Monday, September 11, 2006

Our Lady of the Kitchen Sink


If the kitchen is the heart of the home, then the kitchen sink is a main artery. We mothers spend so much time in front of the kitchen sink that it only seems natural to place an image of the Blessed Mother there. She stands before us as a blessing upon the home, a companion in our day's work and a model and inspiration to virtue.

I remember the statue my own mother had over her kitchen sink. We would bring her the prettiest flowers we could find from the yard. Buttercups, Violets, Wild Roses and even the occasional Lady Slipper (though it was rumored that those were illegal to pick in New Hampshire) would find its way there. I don't remember when or who began calling her "Our Lady of the Kitchen Sink," but it stuck.

While my boys don't spend too much time picking flowers, they are devoted naturalists and they love to bring me gifts from the yard all the year round. In April, Mary is decorated with Crocuses and bird's feathers. In June, she is adorned in large pink climbing roses while Quartz, Mica, and other semi-precious stones surround her. In October, she wears an impressive display of colored leaves and has acorns strewn at her feet. And in December, she holds a sprig of Holly and stands among Pinecones.

In Cape Cod, the boys were particularly generous. All week long they gathered the loveliest shells and brought them to me. They understood that I wasn't anxious to hold the crabs they found or the kelp they collected for themselves. They understood that what I liked were pretty shells and they delighted to give them to me. I brought their gifts home in heavy pockets each night and placed them on the window sill over the sink.

When we returned home, one of the first things we did was to place the shells around Our Lady of the Kitchen Sink. So now, when I am scrubbing pots, I can look up and see this Queen, who rejoiced in her lowliness, decorated so beautifully in the humble and generous gifts of five little boys. Blessed is she, the Mother of Our Lord, among all women everywhere. And blessed am I in my little home among my little men.

Our Lady of the Kitchen Sink everywhere,
Pray for us and the Little Ones in our care. Posted by Picasa

8 comments:

Kristen said...

Beautiful, Suzanne. In our home we have "Our Lady of the Kitchen Stove", as there is no room behind our sink for ANYTHING! Before I prepare our dinners I ask the Lady to bless the food I'm about to place on the stovetop. Somehow dinner is always very tasty, and it's not my cooking that makes it so! But what a wonderful idea to bring her gifts. I'm going to try it. I wonder what our meals will taste like now!

Suzanne Temple said...

Kristen, I've tasted your cooking and can attest that it does not require any super natural graces to taste fabulous.

helene said...

I think I will call mine "Our Lady of the kitchen sink among the weeds". The kids bring all sorts of "flowers" to me for her, but they don't hold a candle to your shell display. Lovely!

Tine said...

I love the idea of decorating Our Lady for the seasons! I am just realizing that I have not had a Lady of the Sink for the past 3 years (since we'ved lived in our current home). I guess I thought I could not have one because there is no sill above my sink here. Now Kristen's comment has me looking at my stove with new eyes.... Regardless of where I put her, I'm thinking a Lady of the Kitchen is just what I need to inspire me to cook more square meals for my family this fall! Thanks Sue!

Sarah said...

This is a beautiful post and a wonderful idea. I think I'm going to have to go out at get a Mary for my sink now!!! :) Thanks for the lovely ideas! (As a convert, I'm all about learning these wonderful Catholic traditions...)

Laura said...

Beautiful!

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