In the Kitchen: Memories, Magic, Family and Fun

What the Kitchen is to Me

How can you really describe to someone what the kitchen in a house.  It’s the one area that can truly make a house a home by giving you a space that can bring friends and family together for everything from daily meals to celebrations and even teaching.  It’s not just the place that we cook and do the dishes; the kitchen is the place where we reconnect with each other and enjoy the people we choose to fill our lives with. It’s the place that grandmothers teach their grandchildren how to find adventure and excitement in the anticipation of a favorite meal. It’s the place mother’s and father’s share an evening dance to reconnect, and the place newly weds steal a kiss when their family is visiting. My kitchen is probably my favorite place in my home, not so much because of what I physically get accomplished on a daily basis, but because of the memories made in the process, and the people I remember while I’m there.

Dancing in the Kitchen

One of my earliest memories is of me jumping, twirling and dancing in the kitchen with my giant stuffed dog that I had gotten for Christmas, while my dad played his guitar sitting in the chair he used for playing (because it had no arms and it was easy for him to rest his Martin guitar on his lap while he played) and cooking dinner for my brother and me.  This is one of the memories I think I will recall when I’m old, looking back at my life to see how much it was filled with love and the simple joy of knowing that I was loved back. My dad was spending time with me and playing for me after a long hard day at work, and he was also taking his time to cook me a dinner that he had learned how to make from his mother; recipes that I now cook for my husband, our friends and family.

Today, I am happy to report, I still dance in the kitchen almost every day. Dancing in the kitchen isn’t just a description of an action in a place, it’s a phrase that means you are able to let go a little bit and enjoy the mundane tasks in life, either by yourself or with the ones you love. When Josh comes home from work to find me finishing up dinner and listening to music, which lets be honest is almost every day, he puts his lunchbox on the table and scoops me up to dance. Yes, even if I’m in the middle of the making something delicate that requires a lot of attention, he will still do this, even if it’s only for a minute. It helps us reconnect after a long day and physically shows me that he wants to spend time with me and how much he truly loves me. It’s a time for us to be a little silly together and helps to relieve the stress of our days. There is a movie from the late 1990’s called Blast from the Past. It stared Brendan Fraser and Alicia Silverstone and was based in an early 1960’s nuclear bunker (if you haven’t seen this movie, you are for real missing out on one of my favorites of all time). There is a scene where the character played by Brendan Fraser is a kid and he sees his mother and father dancing. His father dips his mother and gives her a kiss as he gently brings her back up (check out the IMDb here). This moment helped form the character itself as the movie progressed. This is what I see in my head every time I dance with Josh in our kitchen. Him continuing to woo me and show his love, even though we have been together over 10 years now. It really never gets old ❤

The scene from Blast from the Past

The Magic of the Kitchen

The Kitchen Table

A kitchen is a magical place in the home that can be made into almost anything you need it to be.  A kitchen table can become a workbench for a project, a cutting table for fabrics or a desk to get homework help. We used our kitchen table as a school house when I was growing up, since I was homeschooled until high school. My mom used to have us read just before lunch, especially when we were reading Little Farmer Boy by
Laura Ingalls Wilder, part of The Little House series. Almost every chapter of this book has an in-depth description of meals that the boy ate everyday. The descriptions were so detailed that my brother and I would get super hungry. When we couldn’t stand it anymore, my mom would get out The Little House Cookbook and we would make something that was described in the chapter(s) we had read that day. I still remember doing this and how much fun it was to be able to bring what we were doing for school to life and become a part of the story through cooking. If you are a homeschooler, or just want to so something fun with your kids, I highly suggest this lesson plan. Way to go Mom!

The Stove

The stove is often considered the center of the kitchen, or even the home in some cases. It is where most meals are prepared and you can literally feel the warmth of the love going into preparing those foods. The stove can be used to cook, yes, or it can become a campfire to make marshmallows on a stormy night, igniting the imagination of your family.  It can be used to make any number of crafts and projects with little ones or to help teach lessons of both life and academics through measurements and timing. The stove gives a central gathering point for the kitchen and home. When I think of my grandparent’s home during the holidays, I think of all of the women gathered around the stove, sharing old stories, family gossip and tips they use in their own kitchens. The amount of warmth and love almost makes my heart burst when I think about it.

Season Your Life with Love

If you take nothing else from this post, take away the love that fills my kitchen, and that of my family’s kitchens. The love made in the kitchen can be used to season your entire home, giving it a feeling of comfort and ease. Use your kitchen to share your life with friends and family. Invite your grandparents over and make a meal they used to make you. Have your parents over for a cup of coffee or tea and sit at the kitchen table to catch up; no hurrying allowed! The kitchen is the best place to just sit and catch up with old friends. The last time my bestie was over, we sat in the kitchen for almost 3 hours, just chatting and catching up on life. These are some of my favorite times. We don’t have a TV in our kitchen, and this allows us to really connect with each other; listening, engaging and seasoning our relationships like old cast iron skillets (lol! I know I’m corny). The impact that having a cup of coffee can have on someone’s life is almost immeasurable. You can give and receive advice, compassion and lessons from everyone in your life. The kitchen is the place to let any issues fall away and just create with and for the ones you love.

seasoned with love
Feel free to share your kitchen memories, tips and advice below.

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