My gift for Mother’s Day was a promise to redo the laundry room. The horrible, ugly, ancient wallpaper was coming down in curls, the pantry needed a fresh coat of paint, and there was only basic, inadequate shelving.
Last week was Columbus Day which is, at best, a suspicious holiday. Also suspicious: that Mother’s Day gift. Because here it is the 20th day of October and my laundry room looks almost as it did in May, that month that occurred 5 months ago. I pull down a piece of wallpaper every time I scurry into the laundry room and toss a box of crackers into the pantry blind. Imagine, then, the set design for The King’s Speech, except woefully suburban. Because you aren’t getting a picture until I have an “after” to cushion the blow to my ego.
In August the Mister surprised me with a Nook and a smile, a smile that said we’re good on the laundry room, right?
Nope! Not good.
Not good at all.
I almost didn’t clean out the pantry this month because I want the entire laundry room done, and I’m afraid if I clean up one small area, further delays will be rationalized. Then I started looking around the laundry room and realized the plans I came up with in May could use some tweaking, and since that was the case, I should stop being a baby and clean everything out.
For example, the pantry is not original to the house. A washer or dryer used to sit in this enclave. I don’t know what sat where the washer and dryer currently are, but I know there was once a large window. (That window is sorely missed–it’s dark as pitch in the laundry room, as you can tell from the pictures.) If I was patient and waited until we could afford a front loading washer/dryer that can stack and a tankless water heater, I could really change the floor plan of this small room. I could place the washer/dryer where the pantry is now, put back the window, and create banquette seating for an eat-in kitchen. (Does anyone have a stacking washer and dryer? How do you like it?)
Of course, I would have to figure out what to do with the pantry ingredients. Speaking of which:
It’s a tight fit, so I wasn’t able to get a picture of the entire pantry. It looks good, minus the egregious contact paper. (It’s on my list, but not for this month.) I also didn’t get a picture of everything once I pulled it all out, but there was plenty to throw away.
This is all a little temporary, but the bottom shelf has holiday items, like the candy we will be giving out for Halloween, cookie cutters, and old party supplies. I think I’ll move everything but the candy and napkins to the cupboard above the refrigerator. The next shelf is my favorite. It’s where I will now store all my casserole and baking dishes. No more precarious stacking and reaching into deep corner kitchen cabinets, and I can even add another shelf! Right now there are baking supplies on the same shelf, but that’s temporary. I have a spot in mind for that, too.
On the next shelf I have school lunch supplies…and a carton of vegetable broth? Huh. I guess I forgot to put that in place. Oh well. Above that are all the canned goods, the rest of the broth, and some dried vegetables. The top shelf has a few boxes of grains that didn’t make it into my grain pantry, one box of cereal, tea, and a bin of snacks for a little boy with who has Type 1 diabetes in our school-carpool. Since he lives only a couple of doors down, the boys will occasionally have snack together. That bin holds all his snacks, important contact numbers, legal forms for me in case of an emergency, and a chart to help guide me on what snack to give him depending on the time and his glucometer readings. (You work hard, ZDub.)
On the very tip-top shelves I have my cookbooks (which need to be purged) and rarely used small appliances. If you are wondering where all my grains are, well.
(You’re going to have to cut me some slack on the Nico oven prints.)
My spice cabinet is to the right of the oven, as you know. To the left of the oven is another pullout that sat empty for six years. Not anymore.
She’s beautiful. [wipes tear]
I don’t know why I didn’t do this sooner, although I suspect the agony of deciding on the proper canister played a part.
In the end I used quart sized mason jars and I love them. I’m not done. I ran out of jars, so I just put the remaining grains on the bottom shelf until I buy more. I also ran out of time and couldn’t properly organize and label the jars, but I’ll show you when I do. Even half complete I am so very, very happy!
These last two pictures are more medicinal than they are educational. Please see 2¶, line 4, “an ‘after’ to cushion the blow to my ego.”
New here? For the next 31 days I’m living according to the famous William Morris quote. You can learn more about the project here.