Kitchen Talk

11 May

There’s a house located in Sweetwater, TN that I used to call my home. My family and I moved in it when I was at the ripe old age of 8. I remember much about this house, but I wonder why the kitchen is fuzzy to me. I spent six years there. Don’t families congregate in the kitchen as someone cooks the dinner and someone sets the table? Don’t people discuss what went on that day while waiting for the dinner bell to ring (figuratively speaking, of course, unless you’re in Ducktown, TN but that’s another story for another day)? It seems to me that the kitchen is where it’s at! Just think about all those family get togethers. People group around the kitchen to talk and simultaneously annoy those who are actually using the kitchen to cook. Our lives are sustained around this very act of eating that takes place in these rooms. So, why is it that I can’t recall much about that kitchen?

I have an impression of a light green. I know if I turn my head towards the white refrigerator that I will see a magnet with a cactus on it and loud, bright colors- a souvenir from our family vacation to Arizona. There’s a pantry in there, too and it seems pretty big to house food. Inside there are fudge rounds, but not many are left! The tiles beneath my feet are squares and cold to the touch. Beside the bar area, there’s the faintest hint of dog prints where the tiles were laid out to dry. There are tall, white cabinets that are always so out of reach for me just beside the pantry. Although, I can’t see the light fixture or the countertops, I can see the old table that my great grandfather built. I can see my little brother crawling around at my feet…

which is a miracle because he’s not so little anymore. I have trouble remembering some big things while seemingly unimportant ones (hence the Arizona magnet) are abundant. But the memories I do have of so long ago, I want to preserve. Do you ever close your eyes and think about where you’ve been or how far you’ve come or how your life has changed? I do. And if I could go back for a day, I would soak up every last detail of the family habiting that kitchen. I would pick up my younger brother. I would be nice to my big sister. I’d give my stepdad a hug and I’d go tell my mom I love her. I miss them so much.

I know I’ll count my lucky stars if Captain J’s and my kitchen is half as decorated with love as my family’s kitchen was so many years ago.

What do you remember about your old kitchen?

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9 Responses to “Kitchen Talk”

  1. Kimmie May 12, 2010 at 3:28 am #

    Maybe you can’t remember the kitchen counters because we changed them in the short few years we lived there…..they started out with white cabinets and sea foam green counter tops (I know, I know… but I was going for the Southwestern look….hince the magnet) then we changed them to Maple cabinets with a purplish countertop….(this actually looked better).

    Although we did spend a lot of time in the kitchen (remember the bar stools around the counter?), it was so open that a lot of times, you guys hung in the family room while I cooked. It was really one big room……

    I miss you, Kace. Can’t wait to see you…..really glad we got to Skype last night….we will do it again soon. Love ya, much!

  2. wanderingmenace May 12, 2010 at 7:41 am #

    I remember sitting my little brother in a chair in the middle of our kitchen and daring him to try various disgusting items I found in the cupboard. I also remember making the two of us peanut butter and chocolate ice cream milkshakes after he had enough anchovy paste and was considering disowning me.
    I like this post, you’re right, it brings back really specific times to think about the kitchen you grew up in.

  3. chancesimtaking May 12, 2010 at 11:23 am #

    I remember kneeling on the small ledge in front of the sink to reach the cereal in the top cabinet, getting yelled at each time to get a chair. I remember the over grown plants all over the kitchen that I helped plant and transplant several times. I remember the magnets hanging on the fridge from every vacation any of us ever went on either as a family or solo. Lastly, I remember the lack of family dinners. My father worked til 11pm and my brother and I ate in front of the tv most nights. It’s not as sad as it sounds. Especially when you don’t know any better.

    I enjoyed this post of yours. Beautifully written Mrs K. Kudos to you.

  4. Laura Weigle May 12, 2010 at 2:55 pm #

    I remember our kitchen growin up. It wasn’t in great shape, but the food that came out of that old banged up kitchen was spectacular. You see my Mom (J’s grannie) was light years ahead of her time with her cooking and ability to put a meal on. Everyone was welcome in our home and the kitchen/dinning room was kindof the gathering place for endless friends and family. My mom would let us cook anything and encouraged our creativiity. more to come

  5. louise barnes May 12, 2010 at 4:34 pm #

    Do you remember Sally and Ray Arp? They adored you and Page. She is at her daughters in Georgia now. She’s in her 90’s and very frail, but every time I would go see her, she would ask if I had seen you girls. We lived behind you in Richesin Heights and shared the well, and Billy and Johnny Raby had to work on it in 4degree weather one winter!

  6. Mrs. K May 12, 2010 at 6:23 pm #

    Thank you all for sharing your kitchen stories. Neato! I enjoyed reading them.

    Louise- Yes, I remember Ray and Sally! I used to visit her a couple times a year when I still lived there. Last time I went, though her memory was fading and she couldn’t remember me.

  7. Miranda May 12, 2010 at 7:09 pm #

    I remember going into the kitchen and finding soo many delicious things to eat that I couldn’t chose which one I wanted to eat. Little Debbies & Doritos were a must in our house. Sneaking to get a soda from the pantry as not to mess up the count from the fridge-because my mom only allowed us to have one per day, if that. (She didn’t actually count them, but back then ya just had to be careful) lol. I remember how the kitchen was always so pristine and glimmering white & still is-even when she cooks. My favorite memory is when we had birthday parties for our dogs. We put the dogs at the kitchen table and they had doggie ice cream and hats even! And yes, we wrapped new dog toys, beds, ect for them to open. (on Christmas too)We actually did this more than once. They still get Christmas presents, wrapped of course. One time my sis cleaned the kitchen and she used a scrubby sponge to clean the counters and then the microwave. It left this huge scrubbed scratch spot on the front. I can see it now! My mom couldn’t stand it. We also had the magnets from vacations adorning the fridge! I still buy her a magnet from everywhere I go.

    My kitchen memory with you is telling you that we reuse paper plates. Your face was priceless while you rinsed the paper plate off in the sink! Another one is in your mom’s kitchen. The times I’ve stayed with you and we were “fat kids” just searching the pantry, refrigerator, & freezer for random food to eat all day because we were too lazy to prepare anything. And drinking caffeine free diet mtn dews-from the closet fridge in the garage. Love it. I’ve been addicted to diet mtn dew ever since I met you.

    • Mrs. K May 13, 2010 at 1:58 pm #

      Miranda–That’s one of my favorite stories: the time you made me wash a paper plate. I won’t likely forget that any time soon! Good times. lol (I also remember your kitchen always having good pizza. I bet it still does!)

  8. Robin May 12, 2010 at 7:15 pm #

    I always think about how weird it is that I can remember tiny minute details but, can’t remember the big things.

    I remember all the kitchens growing up. I remember them always being filled with yummy smells and lots of love. Those memories have made me definitely want my kids to remember the same thing when they are older. The kitchen is my favorite room of the house and when I think about the houses I loved growing up, it was always the kitchens that I loved the most.

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