Dancing in the Kitchen

Our children, all seven of them, learned to dance from me.

Being the mom, it was my responsibility to awaken the children in the morning. They were spread through four bedrooms. I used to go in, sit on their beds, and read scripture stories to them – kind of the opposite of bedtime stories. It was a gentle and uplifting way for us to start the day. Then, while they were getting out of bed and getting dressed, I’d head off to the kitchen to make breakfast. I’d load a CD (yes, this was many years ago, pre-ipod days) into the CD player. It was usually Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, or some other smooth-voiced crooner. As the children padded their way into the kitchen they would get scooped up, one at a time. I’d hug them close, sing quietly in my not-so-smooth voice, and we’d dance for a minute before the pancakes needed flipping or the porridge needed stirring. The next child would appear, and we’d repeat the process with any who were little enough for me to pick up.

They were mostly too young to remember any of this, which is sad, since I know they enjoyed it. I hope that they felt loved, cherished, and happy while we were dancing and sharing a love song.

Funny thing is – as the kids got to be teens, we’d still dance in the kitchen. If they wanted to practice jiving we’d push the furniture out of the way, put on the ipod and dance away. They never wanted to slow dance with Mom – that would have ‘weirded’ them out. If they were playing their ipods, and a remixed song of an old favorite came on, we’d dance while they looked puzzled –  “I didn’t know you knew this song, Mom.” “I knew it before you were born, Sweetie!” – and we’d dance some more with both of us singing.

The kitchen is the perfect place for dance lessons. My only regret is that we never got any photos or videos of dancing in the kitchen.

When did you learn to dance, and who taught you?

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