Don’t worry; the kitchen sink isn’t the only one practicing self-care over here! It’s a priority for me, too, and I’ve discovered a simple way to upgrade my routine that I’m excited to share. Here it is:

Yes, friends, that is indeed a giant piece of bubble wrap on my kitchen floor. I strategically placed it right between the kitchen island and the sink/dishwasher/oven because this is my center of operations for hours every day. This is the space in which I conduct the orchestra of breakfast and direct the dinnertime chorus, where the lunch box dispensary is located, where the dry ingredients are added to the wet ingredients and where the hardware of our days is handled. This is the hydraulic hub of our home, the helm at which I captain the kitchen, the holding ground where the anchor keeps us tethered. They say that the hearth is the heart of the home, and that may have been true in the days when the cookpot was one of the literal irons in the fire, but in contemporary times I think that this swath of floorboards between the counter and the appliances we use to get us fed is where the aorta of this house beats true.

Since the roughly 4 x 10 area is privy to the majority of my footfalls on a daily basis, one day on a whim I laid out this piece of plastic with its iconic blisters of air, and it changed the game entirely. How about a foot arch massage while you prepare three different meals at once? Why, sure! Want a tension tamer while you put away seventeen plates and two dozen pieces of Tupperware? Absolutely. What about a satisfying series of pleasant popping sounds to punctuate the minutes spent mentally calculating how to fit the food pyramid into a rectangular bento box? Don’t mind if I do. Care for a fun physical outlet that doesn’t interfere with productivity? Yes, please! Interested in a useful way to repurpose the packaging that came wrapped around the gallon of school glue that came in the mail so that the kids could make slime every day for a month? Why not!

Rubik’s Cubes, thank you for your contribution to society. Stress balls, we appreciate your service. Sensory dough, it’s time to step down. Fidget spinners, you had your moment. Bubble wrap on the kitchen floor takes the cake while you make the cake, put the cake in the oven, ice and decorate and slice and serve the cake then wash the cake pan and cake plates. Oh, and the silverware too. Bonus: when the bubble wrap gives up the ghost, you can roll it up and dispose of it along with any cake crumbs that might have fallen from the counter, which is perfect because the broom is long overdue for a holiday.

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