Thursday, March 7, 2013

Cutest Kitchen

These pictures are a few years old but I thought I'd share them with you.  This little kitchen is from the Flickertail Museum in Stanley ND.  It is a small kitchen, but so very cute and cheerful with it's flowered wall paper and yellow wainscoting.
I simply adore the Hoosier cabinet in the corner and the white, ruffled curtains that are almost TOO pretty to be in this country kitchen.  Notice the tins on top of the cabinet?  They have strawberry decals on them!

There is a darling set of Anchor Hocking "Tulip" salt and pepper shakers above the stove.

On the other side of the little country-kitchen table stands a china hutch.  Not too big, just big enough to house the everyday china and maybe some fancy china too.  I imagine storage might have been a problem when this kitchen was used in "real life".  I just want to peek in the drawers and open up the bottom to see what treasures are hiding!

Would you like to see some more of the house?  Well then, do come in.

This house was small but not THAT small, and I think a person could live in it even today if they didn't have a lot of stuff.  A person could even raise a family in this cute little house and many did!  I imagine they were a close knit family.  Sisters most likely shared one half of the upstairs and brothers the other half.  And I imagine they talked to each other way more than we talk to our families present day. There were no video games, computers or TVs.  There were, however, newspapers, radios, magazines and books.  Maybe Mom chatted with the neighbors, had a clothesline and a garden.  I imagine she baked homemade birthday cakes for her children (no Planet Pizza or Chuck E. Cheeze birthday parties back then).  Maybe they didn't have much, but they had each other (like the Waltons).
Eh, then again, maybe not.  Maybe the family couldn't wait to purchase a bigger home.  Maybe the water from the well was horrible, the grass in the yard grew in clumps, and the neighbors were disagreeable.  
I know we sometimes look back at the past with "rose colored glasses", but I still like to look back on it that way.  Even if it wasn't ideal, I still think we've lost sight of some of the SIMPLE things in life,  like a small china hutch with our most precious dishes in them.  I have a fairly small house, but a large enough kitchen.  As I sit here writing I count that we have 13 cupboards and 7 drawers in our kitchen and they are crammed full of utensils and stuff I hardly ever use.   I haven't used my blender in almost three years.   Do we really NEED all that we have?  People did just fine without all of the stuff we have now:  Fancy bread machines, waffle irons, pizzele irons, griddles, mixers, blenders, fancy coffee machines with fancy little cups of coffee juice.  People of the past did just fine without them!  They borrowed from the neighbors or did without. 
Excuse me a moment while I step up on this box and zip up my flame suit...
What's interesting is, through what little research and reading I've done...I've discovered that housewives in years past had more to do each day but did it with less equipment.  (And truth be told...they probably felt more full filled with the routine of their everyday lives than we do today with our 9-5's.)    When they baked, they used their arm muscles to mix the dough.  They used a bowl and a big spoon.  No fancy mixer with special attachments (well, some maybe did, but they were a luxury for many around here) and no fancy bread machines.  Coffee was boiled!  On the stove, in enamel coffee pots, or peculates, there were no fancy Keurig machines with there little "K-cups" taking up precious counter space.
I see these monster washer and dryers people have been getting now-a-days.  They take up half a room!

We've made things more convenient and simpler to save us time.  But I think we need to take a long, hard look at what we are doing with our time.
We go to work to make money to buy stuff we don't need.  Where will we put the stuff?  In huge houses we really can't afford, so we work overtime.  Is this living? 
Why do we buy stuff?  Do we buy the stuff to fill a void of something we've left behind...a simpler time?  A fulfilling time of family, friends, neighbors, picnics, raising the children.

Whew!  Oops, that was kind of a vent there.  But something I've been thinking a lot about these past few years.  Simpler may not be better for everyone, but it is for me. 

Until tomorrow,
Have a Happy, Simplified Day!

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