/direction are ever-changing. Currently, my main focus is to keep my 5-year-old daughter healthy. She has epilepsy and has been seizure free for over a year and a half now, and we’re trying to get to the point (very slowly) of having her off of seizure medications. We’re pursuing an integrated health approach, avoiding dietary allergens and sugar, and using brain boosting supplements in order to get her as healthy as possible.

    It’s a very scary thing and I feel like my entire heart and soul are directed toward this but sometimes I really miss being interested in art or music or something else, but when I think about it, I feel that this is ALL I care about right now and I need to let go of control of trying to do MORE when I know my heart wouldn’t be in it. Someday, I think I’ll be interested in other things again.

    Enjoy the blogging and life.


    1. Oh wow, my thoughts and prayers are with you! My best friend in elementary school had epilepsy, and it was so scary for her… but she is a thriving, beautiful woman now! :)

  40. Yes! My parents instilled in me at an early age that I needed to have a goal to work towards…and it needs to make lots of money. It probably wasn’t the best parenting strategy, but the pressure to do well has put me in the top 10% of my class more than a few times.
    I think you could definitely make this blog work for ya. It’s amazing!

  41. kate says:

    nice post katie! (hi! long time reader, first time commenter..)
    i think it’s perfectly natural to be confused at our age (i’m 24 as well) and i’m glad that you’re sticking to your passion. i think life is all about mistake – it’s how we learn. i totally love that quote by the way, just made it my facebook status, haha. keep up the excellent work! i love your single serving recipes, they are awesome.

    1. Aww thanks Kate! Great name, btw :).

  42. I was absolutely, positively sure that I would go to law school and practice family law. This was more of what I expected, but not what I “desired”. I was totally inspired by the blogging community and decided to change my major from law to writing. I have started a blog (it’s slowly but surely coming along) and will write for a style magazine for my college this fall. I hope to one day work for a fashion or health magazine or maybe a publishing company.
    This is one of my favorite posts Katie! You are the best!!

  43. Katie says:

    I wanted to be a teacher from the age of three Then I wanted to be a mom. Then I was both. :-)

  44. I love the quote “The faster the fail, the quicker you will be to succeed!”

  45. Kerryne says:

    I am grown up… and I still don’t know what I want to be. I have been a mom for 11 years, and at 32 finally have the opportunity to go to school and find a career… only problem is I have no clue what the heck I want to do. :)

  46. I’m a blogger and a small-business owner, I’m 31, and I still don’t know what I want to be, but I know who I want to be. And that’s a person that isn’t confined to one thing or another. So, I have officially unofficially decided to stay in the state of entrepreneur. My heart isn’t passionate about one thing, it’s passionate and roomy enough for many, many things. Now, I don’t have to decide or stay committed to any one thing for life. Win-win! :)

  47. Gen says:

    Great post Katie!!!!! For the longest time I had no idea what I wanted to be….now, I at least know what my passions are, which is partly thanks to the blog world as well. I had no idea how much blogging would impact my life!

  48. Since I was little,I have a passion for languages. Many people say I was made for a job that has to do with foreign languages; my dad still wants me to go to university after graduating next summer (in Germany,there is no such thing as a college. Either you do an apprenticeship or you go to university).
    However,when I was little,I thought working with languages would be a great idea… I informed myself about almost EVERY job of that kind and couldn’t find a single one that would make me happy. But in the meanwhile,I had learned a lot about myself as well and knew what truly makes me happy: Helping others. Helping animals,helping old people,helping children,helping ANYWHO. When I have the feeling I am helping; when I can make others feel better,that’s what truly makes me happy as well. Therefore,it’s my aim to start an apprenticeship as a nurse after graduating and I hope I will really be able to realise that. :)

  49. We all have plans and they NEVER end up folding out exactly like we had ever planned, but they always end up the perfect fit for us in the end. :)

  50. Leigh says:

    Hi Katie,
    I always, always, always wanted to be a wife and a mom. I never really gave much thought to the “career” side of things. I just wanted to create what I had longed for as a child and never had. So, somehow, on a wonderfully miraculous day, I met my sweet hubby and now, 25 yrs later, we have five children! When we dated we talked (jokingly) about having a dozen kids….so, we’re a bit behind on that one!! I also wanted to be happy. Just happy. To have fun and to enjoy my family and my life. We also talked about growing our family through adoption way back when we were dating and we now have a sweet new addition to our family (through adoption) that brings us all so much joy and laughter. It’s funny how those kid sized dreams can and often do, come true!

    As for a “career” where I made money, I didn’t actually start thinking about that until the last 7 yrs or so and both Scott and I are working on creating the “financial” life we’ve always wanted on a conscious level (rather than just doing what we’ve always done because we’re good at it, even though it isn’t satisfying). So, this is fun too and I think we’re right about where you’re at, only much older! It’s okay though, cuz’ it’s not a race!

    Enjoy the journey and follow your heart…I feel certain it knows the way!

  51. Jae says:

    I wanted to be a doctor or a dentist, badly.
    But, over the years I’ve learned the hard way that while I love Biology and Mathematics, they dont love me back.
    I’m going off to college in 8 days (!!!) in Boston,
    and I’ve had to change my major to not biology but to nursing as there is no calculus involved.
    I’m rather saddened about it, but I know that once I become a Nurse Practitioner I wont EVER regret my decision :) And who knows? Maybe I’ll end up being both? 😀

  52. Amber K says:

    I’m 28 and I still have no idea. It’s frustrating to have a lack of direction. Especially since I just can’t figure out what sort of career I’d want. Nothing has come along that makes me feel a sense of passion. Nothing has given me that “aha!” moment.

    I think it’s amazing that you were able to find the food blogging community! I just wish I could find something that wouldn’t feel like I was just in it for the money and because I need something to do.

  53. Fran M says:

    I am probably one of your oldest posters here….. I have done so many things, joined the navy,
    ran a day care center, worked for a steel company, work in the sweets industry now.
    I am a work in progress and look forward to seeing what is around the next corner for me.

    Lovely post, young lady, lovely post.

    1. Wow, that is awesome! See, you will one day be able to look back on your life and say, “I experienced the heck out of life!”

  54. Noora says:

    I always said I was going to be a bunny, since I liked munching on lettuce. But I have to say that my friend’s answer beats mine – she said she was going to be the hose of a fire truck.

  55. Katie, take a deep breath and go with it! I never did what my college degree was intended for…speech and theatre…who majors in THAT and expects to get a job?!? Well, though I never actually worked in theatre, I used what I learned 4 nights a week for 15 years as a Weight Watchers leader. A new performance every night and I didn’t even have to stick to a script. Everything I learned in college helped me. I had to give up on my WW classes due to my “real job.” It made me sad, but now I don’t have that job anymore and I’m hoping to get back to working for WW when my husband and I move to New Mexico. I’m more than twice your age and I’m still trying to figure out what I want to be when I grow up. Blogging has shown me that my original love, wrtiting, is where my passion lies.Best of luck to you. I love your posts and your recipes. Glad to know you’ll still be right here. Besides…who doesn’t love chocolate?!?!

  56. Amy says:


    Thank you so much for writing this post. I’m a sophomore in college and you described EXACTLY how I feel–I’m good at different things but I don’t have a passion for them. I still have no idea what I want to do in my life but I truly thank you for reminding me that it’s totally ok not to know. Thank you for posting this, I really appreciate it.

    (PS–I made your cookie pie with chickpeas, and everyone LOVED it. They had no idea it was made without flour!)

    Thank you, Katie.

    1. Aw yay! That makes me so happy!!

  57. Aja says:

    I’m glad I’ve known what I want to do since I was like 6. I feel bad for all of my friends starting to apply for college and even heading off to college now knowing what they want to do.

    Love the post.

  58. Susan says:

    I will be 50 in two months and I STILL don’t know what I will be when I grow up. In the meantime, I’m still raising 4 of my 6 kids and take in a stray now and then. I also climb and run and do other things. Being single puts on a little pressure in this department, but I think the key is to keep moving forward in one way or another. =) Love your blog!

  59. true story. when I was little, I went around telling everyone I wanted to be a baby cow when I grew up.

    clearly, I changed my mind.

    …or did I?

  60. I have always been really interested in the medical community since I was little. I always remember saying that I wanted to be a pediatrician. Now I am approaching my final semester in nursing school. I am so nervous about getting a job that I actually enjoy because new grads obviously have to work their way into the profession. I just don’t want to hate my job from the get go!

  61. Robin says:

    Thank you ever so much for this post. You’re such an inspiration! People are forever telling me that I cannot go into art school, because I won’t be able to get a proper job, and a million more reasons like that. They just do not seem to understand, that art school is what I want. I would much prefer being a poor starving (well, no not starving, life without chocolate would be horrid) artist, than a rich unhappy lawyer.

    1. We are in the same boat! I am not making millions here, and I definitely won’t make millions as a cookbook author. But oh my gosh, I can’t imagine being a rich and unhappy office-worker!

  62. Katharina says:

    This post is awesome! What I wanted to be when I grew up was different from when I was a child… and now I’m grown up. But my dreams were always to do something in a creative field. So that part hasn’t changed :)

    I’ve been taking more risks and usually I’m afraid I will fail.. so I wouldn’t take many risks. But you know what? I keep going. Just because someone fails doesn’t mean that there aren’t other wonderful opportunities out there!


  63. Genevieve says:

    thank you for this post…it describes exactly how I have felt my whole life too! I have never known what I want to be, and I was always jealous of people who did know what they wanted to do and went to school specifically to become something. So I just continued my schooling to prevent having to find a “real” job, and I am now working on my PhD…but I still feel like I haven’t found my passion yet…Anyway, it is hearing stories like yours that encourages me that I will eventually find it!

  64. Lilly says:

    Oh man, I love your story! Thanks so much for being you, you are awesome!!! I’m 21 and still have yet to find what I want to “do”, I am still in school and have no clue what job I would want to go into after. Although it is super scary, I have faith that it will work out as well as motivation and drive. I hope I find something that brings me such joy as you found with blogging, with each post I can tell that you found your perfect fit and I am SO glad you did! 😉

  65. Marianne says:

    When I was in high school, I always thought it would be cool to be a chef. But I also loved science, and figured it was more practical to follow that path instead of the chef path. So I went and got a degree in biology, and worked in fisheries. But I still had that passion for food and cooking. And eventually it dawned on me one day that I could combine my interests and skills into a career as a dietitian. The perfect marriage of food and science if you ask me. So here I am, back at school, getting close to finally finding my “perfect” career. You are never too old to make that change when you finally find what it is you love. You might think you are, but who cares if it means you only have 20, 10, or even 5 working years left. Why not spend them in the job of your dreams?

  66. Pureglow*16 says:

    love this post!! i constantly have conflicting ideas on what i am going to to do!

  67. I didn’t really figure out what I wanted to do until a year after I graduated. I luckily had gotten a major (English) related to what I wanted to do (write), but that was mostly chosen because I was great at writing and loved debating/messing with words. Luckily I was able to put two and two together (actually, with a lot of help from my love for my blog!) and wind up here, as an assistant writer/editor. I found the job in the nick of time, after spending a lot of time really unhappy in a career in education. Makes me cringe to think about what I put myself through in the name of “making ends meet!”

    I think that whenever you feel a passion to pursue something, you owe it to yourself to do it – whenever that may be! And heck, if that means trying to become a dinosaur at 24 years old…girl grit those teeth and crawl around on all fours if it makes ya happy!

    1. I think this is the funniest comment ever. Oh, and now I want to be a panda bear. I will tell people that my blogging friend Faith said I can ;).

      1. Faith says:

        Well see if you’re doing the panda bear route you’ll have to sit in trees and gnaw on bamboo. I’m not sure if I want to be responsible for that one… 😉

      2. Pandas are so lazy! All they do is eat, sleep, and reproduce lol! Plus, they are adorable and cuddly :). See? Everyone should want to be a panda!

        (The bamboo thing might present a problem. I wonder if there’s such a thing as chocolate-covered bamboo…)

  68. Allie says:

    I wanted to be a witch, a princess witch to be exact, I think i may have gotten made fun of for it, but that never stopped me!

  69. I LOVE YOU I LOVE YOU this is EXACTLY what I needed today. I am breaking up with my summer boyfriend, and leaving for school in a week. I love you oooodles.

  70. I have SOOOO many interests that it’s terribly difficult to choose just one–or perhaps, despite my super crazy busy life, I can still pursue everything! Either way, like you, I’ve discovered I really enjoy blogging, too, and I’m wondering how that fits into my future, whether it just stays a past-time or it evolves into something more! :)

  71. Like most kids, my career choices changed every 6 months or so. However, when I was graduating high school I knew I wanted to go into sports med. My parents said no way and wanted me to be an engineer. I did what they wanted and hrmm what do you know, I hated it. I had no passion for it either. Four majors later, I’m taking classes for sports med and finally back where I wanted to be in the first place. 😀 Lots of good luck and well wishes to you Katie! I’m sure you’ve made the right decision for you.

  72. What a great post, Katie. I love the deeper side posts. Recipes are lovely (and yours always are!) but it’s the human-side and more soul baring posts that are the best!

    As for what I want to do when I grow up? Still trying to figure that out. My very next post, it’s in my drafts, is going to talk about Projects. And doing things. We’re always on the same wavelength, I swear.

    Except I dont have it figured out. Just about the time I feel like I’ve had things figured out career-wise, there’s been a family status change, marriage, a baby, the economy being hard right now, and then plans are all thrown out the window. Trying to merge passion + making a living a supporting myself and my family = hard! i.e. yoga is great, doesn’t pay the bills in SoCal. Photography is my passion, and maybe one day it will pay the bills. :)

  73. Ellen says:

    When I was really young I wanted to be a veterinarian but by the time I was 13 I realized acting was the thing I could not live without. Sometimes I yearn for a career which has a defined path: go to school, get a degree, get a job and start earning a regular paycheck, instead of the nebulous acting world where every day is a new job interview(aka audition) and you ate never sure where the next paycheck will come from, but I would not trade it for anything.
    I’m glad you found the thing that you are passionate about and are brave enough to follow it.

  74. Lorin says:

    I am starting my second year of college next month and I go to a school where you have to declare a major. Luckily, I know generally what I want to do (I am a nutrition major!). However, there are so many choices that I somtimes don’t know what I want to do with it. I also think that what you said is also true with life, not just school or job decisions. I’ll be living with 5 girls that I don’t know too well. I only really know one of them okay and the other girl lived on the same floor as me but I don’t know her that much. THe other three are friends of either the girl I know “okay” or the girl who lived on the same floor as me. Haha, a bit confusing. But the point is that I’m not and cannot be sure what will happen. I ask myself, “will we be close?” or “who will I be close with?” are they just going to hang out with their friends and we will all do our own thing? I don’t know, but maybe that’s the best part, nothing is quite set in stone.

  75. Char says:

    I LOVE this post, Katie!! It bummed me out in grade 12 that everyone knew what they wanted to do. When they all went off to university, I continued to work in restaurants for years, not knowing what I wanted.
    Finally, I did decide to go back to University. I now work as an Educational Assistant for my city’s school district. I LOVE MY JOB!!

    …but it’s funny how much I love food blogging & making my Char Stars MORE!! So now I’m on the path you’re on…creating a new career for myself :) So far, so good!

    1. Haha I wonder how many of your friends who knew exactly what they wanted to do can now say that they love their jobs. You are a smart girl, taking your time to figure out your passions :).

      1. Char says:

        as are you, my dear! 😉 keep following your heart!

  76. When I was younger, I knew & made sure everyone I ever came into contact with (I love how kids just talk to aaaanyone) that I was going to be a storywriter when I grew up. Somewhere between grade 7 & high school, I knew I wanted to be a journalist & editor. Now I’m a journalist, but still working towards being an editor! It’s not a high paying job, but I think it’s pretty cool that I stayed true to what I knew I wanted to do when I was a kid.
    I’m so happy you’ve found your passion! It shows, a lot :)

  77. Nicky says:

    I don’t think you have to BE just one thing. I grew up wanting to be a cowgirl (or possibly a marine biologist). I was a professional musician for a time but got tired of never having any money, so I went to Europe (to Slovakia) to teach English. I was there for 6 years and had a wonderful time (I even got married there and had a child). I am now a book editor and have been for a number of years. I like it a lot because I do editing for a number of publishing houses and the material varies from botany to sports trivia to everything in between–it’s never boring. However, I’m thinking of switching things up a bit and moving into technical writing. Life is about change and the thought of doing one thing for the rest of my life seems unrealistic. Don’t be too hard on yourself and be sure to follow your heart.

  78. I’m 29 and still don’t know! I do know that it’s my dream to be self-employed…I’m working on it!

  79. um, i’m 25 and i still have no idea what i want to “be”! i know lots of things i don’t want to be, so i guess that’s a start, right?!?

  80. Wow, what an aptly timed post!

    I’m leaving for Georgetown (my college!) this Saturday, and I couldn’t be more excited. At the same time, I don’t know exactly what I want to do. Thanks to the food blogging community (and my kitchen..haha), I know that I love food. I don’t want to be a chef, but I know that I want to be involved with food somehow. I have yet to determine how exactly I’m going to incorporate this idea into my life though. While I know things will all work out in the end, I can’t help but be a little nervous. Mostly excited, but a little nervous :)

  81. Katie says:

    Perfect timing – I JUST wrote a post about my career “issues” as well!

    I had the same problem – i was forced to choose a major in college my junior year, so I went with the one that I had the most credits already filled. I’m 29 and I STILL don’t know what I want to do! I’m happy for people who know at 18, but I just have no clue! :(

  82. I have no idea what I want to be haha! :)

  83. I have gone through a bazillion career choices in my brain over the years, and to finally find massage therapy has been such a blessing! I love my schooling and I’m so excited to be a licensed therapist by the end of the year! :)

  84. Ahhh, I completely, completely understand! I never knew what I wanted to do, except maybe when I was little and wanted to be a vet 😀 I’m 23 now and still don’t really know, but I’m slowly realizing that I really love writing(and not in the way I enjoyed it in school) and nutrition and food and photography. Blogging has opened up so much for me already especially in understanding what I enjoy doing and I still feel like such a newbie 😀

    1. I wanted to be a vet too! Then I learned you have to be good in science. I’m lousy at it! Oh well lol.

  85. Marissa says:

    I went to school for teaching because my family owns a nursery school and I felt like I had to. Don’t get me wrong, I love kids, but I was so afraid of failing at something else that I never considered what I actually want to do. Now fast forward to ten years later, plus 2 kids of my own and for the first time in my life, I am thinking about what I want to do. I’m totally taking a huge risk and going to…become a natural foods chef!!!!! I just applied to the Natural Gourmet Institute in NYC and am hoping to start classes this year! I am so excited but more excited because I have learned that mistakes are actually blessings in disguise and once you recognize that, all of the possibilities in life are endless. Thank you, Katie, for being so inspiring…with your character and with your recipes. And hopefully, one day soon, I might be creating healthy recipes that you want to make!! 😉

    1. Ooh wow, good luck! And when you do start creating these recipes, would you consider moving to Texas so you can be my personal chef????? :)

  86. Brilliant post, thanks Katie :-)
    I didn’t work out what I wanted to do till I’d finished college and spent a few years in other jobs. I then realised I wanted to be a journalist, found my job and love it! I once said to the editor-in-chief that I wished I’d got into it sooner and she said it was better that I hadn’t in some ways, because I’d had more “life experience”… and remember the Baz Luhrmann song? “Some of the most interesting people I know didn’t know at 22 what they wanted to do with their lives, some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don’t” – Wise words… :-)

  87. Allyssa says:

    Growing up I wanted to be an astronaut, teacher, and a lawyer. When it was time for college, I chose biology as my major (no idea why… I just picked it). I ended up changing my major twice and graduated with a degree I thought was my passion. But 2 internships and a short lived “big-girl” job made me realize I don’t want to go into that field.

    Now that I’m unemployed, I’ve been using the time to figure out what I want to do. Luckily I think I’m getting close!

  88. I’m about to graduate college, and I still don’t know what I want to do! I have ideas, but no real plan. When I was very little, I would say I wanted to be a writer-teacher-actress, and later it was shortened to just writer. I’ve since then moved away from the writing, and am looking at library science or maybe nutrition. I get worried sometimes, but really I’m only 21. There’s no reason I have to have my life figured out right now. Good luck, Katie! I’m so happy you found your passion. :)

  89. This is such a wonderful post, Katie! Doors don’t always just pop open right in front of you… sometimes you have to search, and search HARD! But you’re right that that’s okay, and I think that in the end, you appreciate your destination even more if you’ve had to work for it.

    For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to be a vet because I love animals so much. But now, I’m not so sure because there are so many other things I enjoy too! And I’m not stressing out about it. I’m just trying to get the best, well-rounded education I can and see where life takes me.

    <3 <3

    p.s. I think you would love the post I did today – it involves your cool whip, pancakes, and SPRINKLES 😀

    1. I love the posts you do EVERY day ;).

  90. Abi says:

    When I was little I wan’t to be an astronaut. I think that’s like the nerd version of wanting to be a ninja or a fire fighter. Cool but entirely unrealistic. Now I’m not so sure, I could’ve made a great astronaut if NASA hadn’t crapped out on us… Anyways… I wanted to do Physics from the time I was a freshmen in high school, but every body laughed told me I couldn’t do it or that I’d start to hate it sooner or later. So I just stopped telling people that’s what I wanted to do. It wasn’t until I was applying to colleges that I had the courage to bring it up again. I braced myself and told my parents I wanted to apply as a Physics major. People were right in that it’s hard. But they were also wrong; I absolutely love every minute of it and couldn’t picture myself doing anything else. It just goes to show you are the only person who can make these decisions for yourself. Some have always known what they want to do, some people have amazing adventures while searching for it their whole lives.

  91. Alyssa says:

    I basically decided at age 10 that I wanted to be an actress, and spent the next 24 years pursuing that goal. With a nice bit of success, I might add. Then, during my second pregnancy, I decided to take a break, one that has now lasted 8 years. In that time, I became a Pilates teacher and both our kids were diagnosed with Autism. It’s not possible, at this juncture, for me to return to my life in the THE-YEA-TUH, but I do miss it. So now, at age 42, I find myself contemplating returning to school to pursue drama therapy.
    So it never ends, really!

  92. I am STILL trying to figure out what I want to be – yet I am only 17 :)
    Over my high school years I have juggled the possibility of being a baker, fashion editor, or an acupuncturist. I know, not very similar. However, I have decided that I want to do something in health, which is why right now my sights are set on being an acupuncturist :)

  93. thank you girl i needed this post! i have been so down on myself for not “succeeding” or being the BEST or PERFECT…and not KNOWING exactly what was the right thing to do
    i dont know all the answers. and that is ok…i am getting better at it:)
    oh and currently have that thomas edison quote now on my post it so that i see it every day
    thanks girl<3

  94. Michelle says:

    I went through so many different ideas on what I wanted to be when I grew up, but it wasn’t until AFTER i finished my degree that I decided I really want to pursue personal training and nutrition. It is never too late I guess right :)

  95. BroccoliHut says:

    I’ve had my fair share of scrambling when it comes to deciding what to do. In high school, I was interested in nutrition but not seriously enough to turn down Duke to pursue it as a career. I thought I wanted to be a great freelance writer…then realized I was too much of a softee to take all those rejection letters. So then I came back to nutrition again. Fast-forward 3 years, and here I am getting my masters!

  96. Sarah says:

    I am in that situation right now. It’s my senior year of college.. I’m about to graduate with a biology major– I’m worried now that I’m in the wrong major!! But I can’t stop now. I know I’ll graduate in a major similar to what I want to major in. Maybe I’ll go to graduate school for something else. Maybe I’ll get a job in the government. I wish I could make up my mind. The pressure is ENORMOUS! People keep saying I’ll figure it out, and I hope I do. I’m just not sure how long it will take me to do so. :/

  97. Rebecca says:

    Great post Katie and excellent timing. I’m the same age as you and often feel rushed. I’m a college graduate and my problem is I want to do everything. Right now I work 2 part-time jobs, volunteer quite a bit and go to school-I love every second, but I guess I have to settle at some point (?)

    Growing up I wanted to be a teacher and I studied to be a teacher in college and long story short, I got frustrated with education, but I’ve found other ways to work with kids :) I’m still discovering myself and the great thing about being young is making mistakes. It’s ok, we still have 60+ years to find ourselves!

  98. Albizia says:

    My idea for the perfect career has changed many times during the years. I wanted to be a gymnast (too tall for this one…), a fashion designer, a swimmer, a mathematician, a singer, a teacher, a model, a journalist, a computer geek, an English philologist… Now I am a geneticist wanting to steal the job of the cleaning lady in our building. Go figure! Actually, all I ever wanted was to be happy. Still don’t know how to do it, though.

  99. Hey Katie,

    I’ve only been following you for a few weeks, your posts almost always make me drool. : ). When my son graduated from high school and asked me the question you’re posing, I just shook my head. When I was twenty I thought forty meant you had all your stuff together. Was I ever wrong about that. Some people actually have it together at age ten!!! Not me. (Or lots of others methinks.) I have done a lot of things over the years. And I think the trick is to learn what you can from each of the opportunities you are given. Those random skills and that attitude is going to make sure that you have a successful, satisfying life, no matter what you end up doing and when you discover it. For me? The jury is still out. I don’t know that I’ve found the sweet spot niche, but I’m still looking for it and gathering the keepers along the way.

    1. :) And some of those people who *think* they have it all together at age ten are completely surprised to find out they’re destined for something else entirely!

  100. Margeaux says:

    I appreciated reading this, Katie. I just graduated from high-school this past spring and the pressure to have something figured out school-wise for the fall has been immense.

    I hope eventually to have my own baking-related business, so I’m currently gaining practical experience working two bakery/cafe jobs and catering events for friends. I’ve chosen to do this instead of going to college this year. People’s reactions have been less than positive, but reading this was so encouraging :)

  101. Nicole says:

    This is such a thought provoking post Katie! I’m glad you shared :)

    I’ve always struggled with this question. I have a ton of lawyers in my family so I tried really hard to not be a lawyer. After seriously considering veterinarian (love of animals!) and psychologist (love of people!) I went the rationale route: I would probably like being a lawyer (it’s challenging), I’d probably be good at it (100% of my genes come from lawyers), I believed it would provide more diverse job options than my other career prospects, and it would probably provide me with financial comfort. I don’t regret the choice because I was right about these things, but I know I’m not passionate about law and I wonder how this will play out. My real passions are food, health, people and fun! I’m 25 and I don’t feel grown up at all; I feel like I’m just getting started. So, who knows what I’ll be when I grow up. All I know is I’m going to be happy.

    I think it’s amazing that you decided to embrace what you’re passionate about and found a way to make a living doing it. It’s inspirational. I’m probably not going to quit my job any time soon, but I’m going to make sure my life is full of passion. And chocolate. My life will be full of chocolate :)

    Best of luck to you and all the other readers who are still figuring out what they want to be when they grow up.

    1. Oh thank goodness you will include chocolate. A life NEEDS chocolate to be good. Fact, not opinion ;).

  102. Brandie says:

    I wanted to be a lot of things when I was VERY young… then moved to wanting to be a veterinarian, in high school, then a doctor…got into college and realized I didn’t WANT to memorize all that stuff, and didn’t WANT to be in school for 8 years…. but through all of the changes in what I “thought” I wanted, one thing was constant. I wanted kids and I wanted to be an at-home mommy. That’s the thing that I’ve ALWAYS wanted to ‘be’ when I grew up that I still want to be! I got to stay home with my son for a year and a half, then had to go back to work. I pray that someday when I get to have more kids, that I get to be an at-home mommy again. That’s what I REALLY WANT!!! :)

  103. Jeanie says:


    I’m so glad that you choose chocolate over a job! lol
    Seriously, I would hate to see you stop blogging!
    That’s great news on the cookbook! I so love your receipes!
    You are so young! God will show you what He wants you to do. Just ask Him!

    1. Thank you so much, Jeanie!
      I think God works in strange ways sometimes, and we just have to trust!

  104. Cherie says:

    Girl, youre adorable ♥

  105. Jess says:

    Aw Katie your so pretty! I’m so happy your following what you love. Iv’e wanted to be a fashion designer since I was about 11 and now I’m 20, and doing a fashion course. Wherever life takes me I hope I’m always working on something that I find rewarding and makes me happy :)

  106. Ashley C says:

    I’m the same way!!! Second year of college and still have no clue what I want to do. I know what I want to do, but I never realized how hard it would be. When I said i wanted to be a doctor at age 3, I never knew how many classes that would mean or that I would always be studying!! I’m so glad you stuck with blogging, you’re awesome at it!!!!

  107. Lindsay says:

    I’m sure everyone (normal) goes through this; I know I was slow in deciding too — I stayed in high school for TWO extra years (the glorious Grade 14) because my first idea was a flop — doctor. I was terrible at math and science so even though I felt sure I’d be happy helping people, it wasn’t looking good. I took grade 11 math twice because I didn’t feel that I understood well enough, got a 35% in grade 12 math. Chemistry I thought I was doing ok in until my teacher came up to me one day and told me I should drop out before I get another black mark on my transcript. I wasn’t too surprised, but to be told that I was doing so badly that I should get out was enough to get me to walk into the guidance office and say k what can I do. I puttered around the school for another year then decided to try co-op, and ended up LOVING it. I was always terrible at speeches but teaching was awesome. So now I’m going to University for another 4 years so I can go back to high school =p. Its funny how things work out but they do work out. and its super obvious that you have an amazing talent (and passion) in creating recipes and then sharing them with people who admire your skill. Hell, if blogging doesn’t work out EXACTLY the way you want you can always develop a vegan cook book (you wouldn’t even need a photographer =p) or open a vegan bakery. =)
    Doing something you like is much more important than doing something that would break you down over time to a motivation-less drone. Who knows, maybe in another 3 years you will have found a different path, But for now, scary or not, this is what you want to do.
    Good luck =)

    1. Thank you! And good luck to you, too! I took a few extra years in college as well… no need to rush out of school, right? 😉

  108. Lyza says:

    Thankyou Katie. This was a great entry–couldn’t have been more appropriate for me at this point in my life. :) I have been in a total rut lately because I am at a loss for what to do with my future/career/etc. I was given this same advice by my mother–just keep trying new things, no matter how stupid or silly they sound, it’s better than nothing, and it could lead you to the right place. I also love the Thomas Edison quote. This entry=fuel for courage. :)

  109. This is an amazing post! I really enjoyed this because it is honest and relatable. I’m starting college and I’m pretty sure I want to be a graphic designer. But in high school, I had no idea. Everybody always seemed so sure “oh, I’m going to be a football player”, “I’m going to be a teacher”. Made me feel like there was something wrong with me because I didn’t know what the heck I wanted to be. Hopefully the path I’m going down is the right one.

  110. Kelly says:

    I so understand your post, this one and the “my big decision” post. I am 42 and have been an accountant my entire adult life. I never liked accounting, but it paid the bills. Just this year I took a leap and started working with kids as a fitness coordinator (my passion is health and fitness). The pay is no where near the pay I was making as a CPA, but I love every minute I spend with those kids. It’s so very important to do something you love.

  111. I have quite a few possibilities for jobs — all around the same kind of thing (Food Scientist, Nutritional Scientist, Biochemist, etc). I just know I want to do something with the body and nutrition — not just what, but how.

  112. Shelley says:

    I love this post. I’ve never known what I want to do, but not because of lack of passion…I just have too many passions haha. I’ve had a variety of very interesting and inspiring jobs, and I just have faith that one day all my varied experiences will come in handy :)

  113. Becky says:

    Hi Katie! i’m so thrilled to have stumbled across your blog tonight, i’ve been reading through your recipes for almost an hour now and i have to make myself stop or else i won’t get any sleep tonight… :) i wanted to let you know how inspiring and honest i find your blog, i get the feeling that it’s just you, through and through, and that really makes me wanna come back and read more, and cook and bake. to answer your question: i’m 24 and i don’t know what i want to BECOME – but i do take pleasure in finding out WHO i AM. the road has been bumpy and taken me on some really strange turns, but i guess that’s part of it all. What fun is a road-trip on an endless, straight high-way? nah, give me bumps and crooked paths any day. right now i’m a student, doing gender studies, and work with an underground theatre group. no money, but lots of passion :) best wishes from sweden/becky

    1. Aww hi Becky! Hugs back from Texas!! :)

  114. Mehgann says:

    Hi Katie!

    This post made me laugh, because in a lot of ways, it reminded me of me. I knew what I wanted to do when I was 14 years old…I wanted to be a professional musician. When it came time for college, I only applied at three schools…Eastman, Julliard, and SUNY Fredonia (???). After being rejected at Julliard, my choice was between Eastman and Fredonia, aaaaaand I chose Fredonia. Why, you may ask? There is no good reason at all. I still don’t know why myself, but it was the right choice. I learned that music wasn’t what I wanted to do at Fredonia, which I now know is okay! But at the time, I felt like I had already put so much work into it, and I didn’t want to throw that away. So I did what you did…I went to classes but my heart wasn’t in it. And one day, I just quit. I stopped going. I wasted an entire semester and destroyed my GPA. And the worst part is that I did this TWICE. I tried going back several years later and did the same thing! And then I woke up, and realized that I wasn’t throwing anything away by giving up on the music thing…I thew stuff away by not doing it. Now, I am back in school for forensic science and loving every minute of it! Don’t ever berate yourself for not knowing who you are right now. Accept what you don’t know and go from there, and you will be successful!!!

    1. Seriously, you are so brave for just quitting like that. People say it’s bad to be a quitter, but really I think it’s brave. If you know in your heart that something isn’t right for you, why go through it anyway? You’re right; it ends up being a bigger waste of time than if you’d quit in the first place to do what you love!

  115. LIz says:

    Katie, I just found your blog and I couldn’t stop thinking that you looked so familiar…then I read this post and saw that you went to Bryn Mawr. I’m a 2010 BMC grad, so I think we may have been there at the same time! Your blog is fabulous and its so great to see another Mawter excelling at her passion. Best of luck with your future, and I know I’ll continue to stop by and see what fabulous treats you are cooking up. Anassa Kata!

    1. LOL I actually only went to Bryn Mawr for one year, and I would’ve graduated in 2009… maybe you saw me when you were touring the campus?
      Thank you for such a sweet comment! It would’ve been so cool to have crossed paths with you at BMC lol!

  116. Susan L says:

    I didn’t know you went to Bryn Mawr! That’s not far from me, I considered going there, but Penn State is way cheaper for me since my mom teachers there. But I can completely understand where you’re coming from. At 22, I feel like I should be doing graduated and out in the world by now, but I’m not yet. Soon though (August)! My mom always gives me hope though, she’s 55 and still says she doesn’t know what she’s going to be when she grows up. She also tells me all the time that there are really very few things that you can do that you can’t undo (maiming, death, and children are the three she lists, and even the maiming you can recover from). She gives me hope that I can’t screw up life too badly. It’s kind of for making mistakes and learning, I think.

  117. Susan L says:

    I’ve fought it, but I’ve known since I was 14 that I was supposed to be a missionary. Hopefully this is going to come true within the year of 2012 and I cannot wait. I really think I’m about to start one of the most exciting and fulfilling chapters of my life. And I can’t wait. 8 more months, let’s make the best of this!

    PS I just wanted to say that you are absolutely beautiful and have lovely skin and hair. If you ever get a mean comment about your size please just let people know that you are within a healthy BMI and you are an active, healthy eating runner and that there is nothing wrong with that. I have always been curvy and hated my body for years because I thought being thin was the only way to be beautiful. This led me to a five year intensive battle with an eating disorder that I am in remission from for the past 4 years (praise God). But I absolutely HATE it when people say ‘you’re too fat/skinny/curvy/straight up and down/whatever’. We are women, and we are beautiful. I don’t care if you have zero curves or a thousand, God made us beautiful and we need to stop trying to ruin His handiwork. If He made sunsets and mountains and lakes and the aurora borealis, He knows beauty and can put it in any form He wants. We should aim for health and fitness, for strength and poise, not x sized jeans or y sized bras. This is an issue that I am extremely passionate about and struggle with a lot, but I just wanted to tell you that because I am sure (since you’ve mentioned it before and also just because I know people can be idiots) that you’ve gotten the ‘eating disorder’ comment before. And I am so sorry for that. People should never accuse anyone of having an illness (what if I just walked up to someone and said, ‘hey, you look diabetic!’; how is that ever okay?!) but they especially should not make that into a shame/blame issue, even if it were true. It’s just ridiculous. Anyway, just wanted to get that off my chest since I am very passionate on the subject. And with that I realized I should just get my own blog and stop writing novels in your comments section. =D

    1. Oh I am so loving all your novel comments, Susan!
      And I agree (UGH!) about how rude it is to negatively comment on someone’s appearance… If someone DOES have an eating disorder, that’s a disease. Why would people say snarky things to someone with a disease?! You really do sound like you have a passion for missionary work, too… GOOD LUCK, girl!!

  118. Kristie says:

    Wonderful post. Thanks for sharing your story! I know many people can relate, and appreciate knowing they’re not the only ones. Brava, for having the courage to jump in and live your dream! In a few years, the youngest of our four children will be graduating and leaving home, so I am full of pondering over what dream I will live then.

  119. Mandy says:

    I wanted to be a pilot when I was a kid, but I stopped growing at 5’1, can barely touch the pedals even with the seat adjusted forward to the max.. Now doing engineering instead and not have a clue what my next step may be..
    I still check my Xanga these days, btw..ha

  120. Bambi says:

    I have to say I am sooooooo happy you chose to do this for a living! My family and I have only been vegan about 3 months so it is WONDERFUL to have resources like yours to be able to rely on when we need a great recipe! My husband fell upon your website by a complete fluke (or fate?!). He was looking for a band that he had heard on Pandora radio on his phone that had an album cover of a chocolate covered girl (Panty Raid is the name of the group). So of course he googled “chocolate covered girl” and your website came up as the first option. He probably still wouldn’t have clicked on your site if he hadn’t seen the word VEGAN in the page description! He came here and showed me all the wonderful goodies we could make (I have a sweet-tooth for sure!) and I was hooked! I am eating my breakfast of 5-minute chocolate oatmeal(with added strawberries and carob chips) and just tasting how thankful I am that he found you! Thanks Katie! <3

    1. Wow, that is too funny!

      And now I must look into this chocolate-covered album ;).

  121. Jessica says:

    I love this post, Katie!

    When I was in high school, someone asked me what one of my lifelong goals was. I said “to always stay thin.” That sounds superficial & rude, but I never meant it as a judgement on overweight people. What I meant was that I always wanted to make healthy choices in my life so that I would not die of heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes, or another diet-based disease. I was always interested in eating healthy & exercising. Now I see that my passion has always been in those two topics, but it took a while…

    Your post reminded me of a horrible lost feeling I had after college. I never really knew exactly what I wanted to do when I was young, but I was sure about many things I did NOT want to do. As far back as I can remember, my parents & grandparents always reminded me of the importance of a good education. By the time I graduated college, I didn’t have passion for anything in particular, but thought I would land a great job simply because I earned a BS. …that didn’t exactly happen. After a year of hating my job & accruing debt, I ended up going back to school for 4 years total, to earn certificates in a field that didn’t even REQUIRE a degree (at the time). It was hard to do something that felt like back-peddling (try explaining to your friends working on an mba or med school that you are taking jr college level classes). Now I work in a financially & emotionally rewarding field I love, & have recently discovered a second passion: blogging about healthy food & working out. I spend time that should be dedicated to studying dreaming up different recipes, making them, posting them, etc. I enjoy it, but it’s a HUGE time suck. If I ever have a baby, blogging will be a challenge.

    Tomorrow I will enjoy my lack of obligations & make a batch of your genius blondies!

  122. Lexi says:

    I LOVE your blog! My husband has a sugar intolerance and I have a dairy intolerance, so our dessert choices are somewhat limited. I sometimes come up with healthy dessert recipes and blog about them, but I’m still pretty new at the whole process. Thanks for sharing your awesome ideas!

  123. Monica says:


    Your blog is such an inspiration to me!! I’m almost 40 and currently unemployed. I’m a computer scientist with 2 kids who found a passion in “creative baking” about 3 months ago.
    I LOVE your recipes. They are the only ones I follow step by step since I’m no good at following recipes.
    Probably someday I’ll have a blog of my own, right now my recipes just have a FB page. This week I’ll bake “for profit” for the first time!
    My friends have loved your pumpkin brownies and my kids ask for them on a weekly basis. It’s a classic at home already. I loved the chocolate chip blondies too.
    My favorite baking ingredient is still quinoa, do you have any original ideas on how to use it?

    1. Aw thanks, Monica :).
      I actually am a novice when it comes to cooking quinoa. I think I messed it up a few times, long ago, by adding too much liquid. I need to try it again!

  124. Ellie says:

    This is pretty late on this post, but reading it helped me realize that I’m not completely weird in feeling kind of confused at my age! I’m 17 and previously wanted to be a baker (for about 4 years!), but becoming vegan has made me question everything. Now I’m facing college considering personal training, nutritionist, vegan dietician, kinesiologist, ect… but to be honest I have no clue! And I guess that’s ok for the time being! (Now let’s just pray for the economy) Thanks Katie!

  125. I always knew what I’d end up doing/being but then that’s part of being psychic I guess. But even though I knew, I resisted it. What kid/teenager doesn’t resist doing what they know they’re meant to do? So instead I seriously planned on being a Solicitor/Lawyer because I was academically minded it made sense. But whilst I was at university I realised that wasn’t right for me and I was also learning to recognise and appreciate what I was really exceptional at, what I’d always been going to be good at – working with energy.

    I love how inviting your blog is. It’s so welcoming! Plus obviously I’m a major Chocolate lover who has had to give up dairy (& refused to give up chocolate!) Loving your blog and starting to make your gorgeous recipes 😉

  126. Amy says:

    How is it I haven’t come across this entry before? Wow, I have a master’s in Civil Engineering and am still not sure what I want to do and never know how to answer that question during an interview. Sometimes I want to quit and be a full-time baker, but my rational side doesn’t want me to. So glad to know there are others like me and that I might eventually get it right one day :)

  127. SmilingVivianna says:

    so glad you wrote this. i am afraid to follow my passion, i would love to do something food related, but then again i think of the bills and think, just stick to what’s making you some money.. maybe one day.

  128. Cynthia says:

    I visit your blog everyday and also have a passion for healthy great tasting food. I have been looking at some of your older posts and I am so impressed by your candidness and willingness to share so much of yourself with your readers…Maybe this is partly why you have so many :). I am glad that you have been getting bigger and more successful. Many good wishes to you! Thanks for all the hard work :)

  129. Janet says:

    Thanks Katie for your healthy recipes & words of encouragement! I am 51 years old, married for 25 years and a Mom with one son who is in his last year of high school still deciding on which college to attend …Yikes ! I think about what my future will be like as an empty nester. I really like what you said about life is more about who I am right now and making it count, than what the future holds! I Thank God cause He holds our future!
    I Enjoy reading your recipes & Blog!

  130. Hannah Spellman says:

    This is totally inspiring to me, because as a 17 year old junior in high school, with college seriously right around the corner, I have no idea what I want to do. Most of my passions cannot be put into a career, or at least one that I am willing to go to school for. But I loveeee food and chocolate too, and I am hoping that I can put my love of food (even if I am really picky) into some sort of career, and while I probably wont become a great food blogger, this definitely gives me inspiritation!!

  131. Emma says:

    When I was about 6, I wanted to be a neurosurgeon. Now I can barely spell neurosurgeon.

    Then, I wanted to pursue business- I think it is a great way to change the world in a big way! … look what I ended up doing… still giving it a good go! =)