Does everyone perhaps find their kitchen, somewhat bewilderingly, like the Tardis?
How is it actually possible to suddenly realise, on a Saturday afternoon, that you have been in there for several hours, without actually noticing the time slipping by?
How can it be that you sit down to chat, over a cup of tea, or a cappuccino, and realise (seemingly aeons later) that you have set the world to rights, and also decided that your dresser really should be chalk painted a different colour, and that lasagne would be a good idea for dinner?
Is any other room in the home so endlessly nurturing and so versatile about activities, conversations, experiments and events?
Ever since childhood, I have felt at my happiest in kitchens. I know it is a heavily worn idiom, but is it possible to deny that the kitchen really is the heart of the home?
Where else in the house can you sit, and enjoy the colours, and sundry smells of someone working? My memories are full of such snapshots, of watching my Grandmother and my Mother,in their respective kitchens, preparing food, labouring over pots and pans and showing love through their efforts.
My son is also a keen cook. He loves to research, explore and enjoy food from a variety of cultures. There is something very special about standing by the kitchen worktop, seeing him labour over a ‘Pasta a la vodka’, or carefully nurturing a dish in a sizzling wok. Every dish he serves is full of his care.
Food is nourishment, but it is also a way to nurture and to convey love. Although kitchens look alluring in showrooms, it is only when life is breathed into them by their owners that they become places of true magic; places where we show our love through our daily (although admittedly not always successful) efforts.
Kitchens are places of adventure too. The table or counter is a perfect space for being creative. Some of my warmest memories are of sitting with my son (and often his friends) making treasure maps, carving pumpkin sculptures, baking buns or making rocket ships and mini-dens out of paper and used food packages.
During lockdown, my kitchen was also my sanctuary. It was where I exercised three times a day, online, with friends. It was where I sat, for hours on end, painting my first efforts at portraits of my friends and family. It was also where I ‘hung out’ with my son, cooking and.chatting, as we helped each other to adapt to the newness of daily life without friends and family.
So, the purpose of this blog is to pay homage to kitchens. Big or small, sleek or shabby, old or new- they are places of love and connection. Today (after you read this) go to your kitchen and sit down. Relax. And show it some love!
10 Ways to Show Love For (And In) Your Kitchen Today:
- Have a connected conversation with someone (either online or face to face, in your bubble)
- Bake something you are good at, or find a recipe and try something new.
- Cook or make a dish for yourself or a loved one, or with someone.
- Have a cup of tea or coffee and read a book or newspaper.
- Look around you and use what you see to inspire a poem or a short piece of writing.
- Organise a drawer or cupboard and feel a sense of achievement in the results.
- Find something that you can change or upscale easily- a chair to chalk paint or a new arrangement on a shelf. Enjoy it!
- Go through your spices and throw out any that may be out of date. organise the ones you have left. Notice the colours.
- Paint, draw or colour in. Take pleasure in being creative.
- Relax and enjoy the space around you.
What do you love best about your kitchen?
- What do you love best about your kitchen?
- Do you have any kitchen memories that you’d like to share?
- Have you any interesting facts, information or tips about kitchens?
Please share in the comments below.