Finding balance in our kitchens almost seems impossible when both partners in a marriage are working. It’s like the least likely place to get the most attention. Yet it is the CORE to how we spiritually nurture ourselves and family members, it’s the CORE to whether or not we will be healthy, just by virtue of what we are feeding ourselves and our family and it’s the CORE to keeping our family emotionally close, whereby at least one meal a day shared between all of you.
To ‘get’ there can be a long process, but it’s well worth the struggle and/or challenge, because when you think about it, our kitchens need more tending then we are giving them. And the three most important virtues for ourself and our family is: Spiritual, Mental and Health, and all three of these parts of our lives can be manifested beautifully when you have a living kitchen.
I like to say that our living kitchen is a manifestation of truly believing specific appliances and loving attitudes actually makes your kitchen your food and your life come alive. Chop wood/carry water is a big part of our living kitchen. We need to begin to feel comfortable in our kitchen, to relax…creating it to become a sanctuary for us. Most of us have negative images in our head and heart about feeling as if we are the ones who ‘have’ to buy produce, prepare meals, clean up after the meals, because the rest of the family is too busy with their lives, so we end up feeling resentful, and unappreciated.
Chop wood/carry water is a Zen-like approach towards learning to love the discipline and patience it takes to embrace something we need to do everyday of our lives. Let’s face it, we have to face our kitchens more than once, if not twice or three times daily. We are responsible for nourishing ourselves and our families health and wellness. Chop wood/carry water means practicing something on a daily basis with these virtues such as patience and respect, reliability and perseverance laced with love and appreciation, so that in time we become ‘ONE’ with ourselves and our relationship to our kitchen instead of this defunct and dysfunctional daunting responsibility we used to see our kitchens as being.
Here are some ideas how you can start practicing to build your own living kitchen:
1. keeping our kitchens clean on a daily basis
2. keeping our kitchens spices, pantry and refrigerator organized
3. supporting our kitchens with living appliances such as Juicers, Blenders….etc.,.instead of microwaves, slow cookers, deep fat fryers.
4. keeping our refrigerator filled with living foods and greens, for easy preparation for juicing and supersalads.
5. lighting a candle in our kitchen to give reverence to mother nature, our loved ones and to our own divine self…. out of gratitude to Nature for these beautiful foods and juices.
6. Place flowers from your garden or from the florists onto your kitchen island or near your sink.
On a saturday, when most of us want to sleep in or go shopping…why not turn on your favorite cd, light a candle and re-do your kitchen? Clean out the pantry, the refrigerator, wash the floors, buy flowers or better yet, pick some fresh herbs from your garden or buy some to make your kitchen smell fragrant. While you are working in your kitchen, you can clean and store your greens for the week and cut your carrots and beets for either juicing or super salads.
Relax into the chop wood/carry water principle. Consistent presence in your kitchen by building these rituals twice a month to ensure your relationship with your kitchen is alive and well is the road to loving your living kitchen.
With consistent dedication laced with love….real devotion and love, your kitchen will start to take on a new face, and you will start to resonate more with seeing it as a sanctuary rather than a place of dis-connection, drudge or duty.
Once you get your kitchen nicely organized, you can start to think about replacing some of the appliances that do not support living health..with empowering “living kitchen” appliances. Then you will start to wake UP to the fact that juicing daily, eating supersalads, keeping a beautiful kitchen is absolutely transforming!
Depending on how old you are, you may well have negative memories relating to nourishment or your kitchens, meals, etc.,. where nobody was home, nobody cared, or if they cared, the food was purchased from restaurants, fast food places, or perhaps put together without much care for nourishment or love. The last place you thought LOVE would live could have been in the kitchen.
Perhaps you had a great experience in your family then, and even now, and that nourishment with either foods or love were not an issue for you….wow what a great platform then for you to build your own Living Kitchen without any real struggles to overcome first….but for a lot of us………..
Your kitchen can be a very stressful place in our home, or it can be a place of relaxation. For those of you who have had trouble identifying yourself in the kitchen as someone who is loved, appreciated and honoured by your family members or even yourself, then you should know this can be changed, altered and if you like….be totally transformed.
For example, let’s take a look at what a transformed kitchen looks like. Most of our kitchens have appliances such as: coffee maker, deep fryer, slow cooker, aluminum and teflon coated cookware and tools, and the obvious ovens, and stoves. These are appliances that truly take our ‘vital’ health away from us. How can we build vitality and living health when our own appliances we have, can’t come near to supporting this new and transformative way of living and being?
Here is what a living kitchen looks and feels like: vital nourishment on every level; physical, mental, spiritual and emotional. Most regular appliances or foods don’t build nourishment whatsoever, yet in our living kitchen, living foods create true nourishment in our bodies. Living juices such as freshly made juices also build nourishment and ‘life’ in our bloodstream as it also builds ‘life’ in our entire being. Our living kitchen also is a wonderful platform for placing our living appliances on the countertops of our kitchens such as…juicers, blenders, soymilk makers, dehydrators, tofu makers, electronic sprouters, electronic herb gardens….wow, can you imagine how incredibly vital you are going to feel and “Be’ … when your kitchen mirrors your quest for you and your loved ones to be healthy, vital and nourished on all levels?
Living the simple life…connecting to real, authentic, unadultered foods and fresh juicing can help us better understand the beauty of natural foods, mother nature and the awesome transforming powers of a working and joyful Living Kitchen.
As Natural Living Food preparers, we really DO work harder everyday in the kitchen, but by using these meditative and loving principles of prayer, gratitude and love for who we are and who we love, helps us ease into these daily kitchen duties with grace.
Hugs to you all from me and Jay ~ and here’s to Joyful Juicing!