March 28, 2009

Finding Ourselves Again

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Do you want chopsticks? I asked my husband as he stir-fried the meal from Trader Joe's, one of our favorite resources when neither of us wants to stop and cook.

He did and so did I, so I pulled open--or should I say--yanked open the drawer in our kitchen which houses the odds and ends. Yanked, because something was stuck. While he pushed the food around in the hot pan, I decided to excavate.

Plastic forks, spoons, some wrapped from fast food runs, the Japanese chopstick rests, the children's silverware (miniature versions of ours for the grandchildren), serving spoons, the Christmas-themed cheese spreaders, nutcrackers, more-than-enough chopsticks (from our trip to Japan), clippies to hold the chip bags shut, cheese slicers, orange peelers: a veritable treasure trove of clattering, clanging, cluttering detritus.

My husband looked over at me as I unloaded most of this onto the counter. What are you doing? Getting the chopsticks in order, I said. I didn't wash out the baskets that held it all, but did winnow down the bulk of these items and restowed them back in place. The drawer opened and shut smoothly.

When I'm on the run, it's tasks like this that remain undone. The floor in my study starts to pile with books. The ironing board becomes another surface on which to pile things. The guest bedroom collects shipping boxes around the corners. The spare bed in my husband's study starts to resemble an archaeological dig, layer upon layer of manuscripts and papers to be read.

For when we get too busy, we just stack and layer and toss and vow to come back later (summer, anyone?) and find ourselves again.


  1. Funny - my husband and I have been looking for a piece of paper that he is sure he left on the counter where he puts his piles. I have quite a pile of my own that needs to be dealt with - but I am saving that for spring break.

  2. I so agree! I'm in need of that time to find myself again. Summer can't come fast enough

  3. I smiled at this image... I just yanked out a few drawers in my kitchen 30 minutes ago, trying to hunt down a misplaced item, stymied by a drawer full enough to refuse to pull out all the way. :)

  4. I love the description of your drawer! A good reminder that maybe I need to perform some spring cleaning of my own...hmmmm, maybe.

    And speaking of junk drawers - here's some art I thought you might enjoy:

    -Carrie F.

  5. The junk drawer in my kitchem haunts me. It feels like a dirty secret. :)

  6. My favorite line? "...clattering, clanging, cluttering detrius." Well said, Elizabeth!

  7. I experienced this same thing looking for the ice cream scoop... it was somewhere but it took two of us to find it. Love this post!

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  9. No truer words were ever said. I have a total of 6 of these drawers in my house not counting the bathroom which is filled with items relate to my post yesterday about aging...also not counting the storage unit filled with things I clearly don't need as I haven't thought of one of them for the last 2 years.