Saturday, December 8, 2012

My Mother's Kitchen

Ever since she retired, my mother has spent most of her waking hours in her kitchen.  She's a good cook (although she does tend to over-salt things when she's flustered).  She's one of those Jewish mothers: Eat something!  You're too thin!  Take anything from the pantry!  Have more!  No really, what can I get you?

It's quite lovely, actually.

On my shopping list:  Potato peeler for mom's house.  Of course I want to help out when I'm over there for a family dinner, but anything with a blade in her kitchen is as dull as a letter opener.  Sharp blades are dangerous!  You might cut yourself!  Ken brought over one sharp knife, which she keeps separately in its original plastic sleeve and never uses.  Her potato peeler is one in name only.  You may as well rub the the side of your finger against a raw potato to get the skin off.

My mom never had a microwave oven in her kitchen until she moved last year.  The new house has one built into the cabinetry.  She's afraid of using it, the way some people in the late 19th century were scared of using electricity.  I tried to show her how to at least use it as a digital timer, but I don't think she's got the hang of that either.

In her old house, my mother used a small telephone desk at the end of the kitchen counter as command central for all her papers and plans.  No matter that she had a proper desk in a study.  That room was used for storage only.

Her new house is bigger than the old one.  She no longer has to share a study with my step-dad; there are more than enough rooms in the house for them to each have their own office.    However, she consulted with Ken (who has a good head for design) on how to cram her computer desk into the kitchen.  Yes, you read that right, she wants her computer and main paperwork area in the kitchen.  It's not as if she uses the internet for recipes or cooking how-to tips.  She just likes being in the kitchen, because it's cozy, and that's where the tea is.

I think that Ken and I, between us, may have convinced her that putting her desk in the kitchen is a silly idea.  I mean, her main complaint has always been that she doesn't have enough space for herself and her own projects because my step-dad likes to spread his papers all over the house.  She could have a whole room to herself with a door that closes!  Why cram herself into a corner if she doesn't have to?  And why expose her fancy computer to the humidity, grease, heat, and spills of the kitchen?  Ken, after lengthy arguing against her plan, may have persuaded her, or she may change her mind back again.

All these eccentricities aside, I am always happy to hang out in my mother's kitchen and be fed.  Her cats feel the same way.


DarcKnyt said...

I love it! I think EVERY kitchen should have a computer ... or at least a computer-like device. But if the room is too small, it's too small, and you're right -- humidity and grease together create an acid compound which corrodes most everything. (Which is why catalytic lacquers were invented to coat kitchen and bath cabinetry.)

I'm hungry now, too.

Warped Mind of Ron said...

Nice... kitchens are nice places to hang out... especially if there is cooking happening.

Warped Mind of Ron said...
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Warped Mind of Ron said...
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Lynn said...

The new kitchen sounds lovely and being fed by your mom, even better.

Jenski said...

Kitchens are often where people congregate, so it's great your mom keeps those people well-fed. :-) In case you want to add another tick-mark to the "debate", I'm totally with you and Ken on the location of her computer workspace!

Jameil said...

MMM. I wish my mom would cook for me more! She always wants me to cook!

DarcsFalcon said...

How about, instead of the computer desk in the kitchen, put a little camp stove type thing in her office, or a Mr Tea, so she can make tea in there?

It's so cute everyone wants to be in the kitchen.

I hope she listens to you! Computers and kitchen grease don't seem to mix very well.

LL Cool Joe said...

The kitchen is the most popular room in the house and I quite understand the appeal of having a desk there with a computer too! :D

Tracy Moore said...

Your mom's kitchen sounds like a good place to be. I'd like it there too. The microwave thing is funny. My dad just mastered the use of it last year. He wouldn't touch it before. :)