DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS

DOWN TO EARTH SIMPLE LIVING FORUMS
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23 January 2010

You, me and the kitchen sink

Today's photos show a very different kind of kitchen.  It's Caitlin's kitchen and she is living in China. 

Caitlin writes:

"So here is a photo of my kitchen sink.  I am currently a Peace Corps volunteer teaching English in a small town in the north west of China.  The name of my city is Qingyang and it is in Gansu Province.  I am about a 3 hour drive from Xi'an and the Terricotta soldiers.  I have lived here for about 18 months now and feel like I am at home and a very large part of me never wants to leave. 


So, the sink.  Well, it is just this small box of a sink that doesnt fit much, nor does it drain well.  It is also about 3 feet high and I am almost 6 feet tall, so back pains come with doing the dishes, which I avoid doing daily.  There is no hot water in my apartment here, so when it is cold my hands freeze while doing the dishes.  I would boil some water to do the dishes with, but my gas stove has proven dangerous and I try to use it as little as possible.  I do have a small electric hot plate that I cook with, but it only works with the wok that it came with and takes a life time to boil an entire wok of water.  The only hot water that I have access to comes from my shower heater which takes two hours to heat up and provides about 5 minutes worth of hot water.  However, I try not to plug it in too often because the electric wiring in my bathroom has started smoking recently.  The socket even exploded on me the other day with a loud POP and sparks flying everywhere.  I had a man come and fix it, but now I am terrified of it and wear gloves and wrap my hand in numerous towels when plugging it in for my twice-a-week shower. 


My kitchen has, as most kitchens in China, just a cement floor.  I am on the sixth floor and top floor of my apartment building and when it rains all the water comes in through the windows, onto my counter and then flood the floor--which I then mop with.  As well as the windows leaking, so does my ceiling, which is now cracking and falling down around me. 

Yay for China and their building codes.

But even with all of the obstacles, I have managed to keep up with cooking, a hobbie I love.  Some friends and I even produced an incredible Thanksgiving meal last month (minus the turkey--as there are no turkeys in China, nor ovens large enough to cook them).

I still love it here, though.  It has only made me more flexible and now I know that I can live just about anywhere and repair or simply live with just about anything.
 
谢谢和再见
(thank you and goodbye)"

Please don't forget to comment.  A comment is like payment for the time taken to post, and in this case in sending in the photos.  Many of us were enthusiastic about this series, so make sure all the photos get a good number of comments.  I don't want any of the ladies sending in photos to regret joining in.  Thank you friends.   

Tomorrow's kitchen is in France.

106 comments:

  1. Deinitely different from the kitchen sinks we have seen thus far. And it most certainly makes me thankful for my kitchen.

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  2. I just had to comment after seeing that Caitlin is in China. In just a few months my daughter will be finished with her training, in the Navy, ( she will be an interpreter in the Chinese language) and I am worried about when she does start to do her work over in China. This was a very good post. I just love your blog.....I came over from Vickie's blog.....Sand Flat Farm.....shown in your previous post. I am always trying to cut back and find ways to make the farm I am trying to create, pay for itself. Your wonderful blog is so full of wonderful information and I am so glad to have found you! blessings,Kathleen

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  3. It is great to see the sinks from around the world. This is such a great idea.

    I am looking forward to more sinks and stories.

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  4. WOW!! God bless the owner of that little kitchen! I am SO spoiled here in the USA :) Be it ever so humble there's no place like home....even if that home leaks rain water to the floor and you have no hot water except 2x a week for 5 mins!! I lOVE to hear that this person still loves to cook and is making do with what they've got!!

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  5. I will never complain about my kitchen ever again! Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

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  6. I am amazed that you love to cook even without the fancy kitchens we take in stride. Your kitchen is simple but you still get a meal and friends together in the kitchen. That makes it HOME. Your friends are blessed. Thank you for what you are doing. Roxie

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  7. Wow! I just don't know what to say about this kitchen, but I love your attitude and spirit!

    I will no longer complain about how small my kitchen is!

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  8. I woke up this morning to see Caitlins kitched and have such admiration for her and her little cooking space, with a flick of the switch I had a hot coffee,washed my face in warm sweet water and if I feel like it can pop in and have a hot shower,O'h what we take for granted.We are so spoilt in Australia ..I am loving this kitchen sink series and my lovely friend Melissa from "Vintage Rose" has opened a whole new world of lovely people and places for me, she is encouraging me to have my own page but have no idea how to start lol anyway Rhonda I am now an avid follower of you and Caitlin you will be in my daily prayers from this day..Carole Johnston

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  9. wow. i amazed at this kitchen. Simple living huh! In our house wi try to have the least amount of electrical appliances as possible, so no microwave, and we have a stove top kettle. but we still have a food precessor etc, now i know we're not going without and almost living the high life compared to this. Thank you so much for sharing this photo, what an eye opener.
    and hi Rhonda, loving the new series!
    V. x

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  10. Wow- after seeing and reading that my kitchen is very spaceous. It puts things in perspective. I would love to see the Teracotta Soldiers, but alas probably never will. I doubt we will ever get to Europe or Asia.

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  11. Great post! Seeing other people's kitchens and sinks is a great opportunity to understand other cultures. Thank you for posting this. I had thought about sending a picture of my kitchen when you call for new pictures, but I probably won't do it. It isn't grand or something you would find in a magazine, but still. Americans just have too much, and after this post, I'd be embarrassed.

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  12. I want to say thank you for sharing your unique kitchen with us. You are working and creating delicious meals with what you have, right where you are, bless your heart.

    Bless your heart for doing your work in the Peace Corp too.

    FlowerLady

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  13. Thankyou, Caitlin. You have just reminded me once again to be thankful for what I have - WHATEVER that may be!

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  14. What a wonderful look into another world! Thank you Caitlin and Rhonda.

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  15. WOW! 'Nuff said.

    Blessings from someone very spoiled in Ohio, USA...Kim W<><

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  16. Wow, what a contrast to Vickie's and most of the kitchens that we are accustomed to here in the US. I admire her for doing what she's doing in China.
    Berte

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  17. Wow - quite a big difference from some of the other kitchen sink posts - but it was so inspiring to realize that "home" can be a feeling as much as it is a physical place (if that makes any sense). Thanks so much for sharing this!

    Kate

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  18. Wow! What an interesting look into another culture. Thankyou for sharing!

    Vicky x

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  19. Hello Caitlin,
    That all sounds a bit scary to me. Perhaps when I was younger it would have seemed like an adventure. Makes me realize just how lucky we are to live in this lucky country Australia. Thankyou for sharing and good luck to you in your adventure.
    Blessings Gail.

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  20. Thank you so much for posting this Rhonda Jean. I am so impressed with Caitlin's wonderful attitude! In spite of really challenging circumstances, she still has great spirit to enjoy cooking! And the way she "matter of factly" accepts the situation she is in...the leaking roof, the flooding floor, etc... a lesson to us all who are indulging in comfort and yet want even more...! Chapeau(hats off to you!) Caitlin!
    ronelle

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  21. It amazes me that a kitchen can tell so much about how we truly live these days! Every Kitchen Sink publication opens my eyes a little more to the world around me.

    I do love the economical minimalism that is Caitlin's kitchen. How am I to complain about my 4 linear feet of counter space now, when I have read about Caitlin's flexibility in the itty-bitty space? I must ask, does she juggle as she works in the tiny kitchen?!?? ;)

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  22. absolutely amazing. good luck! sounds like you have mastered the trials and tribulations!

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  23. I must say the kitchens and baths in China are not what most people are used to! LOL! We loved our two weeks there on our adoption trip. But then, we were spoiled with 5 star hotels, etc. as the government didn't really want us to see that side of China!

    Thanks for sharing! It will help others (such as myself) with small kitchen keep it in perspective!

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  24. Wow your outlook is amazing. I will never complain about anything again.

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  25. Well ... this certainly makes me stop and think about what I take for granted! Hot running water thats lasts much, much longer than 5 minutes and is on call. Not to mention electricity, oven and stable ceiling. Thanks Caitlin and Rhonda

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  26. Amazing. We all take so much for granted. Kudos to you for making do with what you have! Glad that you still love to cook.

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  27. Caitlin......I loved your whole story of life in China, and the pics of your very simple kitchen, along with all it's hazards and pitfalls.

    I understand just how you feel about it....I lived in a tiny apartment in India for a while, and it was just the same, and I know well that feeling of being 'home', and not wanting to leave despite the difficulties. It's true, living in those circumstances really shows us just how simply we can live, and still be very happy.

    Thankyou for sharing your kitchen, would be lovely to hear more "China" stories from you.

    Nanette in Australia

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  28. Amazing. I feel ashamed for complaining that my oven doesn't heat evenly. It's a great reminder that people make do with less everyday. I'm so lucky.

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  29. Very inspirational - we don't know how lucky we are in our western kitchens,

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  30. Wow, I am now officially thankful for the small kitchen that I do have! Thank you for sharing your kitchen with us. It is amazing what people will give up or make-do with to help others more needy!

    Bless you!

    Dawn

    bcsmithereens.blogspot.com

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  31. Congrats on having the guts to do something like that! :) I have a few friends over there with the Peace Corps and I know I couldn't do it.

    Hope you figure out a better solution for hot water soon & best of luck with everything!

    Lauren

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  32. at a happy and graetful heart.
    greetings from tyrol/austria:
    rita

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  33. This post is excellent. I've been in a couple of kitchens in Asia and it's a real wake up call to be appreciative of what we have.

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  34. WOW...you are a brave soul! I'm afraid I could fall to pieces there. Good for you, and good luck with everything you do!

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  35. Wow. Now that's something!
    It just shows that you can learn to live with just about anything.. =)

    But very nice to see, anyway.. =)

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  36. Oh my gosh, I opened your blog as I do everyday and started reading about the kitchen in China. This is my daughter's kitchen!!! Yes Caitlin is my daughter and her kitchen is as bad as she wrote about. The bathroom I do not even have words for except BAD., real BAD.She is traveling now and will not know her kitchen was on your blog till February. She will be thrilled Rhonda. How exciting, Thank you.
    Eileen
    PS: Yes she can put out some incredible meals from that kitchen we were there for several.

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  37. Wow it makes complaining about not having a "chef" worthy kitchen seem incredibly selfish ~ thanks for the reality check.

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  38. I am not ever going to whine or complain about my kitchen again. I love the positive attitude.

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  39. Wow, and I was grumbling when my pipes froze last week! Thanks for sharing and reminding us how easy most of us have it.

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  40. Wow! That's even smaller than the kitchen I had when I lived in Alexandria, Egypt.

    My family just moved into a townhouse and even though we've been here for several months, I still feel like it's too much space and luxury for someone like me. After seeing a picture of that kitchen, I think my house is REALLY too much luxury!

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  41. Wow! Thank you for sharing your kitchen! It's amazing how things are the same and different all at once, running water, sinks, electricity, etc.

    I will appreciate my hot and cold water a lot more and the current electrical code for my area.

    It's wonderful how we can adapt to life as it comes.

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  42. Wow I can no longer complain about my small kitchen or leaky sink. We are really blessed to have hot water anytime we want it. She has such a positive attitude. I'm really glad she shared her kitchen. I have really enjoyed seeing everyones kitchens!

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  43. My daughter spent six months in Kenya volunteering at a blind school way out in the country. She did not have running water and used to walk a long distance to get her one pitcher of water a day, which she boiled an egg in then drank for tea. It really goes to show how many of us take what we have for granted and how we really can live without all of our 'luxuries' if need be. It really humbles me.

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  44. Wow! What a tiny sink. I am happy to learn how people live in other parts of the world. Thank you for taking the time to share with us. This also reminds me how lucky I am for the conveniences I frequently take for granted. Blessings.

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  45. Caitlin, I am totally with you on wearing gloves, I'd be scared of the 'socket' too. Back to basics your kitchen may be but it's all a part of your home away from home. Best wishes with your work in China. I'm very proud of the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Commission) China correspondent Stephen McDonell. I taught him years ago. I wonder if he has a kitchen just like yours.

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  46. Okay now I know I am spoiled.
    I love that you are able to prepare wonderful dishes in your tiny kitchen.
    ---Krystal

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  47. Hello everyone!

    Thank you Carole.

    Beth, please send in your photos when I call for them. This series is about sharing our workspaces it's not a competition. I love the variety of it all. I have no doubt the kitchen in Caitlin's home country is very different to what we see her happily using in China. This is reality, and whether it is Chinese reality or American, English, French, Spanish or Australian, it all adds to our education and understanding.

    Eileen (ELP) I sent Caitlin an email telling her about the photos and was wondering why she didn't reply. Please let her know that we all send her our very best. What a wonderful daughter you have!

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  48. Wow, what a resourceful young lady! I would have flipped out long ago - around the point when the electricity began to crackle. Probably not when I was young though.
    As many others have commented, what do we have to complain about?
    Great that you haven´t lost your love for cooking.
    Keep up the good work you are doing. You are a wonderful ambassador for the West.
    Ramona K
    Sweden

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  49. I thoroughly enjoyed this kitchen and the story behind it! It amazes me how different parts of the world can live so completely differently from one another. Thanks again. Loved it.

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  50. My brother has lived in China for years now and this looks exactly like his kitchen in his first few apartments.

    I know that he ran a pipe from the shower to the washing machine, otherwise there was no way to get water into it! Also, like Caitlin, he's always on the 6th floor - no gym for him, just miles of concrete stairs!

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  51. I will never complain about my small kitchen again. Amen

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  52. Thank you so much for sharing this! Now excuse me while I go kiss my dishwasher. . .

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  53. My goodness! That puts everything into perspective! Thank you so much for sharing. We're currently living at my parents' place while we look for a house. Maybe now I won't be so picky about how many feet of counter space I have to have.

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  54. I like how she said that being there has taught her that she can live just about anywhere and simply. I learned that lesson years ago, while in missions training. We lived for six weeks in the woods, in a house made of landscaping plastic and tree trunks and branches. My husband made all our furniture and a clay oven and we had a great life for those 6 weeks! It really taught me that I can make a home anywhere and that a person doesn't need a lot of stuff to do it.

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  55. Loved seeing this kitchen sink! My daughter is from China (adopted at 9 mos, now 3 yrs old) and it is always great to see what life might have been like if she had grown up in China.

    I just found your blog this week and am really enjoying it!

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  56. You are such a trooper! Now I am so very grateful for what I do have.
    You have taught me that we can be happy with what we have in life.
    Bless you!

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  57. Wow!

    We are spoilt !

    Thanks for giving us a little peek into your home Caitlin.

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  58. I shall stop whining about my kitchen immediately!

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  59. Good for you Caitlin, for making it work! I like your can-do attitude. Best of luck to you in China and thanks for what you're doing.

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  60. Amazing. The entire world will no longer complain about doing dishes. I was an exchange student to China while in college many years ago..yep, looks about the same. I've grown weak in my comfortable American Midwestern digs. Godspeed and God Bless to you Caitlin.

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  61. Wow -- a friend of mine lived in a similar apartment, I think -- she was working in a poor province with a local charity. Will ask here to take a look!

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  62. People have become adept at guilt. I live in a rent house with a kitchen that serves the purpose, nonetheless, I would love to have a nicer one and feel absolutely no guilt saying so. Enjoy reading your blog. Centralchick

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  63. I spent a few weeks in China and was always shocked at the kitchens there and how they managed to produce such amazing food. To think most kitchens are stocked to the gills with stuff here and most of the time they're just used to heat packaged food! Great post - thanks.

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  64. That's amazing. I don't think I could handle that, but then again, if I stayed there for 18 months then maybe I would be the same as you.

    I'm not sure though...

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  65. This wonderful post shames me. I will NEVER again whine about my smallish kitchen and home repairs that need to be done! A reminder that we should be thankful WHEREEVER we find ourselves. Thank you, Caitlin!

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  66. I'm really impressed that you can create such wonderful meals with such limited resources! It's interesting seeing what others deal with.

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  67. Thank you for sharing these kitchens - it is a wonderful idea, especailly for those in different countries.

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  68. Really enjoyed seeing Caitlin's kitchen and the story that went with it. It reminded me of something I had forgotten or perhaps wiped out of my memory .
    When we shifted our house onto our 5 acre block over 20 years ago we had heavy rain for 6 weeks and the power company could not get through flooded land to attach us to the grid.As money was tight we had shifted at the same time as the house, which was in a very rough state of repair.
    We had no running water because we were on tank water but had no power to run the pump. My parents lent us a 2 burner camping stove and with that I cooked, cleaned ( the house was filthy) and heated water to bathed 3 children ( 2 had to go to school). Because it didn't stop raining we could just put the bucket outside to collect the water. Hubbie had an office job at the time so he showered at work and bought home a rechargeable torch each night. I should mention here hubbie is a workaholic so we often sat in the dark telling stories or playing "murder in the dark" until Dad came home.
    I now have a very nice kitchen and had forgotten about that 6 weeks- though now I do remember that when the electrician eventually turned up to do his thing he was singing "Blinded by the Light" and I thought rather bitterly "if only" . That was in Queensland Australia 20 years ago.

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  69. Wow i loved seeing this little kitchen and don't think i will complain about not having hot water running in my kitchen again. (Havent had hot water downstairs in months and too expensive too get fixed right now) At least I have unlimited hot water running in the shower upstairs and an oven that works.

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  70. Amazing Post thanks for sharing!
    ~~HUGS~~

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  71. Wow, thanks so much for showing us your kitchen. Took me straight back to my month in China in 2005.
    I feel extra grateful for my little kitchen now.

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  72. Wow I am impressed with Caitlin's attitude. Most people would not cope with this and she si so cheerful about it all. Thank you

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  73. Thank you Caitlin for reminding us all of the reality of the living conditions for the vast majority of people on our planet! Your fantastic, positive attitude to make the most of what you have there is an inspiration - in Australia, most of us are so spoiled materially in comparison. God bless you and your wonderful work!
    Love and best wishes,
    Heidi, Mt. Barker, South Australia

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  74. What a very interesting kitchen. I have seen similar kitchens before and have always been amazed at the variety of meals that can be produced from so little. I wonder what rural Chinese women would think of our western kitchens?

    Chris

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  75. Wow! God bless, you Caitlin for sacrificing so much (assuming you came to China from a more prosperous living) to give to others and for the work you do. What a shining example you are. Thank you for opening my eyes to others' kitchens. I won't complain about mine, anymore!

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  76. Caitlin, what you are doing is wonderful for the world, and for you! I lived similarly in the Appalachians in the early 70s, no stove but a camp stove, no running water, no fridge, etc for 2 years, and I learned the best lessons of my young life--namely how much meaningful life can be without all the frills because you focus on the people and relationships instead of acquiring.
    Enjoy every moment and soak up every opportunity! Thanks for sending your photos.

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  77. This was very interesting. It certainly gives me a new perspective on things. I am so thankful for what I have.

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  78. Thank you for your post about Caitlins kitchen...i will never moan about mine again..i am so glad she Loves working there and that she as learned to adapt...it must be so difficult coping in those circumstances..but what a lovely young woman she must be..her good attitude shines through in her post.

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  79. I wonder if anyone has ever done a mathematical study on the correlation between how the simpler the kitchen is the better the food coming out of it tastes! I have certainly not seen a kitchen in America this bad, but I have definitely found that the most talented cooks tend to have the simpler kitchens, and the ones with granite countertops and chef-worthy stoves are usually just used to boil water and microwave a frozen dinner. LOL!

    What I find amazing is that people all over the world live like this or "worse", and they are sometimes even happier than those of us in the Western World. Not that we shouldn't all have better building codes and buildings, but it really says a lot about people who don't that they don't find their happiness or unhappiness in their possessions of lack of them.

    I do think it would be safer to be in a primitive hut with a small fire for cooking in rural China than in this apartment building though! Urbanization has certainly brought some challenges.

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  80. Hi Rhonda..i read your blog everyday and really enjoy it...i would like to contribute sometime, but can not see a facility to upload a photograph etc on your blog page..could you tell me how to do this please ? i live in the U.K...I imagine i will have to E-mail anything to you and it will go from there ??..Thanks Rhonda

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  81. I lived in Uzbekistan for 5 years and went through some of what Caitlin has described as well in terms of kitchens, though I never had to deal with leaky rooves or terribly bad wiring. I too realized how much cooking the world did and does without modern conveniences. Many of the women I knew had maybe one or two knives, a couple of spoons and bowls, a cutting board, and a wok-like dish to cook things in. But I loved the simplicity of it.

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  82. Thank you Caitlin. I shared your post with my Grandson. He is 13. We talked about the adventure you are having. I loved that I could share with him your thoughts on being "flexible" Wonderful Post. Loved seeing and hearing how you make do!

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  83. I admire Caitlin greatly. What a lady.

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  84. I can't say that I envy your kitchen or challenges but I love your contentment and determination. You'll have great stories to tell from your experiences.

    Great spirit.

    Shan

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  85. This post gave me fond memories of China as my family visited for 2 weeks about a year ago. We were lucky enough to be with our friends' and their families who welcomed us as guests in their home. I loved how their kitchen closed off from the dining area with sliding screens. The food was so yummy prepared with fresh ingredients on the stove top! Thank you for sharing and bringing great memories to mind!

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  86. I'm really glad you shared Caitlin's kitchen, Rhonda. From her pictures it reminds me of how many in the world have so much less, and still are quite content in their lives.

    When it comes down to it, it's not about the "stuff", or who has the prettiest kitchen, etc. I was a little taken back by several of the comments. God forbid that some might be called to live with less.

    Personally, my own kitchen is small, without a window. I cook with a hot plate and a few small appliances, including a toaster oven. I feel really blessed with all that I have.

    Caitlin, you rock...thanks for sharing. You may not be rich in things or surroundings, but the life you live is very rich in all that you do. God bless.

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  87. Hey there everyone,

    Thank you so much for all the comments. Sorry, it took me awhile to write my own comment as most blog websites are blocked in China and I am away from my apartment traveling right now. I do not have a blog right now, again, because accessing the sites can prove difficult at times. however, i do write home every few weeks with updates of my adventures. if anyone is seriously interested in hearing about more china adventures, you can email me at caitlinpcv08@gmail.com and I can add you to the list.

    As far as the kitchen and china, i must say that I find most western kitchens a little ridiculous now. However, I do miss the higher counters. I do think that a Chinese person would fall over at the site of some of the kitchens I have seen back in the states. Food is simpler in china, however. it is mostly just stir fried meats and vegetables. refrigerators are a new thing here and no one has a stove as majority of Chinese foods are not baked. it has been truly amazing living here in this country; the people are definitely the best part. Coming from a very frugal mother, i thought I knew what it meant to live simply, but becoming apart of this community i am amazed everyday at their ability to live truly simple and content lives. i have to admit I was a bit surprised at some of the comments that mentioned that living with even less would be unimaginable, as I feel that even with what little I have here in China, I still don't need most of it and am still very American in my pack-rat-impulse-purchasing habits.

    Living here in rural China i have definitely grown a lot and see the world with different eyes. Thanks for sharing apart of it on your blog Rhonda and all the great comments you all left.

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  88. I think it is so amazing that Caitlin shares the challenges of her kitchen and at the same time talks about how she feels at home and never wants to leave. I admire her so much. She must have the most positive attitude ever!

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  89. I also live in China. I live in Beijing and I am thankful for my kitchen which is NOT as rustic as Caitlin. It is smaller than what I would like, but I have a stainless steel double sink and counter space. I admire Caitlin's positive attitude. I don't have a traditional oven, just a toaster oven, but I too can make almost anything in my kitchen. It really isn't about what you don't have, it is using what you do have to the best of your ability.

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  90. May I suggest, Caitlin, that you invest in a large plastic basin, and use it on your countertop to do your dishes in. Also, if you put some water in your wok to heat up and go do something else for a while, it will be boiled in less time than you think!

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  91. Such an angel you are. Your enthusiasm, your passion shines through your little kitchen. To hear you celebrate a meal, to 'feel' your passion through your words, thank you for sharing your kitchen with us. Bless you.

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  92. I've been reading the Kitchen sink posts with much intrest over the weeks, and NEVER thought i would read about one that mirrors my life!!
    We're living in North Africa, and I didn't realise that we and China had quite so much in common on the home front!! I feel inspired to perhaps send in my own kitchen sink post now....

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  93. That is so amazing of you to be a Peace Corps volunteer and to persevere in cooking when your sockets explode and your kitchen floods. Kudos to you!

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  94. Wow! We take so much for granted here! What an eye opener. Thank you.

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  95. My husband and I are missionaries and I've lived before with a kitchen sink a little better than that :) BUT THANK GOD I had a small apartment sized stove that at least 2 burners worked (the oven only had one heat -HIGH). AND my apartment didn't leak. You made me soooo thankful for the home I have now in the third world country where we are missionaries to. I think I'll go cook some lunch now with my hearth full of thankfulness for HIS goodness and blessings to me.

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  96. Wow!! And I thought the tiny apartment I lived in 11 years ago was roughing it. Living in Canada we don't get to see these type of conditions first hand. Thanks for posting this one Rhonda and thank you Caitlin for sending in your pictures. A real eye opener for sure.

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  97. I lived in China for a time myself and find myself smiling at this post. There are building codes? ;) I had a two burner cooktop attached to a gas can thingy and my sink looked a lot like that. Not missing the squatty potties!
    Best wishes!

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  98. Hi, Glad to read Caitlin's story about her plush kitchen. My son is in her group since he has also been there the same amount of time. He is in Guiyang but since he only uses his kitchen for storage or whatever, he doesn't care. My daughter, 23, spent Christmas with him, cause this nonsense has gone on long enough! They are a year apart and have never liked being too far apart for too long. He eats out since he can eat for less than $1.00, way less. He has also met lots of local people this way. My daughter was glad to get home. She froze too death. Most people don't know that below some imaginary line there is no heat provided. I know you are as proud of her as I am of him. Anyway just wanted to say hi.
    Patti

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  99. Patti S.
    Are you Patrick's mom? I just hung out with him last night here in chengdu! Wow, small world, small world. We are doing well here in china. Love your son, blessed to have met him and gotten to know him.

    caitlin

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  100. Very interesting kitchen! When I first moved to Guatemala, my sink was similar, with a water area in teh middle and a space on the side to wash.

    Our water is all cold, as well, though our electric shower heater works better than yours. :D

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  101. Wow! It is definately different. Sometimes I find myself ungreatful for the things I have and know I should not be that way. I am so glad you sent the pictures & read about you living in China. It is very different & interesting.

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  102. Rhonda, this is my first comment to your wonderful blog. Today's post surpassed my expectations. While my "visits" here are always enjoyable, I believe we received the benefit of a valuable ministry through Caitlin's enlightening article and photos.

    Gratitude offers us a genuine and lasting feeling of abundance and an opportunity to find beauty in our surroundings, under any conditions. Not an easy undertaking, but a worthwhile venture.

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  103. I'm so glad that you sent in your kitchen picture, it is so nice to see homes from others areas. It is so nice to live differently than raised, it gives you an appreciation for life. So glad that you are enjoying your time in China and how you seem to be so flexible in life....wonderful!

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  104. wow, that has had to be an adjustment for you to live totally differently! all my respect! I like what you did with the red shiny thing wrapped around the pipe, it makes it more feasty! It's nice to see all those kitchen around the world, great idea Rhonda!

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  105. Remind me to never complain about my kitchen again :)

    You are one trooper!

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  106. You are one tough, great girl! You've got perserverance and a pioneer spirit. I feel like some pampered wimp up beside you!

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