Melissa, Jonathan, & Caelan
What is your name & what kind of widow are you?
Melissa Adams, and I am a chef’s widow. My husband Jonathan is the chef of Pub & Kitchen in Philadelphia.
Where is your casa & what is your jobby job?
Mi Casa is currently in philadelphia. I moved here about 3 1/2 years ago from NYC to be with my chef and 8 months after moving in together we got pregnant. Oops! Which leads to your next question. My jobby job? I’m a stay at home mom to an 18 months old son, Caelan, and 2 dogs (an english bully & a pitbull).
How long have you been in a relationship with someone in the ‘industry?’
I met my chef is Sept of 2006, we were married in August of 2008, had a baby a week later and he opened a restaurant 3 days after that :)
What is your biggest turnoff or dislike of being a Chef’s/Restaurant Widow?
Loneliness. Most of my friends & family don’t live close by. So my days, with a toddler, are long & lonely. There are weeks (as other chefs widows know) that my son & I see my husband 1 day out of 7.
That, and how no one recognizes me when I’m walking through the city unless I’m with my chef. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve waved/smiled at someone while I’m out alone only to get an odd look… you know the one that says “who is that women and why is she waving at me?”. Embarrassing.
What is your favorite aspect of being a Chef’s/Restaurant Widow?
I love being a part of his career. I love reading food blogs and restaurant reviews. I love knowing the terms & techniques. I think it brings us closer. I want him to know that what he does is not only important to him, but important to me as well.
And I love getting things that aren’t on the menu when we go out. The cool things that the chef wants to put on the menu but isn’t sure people will order. I love that!
Considering your significant other most likely works a million and one hours a week, how do you find time to keep the relationship alive?
Well, having a toddler has definitely made it hard. We try and have a date night as much as possibly (right now we average 1 a month). On nights he’s home we usually make dinner and have a bottle (or 2) of wine and just catch up on our week. Just laying on the couch together watching tv helps us feel close. Most couples take that for granted. Even after 3+ years we still try and make every moment matter.
When you do have time together what is your favorite thing to do (besides the nasty)?
Because we get out so infrequently, when we do it’s usually to hit up a new restaurant or bar. We like knowing what’s going on in our city. And as a former interior designer I like criticizing places :)
Do you have any sage words of wisdom for those men or women just starting a new relationship with a Chef or Restaurant manager?
Remember that you love them for them. And they love their career. Don’t fault them for that. You are lucky to have found someone so passionate.
And don’t spend what little time you do have together fighting. Make the most of it.
Do you cook?
I do. Sometimes. Because it’s just my son & I most nights, my “cooking” consists mostly of putting fish sticks or sweet potato fries in the oven. If my chef is home and I want to eat sometime before 11pm, I’ll cook. If I let him cook, I end up eating half a wheel of cheese and drinking a bottle of wine before he gets dinner on the table.
What would your last meal/adult beverage on earth be? Who would you eat it with?
Bread/cheese/red wine. And it would be with my family (and my dogs. as long as they don’t whine while I’m eating like they usually do)
I know that being a mother and being married to a Chef makes me insane, how do you handle balancing your family life with such a demanding work schedule of your partner?
Booze. Kidding! Well… sort of.
Seriously though, I try, at the end of the day whether I’m alone or with my husband to realize how lucky we are. We may not be like other families, but that’s ok. We talk about him doing something else, something easier. But easier doesn’t always mean happier.
If you have/had kids would you encourage them to pursue the restaurant industry as a career?
As long as he can assure me he’ll have good medical coverage and an IRA.
Feel free to share an awesome widow facts about yourself &/or anything you’ve got going on…blog, restaurant events, etc…
Wow, this is sad. I’ve got nothing! Well, that’s not true. I have something but I’m not at liberty to talk about it yet J and no mom, I’m not pregnant.
Oh wait! I have something!!!! This Sun (valentines day) – Wed, my chef and I are taking a mini vacation to NYC. We are having dinner at Corton & Marea and I’m super excited! Not only to eat at those places since they are amazing, but to spend our first valentines day together… EVER! He has always been working on valentine’s day. I haven’t decided yet whether or not that’s great or just plain sad. AND… we are getting new tattoos! Woohoo!
Please feel free to elaborate on anything.
I am grateful for all of you who do what our family does. Not only chefs, but other professions as well. It’s not easy sacrificing family life for a career but I feel better knowing I’m not alone. Thank you xoxo
Thank you Melissa! You better believe we are coming to visit the next time we are in Philly. We'll even bring our pitbull!