Ever thought this? “I’m overwhelmed with where to start!” Oh my goodness, I’ve thought this often! And have you ever felt stressed with how to transform your kitchen – I sure did. This sentiment can be repeated for many areas of our lives, right?
- Our schedule
- Our relationships
- Our marriage
- Our teens
- Our home projects
- Our cleaning
- Our budget
- Our homeschooling
- Our task list
Am I alone in sometimes feeling overwhelmed in some of these areas? I didn’t think so. So why on earth would we add stuff into the mix of our already super-tough daily lives?? How can we possibly add one more thing onto our plates?
Well…sometimes we can’t. Right?
Spinning Plates to Transform Your Kitchen
One of my fave pastors, C.J. Mahaney (read his blog here), used an illustration in a message of an individual spinning a plate on a pole. Spinning one plate on a pole isn’t usually that difficult. Adding another plate on a pole gets tricky. Add another (and another, and another) and it becomes downright difficult, if not impossible!
Of course, he wasn’t referring to living simply in the kitchen, but I think the point of his illustration can also be applied here. We hear of sosososo many awesome ways to improve our family’s lifestyles, health, etc. But when we attempt to implement the things we learn in order to impress others, keep up with others, or even at the risk of neglecting other things we know God is calling us to do…we become plate spinners. And, eventually, those plates come crashing down. (This is usually when you’ll find me crying – dinner burnt on the stove.)
If we’ve just had a baby, just started school, are experiencing major illness, just lost a job, etc., then the timing is probably not right for implementing living simply in the kitchen. (And if you find yourself in one of these seasons, pin this post and come back to it later. )
Learning to Transform Your Kitchen – without Spinning Plates
So, while we want to avoid jumping into things unwisely, I think there’s wisdom in continuing to grow in how we manage what God has given us.
I’m a fan of going slowly and, as an item began to run out, I researched and made changes as I could. With the list below, you could take one item every couple of weeks and transform your kitchen over the course of one school year! So, in no particular order, really:
- Learn the difference between “Non-GMO” and “organic.” Start shopping for organic produce when possible.
- Discover how to not waste any of that real food you’re purchasing.
- Read why store-bought yeast and grains are bad and how to make a sourdough starter instead.
- Read why pasteurized milk is no good and try making coconut milk (or another dairy alternative).
- Find a source for raw milk. Now you can make homemade yogurt, butter, sour cream, cream cheese, etc.!
- Bake a loaf of sourdough bread and be amazed at how easy it is. Try one of these new sourdough recipes on the menu once a month.
- Go through your pantry: donate, toss, and add healthy items to replace.
- Learn how you can save money on replacing pantry items, like organic vanilla extract and using lard.
- Read about how to ferment foods, like kombucha, and try making a batch of kombucha.
- Learn how easy it is to make your own chicken stock.
- Try soaking beans. Try soaking raw nuts.
- Learn how to make baby food – 2 weeks’ worth in 2 hours!
- Determine what your budget allows you to do and find ways to save money while still eating real food.
- Read how to maximize your time in creating real-food menus.
- And create healthy menus that save money.
- Review the make-up of your kitchen: consider getting rid of your microwave and adding some new tools of the trade, cookware, etc. as the budget allows.
- Find a co-op near you and learn what questions to ask your local farmer.
- Research how to preserve and can and begin purchasing supplies.
- Consider planting a small garden – whether you have a large space or an apartment balcony!
- Use a water filtration system.
- Remember to laugh at yourself – because this is a pretty funny journey, isn’t it?
You can take it as slow as you need to (years and years, even!), or go as fast as you have the grace for! And what is important to me may not make your list of things to change – and that’s ok! The goal is to make changes wisely so that they enhance our effectiveness while reflecting a desire to honor God.
What would you add to this list? How have you managed to transform your kitchen?
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