Saturday, August 7, 2010

The Pantry.... Stage 1

Around here, things seem to have to be done in stages. Part of this is that we're trying to reuse stuff that Dad's been holding onto for the last 40 years. The other part is that there are so many things needing our attention that we can only give one thing so much of our time before we have to stop and move to something else.

Today, I focused on the pantry, or what will become the pantry once we're all done. The problem is that we need more space so that I can easily see what I have...and don't have. I found several cans of food that I didn't realize I had until I unloaded these shelves. Up to today, we had very limited dry/canned food storage. It was confined to THIS:

This shelf was nearly 30 inches deep and while it worked well for volume, it made it difficult to keep track of what I had and what I was out of. With the two semi trailers we got, we were able to move all of dad's camping stuff out of this area:

This is what will become my pantry. It'll be a long hallway type thing, and will have shelves as well as two different freezers and our second refrigerator. We'll also be adding a wall along here - which will be one wall of our bedroom. Along the left side of the picture below, just past the two shelves that are down low. Like I said....lots of stuff going on at once...

After grocery shopping yesterday, I realized that my surfaces were very overcrowded. Overcrowding and clutter makes me anxious. I had to do something about it!! So, off to dad's trailer we went and found some modular shelving stuff - which is close to 30 years old!! Well, around here, we don't care how old something is, we only care if it can serve a purpose.

I started by clearing off one side of the counter. Notice the soda machine?

The answer is NO so don't even ask. We could have a fully functioning machine... but that's just one more thing that requires maintenance and frankly, none of us need liquid crack on tap. So, it's a nice decoration and the ice bin made a GREAT place to store cat food!! I can fit 60 lbs of cat food in there!

I assembled the shelves and then loaded them up with all of our stuff.... Repeat on side two....

There's also the other side of the aisle, where this little freezer sits - this is the one I was contemplating making into strictly a dessert freezer.... We'll see.

Above it is more storage, and places for more shelves to go in eventually.

There is a counter along side of it which is a straight shot (nearly) from the door to the outside. It's where the car will be unloaded and everything unpacked & put away. Under the counter are two shelves where I now have bins for potatoes and onions. I'll be adding a third bin for the contents of that large black bag on the far right - 50lbs of bread flour.

Oh and here's the old ice machine that holds dog food - the tan thing on the right with the black flip down door.... it's also down in the pantry - a full 40 lb bag fits in there with no trouble, and truthfully, I could probably fit 80lbs if I bagged off the actual ice making parts inside the bin. There will also be shelves put in above it for MORE storage

Do you remember up above, what we DID have in the kitchen? Well now it looks like this!!! SOOOO much better. Now it's just my grandma's china that's displayed on the top three shelves and a few daily use type items on the bottom shelf....

And here they are side by side.... just for comparison:

It's a HUGE improvement in the "working" part of our kitchen. This is how it is around here.... improvements are a constantly happening thing. It's really nice when they happen.... but I will say that I will be really glad when the INSIDE improvements are done, because what's left after that is the FUN stuff... like landscaping!!

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