Days Away From Settled: Kitchen Pantry Update

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Hi folks –

So I’ve posted a before photo from our pantry – seeing as this is where we spent most of the day. We’d already removed the grease-stained shelves when I remember to grab the camera. The wire racks have since been removed and the room was painted with a fresh coat of white. In hindsight I wish we’d been a little more adventurous, but I’ll be happy with clean and fresh over scuffed and greasy!

The more time we spend on home renovations, the more I find myself amazed by home renovation blogs. How on earth do people manage complete space overhauls? I can’t imagine all the foresight that would need to go into a full-scale project. For example, check this fantastic pantry makeover on Decor Chick – seriously – the lazy-susans, the storage bins, and even the decorative wreath! I’m amazed at how well people prepare for their DIYs!

Our DIY day started with us emptying the garage to clean a spot to paint the shelves. Then we had to go buy some painting supplies. The shelves had to come out and be cleaned. The painting was finally complete. I suppose tomorrow we’ll reassemble the shelves… but there won’t be any spectacular organizational changes to look forward to here on the blog! I suppose I’ll do my best, but I really need to up my game if I want my DIY posts to stand out among the Pinterest crowd.

I think that’s a goal to start working toward. Once I’ve set up my workspace, I’ll sit down and start prepping notes for upcoming projects. Lately my writing has been chaotic and messy; I’ve stuck to my daily writing goal, but quality has suffered. I think it’s time to bring a little light back into this blogging project and see whether the next 100 days can be the best yet!

A Good Lookout

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Belle seems to have found a new lookout spot.

She’s now obsessed with spying out the window overlooking our driveway. She announces my arrival with meows and loud brrrrring. I don’t know how else yo describe the sound, but you can never sneak home without one of the cats announcing your arrival. I love hearing little cat meows when Scott’s expected.

Today was a long one, ending with something getting in my eye. It’s legitimately all I can think of – my eye hurts. Is it scratched? Is the thing still there? Is it just inflamed from me touching at it? Will it ever be the same again?! You know – the usual fresh out that happens when you get something in your eye. It reminds me how important my vision is to me and how one little thing can cause so much discomfort.

Finally, tomorrow we say farewell to our apartment at a walk-through. One last viewing. I will cherish the memories of my first home with Scott and all our many guests. We made a lot of memories in that little space and learned so much about each other. It will be weird to see it off.

Exploring the Neighbourhood

Pretty backyard view #clouds #PEI

A photo posted by Laura Feeney (@ellefeeney) on

I’m exhausted.

Today was another rainy day in Charlottetown. One of those days where you think about staying in bed because you can hear the sound of rain pounding outside. Where you can clearly see your rubber-duck-yellow raincoat sitting in your car from inside you home. Where you’re pants just won’t dry from rain spatter.

Ugh.

But there was a light at the end of a dreary work day – the sun was vaguely shining and we were able to squeeze in a walk through the new neighbourhood. And I like this place. There were families playing in the street and plenty of neighbours getting work done in their yards – it was always a rarity to see any  people at all in our last neighbourhood. We discovered an interesting path system and were nearly devoured by mosquitoes. Not a bad adventure

But now is nearly 9 pm and I’m absolutely drained! This probably has to do with the several hours of unpacking I put in when arriving home, but I just feel lazy! Aw well, early to bed means early to rise. Tomorrow brings with it a weekend – so here’s to a brighter Friday!

Home Renovations

Kitchen drawer hero and his tuxedo sidekick #newhome #removations

A photo posted by Laura Feeney (@ellefeeney) on

We’re taking off down the road of home renovations. Hurray!

Tonight Scott’s in the kitchen cutting out new contract-paper drawer liners. This is the solution to old, cardboard bottom drawers. I just wish we could have found some lovely patterned paper à la Pinterest. But plain white looks fantastic compared to grime. (Scott’s doing the cutting and adhesion mostly because I keep making cutting errors).

This weekend were planning to find a fix for our very soiled pantry. The shelves are lined with particle boards, which is a step up from the plain metal racks, but they’ll require a coat of paint to cover oily stains. I’ll definetly post some before and after photos from this project!

Garden Pizza

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As usual, my food photos are less than desirable.

Tonight I made mini pizzas with ingredients fresh from our garden. This took a bit of work since we’ve yet to unpack most of our kitchen, but I managed to chop up some peppers, tomatoes, and fresh oregano, basil, and thyme. The crusts are from a local bakery called Buns and Things – this is one of my favourite places to pick up a treat in Charlottetown. They baked up nice and crisp on the bottom and were the perfect size for one.

Today I had the realisation that our current house predicament is much like life. We have the things we want in sight, but there’s work to be done in order to have them. Everything worth having is hard work, so I’ll be going forward with that in mind. It’s all here – the garden, the pantry, the freezer, and even the apple tree. It’s just going to take a little work to unlock them.

Ups and Downs of Second-hand Gardening

Hi folks!

Tonight I arrived home in a hungry mood. Since our kitchen is barely unpacked, I wanted something simple. Tortellini, canned sauce, and a vegetable.  I was thrilled to skip out to the backyard and gather a handful of beet greens and serve them up with butter and vinegar.

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However, on a return trip to our second-hand garden, Scott and I discovered some pretty nasty things as well. Our enormous crop of turnip is infested with maggots for one. And the Swiss chard is crawling with my least favourite insect: earwigs. Ewww.

I honestly don’t know what to do about the situation. Since we didn’t plant these vegetables, and have a thriving garden of our own, I’m thinking we pull the bad and try to save the above-ground crop. At the same time, I’m absolutely grossed out.

Going forward, we’ll never be planting as densely as the previous owners. I spend hours just poking around in our community garden, so I hope that I can keep our future garden looking OK. But are the beets from this year going to be impacted by their neighbouring maggot-filled turnip? Do I even have the stomach to find out?!

A Photo-Tour of our new Garden

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Welcome to our new garden!

I’ve spent my entire weekend in the kitchen. Cleaning. I’m so exhausted right now that I almost forgot to blog before passing out. I’m actually looking forward to work tomorrow.

So the garden. As you can see above, it’s a bit unruly. This is no surprise after tackling the kitchen for the past two days – but I digress. I won’t be able to give this garden the TLC it needs this year, but next year I’ll have a great place to start.

Let’s do a virtual walkthrough!

So we’ve got what looks like a dozen tomato plants – all well-overgrown – including some cherry and beef eaters. Next we have over a dozen very large pepper plants. These are easily the most impressive feature of the garden. We found some bell peppers and several species that we think are hot peppers.

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There are plenty of beets – they could use spacing but I’ll probably just grab a few handfuls now and then for greens once we have the kitchen running. The turnips are growing like mad with no space to spare. I’m not a huge fan of the turnip, but willing to try them fresh.

I’m excited to see a young apple tree, although curious as to what it’s doing in the garden. I’ll keep an eye on the impact of roots and shading in years to come. I can’t wait for it to really start producing!

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The shed has two planter boxes, one with cucumbers that are starting to take off, and the other an assortment of cukes, turnips, and an unknown vine. I call it the planter of mystery.

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