alison kent HOME KITCHEN design gather elevate compose home cook designer dinner entertain celebrating HOME during Quarantine

today’s KITCHEN | Celebrating Home While in Quarantine

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No doubt it’s an interesting time around the world right now. With everyone in quarantine, we’re having to focus sharper inward while still standing strong with the city / country / world we love. If there’s a silver lining, for me, it’s an opportunity to genuinely celebrate HOME.

We are lucky. VERY lucky. We more often than not were already eating dinner as a family almost every day. Our daughters are safe at their homes. We have freezers full and a small grocery store that’s practicing all the safety measures nearby. There are plenty of Restaurants providing take-out when we need a break. Three of us still – for now at least – have our jobs. I know we’re going to be ok.

That said, I wanted to use this chance to do better. There’s a chance I’ll never get time like this again with my boys, in my home, chatting with my friends. To learn something new, to grow as a human being without so many distractions.

I’m trying to focus my newly VAST amount of available attention (LOL) on celebrating our HOME. How?

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Dinners TOGETHER

While we often ate together, it was at the Kitchen Island, sometimes the TV was on, and people were up and down the whole time. For the weeks now that we’re not entertaining, I’ve set up a small table for 4 in the space between the Dining Room and Kitchen for us to SIT and eat – focused on being together. It’s nice to have conversations and look each other in the eyes across the table, vs in a row unable to make eye contact at the Kitchen Island.

Our youngest boy – who doesn’t cook really yet – has a newfound job being in charge of setting a nicely laid out table, right down to completely unnecessary but joyfully decorative napkin rings! It’s new and special every evening we have dinner.

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Family time at HOME

Since we weren’t using the big Dining Table to have people over, I’ve let the boys bring down their laptops, gaming consoles, Lego’s and homework all downstairs to the table, one boy per side. Even when we’re doing our own separate things with headphones on, we still have a sense of each other being nearby. When it’s time for an afternoon movie or an evening game of cribbage, we hang out all together in the Living Rm for an hour or two. We’re on our own much of the day, but still together. It’s a lovely compromise, even if Lego are pretty noisy!

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Text, Skype, Facetime…

You name it, we’re on it! We have been keeping a sense of home and family through our ongoing group chats with our daughters, my parents, family, and friends. Even though we’re all apart, our conversations are bringing us so much closer than ever. There is time, no one is rushing to get somewhere else, we’re relaxed, there is a deep sense of caring for one another, and somehow HOME – whether our immediate space or the home of our City – feels closer than ever. Especially at the 7:00 ‘drums’!

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Time to EXPLORE

Suddenly there is TIME. I’m taking the time to explore new recipes, ways to perk up the backyard for ourselves but also for entertaining (in small groups) once again, making my way through classes and lessons online, etc. There is time to read that book I’ve been meaning to get to, or write the book I’ve been meaning to write (the story of MY Kitchen).

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As I sit here, I’m watching a guitar concert in someones Kitchen halfway around the world. Celebrities are inviting us into their homes, as they cope with music and humor and share it with us all. And suddenly, these past weeks, the sense of HOME is global.
How about YOU?! You’re officially a part of THIS home!
Hope you’re all doing well, keeping safe, and creating for yourselves a renewed sense of HOME that will last far beyond the current world situation.

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