The Life Of A Cook

RANDOLPH – “Cooking is something I have always liked to do,” said Tonya Studley of Randolph. “I like to cook for a large amount of people, and when I have dinners I like to cook everything and not have others bring food. I don’t usually use recipes. I may look at a recipe and then do my own version.”

She didn’t start cooking until after she was married and would ask others how to make dishes. She is very happy to be able to cook with her grandmother’s wooden spoon and pan and has her turkey platter, as well.

“My grandmother was a very good cook. I wish I had more of her recipes and wish I had her Pigs in the Blanket recipe,” she said.

The mom has waitressed, been a short-order cook and a pizza maker in various restaurants. Although at one time she thought she may like to be a professional photographer, she is pursuing a career in real estate.

“I have had my real estate license for nearly two years and can honestly say that that is the one thing I am passionate about.”

She works out of the office of Real Living Avista Property and works two days per week at JC Penney.

Studley recently bought a new home and has done some carpeting, wallpapering, and painting and has had new gutters installed. Other goals for outdoor improvements include landscaping, new walkways and to redo the front porch.

“Like most people, I have a list of things I would like to do but don’t need to do,” she said.

She loves camp fires, roasting marshmallows and playing hide and seek in the dark with her kids and their friends. Photography is another passion, especially of people, nature and birds. She also enjoys watching her children play sports. She collects snowmen and loves flower gardening and used to volunteer at Cattaraugus-Little Valley Elementary School and at Gail N. Chapman Elementary. She is a member of Randolph Area Community Development Corporation.

“If I get a day off, I usually bake something, read or if the weather permits, go somewhere beautiful to take pictures,” she said.” Some places I have gone to in the past few years are Father Baker Basilica, Goat Island and Niagara Falls, Thunder Rocks, Allegany State Park and Chautauqua Lake. I love old architecture and plan a trip this spring or summer to Boldt Castle and Presque Isle.”

Studley has two children. Her daughter, Karly, is 14-years-old and is a freshman at Randolph Central School. She is in 4-H, Future Farmers of America, on the trap team, in student government and band. She plays soccer and basketball, also.

“She is the most fantastic daughter you could possibly have,” Studley said. “I don’t have to try or ask her to do homework.”

Her son Kyle is 9 years old and in the fourth grade at Gail N. Chapman Elementary School. He plays basketball and soccer.

“He is 100 percent all boy,” Studley said. “If it has wheels, a motor and mud involved, he’s happy. He’s extremely kind. I named him Kyle Joseph after my dad, Joseph, who I think is the most remarkable man on the face of the earth. If Kyle grows up to be half the man he is I’ve done a good job.”

She adds that her parents, Joe and Mary Ellen Giblin of Salamanca, will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary soon.

The family has two 4-year-old black labrador retrievers, sisters named Tink and Izzy, and a turtle named, Hueby. They attend Believer’s Chapel in Allegany.

“I used to have the spaghetti pie at a friend’s house and really liked it,” Studley said. “After we lost touch I missed having it. After I looked at a few recipes online I winged it.”

She was lucky to get the same friend’s Crunchy Apple Crisp recipe.


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