The Kitchen is the Heart of the Home (part 1)
Sometimes I worry that “the kitchen is the heart of the home” is losing its meaning. Are you wondering why? For so many of my clients the kitchen is intimidating. Either because they have not learned the skills to be comfortable cooking in the kitchen or because their relationship with food, in general, is strained. People seem to be spending less time at home, too. Rushing is becoming a way of life for so many of us. This just leaves less time to congregating in the kitchen with family and friends in the way I remember it. And, yes, this has me worried! For me the kitchen is more than a kitchen, it is the spot in my home that feeds body, mind, heart and soul. Yes we cook, but we also play, listen to music, talk, and catch up. It is the space where much life is lived and some of our happiest moments are created!
Trust me, I know that you may have the same feeling of joy in your kitchen, either because you feel too rushed or because you are not a fan of cooking. But if you are ready to learn to enjoy your time in the kitchen more, here are a few questions to guide you to having the kind of relationship with your kitchen that best suits YOU. Journal prompts...
What 3 words would describe a kitchen space in your home that you would love to be in?
What is your philosophy on cooking and does it reflect your philosophy on how you want to be living your best life?
What’s your fondest or most special memory that took place in the kitchen?
For those of you who already love your time in the kitchen, and those of you who want to learn to feel more jazzed up about cooking, here are some of my favorite ways to make cooking easier and more joyful experience:
add functional beauty to your space
A crock of wooden spoons adds simple beauty and elegance.
Fresh cut flowers or potted herbs add freshness and life to any space.
make it personal
Adding an unusual personal detail to your kitchen can make it a more inviting space to be in. My personal touches in my kitchen are a Shelburne Farms weathervane inspired iron copper patina pig that hangs above my kitchen sink and vintage french taper candle holders that move around my kitchen space.
keep it organized
I have a thing for trays lately. Like my self care trays, in the kitchen trays can be used to organize gadgets that you are likely to use in combination with each other, or they can contain clutter and hard to organize objects. Bamboo trays are an essential organization element in my house.
Minimize clutter. Be choosy with your herbs and spices and only keeping on hand what you need and are going to use. If I only had room for one spice in my kitchen it would be, hands down be Perfection Spice Blend from Teeny Tiny Spice Company. This is perfect on salmon, chicken, and veggies.
invite culinary creativity into your life
Try a meal delivery service. Sunbasket invites me to get creative in the kitchen. I worry less about what I am making for dinner when I know I am getting a box for the week. And, I am nudged outside of my comfort zone to try new recipes that I would not normally consider.
Keep recipes at hand that you are excited to try. Organize them using a cookbook stand, file folder, or keep them on the refrigerator.
kitchen compliments that i LOVE
feed the heart
Recipes should be easy and taste good. Full flavor, low stress. “Sloppy Shrimp” is one of my favorite full flavor, ready in 5 minutes, recipes. Perfect for a quick lunch or dinner.
And if this all sounds too good to be true, in part 2 I will share with you a college students version of “kitchen as heart of the home”. Stay tuned.