Since my kitchen is clean, I decided to take pictures for the purposes of documenting that every once in a while it can be pretty. Our kitchen is definitely a retro-style kitchen. The stove is a working model from the early 50s and the cabinets and sink date back to the late 40s. The previous owner completely refurbished everything and it's what made me want to buy the house. It's so bright and happy. The tile back splash reminds me of a sunny day! My kitchen still looks cluttered, I guess, but there's some things I keep out because I use them so much. The little black thing on the top left of the stove is a heat protecting handle to put on my pans after I pull them out of the oven. It's kind of the joke around here, but whenever I pull a pan out, I always warn everyone else that it's hot, so be careful ... inevitably ... I'm the one that gets burned. So, I keep it handy, so I remember to use it.
Then, the next "clutter" I can't live without is the big yogurt container by the sink. We don't have a garbage disposal, so instead of throwing food scraps in the trash can, my neighbor and I started a compost pile. I keep my scraps in the yogurt container and once or twice a day, I empty it into the composter. Neither one of use thought it would work very well, but it actually produced great fertilizer. I don't use it because I don't plant things. I just buy them in the pots already and kill them before the season is over. I just got back from grocery shopping and I'm leaving a few things out. I bought the necessary ingredients for Kevin's favorite peanut butter cookies. I'll put the recipe on here in a minute ... believe me ... they are the best ever! I worked hard at adding and taking away ingredients and have mastered this recipe over the last five years of baking them for Kevin.
Then you can see the one mess I haven't cleaned up and that's Lubbock's kitchen toys. They're a set of dishes that are the same colors as my kitchen. (That way I don't mind when they're scattered all over the place.) And a sandwich stacking game. He's too young to play it right now, but he likes to put the pieces up to his mouth and say "Mmmm" ... I guess he's seen me do this enough that he started imitating me.
Anyway, there's a close up picture of his kitchen toys the way he left them. We're working on putting things away. He likes to put something in the basket and then clap for himself because that's what I've been doing. If I don't clap, too, he takes it back out of the basket and throws it on the ground. If I do clap, he pulls it back out and puts it back in and claps for himself again. It's a pretty silly cycle and ultimately winds up with a messy kitchen and an upset one year old!
The only 'art work' we have in the kitchen are some canvases that I painted yellow and have placed pictures of Lubbock with a messy face on them. I like it because it's the dining room and so it's kind of fitting. I meant to get a good messy picture of him with his birthday cake, but he wouldn't touch it! He didn't like it at all. But, I do have a picture of him after he ate some cherries last week. I just need to get it printed. The middle picture is of his first bite of baby cereal. He didn't know what to think, but it's a pretty cute picture. It reminds me about how little he used to be, too. I never really noticed how the middle picture is higher and not very centered until now ... I'll have to fix that.
Lastly, there's a picture of the curtains I had made for the kitchen and dining room. I attempted to make them myself, but it was a complete disaster. I am not handy enough to keep myself from going insane. I'm great at picking out the fabric, but that's it. So, a friend from work made them for me a little while ago. It was really nice of her. She laughed because it wasn't even like I needed anything fancy ... just sewing straight lines ... how hard should that be?
Okay, here's my beautiful peanut butter cookie recipe:
1 c. sugar
1/2 c. dark brown sugar
1 c. shortening
12 oz. jar of peanut butter
cream together above ingredients
1/4 c. milk
2 tsps. vanilla
add and beat well
stir together next ingredients and add in small batches
3 1/2 c. flour (sift, then measure)
2 tsps. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
shape into balls about the diameter of a quarter (I use a cookie scoop sized for 2 tsps and make it a little fuller).
roll these in sugar. place on cookie sheet.
bake at 375 for 8 minutes, remove and place peanut butter cups in the center and push down slightly. bake 3 more minutes.
they'll look under-baked, but let them sit on cookie sheet for a few more minutes and then let cool for a while before eating. before placing in cookie jar, you'll have to let them cool over night since the peanut butter cups will take a while to 'un-melt.'