When many of us barely have three minutes to nuke a frozen burrito, the thought of taking time to make your kitchen a more special, magical, even sacred place may seem pretty daunting, but these simple tips will inspire and enliven you.
Claim your role as a Kitchen Priestess, making nourishing magic that will feed you and your family–body, mind, and spirit. The antidote to cultural depression and disconnection can all start in the kitchen! Food for thought, right here:
1. Connect with the seasons. Our disconnected culture may have lost touch with the world of nature outside our kitchen walls and windows, but we honor what is happening seasonally by bringing in a perfect bare branch to grace the countertop, or thinking Spring by forcing a flowering twig to bloom, or hanging a crystal point where its icicle-like shape will catch and reflect the light.
2. Organize to meet your real needs. Take some time to think about what you need, enjoy, and want in your kitchen and then make it happen. For example, if youíre a tea-drinker like me, you may want to keep mugs, teabags, and honey in one cabinet rather than in three different places, so all you have to do is open one door. And let your kitchen reflect your passions and beliefs by displaying artwork, quotes, or objects that are meaningful to you.
3. Be willing to be wacky. Play and spontaneity are deeply nourishing, but many of us donít even consider having real FUN in the kitchen–instead, we feel drudgery descend like a thick fog the minute we set foot in it! Liven things up by allowing yourself a little creative freedom: why not paint a magenta sun on your backsplash, or hang a rubber whale from the overhead light, or sew yards of fringe and rick-rack on an apron and wear it with pride, if you want to?
4. Make a Kitchen Altar. Many cultures throughout the world have small holy shrines in their homes. When we bring our own personal sense of the sacred into our kitchens, we connect with our deepest selves, and recover some of the ancient sense that cooking was once revered as a deeply important and magical act. You might want to include a photo or statue that is meaningful to you, as well as a small candle or tealight, perhaps fresh flowers, incense–anything that pleases you and honors your sense of the sacred.
5. Claim your Power Place. You deserve a comfortable spot in which to sit and muse about hunger and nourishment (translation: read cookbooks, think about whatís in the fridge and how that can be translated into dinner.) Consider installing a poufy armchair in your kitchen, so you can bask in comfort. If there isnít enough room, then even a plush cushion on the floor, if itís yours and yours alone, can help you claim your power as Priestess of the Kitchen.
6. Clean Green. We need to feel more rooted, safe, and connected in the kitchen, but toxic chemicals make our bodies feel unhappy and ill, discouraging us from connecting at all. Take a look at Annie Bondís wonderful books, Better Basics for the Home or Clean and Green, or subscribe to our free newsletter, Healthy Home, to find out how easy it is to use kitchen-cupboard ingredients to clean your home safely and naturally. You could also try singing while you clean, or cleaning barefoot! Add a strong herbal tea to your cleaning water, for sweet scent and nice vibes.
7. Celebrate. Even more fun than a potluck is a Community Cook: invite your closest friends, uncork the wine or grape juice, and chop, dice, stir, and laugh together in your green, sacred, magical kitchen. The sweet memories will make you smile for years to come.
Adapted from Witch in the Kitchen, by Cait Johnson (Inner Traditions, 2001). Copyright (c) 2001 by Cait Johnson. Reprinted by permission of Inner Traditions.
Adapted from Witch in the Kitchen, by Cait Johnson (Inner Traditions, 2001).