31 March 2007

sunday scribblings: #52 - In The Kitchen

*Yeah, I know it's already Friday but I worked on this last Sunday. Does that count? I didn't want to scrap it as this is my very first Sunday Scribblings .
© 2006 Meg Genge & Laini Taylor

Memories are what come to mind when I think of “In The Kitchen”. The memories I speak of are those that were created in my grandmother’s kitchen.

I can hardly remember a day when I wasn’t there. I didn’t live in the same household but we only lived five blocks away. An invitation was never needed and if you wanted to eat dinner you could count on it being served at 5:30pm sharp. Everyone was welcome.

My grandmother always wore an apron and there were extras for other collaborators in the kitchen. My mother still has a few of the old collection and they are still being worn.

Ahh . . . . the smells and the taste of everything. Meals made from scratch, birthday cakes and cookies baked, holiday meals prepared, hot oatmeal available each morning, pickled beets with hard boiled eggs and onion always on hand, sauerkraut, pork and dumplings stewing and fresh fish caught by my grandfather. All of these carefully prepared and graciously served.

Gathering at the table, sitting down together and sharing a meal was the norm and going out to dinner was a rare occurrence. Today, unfortunately, I think it’s often the other way around.

A dishwasher was a luxury. We had one all right, several to be exact; anyone who participated in eating was equally qualified to do the washing. Everything was washed, rinsed, placed in the dish strainer, dried (with flour sack towels) and put away. There was no putting if off until the next morning. This was all part of the family time together.

The table we sat at for dinner was also the table where countless hours of games were played. They were all stored in a wooden cabinet, also still around. Whether it was a board game, word game or just a good old game of cards, everyone had fun.

That same table also doubled as the place where my grandfather would polish his shoes. Layering it with newspaper, he would meticulously clean and polish each shoe with precision and then place them on the floor.

The last event of the evening belonged to my grandfather. He “swabbed the deck” every evening. This is how my grandfather referred to mopping the floor. He spent twenty-six years in the Navy, and some habits, along with polishing his shoes, never died.

The kitchen still remains. It’s wearing a completely new décor, but the memories are still alive. I know because I stand in it everyday.


Michelle | Bleeding Espresso said...

Ah, how wonderful that you're still in the same kitchen! And yes, I remember the washing, drying, and putting away of everything almost immediately...although that's one tradition I can do without ;)

Great Scribble :)

all over the map said...

sogn - Ahem, I have to be honest and say I don't follow that tradition, are you kidding? It was a good habit but I'm too much of a slacker at times.
It was fun to think about those times and I liked the exercise. Think I will give it a whirl again.