Grand Central Counter


At night, it’s a mild-mannered kitchen peninsula.

But, when day breaks, it transforms into a hub of activity, a hive of productivity—it becomes Grand Central Counter!

With a complete lack of planning or foresight, this one spot in our home has become the go-to spot for many of our daily activities. The traffic of our daily lives all goes through Grand Central.

It measures 27 inches wide—easy to reach across but wide enough that a husband and wife can stand on opposite sides and work on a salad together.

It’s a long and lovely 72 inches long, plenty long enough for bolts of fabric to be unfurled or many pans of candy to be lined up, for dipping in chocolate.

For reasons known only to the guys who did the renovations for us, the counter is about two inches taller than the average counter height of 36 inches. That seems perfect to me, when my back never gets sore from bending over it.

At Grand Central counter:

  • 11-pound blocks of chocolate are chopped to usable size
  • Fabric has been cut for oh-so-many yoyos, as well as for curtains and quilts.
  • Thousands of candies have been dipped into chocolate—caramels, fondant cherries, mint, peanut butter . . . yum
  • Over 1200 Etsy orders, for candy and linens, have been packaged and taped and readied for the mail
  • Weaving has taken place on the counter, on a table loom; I needed to stand on a step stool for that!
  • Fringe has been twisted
  • Limoncello has been made here
  • Pomanders have been started
  • Family members gather for holiday baking
  • Hundreds of caramels have been wrapped in waxed paper
  • And all the food prep of a busy kitchen crosses this counter, too—dough is kneaded, veggies are chopped, chicken is pounded for cutlets
  • Cocktails are mixed here at the end of busy days—wine and scotch and bourbon and Drambuie and vodka and beer have been sloshed here

The counter is spritzed and wiped and cleaned many times a day—get the chocolate off to make room for the weaving; move the weaving so dinner can be started.

Grand Central becomes congested at certain times of day. If a project is ongoing when the load of groceries comes in from the car or it’s time to sort paper for recycling. Negotiations are sometimes necessary, to determine who gets to use the counter next and for how long.

Grand Central Counter is a godsend for busy, loving hands at home. Each night, it gets cleared off, and left quiet and empty, having earned its rest just like we have.

It awaits me now, in early morning light, ready for the traffic of the day . . .

Does your home have an equivalent?