It gets hard. It gets boring. It’s tiring. And you just don’t want to do it. But at the end of the project, you’ll realize that it was worth it. But in the middle of it, you might “hit the wall.” You might just wonder why you even began.

I hit that proverbial wall yesterday when I was working on the pantry. It took me forever to yank everything out of there and there I was, surrounded yet again with “Good Intentions.”

meant to make that cake. I intended to use that up.


I wanted to cry.  Many of my good intentions had to hit the trash. I was stuck. Frustrated. This was not an easy job. I couldn’t just strip it, clean it and put it back. I had to stop and think about how I was going to put it back. I had to have a game plan. And that game plan involves going to “The Container Store” and figuring out what was going to work best for storing the food I buy. I couldn’t just power through and clean the damned thing.

So I went over to Pinterest to see how other people set up their pantries.

Well, that made me feel worse because there are some pantries over there that look nicer than my living room.Some have little themes going on…color schemes; little decorative touches. All I’m looking for is an orderly and tidy way to keep my pantry and I find there are people out there who have found the imagination (and the time) to hand-letter their damned storage jars.

Well, whatever winds your clock, I guess.

So I gird my loins and head over to The Container Store and I see this. Holy Mother in Heaven, help me:


Oh good God, where do I start? It was overwhelming.

They had everything you could possibly need to set up an orderly house. They had stuff for filing papers, stuff to store the files for the papers you filed and storage boxes to store the stuff you put the files in for the papers you filed.



There were boxes, bins, racks, bags, bottles, cabinets, and drawers. There were hooks and ladders, snaps, latches, hangers and rods.

It was endless. And so were the possibilities. I almost burst into tears. I pulled myself together and did what I had to do. I began at the beginning.

I began with my measurements and my list of what I needed. Let me simply say, that if you step one foot in that store, you’d better have measured every square inch of the area you intend to address or you’ll be completely lost. I even brought a tape measure. I also found the calculator app on my phone a handy tool, because I completely suck at math.

(I’m a”New Math Victim” of the 60’s. My Dad was a CPA and even he couldn’t understand my homework.)

I stuck to what I knew I needed or what I thought I might be able to employ. I was there so long I had to take a break and go eat something. I asked an associate if she would just watch the 2 carts I had already put together because if I didn’t eat something I was going to freak. Well, apparently they are ready for this. They put these on my carts and parked them in a corral area:


I had a quick lunch and headed back, finished what I thought I needed to get and got out of there with about a three-hour time investment and 256 bucks lighter.

I got the stuff home and began playing around with the pantry to try and figure out what I needed to do, and got my friend Bill to cut, measure and fit the rubberized shelf liner for me. (“New Math” remember?)


I then called it a day because I was completely exhausted. The process of thinking about it wasted me. So today, my goal is to get all of the bottles and boxes and bags and cans wiped down and back into my pantry in an orderly fashion. I’m not exactly looking forward to it, but this place looks heinous and I simply want to get everything back into here so I’m not tripping over boxes of pasta and canned goods.

Is this process worth it? I think so.

How? How is this going to help?

The time you’ll save in just finding the things you actually need.

You won’t be tripping over crap getting things done. You won’t be moving crap, to get to crap, to move crap to find stuff.

You feet will ache. Your back will hurt. But your house is losing weight. But your spirit will be lighter. Your mind will be freer. You will breathe easier. This is not about hoarding. Your home is most likely pretty typical. Kind of messy; needs work. We’re just all so busy. And the birds take up your time.

So taking the time to do this is not only an investment in your home. It’s an investment in yourself.  It’s called Self Care. And I think it’s high time we all take care of ourselves. Because if we don’t, we’re no damned good to anyone else.