Thursday, November 20, 2008

Kitchen Refacing Project - Phase I (continued)

Yeah... So, the explanation behind the previous picture - in case you couldn't guess! - is that I am in the process of cleaning out cupboards.

I've never really been known for my - ummm - "Organizational Skills" (And, as I'm *quite* fond of saying: "It's all Part of My Charm!"). Although, out of necessity (and/or if a gun is held to my head), I have actually demonstrated the rudimentary ability to muster up some semblance of order.

Of course, that's "order" by *my* definition!

Let's go back in time for a moment, shall we? I mused about this very subject many, many years ago - when I was living on a 32' cabin cruiser, floating on the San Francisco Bay.

An excerpt from my website

One of the first things I noticed about boats is that you really don't have a lot of "normal" storage - Not that I was ever exceedingly organized to begin with, but it's hard to get a sense of "This belongs HERE." Shellie Taylor [of a long-dead website about liveaboards] captured it brilliantly:

"I have empty lockers. Behind settees, under berths. I'm afraid to put anything in them, because I'll forget it's there, and if I need it I won't be able to find it, and if I don't need it, it will breed in the dark and make six more just like it, and there will be a thousand pounds of junk in hidey-holes that I'll never get to. I've developed a phobia against hidden junk; I'm discovering whole truck loads of it as I weed through stuff I can't imagine why I ever wanted, and as I weed through stuff my boat's former owner deemed precious enough to store forever. I don't want to store anything forever. I don't want to store anything at all; I want to strip life to its essentials so there are fewer things to own me and claim my time and my energy and space in my head and in my lockers. Things are a trap; they'll eat me alive if I let them"

So the first order of business was, of course, to figure out "where things go." That took several months (and [was a never-ending!] Work in Progress)... Tools live under the aft bench, heavier power tools under the salon floor... The blender lives under the galley bench, along with my food-processor and serving dishes. My non-functional oven has become an extension of my midget pantry... The list goes on and on... The interesting thing is, I've discovered a whole new way of looking at things - prioritizing by need. And I have finally accepted the fact that for every one thing I want, I will need to move six things to get to it...

And I have become positively anal about putting things away (Mom would be so proud!!)... It really doesn't take much to turn the entire boat into a disaster area. The good news is, when it is at it's worst, it only takes about 15 minutes to clean up!

[That theory holds true when you're living in appx 180 square-feet of living space. The clean-up time increases exponentially when you live in a house, I've discovered!]

FYI: Ummm, that whole "shove stuff into any available space" concept followed me to my present landlubber existence. Unfortunately, my "fear of acquiring new crap" did not!

* * * * *
So anyway, Rog is out of town again, and I figured this'd be the ideal time for me to start emptying/re-organizing the cabinets. Grant you, the re-face "work" won't happen for another couple-three weeks, but based on my, umm, "filing system," it's gonna take me at least that long to accomplish!!!

And I KNOW there are people out there who tackle projects like this "for pleasure." My buddy, Joisey Kathie, is sick like that. Likewise, Mom and Sis used to go on "Organizing Frenzies" with alarming frequency as I was growing up (which probably explains my pathological aversion to such activities - I was traumatized as a child!). Essentially what this boils down to is: This is very UN-Nancy-Like Behavior. And I am frightened to realize that I am doing this willingly!!!

Frankly, I'd prefer to think of it as "Alien Abduction" to tellya the truth. This just isn't NATURAL!

So the Aliens have temporarily abducted "Charming Nan" and replaced her with this bizarre "Clone!" Hopefully she can get everything done in a week.

FWIW - It's not *really* as big of an undertaking as painting the living room was (but it's about 3X as difficult - for me!!!). And it really *is* necessary. I forget that not EVERYONE has spent 6 yrs living on a boat and the concept of a tin-can avalanche occuring whenever you open a cabinet-door is not really "normal" for most people! In fact, when said cabinet is overhead, some folks might even call that "dangerous!" :::shrug:::

So anyway, in my quest to maximize our minimal cabinet-space, I decided to first tackle the "pantry" (actually, a utility cabinet in the garage).

The pantry purge produced the plethora of Pasta-Ronis and (alliteration-ends-here) BBQ sauces. Oh, and Jell-O. LOTS of Jell-O!!!

I bought a few additional shelves and moved the lesser-used "Electrics" (food processor, bar-blender, ice-crusher, waffle-maker, etc) out there. And I've started to move most of the canned stuff out there as well.

Although, now that I think about it... By moving the "Electrics" out to the garage, that frees up a lower cabinet where *maybe* I can put my bakeware and pots/pans.. And if I move THAT stuff then MAYBE the canned goods can live on the Lazy-Susan "Blind-Corner" shelf!


Oh Gawd.... I'm reshuffling the whole freaking kitchen now! And I have to be "Or- Orrrg- Or-gan-ized" to accomplish that! (I'm very frightened!)

"Breathe, Nancy... Breathe...." One-step-at-a-time...

* * * * *
See?!! This ain't EASY for me!!!

So anyway, that's the Latest! I've accomplished "quite a bit," so far - but I am nowhere NEAR done. In fact, you know that whole "It gets worse before it gets better" thing? Well, I am SOLIDLY in the middle of THAT phase of the project!

Pantry looks "OK" (so far) but the rest of the garage is a freaking disaster area. Good thing Rog is gone - there's no room for a car in there right now. And the "Hallowed Bastion of Manliness," the Work-Bench?!! HAHAHAHAHA. Sorry - all horizontal-spaces are fair-game right now! And that includes the "Not-So-Hallowed Bastion of Domestic Servitude," the Washer/Dryer, as well! I sure hope I don't run out of clean clothes anytime soon!!!

Why do I torture myself like this?!!


Unknown said...

Okay, so the Joisey Kathie is flattered that she got mentioned in the blog but it doesn't stop there! She failed to mention that whenever she needs to clean/organize ANYTHING, *I* get a phone call. Not that I mind, of course, I don't get out much. Another Joisey girl has accused me of having a 'code' identifiable for this condition. I'm so proud. BTW - I'm exit 13.

IMQTPI said...

Yo Joisey Girl...

While it's true that you have "helped me" on numerous occasions when I felt the Urge to Purge - The cabinets, I mean! - Of foodstuffs that expired during the Nixon Administration...

I *would* like to point out that I have been tackling this particular endeavor SOLO!

Yes, it's 'scary' - and I get a little 'wobbly' and 'lost' at times. But I'm working through "my issues!"

Be glad I'm not calling you every freaking night for assistance (Damned Time Zone differences, ya know?!!) You'd NEVER get any sleep!!!


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