A home can be many things to many different people. For some, it’s just a place to hang their hats, grab a quick bite, shower and sleep. For others, it is the place of comfort they return to after suffering all the disorders and struggles of a typical day. Others love being at home so much that they rarely, if ever, leave to go anywhere further than the grocery store and run a few errands.
Finally, some see their homes as wonderful stages where they can entertain friends and family lavishly and often, with food, beverages, and various themes and entertainment venues. A factor contributing to the importance of any particular room in the home always relies on how those who reside there regard and use the place.
The bathroom serves as a critical must-have component of any habitable home. It’s where everyone goes to bathe, shower, freshen up and make themselves presentable. It’s where dental hygiene is performed and the location of toothbrushes, toothpaste, dental floss, anti-cavity rinses and mouthwash.
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Towels laundered just the right way to be fluffy and absorbent hang folded across towel bars or on towel hooks. There you’ll find bar and liquid soaps, shampoos, hair treatment products, conditioners, detanglers, cleansing creams and lotions. There are washcloths, loofahs and back washers.
Often a bathroom is where women keep their makeup, along with lighted magnified mirrors for exacting things like eyeliner perfection and symmetry. There might be a bevvy of nail polishes and lipsticks in an extensive colour range within a drawer. Hairbrushes, combs, hair ties, clips and other ornaments can be found, along with hairdryers, flatteners, curlers, curling irons and bobby pins.
Razors, shaving creams and aftershave lotions or astringents are always kept close at hand. Many families choose the bathroom as the location for all the medication being used by everyone in the family.
There are toilets and toilet paper, which need no further elaboration, but it is worth saying that the toilet gets more use than any other part of the bathroom. Sometimes the bathroom is where a family member gets away from the madding crowd in the rest of the house. The bathroom functions as a multi-purpose room more than any other room of the home.
The Living Room
For many years, the typical design of the home included a living room that was set apart strictly as a location where visitors and guests were welcomed and entertained. The furniture, drapes and rugs were typically more formal and often more expensive than the furniture found elsewhere in the home.
For most of the time, the living room would remain closed off and considered to be out of bounds, especially for children at play. Only when guests would be present did the living room come alive, transforming as a family’s ambient focal point, even if only for one afternoon or evening.
Today’s living rooms typically serve as the hubs of all family life, home get-togethers, meetings, social soirees and entertainment, especially when the weather prevents a backyard hangout from occurring.
Living rooms are where family members read, crochet, listen to their favourite music, watch TV programs and movies, course the Internet, read and respond to emails, talk on smartphones, flip through magazines and mail and chill on their favourite chair or sofa.
In homes where there is no appropriate screening room, the living room often doubles as the location of a home theatre. Many families eat in the living room, whether its a full meal or a big bowl of popcorn for TV watching. Most living rooms now have a fireplace, where blazing fires roar, courtesy of either natural gas logs or the more traditional mode of real wood, cut and split to size.
Often the living room sofa is the perfect place to steal a short twenty winks or more. The living room sofa sometimes becomes a temporary sleeping spot for a partner who is “in the dog house” for one or more reasons.
If there were one room in the home that people could do without, it would be the bedroom if push came to shove. Certainly not according to the average teen, whose bedroom serves as a mecca like it never again will at any other time in life.
But in terms of actual need, the bedroom (while certainly a luxury and the place where we finally separate our thoughts from the cares of the world and sleep) is a room that provides comfort and privacy and a place to store our clothes. If we had to, we could designate other home areas for this purpose.
With that being said, thankfully, we are nowhere near ever being in a position of losing the bedroom from the adequate design of any home. This is just for the sake of ranking room importance here.
Other Home Spaces
It should go without saying that all other home spaces are add-ons and could easily be eliminated from a home’s design without severely impacting any family members. Hallways, studies, playrooms, craft rooms, laundry rooms, etc. Yes, we love them, but we could live without them.
There was a time when the kitchen was more or less off-limits to everyone who was not directly involved in the process of preparing food or a meal or cleaning dishes and any other kitchen-related activities.
While Who frequently included eat-in kitchens in the typical home design, Who reserved the actual dining room for dining with “company.” So at mealtime, and only then, you would find the entire family assembled for the duration of the meal, after which one or two would remain behind to wash dishes, and the rest of the family would disperse elsewhere.
Today’s kitchen has become more of a place of entertainment than ever before. Everyone in the family can be frequently found hanging out or preparing food in the kitchen, where charging stations are now remotely recharging all types of devices belonging to family members.
Homework and school projects are frequently completed at the kitchen table or counter; Keurigs provide excellent impromptu opportunities to visit friends at the bar counter or check emails and respond. Frequently, family entertaining migrates to the kitchen more rapidly than any other room of the house and tends to remain there for the length of the event.
The kitchen technology we now have recreates every kitchen task so that they are seamless and fun. However, it would be a struggle to determine whether the bathroom or the kitchen would top the descending order of room importance, which can safely state that the kitchen serves more people more often.
Certainly, the bathroom is not generally considered a food location for entertaining guests. (Whatever you do in your own home is up to you.) So, in terms of serving the most needs of the most people, the kitchen wins out, hands down.