Thursday, May 22, 2008

Task #8: North Side of Kitchen

I worked my hour or so in the kitchen, but I will admit there is still much left to do. While I was working on it, I came to the realization that for several years, survival lay in hurry. When I had small babies, cleaning the kitchen meant either zipping through at top speed for the 15 minutes he was looking at his mobile, or delegating kids.

Now that I have more time, my rushed habits yet remain. I am trying to be more respectful, more peaceful, almost more contemplative about doing these necessary and never-done things. It does not come easily to me -- housework and cooking are what you rush through so you can get to the good stuff -- reading, thinking, writing, talking. But the Kathleen Norris book is right -- too much of that leads to acedia. For now I resolved to at least dwell on one thing and try to make it beautiful. I liked what Anna at Pleasant View Schoolhouse wrote in Lessons from Vintage Fiction:

A room isn't finished until it reflects the homemaker's love of beauty. A pot of primroses on the dinner table, an embroidered bureau cover on the bedroom chest of drawers, a clean dresser scarf on the buffet in the dining room--creating a home takes attention to detail.

Now, here are some BEFORE pictures -- we have a music center in the kitchen -- no compartmentalization here : ):

I spared you the pan with the scrambled eggs remains. My kitchen looks like this every morning -- we're a family of nine!

Some of the "after" views will have to wait until tomorrow because I only got to about half of it. I find the kitchen extremely challenging for my sensibilities. I dislike grease, I dislike strong cleaning agents, I find it difficult to work very hard on a small spot and have it look only better, not perfect.

But here's what I worked on:

The stove -- scoured top, underside, surface. -- swept underneath and collected a lot of little things, some from way back when the 5 year old was a toddler.

Microwave area -- wiped a bit -- I will admit I didn't get to the interior of those cabinets. My husband made the doors of them a couple of years ago ;-).

If you take a look at the first "before" picture, this is the after -- inside the bottom cabinet.
Detail: the tea kettle. I worked on this for about 15 minutes, scouring and polishing. I tried to make it look like it was loved and respected. That was my little try at perfection in the details for at least one thing today.

1 comment:

Susan L said...

I really like this post and your kitchen, too! And congratulations on your weight loss and on the progress traveling by bike to Lothlorien. :-)

The personal details might be good for keeping you accountable, but they're also good for those of us who are working at various projects and goals. So, I'm glad you're posting!