Often while people are thinking about what they really want to do, they are led in a somewhat different direction that is ultimately just right. Lorraine Slud’s career choices evolved slowly during a progression of interests and abilities in a variety of areas. As her ideas became more defined, she was able to better focus on what she wanted to do and how to reach her goals.
After several not-quite-right detours along the way, Lorraine was able to define how she thought she could make an appreciable difference in kids’ lives while choosing work she would enjoy. Now, as the owner of Happy Healthy Chef, Lorraine “provides fine interactive and educational cooking classes to kids, teaching them important nutritional skills as well as empowering them in the kitchen.”
A psychology major at George Washington University, Lorraine was affiliated with the American Psychological Association for close to ten years. Eventually she realized that her interests were leading her elsewhere. She explored coaching, became a wellness life coach, and spent some time researching health and nutrition. She soon realized that she was motivated to continue exploring other areas of vocational interest until she found the area that seemed right for her.
“I have always enjoyed cooking,” says Lorraine, who became more involved for finding proper foods for her family after her son became a vegan. “I was always the party planner who loved having people for meals. I hosted Thanksgiving, New Year’s Day brunches and other social events related to food.
After being certified as a life coach, I coached myself into a new job! I love to cook. It’s fun and creative – and I like to teach kids.” Lorraine had discovered a perfect career choice!
Happy Healthy Chef is unique. Lorraine is a certified Healthy Hands Cooking Instructor. After working with this online organization that provides certification and career help to people doing what she does, Lorraine became certified after online testing and training in various kitchen topics. She has created a way to enjoy cooking and teaching kids while showing them how to eat better, feel better, and serve themselves in their kitchen while making proper food choices. She is also a certified Wellness Coach instructor.
Lorraine’s classes are informal, small classes for up to approximately 10 kids, taught at a variety of venues. She has Healthy Happy cooking classes for kids, healthy lunch classes, cooking camp and a variety of sessions for adults. An elementary school Kids’ Camp held this past summer focused on knife skills and learning to cut food correctly. In this hands-on class, the kids made calzone and learned how to make smoothies and lunch items. Lorraine’s 4-week Core Program focuses on breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack (one meal a week). Her One-Day Classes include favorites like Bento Boxes, pasta, etc. Lorraine’s first Mommy & Me class in late October is designed for preschool ages.
“There’s a resurgence in home cooking and in cooking in general,” says Lorraine. “There’s a great deal of variety in what I teach and it all appeals to kids, whose parents often lack time or interest in cooking.” Noting that many kids have no experience in the kitchen, Lorraine loves teaching them how to crack an egg, use a knife, and see how nutritious food and positive eating habits can make a big difference in their lives.
Lorraine’s mission statement is important for today’s issues and values. “I wish to fight obesity and related illnesses by empowering and educating children and adults in the critical skill of nutrition and healthy cooking so they can make informed decisions for a lifetime of wellness,” says Lorraine, who “loves engaging with the kids.” Lorraine exhibited at the Oktoberfest Show at Kentlands and relies on word-of-mouth comments from happy clients who have been impressed by the classes they or their children have taken.
Lorraine is the mother of three teenagers, one of whom is a vegan. Healthy cooking has made her more motivated to select appropriate choices. She knows how important food is – both socially and nutritionally. She loves teaching about nutritious foods and positive eating habits. “It’s easy to make poor food choices and rely on items made with white flour and too much sugar,” she says, “but your family will thank you for showing them how to do better.”
You’ll agree with this quote from Lorraine’s web site: “Trying to get our kids to eat healthier and make better food choices often feels like an uphill battle. We are all so busy and often it’s just easier to reach for the bad stuff! But did you know that over 20 million children in this country between the ages of 2-19 are overweight or obese? And most kids don’t know how to prepare the simplest recipe on their own. That is why I am passionate about teaching our children the importance of a healthy diet and about teaching them valuable kitchen skills and lessons that they can use for a lifetime. As a Healthy Hands Cooking Instructor, I will engage your child in various food preparation processes, while teaching them safe kitchen practices and educating them about nutrition, all in a fun and creative environment.”
A new WBO member, Lorraine notes that she has been to other networking groups and likes WBO because “I like the speakers, the community involvement, and the members’ sense of helping one another.” Originally from Connecticut, Lorraine likes to read, travel, and do things with her family when she is not working. The Sluds went to Italy last summer and loved it.
Ellen R. Cohen is a free-lance writer and editor whose “editorial advertising” helps her clients advertise their goods and services in a variety of ways. She can be reached at (301) 984-7444.