My Grandmother's Kitchen

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

An essay about my memories of childhood in my Grandmother's kitchen

Submitted: June 06, 2018

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Submitted: June 06, 2018



My Grandmother’s Kitchen



My first memories of my Grandmother’s kitchen are of a small room, barely 10’ x10’, warmed by a small gas heater and a gas stove.  And although I have so many memories of her kitchen; of the overwhelmingly hot days, the rainy days, or the just about perfect days, it’s the feeling of the warm kitchen that always accompanies me. That incredible warmth I believe had as much to do with the woman herself as it did that old gas heater.

 My Grandmother taught me to cook in that kitchen starting at a very early age, but she also taught me about how to live life, gave me values and morals. She taught Bible lessons while she cook supper, sang songs with me as she ironed clothes, and told me family stories for not only the history I would someday come to treasure, but also as life lessons. There was no TV in my grandparents’ house, there was no need. There was always something to be taught, something to learn.

 She would teach me about being “Green” long before it became a popular term. Her generation was all about using and reusing in the decades before we assumed we thought the concept up. Grocery paper bags when split open and laid flat were great for coloring and art projects. Old giant map books were turned into scrap books. I would cut out articles, cartoons or pictures that I liked out of the paper or magazines and paste them in my scrapbook. My own artwork could be placed there as well. Wash water from the wringer washer was used to water and fertilize the garden. Simple things like the foil wrappers from the butter or margarine would be saved and used later to grease the bottoms of cake pans or bread pans. Everything could have a 2nd purpose and she taught me that when I was very young; values that are instilled in me even now as I have my own home and family.

My first real memory is in her kitchen. I was 3, but only by a few months. It was a winter day, but the kitchen was warm and full of wonderful smells. My great uncle, her baby brother, was visiting and the 3 of us were gathered in the kitchen. My uncle and I were anxiously watching the clock and the oven door simultaneously. I could tell time yet; but it was what he did, so I did the same. Then she opened the oven door and pulled out the most delicious smelling cupcakes and the fight was on. We both wanted the cupcakes. She knew that he was teasing me and trying to get me riled, but she took the opportunity and the first lesson I would remember was taught. “The first shall be last and the last shall be first”, she said, and asked if I knew what that meant. I learned that day about being gracious, allowing others to go first, and sharing. And yes, the cupcakes were delicious. Those cupcakes were the first thing she taught me to bake, before I could even read because I had the recipe memorized. She taught me with love and patience all the things that she knew and all the things that she wanted me to be.

 The kitchen is no longer standing and Grandmother has been gone for too many years now. However, lessons learned are still lived daily and even now I can feel the warmth and love from Grandmother’s kitchen.

© Copyright 2019 Gail Ann Hill. All rights reserved.

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