I'm not going to lie, I'm having my ups and downs with the January Cure. I'm going to share my ups with you, but I gotta say, the downs are that this is harder than it looks. And there is a reason (I'm going to start pointing fingers now) — my family isn't entirely on board. Most specifically the kids.
Sure, they liked the idea of getting things in their rooms fixed up, and hopefully we will get to that, but as I read about this landing strip thing, I suddenly see the cure project spiraling out of control. I have a landing strip — it is a whole mud room devoted to this very thing — and if I am going to be honest, it is pretty functional. But kids walk into it and explode and the shards of the explosion have this way of ricocheting all over the house.
It really is a backpack and school paper and project issue. I have my mail under control (for the most part) and a place to put keys, take off boots and outside clothes. And if it were just me, this day #9 thing would have been a piece of cake, as in already done. But it is those backpacks that give us trouble. If they open up — watch out. Am I the only one that needs a kid cure?
But back to the ups — my daughter and I tackled the chaos in the pantry as part of the weekend kitchen cleaning. I took the 'before' picture and instantly experienced the magic of 'before picture' photography. Why is it that the moment you take a picture of something you see it in a whole new way? I can't explain it, but it is a universal truism — if you want to find new solutions, design new spaces, see things differently and for what they really are, look at them in picture form.
In this case, my immediate reaction was shame. (How did we let this pantry get that bad? Can I share this on Apartment Therapy and live to tell about it? Ugh!). But we worked through it. And it got worse before it got better — that middle image is when Zippy, our dog, had to jump in and help after a container of oatmeal on a high shelf toppled over us and spilled everywhere.
In the end, we, rather embarrassingly, removed 3 trash bags of stuff (not all food) in addition to storing a few less needed items away in the attic to arrive at a wonderfully cleaner and more organized pantry. I discovered that there are some items that I need not buy for a long time (there were 3 or 4 jars of pasta sauce that I unearthed, a couple bags of brown sugar, and ridiculous numbers of canned beans in all varieties). And now I can actually think through dinner options in a much healthier and sane way. Next up is the fridge — it needs the same.
Some of my other happy upgrades — the flowers. I love the greens in this grocery store bouquet. I was actually able to make one bouquet into two — now I just need to stop my cat from nibbling on them and constantly knocking them over (again with the family working against me thing).
Also, the cure inspired me to buy some room sprays from a new local business. They are wonderful — the lavender is (of course) relaxing as can be, but the jasmine puts me in a whole new state of mind. I had a jasmine plant next to the sofa when we lived in London. It is where my daughter was born and where I cared for her as a newborn. The smell of jasmine takes me right back to that warm nested newborn feeling and time. I am really enjoying having it here in this home… it has me thinking that even though this room spray is lovely, I might need to get a new real jasmine plant. More Cure ideas!
(Images: Rochelle Greayer)