Monday, July 19, 2010

Why I Love Paula Deen

Paula Deen is one of my heroes. That might sound a little weird coming from me, but it is true.

I have to put in a little disclaimer here - I read an article that said that in her recent biography, Paula Deen admitted to a 10 year long affair with a married man. THAT I can't admire or support - it is completely foul. So, make no mistake, that isn't why I admire her, and it was a real blow to me when I read that because I liked her so well.

But, that said, I still respect Paula Deen so much in so many other ways.

I see a lot of criticism of Paula Deen online and people love to bash her it seems - from saying her accent is fake to taking delight in her being hit in the face with a ham, there is definitely a contingent out there that loves to Hate Paula.

But in many respects, Paula Deen is an excellent female role model.

When Paula Deen was 42 years old, she found herself divorced and living in poverty with her two sons. She was house bound by Agoraphobia and panic attacks and was really at "The Bottom".

At 42 she had nothing, and now she must be one of the wealthiest women in the world.

With her last $200, she started a food service business called "The Bag Lady" where she made bag lunches from home and had her boys deliver them to local businesses so the business people could buy them for lunch. From there she went on to start her own very successful restaurant and then to having her own show on Food Network - and the rest is, of course, history.

She is the quintessential success story in my opinion. Paula's story gives me hope, and I think it should give all women hope. If Paula can get to where she is now, we can ALL reach our own dreams and goals with hard work - just like she did.

And Paula gained her success without losing who she was - without losing sight of what is truly important [if you read any interview with her, she will tell you that her two sons were always her top priority and still are - she's obviously crazy about them]. Paula was and is, first and foremost, a mother.

I like Paula for other reasons too.

I like that she loves food and isn't ashamed to let the world know. Women in our society are absolutely neurotic about food [not our fault, really, look at this insane culture we live in!]. Then here comes Paula - rich and powerful and she is not the least bit afraid to tell you that a stick of butter will make just about anything better. You go Paula!

I like her work ethic too - by all accounts, Paula is a hard worker. One of my favorite quotes is from her: "Anything is possible if you are willing to work for it." And work for it she did. She embodies the good old fashioned "hard work pays off" ethic that is so missing in our "get rich quick" culture.

I also admire her *confidence*. Paula Deen is an uneducated woman from poor white trash roots. She would tell you that herself [she'll also say she's not very smart, but I disagree with that - maybe she's not book smart, but she's definitely crafty like a fox!] But the woman radiates confidence - exudes it. She took what she had and she worked like crazy and made the absolute most out of the cards that were dealt her - she OUGHT to be confident!

Another thing I like about Paula is that she is a big fat older woman who doesn't feel ashamed of herself - in fact, if you watch Paula for long, you will know that she thinks she's the absolute bees knees. She obviously thinks of herself as very sexy and desirable. In a world that tells women they are "over the hill" by the time they hit 30 and that they are "fat and ugly" if they aren't a size 4, it is refreshing to have a role model in her 60s who is FAT and HAPPY and not worried one bit about it. Paula feels *Beautiful* and she IS beautiful. It all sure seems to work for her - she appears to be happily remarried to a man who seems to cherish and adore her. Good for her.

The world could use more women like Paula Deen [OK, more women like her but who do NOT have affairs with married men].

Thank you Paula Deen.


  1. Don't kid yourself Kelly, Paula Deen is a wicked woman.

    Why I saw her make Bread Pudding using Krispy Kream Donuts.

    I think the devil himself put her up to it.


    I love Paula Dean for all the reasons you listed. And for her foxy hair.

  2. ROFL!!! I agree Lola! :) :)

  3. I definitely agree...I love Paula. She was born in Albany GA which is 45 miles from where I live but I have never met her. We are the same age...both born in 1947. I do admire her for what she has accomplished. Paula and her sons are so close and I will drop what I am doing to watch a cooking show with all three of them. I just love Jamie. I have the Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cookbook and my favorite salad recipe is Jamie's chicken salad. Thanks for writing such a great article. Please visit my blog at
    Merry Christmas!!