by Barbara Early
Our long-time readers may recognize Monday as the day we set aside to talk about current events. It’s important to stay abreast of the news and newsmakers that influence our country, our families--our very lives.
Today I’d like to discuss the recent invasion.
During the holiday shopping season, our shores, towns and maybe our homes were invaded by... the kitchen gadget. The kitchen gadget often makes an appearance during that time of year--popular among glassy-eyed men wandering aimlessly during their annual trip to the mall. But this year, more than most, kitchen gadgets flooded department stores with new functions that are hard to live without.
(Note to husbands: There are two kinds of women. Women who sell kitchen gadgets on Ebay, and women who buy kitchen gadgets on Ebay. When considering a gift, you must know which kind of woman you are married to. A quick test would be to look for that kitchen gadget you gave her last year. If you can’t find it, consider the jewelry department.)
Perhaps the most universally sought-after gadget of the season has been the K-cup coffee maker. I placed one into my Amazon cart for a couple minutes, in advance of a party I was giving. What could be easier than placing a little cup or pod into the maker and waiting for it to brew a cup of perfect coffee--and any variety of coffee you chose? And so economical too, compared to the cost of buying coffee at your favorite high-end coffee shop.
And here’s where I came screeching to a halt. While this may be a valid money-saver for anyone who has been buying coffee from a high-end coffee shop, at anywhere from 40 to 60 cents a cup (and up), it’s hard for me to justify. Especially since I’m the lone coffee drinker in my house, and I managed to adjust to a weak cup of instant at about 15 cents per cup.
What’s a gadget lover to do? Well, with all the money I didn’t spend on K-cups, perhaps a different kitchen gadget?
Only when I read the reviews, most said the machine pops about the same amount of popcorn you’d get from a microwave bag. So I’d be spending the whole evening popping popcorn. And then, when everyone goes home, someone has to clean it. Sigh. I think I’ll hold on to my smaller electric popper. Still…
So this season has been a bit of a bust for me as far as kitchen gadgets go--not one under the tree! Unlike previous years which brought my long-sought pierogi mold (and yes, I use it). Or my homemade blizzard maker (a dud). Or my rotisserie (I seemed to have set it somewhere and forgotten it.) Or the various attachments to my stand mixer (LOVE.)
Some of my kitchen gadgets save me time and money, and make my life better. Others just take up space and demand a periodic cleaning. They seemed like a good idea at the time, but they drain more than they give. If I were wise, I’d pull out every single gadget and ask, “Is my life better because of you?” (As long as I wasn't committed to a psychiatric facility for talking to my kitchenware.)
More insidious than that are habits and activities and attitudes that clutter my life and my relationship with God. It doesn’t have to be New Year’s Day to resolve to clear away the clutter of things which detracts from my spiritual walk.
Right after I’m done on E-bay.
Questions for discussion: What is the most interesting kitchen gadget you have/seen? Anything taking up space in your cupboards (or life) that has to go?Barbara Early grew up buried in the snowy suburbs of Buffalo, NY, where she developed a love for all things sedentary: reading, writing, classic movies, and Scrabble. She holds a degree in Electrical Engineering, but her penchant for the creative caused her to run away screaming from the pocket-protector set. Barbara cooks up cozy mysteries with a healthy dose of comedy and sometimes a splash of romance. Her holiday novella, Gold, Frankincense, and Murder was released in e-book format from White Rose Publishing in December 2011. You can learn more about her writing on her personal blog: http://barbearly.blogspot.com/ or see what's for dinner on her recipe blog: http://bflogal.blogspot.com/.