Tag Archives: barefoot

Dancing barefoot in the kitchen

Yep, that’s how I am most days, barefoot, and that’s where I am most of the time, the kitchen. Why? Well that’s how I am most comfortable and that is where most of the activities in our house are centered around. I do keep a pair of flip flops at each door in case I need to run out for something like the mail man or chasing a pig outta the yard. For the most part I am barefooted though.

I’ve heard all the barefoot and pregnant jokes when I was married and pregnant. I’ve read the ‘dangers’ of going barefooted, especially the stuff you can catch from the ground. (I do usually wear shoes outside.) I have broken a few toes because of being barefooted and I’ve stepped on more Legos than you could ever imagine. The fact that there are still Legos in my house is a true testimony to the power of forgiveness!

The kitchen is the heart of our home. I really enjoy cooking so I am always trying out new recipes or letting the kids help me fix a snack or a meal. It is usually filled with good aromas coming from the crock pot or the oven. I always have sweet tea or hot coffee ready for anyone who comes to visit. Most days we can even rustle up a piece of pie or slice of cake too. If you come hungry I’m sure can find something in the fridge that can satisfy your hunger too.

The island is fairly good size for an older mobile home and it is used for everything from schoolwork, bread making, sewing projects, and vacuum repair. It is also the place where a lot of visiting takes place. The younger kids and Grandpa have claimed the playroom and the older kids have pretty much claimed the living room. So Momma has claimed the kitchen. When I have visitors, which isn’t that often, we usually sit or stand around the island to chat.

This island was also the center of activity during wedding preparations for my oldest daughter’s wedding in June. (See Who can you count on? for more about that.) My family and friends all gathered around this island to prepare the food and decorations for the wedding and reception. We shared lots of stories, caught up on news, and had a wonderful time. We made many memories around this old island with its peeling cabinets and chipped counter-top.

Our kitchen is a dine-in kitchen as we converted the formal dining area to a bedroom for my special needs son. We have a big kitchen table with benches. I love this table and I had prayed for a table big enough for all of us to sit around. My then husband and I went to the flea market, the first and only time I’ve been, and on our way out I spotted this table back in a corner. We found the seller and asked about the price and the cost to deliver it. Well, it was way more than what we had on us and over the budget I had set for a table. I was sure that it would be gone before we saved the money so reluctantly we left and came home.

A few weeks later he had went back to the flea market. He came home sooner than I had expected and he was really excited. He asked me to help him carry out the two tables we had in the kitchen. I wondered what he had gotten and soon I found out. A pickup pulled in with the most beautiful kitchen table on the back. (Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder.) The man had seen him walking around and had asked him if we had found a table yet. Within a few minutes the table was bought for the exact amount that I had saved and set back for our table.The kids were so excited to eat their first meal together. Before this we had two smaller tables for the kids to eat at.

That is a good memory and when I look at this table I am reminded of that day and how happy we were. It also reminds me of how God always provides us with what we need and many things we want. (See Are you needy? for more examples.)

Now the table is used for school work, art projects, meals, dinosaur adventures, monster truck rallies, play-dough sculpting, and so much more. It has the marks of being well-used and sometimes I contemplate having it refinished but I kinda like the character it has.

Our kitchen also has my roll top desk which is where I happen to be sitting, barefooted, at the moment. This is where a lot of my work gets done. I do a lot of planning for meals, school, budgets, outings, and other activities that must happen. I also take care of the bills and other household related things here too.

My kitchen is pretty much open to the playroom where the kids spend a good amount of time. I can cook, work on projects, make a grocery list, or just browse the internet for my next project while keeping an eye on them. I can also hear everything going on in the play yard from the kitchen.

If my kids come in looking for me they will usually come to the kitchen first. They know that is where Momma can normally be found. They also know that is where snacks and other goodies can be found. Unfortunately our cat knows this too and has developed the bad habit of jumping on the counters which we have been trying to discourage with a spray bottle of water.

When my kids have made some discovery outside or have created some interesting architectural structure that I need to come see they will come looking for me. They will bring my flip flops with them because they know Momma probably won’t have her shoes on. They keep me from having an excuse.

Another thing we have been doing is playing music throughout the day. There is just something about music that can calm the soul. It can reach deep inside a person and make their heart happy. It is not uncommon to walk in to the kitchen and find me dancing around while cooking or cleaning. If the kids come in and laugh then I will grab them and ‘force’ them to dance also. Sometimes a whiny kid will be ‘forced’ into dancing, as well. This has become a fun outlet that is an immediate cure for the ‘grouchies’. We all know that grouchies can’t survive for long around music, dancing, or laughter.

I want my kids to have good, consistent memories of their childhood. If seeing Momma dancing barefoot in the kitchen is a memory that is forever etched in their minds then I’m happy. If they break into a smile every time they hear ‘Walking in the Sunshine’ then I’ve succeeded at this mission. (This is also a proven cure for the grouchies that was passed along to me by a dear friend.)

So how long has it been since you’ve danced barefoot in the kitchen? Why don’t you give it a try and see what happens?

Living the country life?

Original Blog Post April 6, 2016
What does living the country life really mean?
I know I think of farms with cows and chickens.
I think of lazy mornings sitting on the back porch sipping my hot coffee while wondering what to do to pass the endless amount of free time I have.
I think of working in a garden with lots of beautiful plants springing forth.
I think of my kids playing barefoot in the yard.
Then after a nice dinner, made from things we have grown on our farm, we sip some sweet tea and watch the sunset go down from our back porch swing.
In reality things are not quite so simple and not so peaceful.
I wake up before the alarm goes off and hear the roosters crowing. I try to carefully roll out of bed because any movement will wake up one or both of the little ones in my bed.
I tiptoe to the bathroom with my clothes in hand and softly close the door. No sooner do I turn on the water then I hear the pitter-patter of little feet, see a hand under the door and hear ‘Mommy, is you in der?’. Sigh, that’s how most mornings start around here.
I try my best to get up early and have a little quiet time, a little sliver of time for me and time to talk to God but it rarely happens the way I have it planned in my head.
After a quick shower we make our way to the kitchen for a chocolate milk sippy for him and one for my his big brother (yes, they do look out for each other) and he heads to the couch for his daily dose of Animal Planet.
Meanwhile I go back to the kitchen and start with pouring a cup of coffee and trying to remember what I need to do next.
Breakfast… Yes, I should probably do that. I grab my phone and check my calendar for the recipe (I’ll probably write about that another day) which is blueberry muffins. I don’t feel like making muffins. Actually I don’t feel like doing anything but going back to bed.
I mix up the muffins (using frozen blueberries from our farm) and pop them in the oven. I remember to set the timer too! (Last night I forgot and I almost burned the cookies.) I have about 15 minutes so I hurry back to the bathroom to fix my hair.
I sneak back to my room and read my daily devotional and say a quick prayer to ask God to watch over us and guide us through the day. It bothers me that I didn’t have my ‘quiet time’ as I do need it to help get me through the day.
I pick up a few stray items on the way back into the kitchen and grab my laptop off my desk. I thought I would sit down really quick and figure out a few more things on this blog thingy I’m trying to do. I grab a sheet of paper and jot down a few ideas as well as some other things I think of that need to be taken care of.
The minute my butt hits the stool the other kids start waking up. I start to get bombarded with questions and problems.
‘Mom, she has my shirt!’
‘Mom, I’m hungry!’
‘Mommy, mommy, mommy!’
I close the laptop because it is only stressing me out trying to figure out technical details with life happening. I wonder how anyone really has the time to do this and is it really worth it? This has been a similar scenario for the past few months when starting a blog was first brought up to me.
Right now I’m typing this on my phone and praying it will post correctly. The cats are at the door begging to be fed. The roosters are still crowing and so is one of kids. I can hear Oscar, my gander, scolding me for being late to feed.
Mornings are crazy here. Actually most days are crazy here. After breakfast I will head out to feed the animals and then come back in to oversee our morning chorea and start our school lessons for the day.
I have somehow lost the simple country life I dreamed of and it has been replaced with a chaotic, noisy life. I wouldn’t trade it though. I know this is just a season we are going through.
I know I will find moments through the day to speak to God and there will be quiet times when he will speak to me. There will be moments with the kids that I will always cherish. I may get stressed from time to time but I can use these times to push to my goal of the simple country life.
For now I’ll drink my cold coffee and then put some water on to boil so I can make some tea. I might not have a back porch swing yet but I can watch the sunset from my back steps and dream.