Okay so some of you may not realize this but I am chronically unorganized. I’m not kidding. In fact, if you were reading this aloud to anyone who has ever lived with me they would be emphatically shaking their head right now like a bobble head doll on a Tennessee gravel road. Seriously.
So it is no surprise that my pantry usually looks like something exploded inside it. My sainted mother in law has taken to organizing it for me each time she visits though, and for a few weeks after she goes home I have grocery bliss. Then, I eventually catch up with myself and it goes back to looking like a bomb went off once more. Those nearest and dearest to me witness this kind of disorganization daily.
A few months ago Katy Rose went to look for something in the pantry and as soon as she opened it and saw how messy it was she said “Whoa, looks like Granny needs to come visit us soon.”
~snicker~ Now some moms might take offense to that but in the interest of keeping it real and accepting that I have the things I’m good at and others have things they’re good at, I looked at my little girl and said “You sure are right, Katy Rose!”
So over the Thanksgiving holidays my in laws came for a visit from the great state of Georgia and decided to make a project of organizing and doing a little remodel on my pantry and I thought I’d share it with you.
First, the before pictures. Brace yourselves. This is not for the faint of heart.
Also, if you are pregnant, easily frightened at horror films, or have nightmares about clowns coming out of a Volkswagen beetle, you might want to just scroll to the “after” section.
Okay so here is the ugly, bare bones truth telling photos of what my pantry looks like.
My mind is cluttered much the same way but I enjoy it and it works for me.
Don’t worry though, I’m NOT going to show you what the floor of my pantry looks like.
I would never do that to you. I don’t want you having nightmares or anything ya know…
Oh heck, who are we kidding?
Hold your breath…here comes!
Just in case you still harbor any Martha Stewart visions of me, lets bust through those right now.
So before we could start adding in more shelves (isn’t it cute how I said “we” there, like I did something other than go sit in the recliner and drink tea while the men worked? hahaha) we have to remove all of that umm…stuff.
This is just some of the groceries from the pantry.
Disclaimer: I bake a LOT. When I need flour, it is not uncommon for me to use five or ten pounds at a time. I also tend to bake things on a whim so having a big variety of ingredients on hand is important because the grocery store is like…a whole mile away! Oh the horror.
OOH OOH! Look! you can also look up and see the Christmas curtains I made. I did those Thanksgiving morning and had them up and the meal done by noon! Sometimes the planets align for me that way…
The menfolk getting started.
This is my father in law, who has already installed shelves on the left side and setting them up for the right.
They planned the shelves so they would be wide enough to stock things front to back, grocery store style.
Here is the pantry finished. Now I just need to take the stuff down from the top shelves and organize it.
And between you and me, that’ll probably happen next time my mother in law visits.
Now to stock it. I have issues with grocery shopping. I’m always putting back and stockpiling “just in case”. When I find a good deal (where I can save half or get it entirely free) I can’t resist. As a result, I have this pantry and then another big closet that I use to help with overflow. I know, scary.
But hey, if some kind of disaster strikes, my family will be set on dried beans, oatmeal, popcorn, peanut butter and mandarin oranges.
Raising kids in a world where precious little is within my control, it’s the little securities I cling to.
This is my other side where I have a few baking ingredient shelves, a rice/pasta shelf, aluminum foil/cling wrap shelf, etc.
Now y’all keep in mind that I’m letting you into my pantry here. That is my equivalent of you letting me see your pajama drawer. I wouldn’t criticize your pj’s so this is just gonna be an observation activity only. I welcome all comments, of course, just nothing about “eewwww, why do you have that in your pantry?” or anything about how something in here is going to kill us all.
I am fully aware that a lot of things are going to kill us all and I’m kinda cool with incorporating as many of them possible into my life and sitting back to watch and see who gets the shiny rodeo style belt buckle at the end.
Oh, and apparently I like mandarin oranges…
…and peanut butter. Okay, I blame that one on my husband and kids. They love peanut butter and I bake with it a lot. Our favorites are peanut butter balls, peanut butter icing, and peanut butter cookies.
By the way, any name brands pictured here are purely due to a sale. With a few rare exceptions, I am definitely not a brand name person.A generic may only be ten cents cheaper, but over the course of feeding a family, ten cents here and there adds up quick.
These little drawer thingies are leftover from the time in my life when I had time to scrapbook.
Now they are really handy for raisins, dried fruit, and chocolate chips. See? I recycle!
I keep baking mix, self rising flour, all purpose flour, sugar, cocoa powder, corn meal, evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk, and cocoa powder on hand at all times. I also have a good bit of confectioner’s sugar and brown sugar in the back of the pantry. You’ll find lots of marshmallows and marshmallow cream this time of year so I can whip up fudge in a hurry!
Notice that each bag of sugar is a different store generic! It’s sugar, for goodness sake. Sweet, granulated, white stuff. All the same to me.
The newly organized pantry, complete with show model!
Now, wonder how long I can keep it this way?