The object that reminds me most of “Home” is the kitchen table. Over the years the kitchen table has changed in shape from oval to rectangle. Its wood has been that of oak to pine, but no matter its specific characteristics, the kitchen table has been the center for many memories of home.
Each table has entered the home new and unscathed, but as we have come to it for meals and conversations it has born the battle scars of crayons, cake icing, spilled milk and perhaps a dent or two from toys that have run across its surface. It has been the foundation for many a school project started and completed and its wood has absorbed the aromas of cookies decorated and meals enjoyed.
My family, immediate, extended and ancestors alike, have loved to linger at the kitchen table for hours long after the dessert was gone and the coffee cups were dry. The table has heard conversations of happy times, the planning of weddings, the celebrations of birthdays be it the first or the 100th, stories of the farms, and the mischievous doings of cousins. Its surface has played home to many a board game and the sorting of recipes along with the bantering of siblings, aunts and uncles deciphering whose story is correct.
If the moments around the table could be extracted it would reveal the wondrous history of family and jokes, good days and tough days and the significance of it as a family gathering place – HOME.