I saw Ree Drummond at Changing Hands last night. She spoke a bit about her new cookbook. Beforehand, over drinks with girlfriends and the cookbook, we talked about the incorporation of family (especially children) into such projects. Is it okay to put your kid’s photos online? We agreed that in this format, it was fine. She and her husband must agree and the truth is, the cookbook isn’t just recipes. It is a gorgeous view of their family and their way of life. She has so much to be proud of.


As I watched the masses swarm to hear Ree speak — truly more folks came to hear her than Jimmy Carter or Madeleine Albright’s recent visits — it dawned on meย  one of the reasons she and Dooce are so incredibly well received in the blog world is because they are willing to be so vulnerable. They talk about the details of their personal lives and while I’m sure they don’t reveal all, they are comfortable taking us into their homes for a glimpse.


I’m not entirely sure where my comfort level sits on my personal life and the blog; there are times I’ve revealed enough to get a phone call from my angry little brother in Colorado (who magically must have just happened to read my “stupid blog he never reads” that day) to say, “Too much! Stop talking!” There are other times I’ve handledย  crises and changes without mentioning a word because I just didn’t know how to broach the topic.

I love what this blog has provided me. More than anything, it is a daily challenge to be creative, positive and proactive in my writing. It pushes me to carry my camera nearly everywhere and to document my life in a way that previous generations would have certainly deemed vain. C’est la vie. Life changes and my skin is a bit thicker than it used to be. I can hear my friend Mini’s voice saying, “Dear, you can’t please everyone” each time I open an email or receive a comment bemoaning my views.


The title to this entry is a bit tongue in cheek. A man I had been spending time with of late recently told me I was “too domestic.” He hurled this at me in a moment of anger, one in which I wish more than anything I’d had the chance to remind him that without such an interest, he wouldn’t have eaten about a dozen requested chocolate cakes. Alas, I sat there slack jawed thinking, “Too domestic? That’s a new one.” It stung for about two seconds until I remembered I’m much better off being exactly who I am — a woman who loves to play house as much at 30 as I did at 5.

And yes, I’d say domestic is an apt description. When I went to download photos for this entry, flowers, a future quilt and three dozen cookies I baked yesterday came up as options. While I dislike being pigeonholed into such specific descriptions, people will think what they want.ย  (And those people will not get cookies. Or cake.)


25 Replies to “Domestic”

  1. Too domestic? That’s a funny one. How about too awesome? Too perfect? Too intimidating?


    Meanwhile – so glad you got to see Ree in person – I love her blog like a mutha. And now I also love cinnamon rolls, which I’m not sure is a good thing since I managed to live my life until a year ago not liking them at all.

    And they’re not fat free, those things.

  2. I agree — you’re too amazing! I’m constantly inspired by your life and all you do. Too bad you didn’t sneak some exlax into the last chocolate cake! ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. And also, if “domestic” was the best insult he could hurl at you, that is pretty awesome! You must be doing A LOT right. ๐Ÿ™‚ Obviously, that is not the right man for you to be baking for. Live and learn, you know? Just do YOU and never change! I love your site, your personality and all the joy you have given me even in really dark times. God bless!

  4. Kind of interesting, that for someone who goes by the pseudonym of “African Kelli”, you can be too domestic.
    First of all, so what.
    Second, it’s true you are domestic and awesome at it. But having followed your blog for a while (but not nearly as long as you’ve been at it), it seems more apt to say that you have your heart in whatever it is you are doing. Sometimes it is being domestic, other times it’s helping children in poverty in third world countries.
    Third, we all say things in anger. It isn’t always what is said, but the way it is said. Oh yes, and the timing of it.
    Fourth, you rock. Now lets have some cookies. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Dude was ‘meh’. that was the best we could say about him, doncha think? and he would have been a duplicate name, and you wouldn’t want that. You know what else i’ve said before and i’ll say again? you need a man who loves everything about you (especially the things that really make you ‘kelli’) more than anyone else he’s ever met. you deserve that and you will find him.

  6. I think Ree is fantastic. Read Heather’s blog for years too. You fit up there with the best of them – all three of you are inspirational in your own way. You rock, no matter what anyone calls you.

    I so want cookies. ๐Ÿ˜›

  7. One of the things I enjoy most about your blog is how authentic you are. I’m glad you are proud to be who you are. Also, I made and canned apple pie filling all day today, so I am proud to be domestic.

  8. Kelli,

    You are one of maybe 4 blogs I read regularly, Pioneer Woman being another. You bring a smile to my heart each and every time I see in my Google Reader that there is a new blog from African Kelli.

    Keep being domestic, spiritual, loving, open, honest and crafty. These are just a few of the wonderful gifts God gave you. Relish them and don’t let anyone steal your joy.

    Can I have some cookies now ๐Ÿ™‚ hee – kidding – kinda ๐Ÿ™‚

    Love you – God Bless.


  9. I love all the comments – ditto!

    Kelli, I went to see Ree last night, and that was alright, but I really am most disappointed that I missed seeing you!

  10. So funny….too domestic??

    Um, that was probably one thing he liked about you in the first place.

    Enjoy being you because you are an amazing woman.

  11. you rock it kelli! I love your blog and you inspire me to my own “nerdiness” of domestic bliss. As for that boy – there are too many other men out there who need brownies!! As for me, I am working on the t shirt scarf and an apron today. woo!

  12. Hi Kelli,

    Just popping in to tell you I love your blog, the way you write, domestic or whatever the topic is, the diversity. Keep amusing/informing us, please!
    Thank you
    Regina, St. Maarten

  13. Aah…to be so domestic and so modernly feminine at the same time. You have a well balanced femininity about you dear one. Bring on the cakes, bring on the sewing, bring on the photos, bring on the social justice, bring on the “green” attitude … you are who you are and we are all blessed to hear about it.

  14. Oh, Kelli, so happy you got to meet Ree! I love her blog and cookbook, but do to work travel I’ll miss her signing in Chicago.

    And a big ole WHAT-EVER to the “too domestic” boy comment. His loss.

    Keep on being you!

  15. Too domestic? He is just intimidated because you are not afraid to use your God given talents and live your life to the fullest. Keep on being true to yourself!

  16. That’s funny about your brother calling you. That’s actually kind of cute of him, don’t you think?

    Share whatever you want. You own this space.

    I am glad, though, that you don’t have the thick-skin that so many others have. Maybe it’s just me but I am really tired of the “Forget you!” society that surrounds us. I am glad that there are important things mattering to you.

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