A Secret in the Kitchen


I have a little secret for my kitchen work.

My grandma, whom I love dearly and is a great treasure to me, always told me:

“Never do anything standing you can do while sitting down.”

In many modern kitchens, we find islands to work at, high bars and long counters. This leaves people standing around the island, whether to talk or to work. Sometimes there is not even room for a family dinner table as dinner is served on the island. Yet, I have found in many kitchens from an era gone by, you will find a handy secret in old images or paintings of their kitchen scenes…

And after seven pregnancies (which I find extremely hard on my legs and feet), I snatch the opportunity to sit while I work as frequently as I can. Whether it it as the family table (a great place to roll out large batches of cookie dough, especially with little helpers) or at the hoosier (a perfect location for bread making), I can pull up a chair and sit while I work.

So if I am canning, chopping, mixing or just reading a recipe book, I prefer to sit. Even if I am working outside in my simple outdoor kitchen {basically, our patio area that we convert into an eating area for the warmer months}, there are options to sit while we prepare our vegetables for canning or storing away.

Sitting for little breaks while you work saves your legs and feet.
There is plenty of time for standing and walking in my life (I do know how healthy it is to move about)- so if I can snatch a few minutes of sitting while peeling potatoes, I do.

In front of our kitchen cookstove, you will find a rocking chair ready to be used.

Sometimes when friends visit, they will sit there and talk to me while I prepare dinner or lunch. It feels inviting and comfortable. Many mornings, I can be found having my cup of tea in that rocking chair in front of the warm cookstove.
I also use a tall chair to sit at the counter height when needed to chop and slice food.

So my suggestion for you today:
pull up a chair and rest your tired feet, even if you are still working with your hands.
You can still work just as fast, but your body will have a few moments of rest.

And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business,
and to work with your own hands, as we commanded you;

That ye may walk honestly toward them that are without,
and that ye may have lack of nothing.
1 Thessalonians 4:11-12

April 7, 2017 - 6:27 am

JES I just showed pictures of 1920s pictures on my blog and they all had stools. This post now makes a lot more sense. I love these sentiments you shared here today 🙂

April 5, 2017 - 7:01 am

Gigi Yes, if you can get a stool, it helps at the counter height. 🙂

April 5, 2017 - 2:07 am

Rebecca I also want to see a house tour! And I thought this post was super interesting! I don’t know why I’ve not thought of this before, but I do find that I stand a lot in the kitchen all day and my back hurts, but I could easily put a chair in there — brilliant! Thanks for the inspiration!

April 4, 2017 - 4:19 am

Gigi Stacy, you are so sweet! Hmmm, a tour of my home would require it all to be clean at one time… I’m not sure that could happen in this home with so many people living in it. 😉 It would be something to aspire too, though!

April 3, 2017 - 3:31 pm

Stacy I love this post and I love your blog. Could you post a tour of your home? I would love to see 🙂