April 23, 2019

Shameless, My Pantry, and a New Toy

Yikes! I haven't written much at all this month. I haven't really felt like writing lately; I'm not sure why, but I just haven't had the desire to, so my computer has remained untouched for well over a week. Everything is fine! It just feels nice to take a break from the blog (and anything on the computer, really).

Things haven't been too exciting around here. Jerry went to Chicago for five days to attend a Star Wars Celebration. I was absolutely not interested in that, obviously, but I'm really glad he got to go. When he first learned of it last year and the location was announced, he immediately bought a ticket (it's about a 4-1/2 hour drive from here). I was going to rent him a car to take, but discovered it was actually cheaper to fly! So, he flew in on Thursday morning and came home on Monday night.

He had a blast while he was there among his fellow Star Wars nerds ;)  He sent me several selfies of him with actors from the Star Wars movies, but I had no idea who they were because I don't watch Star Wars. I did, however, get very excited when he sent me this one...

Cameron Monaghan, from the Showtime show Shameless! Jerry and I have been watching Shameless since the airing of the pilot episode, and it is our very favorite show. Jerry caught Cameron as he was walking out and asked if he could get a selfie "to make the wife jealous", haha. And, of course, I totally was!

While Jerry was in Chicago, I worked on our pantry (I hadn't done anything with it other than the flooring while making over the kitchen). The pantry is relatively big--12 feet by 4-1/2 feet. The original layout of our house had a room between the kitchen and the master bedroom that they called a "sunroom". I had no need for a sunroom, so I had the builders divide it in two--half of it became the master bedroom closet and the other half became the kitchen pantry. I'm so glad I did that, because I love having a big pantry!

I have never been a fan of the wire shelving--things fall through the cracks and they are hard to clean. They're just awkward. I had a bunch of leftover boards from building shelves in the boys' closets, and I still had my dad's miter saw here (as well as my brother's tools), so I decided to take on the project of building shelves for the pantry.

First, I removed the textured ceiling in the pantry and finished the seams with drywall tape and compound (also leftover). Then I painted the walls with leftover paint from the boys' bedrooms. I cut shelves from plywood and built them in from wall to wall. I made the shelves 16" deep instead of 12", like the wire shelves had been, and that increased the storage space. I also left the far wall open instead of adding more shelves so that it wasn't so awkward to store the broom, Swiffer, and vacuum.

I painted the shelves white and put contact paper on top of each. The pantry looks so much better! This "before" photo is from 2011, but it hadn't changed at all...

I do wish I'd painted the walls white or a very light gray rather than the blue. The blue looks bright in the boys' bedrooms, but I'm sure that's because they have windows. The pantry obviously doesn't have windows, so it's darker in there than I'd like (I had to lighten the picture a bit so you could see it). Still, it's a drastic improvement.

Now the only parts of the house that need an update are the master closet and my laundry room, which I'll probably work on this summer.

I'm still reading quite a bit. I didn't turn on the TV even once while Jerry was in Chicago, and I like to read whenever I get some spare time. I had a $70 credit for Amazon, and I decided to use it to get a Kindle Paperwhite. (It was $150 for the ad-free version, but somehow using the credit made it feel like I was only spending $80. I also got 20% cash back on my credit card for it!)

Anyway, I absolutely love it. I had always used my iPad Mini to read ebooks, and I just assumed that a Kindle was basically the same thing. The Paperwhite is amazing, though! I especially love it because there is no glare on the screen, making it very easy to read outside (just as if I'm reading an actual paperback). I'm going to love reading outside this summer!

(This current book is Mindhunter: Inside the FBI's Elite Serial Crime Unit)

The Kindle Paperwhite is also less than half the weight of my iPad--the main reason I wanted it. The iPad is heavy and irritates my carpal tunnel, but the Kindle weighs about the same as my iPhone 6. It's smaller in size than the iPad, too--roughly the same size as an average paperback book, only very thin.

I've always preferred using an actual paperback to reading ebooks whenever possible, but the Kindle Paperwhite has converted me. It's not awkward to hold, like a paperback is when you're reading the beginning or end and there aren't many pages on one side.

I just finished a book called Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer. It's about the 1996 disaster on Mount Everest, in which 12 people died during a summit attempt. There was a lot of controversy about the incident, in part due to Krakauer being there as a journalist for Outdoor magazine. Into Thin Air is his memoir about the event.

I knew nothing about mountain climbing when I started the book, but he did a great job explaining the hows, whats, and whys. He also shared a little about the people that were going to attempt the summit that May 1996 and it was sad to read about them, knowing their fate. I found the book pretty fascinating and I learned a lot about mountain climbing--which only reinforced that it was something I have absolutely zero desire to try.

I'll post a Wednesday Weigh-In tomorrow. I had taken pictures last week but never got around to posting. I've been doing good with my eating--focusing on smaller portions--and I've been walking. I haven't been following the walking plan (I got off schedule when Jerry was gone) but I've been walking nonetheless. Despite my weight being in the low 160's, I actually feel really healthy right now. And I like not being so focused on numbers.

Eli's playing baseball for the school and his first game (a double header) is today. This time of year gets very busy! But I'll at least check in for a Wednesday Weigh-In tomorrow.


  1. If you haven't already read it, another book by Krakauer is Into the Wild. I read it after I saw the movie they adapted it into but I liked the book even better. It's just an interesting story.

    1. I totally agree with this. Into the Wild is a great book, pretty short too. I’ve read it a few times!

  2. Its baseball season in my house hold too! <3

  3. Your pantry looks amazing. I always wanted one. About 10-15 years ago I bought a huge oak wardrobe to use as my pantry cupboard in my kitchen. The guys from the furniture store could barely get it up the three steps from my garage into my kitchen, cause it's so heavy. The problem with it is the shelves are deep and lots of times I lose stuff back there. But it's still nice to have a well stocked pantry so when I read a good recipe on Pinterest, I often have all the ingredients on hand to make it!

  4. Katie, I just finished reading "Vox" at your suggestion. It was an interesting read.


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