It finally arrived. Your new dehydrator, juicer or grain mill showed up at the door or at the post office. If you are like me, you brought it home and set the box aside for later, after work, when chores are done or after the kids’ dinner. But it is hard to resist a new toy.
I usually give in and find excuses. I was going to break for tea anyway, so I might as well take the juicer out of the box, just so that’s done. Or I can’t focus on my work or the chore I am trying to complete, so I might as well take the dehydrator out of its box. In fact, I might as well plan on dehydrating some fruit today for the dessert I will make for a weekend potluck.
We know exactly what the new appliance looks like and what it does. We’ve done our homework and found everything there is to know about the grain mill and how it adjusts to any desired coarseness or how easy it is to clean the juicer, but we absolutely cannot resist touching it. It is here. We’ve earned it. We commune with the things we bring in our lives. We embrace them. We have worked hard and this is our reward. This, I think, at least partly, is where we re-channel our childlike wonderment.
As for the box, by now we know the drill: break it down and add it to the recycling. End of story. May I suggest another storyline, while we’re in a childlike mood anyway?
There is another common trait amongst Americans in the kitchen: We use the refrigerator as a billboard and art display. Here is what you can do with the dehydrator, juicer, grain mill or other appliance box and here is what you will need.
An old garden catalog
Magnets (I recycle mine)
And Children (though it is perfectly acceptable to do this by yourself)
- Cut the box by roughly separating each panel. If it is a large box, cut panels down to about the size of a sheet of paper (8 1/2 ” x 11″).
- On the plain side, use a marker to draw the outline of a figure, as if you were drawing one of those paper dolls to dress up. Draw a face (preferably smiling) and hair.
- Cut out the figure.
- Select colorful pages from the gardening catalog.
- Use the cut out figure to outline pants, a shirt, a skirt, a hat…
- Cut out the clothing items and glue them on the figure.
- Glue magnets on the back.
- Proudly display on your fridge door.
- Make a smoothie or dried fruit snack. Stand in front of your artwork. Enjoy the moment.
Each figure could represent a member of the family.
A variation: Affix a small paper envelope to each figure where you can leave each other memos and thank you notes.
Another variation: Add twigs, twine, dried leaves and flowers…