Tuesday, January 06, 2009


We have a galley-style kitchen. I keep reminding myself that there are positive aspects to this situation. For example, there's less to clean. And I can reach nearly everything I need without moving. And I get to guiltlessly turn over management of my kitchen to my MIL when she visits; the two of us don't really fit in there at the same time, so . . .

But there are still a couple of sticking points. Like, for example, storage. (Don't get us started on the arrangement of the cupboards, which Paul unilaterally reorganized 2 years ago. I can access all of the canned goods now, but pots and pans are completely beyond my reach. Who needs those, right? We can just cook in the cans!) But it's not just that. Other dangers lurk, as well.

Our kitchen serves as a pass-though between the family room and the dining/living rooms. The foyer serves the same purpose at the other side of the house, but sometimes I don't want to walk way over there or step barefoot on cold bricks, so I cut through the kitchen.

I was trying to do so last night, shortly before bed. Paul was standing at the kitchen sink, complaining about sour milk or yogurt he'd discovered in a hidden sippy cup somewhere. I walked up to him from the family room, holding my computer out in front of me, headed for my desk/power cord in the living/dining room.

Proper ettiquette at this point is for Paul to turn sideways so that I can slide past him. Oddly, he didn't.

Then the reek hit me. "Man, that's disgusting! It smells like vomit. I think I might vomit!" I was distracted at this point by the terrible smell, but I still
wanted to get past him so that I could set down my computer. Even a laptop gets heavy when held out in front of me for a few minutes. I gestured with it to indicate that I wanted to move forward, then I thought of something else.

"Oh, crap. I forgot to make something for my circle meeting tomorrow morning, and I'm supposed to bring the snack." I scanned the kitchen counters, hoping, I suppose, to discover a fresh loaf of pumpkin bread just randomly lying around. Then I moved on to wondering how many Christmas cookies we have left. (Answer: not many.)

"Why don't you bake that bread pudding from Time for Dinner?" Paul suggested helpfully, still standing broadside and blocking the path through the kitchen. I was almost on him by now, but he still wasn't getting the hint. Weird.

"That's a fantastic idea. I just need to set this - "

My computer waving had proven ineffective so I moved to a more direct confrontation. As I spoke, I stepped firmly forward, confident that my husband would turn aside, laptop still held out in front of me.

I was immediately in terrible, horrible, sharp, excruciating pain, hopping and falling and stumbling forward. But at least I made it to the dining room without destroying my laptop.

I'd stepped directly into the open door to the dishwasher, which Paul was apparently loading with nasty sippy cups. Explaining why he wasn't moving out of my way. We were on opposite sides of the machine and he had no idea that I couldn't see the open door through my computer. When it's open the door to the dishwasher lies across most of the kitchen floor, almost meeting the drawers opposite.

I'd somehow managed to slam into the metal obstacle with both of my shins, scraping them both most unpleasantly. I was a huge baby about it, but the pain was terrible.

I'm not a big cry-er, and I did go ahead and plug in my computer, then bring up the raw, frozen bread pudding from the freezer in the basement so that it could thaw on the counter overnight. But then I went straight to bed and lay there whimpering until Paul came in with ice packs. Then I moved on to whining.

Perhaps we do need a bigger kitchen.

Anyway, the girls had trouble sleeping last night and slept in (until 7:30!) this morning. And Paul set his alarm clock for PM rather than AM. So we ended up running around like mad people this morning. (In my case, it was hobbling around like an irritable mad person.) And I didn't have time to bake the bread pudding (which I made in somebody else's kitchen) after all. I just stopped at Bread Co. for bagels.

So, for our purposes, maybe our kitchen isn't too small after all.


Barrie said...

Oh yikes. Sorry about your shins. You've started me thinking about kitchens now....and I'd like new cupboard, counters, flooring. But, it would be too expensive!

flatflo said...

Pobrecita! At least it is winter so you don't have to worry about ugly bruises and shorts.

Given the breadth of your hubby's shoulder's I would imagine you kitchen could be a tight fit. Our kitchen is not very narrow overall, but the fridge is so close to the counter with the sink that some chairs have to be lifted over instead of go through. Just one peeve on my kitchen design list. Alas, new windows for the main floor and a furnace that need replacement in the next couple of years are higher on the list of capital improvements. I still spend time redesigning in my head, though!

Sarahlynn said...

Barrie, maybe not! I was excited by your book when I first heard about it and am looking forward to reading it; maybe it'll be a new kitchen in disguise!

Flatflo, that's true. And I, too, have a long list of things that come way before a new kitchen. Like, for example, a new house. We love this one (and our neighborhood) but have some frustrations with the layout that we can't figure out how to address easily.

I never stop dreaming, though! I have great ideas for my windows, bathrooms, and landscaping. And that's not even getting into all the knocking down of walls I'd love to do (for a new workshop, home office, sun room, master suite . . . ). But at that point, we're pretty much creating a whole new house!

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