In My Kitchen ~ January 2016

Tea kettle

In My Kitchen… is the cutest lil’ tea kettle. (Makes me happy just looking at it!)

Normally I’m a coffee drinker, but I just can’t do java like I used to past 2:00 p.m. (or a.m.) and believe me, I’ve tried. This recent acquisition was prompted by a boatload of tea (a Christmas gift from a musical friend — thank you, Karen, xo) which I’ve been enjoying ever since…. especially since I got this.

Boiling water “ala saucepan” is no trouble (really), but tea-making and drinking just aren’t the same without a tea kettle. (Plus, I’ve missed “the whistle”… anybody?)

Stash of Tea

In My Kitchen… is an assortment of Stash Tea.

Simply wonderful flavorsherbal, caffeine-free, and/or otherwise — and great for mid-afternoon (or midnight) lulls. Ebeneezer Scrooge wasn’t the only one who suffered from whenever awakenings… but thankfully mine come without ghosts.

Nurture your creative “Spirit” — past, present, or future (or middle of the night) — and Happy 2016 everybody, xo!

Red platter with chocolates

In My Kitchen… is this cranberry-colored platter.

Most of my serving dishes are “basic” white, but every now and then a girl’s gotta play. As for the chocolates, they’re part of a future post (provided I don’t eat the evidence before then, ha!)

Good things come to those who wait, including cranberry-colored platters.

Cooling racks

In My Kitchen… are THREE professional grade cooling racks, woohoo! (Apologies… only two fit in the photo.)

I’ve been using one discount store cooling rack for over a year, juggling TMOFW’s baked goodies (and sometimes having to pry them from the aforementioned), but now I’m thrilled to be able to give his oven treats (and moi) a lil’ SPACE between batches. Repeat after me: NO stress ‘In My Kitchen’… NO stress ‘In My Kitchen’!

Sometimes even the most mundane item can be taken for granted, but please do me a favor and take a quick inventory — then thank God — and hug yourself  for every amenable blessing. Make it a point to INVEST in your cooking efforts in 2016 if you haven’t already — totally worth it — and YOU. (Get what you NEED!)

Red or Green Chili Cookbook

In My Kitchen… is yet another cookbook “gift.” (Thanks, Linda, xo!)

I LOVE spicy food (or perhaps the more apt term is HOT food?!) and I learned loads about what to look for in peppers, how to handle/prep/cook ’em, etc., from this gem of a cookbook. (Fantastic recipes as well!)

Remind me to head for New Mexico again soon, too… I love the landscape there.

In My Kitchen… is/was tangible evidence of the first time I could play “IMK” since the 1st of December (musical obligations, ‘n’ all)prompted by my friend Ally — plus a lil’ reciprocal lovin’ from TMOFW.

Gotta love friends and loved ones who cheer you on!

I don’t know who was more tickled… me with two dozen of each (red and yellow), or my hubby over Mini Pineapple Upside Down Cakes. Somehow I think it was a win/win situation!

Pen holders

In My Kitchen… (and probably totally inconsequential, but it’s part of “who I am”) are these recently discovered/acquired pen holders.

I can never have enough pens (let alone storage for ’em) and these tickled my soul!

In the foreground is a “handmade in Greece with 24 karat gold etchings vessel” (purchased at our church thrift store for a dime — I love that place!) The other is an obscure (unknown origin) jade green pottery/pattern/piece reminiscent of ancient China. (Don’t care if its “authentic” or not — loved the shape and color — $2 at a local antique shop!) The better to write to you, my dears.

Forget Me Not Dove

Last, but not least, In My Kitchen… is my wish for you for the New Year: PEACE!

The dove (above) arrived in the mail with Christmas greetings infused with Forget Me Not seeds to replant later — an unexpected gift from Carol, a Pampered Chef consultant whom I’ve only “met” online (like many of you) who’s been instrumental and entirely helpful in re-stocking my my kitchen during the past year. (Again, like many of YOU!)  How nice, xo.

I feel so blessed… hopeful… thankful… and peaceful as we start 2016. Things are finally starting to look, feel, and COOK “normal” around here. (Yay!) Thanks, too, to Fiona (Tiffin) for the 2016 IMK calendar (LOVED IT!) and to Celia for the gorgeous Swarovski “angel” bookmark. (DITTO.) Hugs back!

This month’s In My Kitchen adventures are brought to you by Maureen at The Orgasmic Chef (same great fun, new hostess), with many thanks to Celia from Fig Jam and Lime Cordial for getting the proverbial ball rolling (and to Maureen for stepping up to the PLATE, literally.) Thanks, ALL … and Happy New Year!!!

Enjoying worldwide blessings and IMK always,

~ Kim

34 thoughts on “In My Kitchen ~ January 2016

  1. Lovely eclectic mix of things in your kitchen Kim and I have cooling rack envy – I’ve been making full use of just one rack too, a very old one that’s crying out for some companions.

  2. Love cooling racks and professional cooling racks are the best – I will get some of these one day when I have my own kitchen in my own house :) Looking forward to seeing the dishes you create out of you Red or Green cookbook – we just love spicy food too! Lovely goodies in your kitchen Kim for #IMK xx

  3. I’m always keen to see what you picked up at the thrift shop Kim, as I love those shops too, and your little pen holders are a treat. Yes, we share the same Celia angel- a lucky omen and beautiful treasure. I bet that Lindt chocolate doesn’t last long!

  4. Anything red in the kitchen adds a cheery note, and your red kettle does that with great lines as well. Love it! Can’t wait to see what you cook from “Red or Green”, and whether you recommend the book as a terrific resource for New Mexican dishes. Happy 2016!

  5. A lovely thought, we have a similar blue tea kettle, that we bought to use on the gas stove after our electric jug died. I love the whistle and the water boil is gentler so the tea tastes better. Of course I also have to admire your pen holder op-finds, they are fantastic :)

  6. Just love that red kettle Kim and I am sure it will get plenty of use with all that tea you have to get through. I keep a stash of pens in the kitchen too but the containers are not as pretty as your. So happy to see that life is good and the kitchen is “blooming” once again. Happy New year to you and your family and wishing you all health and happiness :)

  7. I love the kettle, so gorgeous. We need to replace ours in the kitchen. I am loving your stash of teas. I am curious about the Pumpkin Spice – never seen that in the UK. Wishing you a happy New Year in your new kitchen.

    • Thank you, Vicki! The mixture of old memories (even without the former “visual” prompts) and making new memories here and now have helped create a space I’m thrilled to be in. Tickled you could join me! Thanks again.

    • Isn’t that the truth, Sandra?! We’ve been on such a bare bones “replace the basics” quest for over a year, it’s been a total delight to have a lil’ breathing room and pick up the odd knick-knack here and there. 2016 will include more “personalizing” as I go! I think that’s been the hardest obstacle to overcome “post fire” — especially during the holidays when things with memories attached aren’t there — or when you realize the house is “live-able” but it still doesn’t look like “you.” One hopeful day and thrift shop at a time, my dear! :) xo

  8. I love the tea selection and the names are so gorgeous; what a fabulous gift. I hope you don’t eat all the chocolate as I’m looking forward to seeing what you do with it. I do need a few more cooling racks so I hope to get a few like yours. I want some peace for the world as well! xx

    • Charlie, I got a kick out of the tea “names”, too — so enticing. (Just noticed the Christmas Eve selection is “upside down” (obviously due to packaging and my frequent imbibing of that flavor!) Please refer to my reply to Maggie (above) as to what I’m going to do with the chocolate (coming soon to a cooling rack near you! :) Peace my dear friend, xo.

  9. What a fabulous month and so glad to hear things are returning to “normal”. Your tea kettle is fantastic, though I use my electric one. It’s just so fast! Curious what is happening with the chocolates. Happy New Year!

    • Gretchen, you’re the third person in this comment section to mention an electric tea kettle (sounds like a great gadget!) Whatever makes tea-making (and sipping) happen, GO FOR IT! As for the chocolate, I’ve got a chocolate-orange cake in the works (bonus points for gluten free) that I’ve been hankerin’ to make/try. (Photographic evidence forthcoming… probably with teeth marks in it, LOL.) Happy New Year!

  10. Hi Kim, what a great collection for this month’s IMK post! Your pen jars would be the envy of my mom! I’m partial to the jade one myself. Although a huge tea drinker, I mostly use an electric kettle to boil and our teapot for stewing is a very sturdy and metal one. However, it does the job. I must say though, your teapot is adorable. I need to get some new teas soon – I just have some blackberry tea, lemon and ginger in addition to some regular black tea in the house at the minute – both you and Jhuls have inspired me! I look forward to seeing the new new chocolate recipe – Lindt and Ghiradelli choclate! Yum! Can’t wait!

    Also, wanted to stop by and say Happy New Year and thank you so much for being a great blogging friend this year! You were one of my top commenters on my blog and I really appreciate that. All the best for 2016!

    • Maggie, blog “stats” are fickle creatures from year to year in my experience, lol. Thanks for letting me know I made the “one o’ your top commentors” list though! Seems like everybody is pressed for time, and commenting on blogs isn’t what it used to be… which brings me to say: thanks SO much for commenting on mine, too! Looking forward to exchanging thoughts (and IMK goodies) with you in the New Year, xo.

  11. Oh how I’d love to hear your tea pot whistling! I’ll have a cup of Holiday Chai, please – and one (maybe two) of those mini pineapple upside down cakes, cooling on your new racks. Put the kettle on – I’ll be there as soon as I peruse your thrift shop for a cool new pencil jar to replace my old, cracked mug! You are so great at helping me enjoy all the little things in life!

    Marian in Faribault

    Sent from my iPhone


    • Ally, the coolest part of this past year has been starting over from scratch. “What (and who) do I want to be NOW?” Nothin’s set in stone… every moment is an opportunity to re-define and CELEBRATE! Love you.

  12. Your kitchen keeps getting better and better and more rooted to who you are. I’m thrilled that you are recreating the kitchen of your dreams and looking at life through happy eyes now.

    I love that kettle and pen holders.

    • Maureen, it meant so much to me that you could see “me” emerging In My Kitchen (with “happy eyes.”) Yes ma’am…. one day (and thrift shop find) at a time! :) xo

  13. Kimby, I couldn’t agree more ……. your kettle is a cutie! Guess what? I just received one like yours last Nov for my birthday, but it’s a Hello Kitty whistling one. Still not sure what to do with it since I already have an electric kettle…….. xoxo

    • Shirley, I can just picture you enjoying tea with your “Hello Kitty” kettle. :) I have a non-electric one due to intermittent power outages… yay for alternative solutions and gas stoves! Enjoy either (or both) and Happy New Year, xo.

    • “Cozy” is the key word :) and I’m so glad you felt that! Thanks for your compliment on my photos, too — I’ve been battling overcast skies (and/or downpours or SNOW flurries) and I miss the “natural light” when it’s waning… but still take photos! Much appreciated, xo.

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