Feel free to skip over this post if you're sick of hearing about my home organization project, but I can't stop writing about it because it's having such a profound effect on my quality of life.
I am fundamentally a nester. Not that I'm a big horoscope person, but I've had people look at mine and tell me it's a wonder I ever leave the house.
This is my "starter house" and at some point this summer I'll have lived here for 25 years. I have no intention of ever leaving. In fact, if I were to suddenly get rich, my dream would be to bulldoze this house and build a nicer, more energy-efficient one in its place.
Two-and-a-half decades is a long time to live in one place. My husband and I have been pretty good about keeping the super-noticeable clutter at bay and we have a habit of renting a dumpster every five years or so to make sure. However, it gets easier and easier to look past the massive amounts of smaller stuff you're keeping for absolutely no reason once you've spent that long with it.
This weekend, I crossed one of my extra projects off the list. I'd decided it would be nice to get an enclosed cupboard with a hutch to replace the open bakers' rack we've been using as a microwave and cookbook stand all this time. Nothing screams, "I decorated this room in the 1990s" like a bakers' rack.
I found the perfect cupboard on Facebook Marketplace. It was a great color and it had already been marked down a few times by the sellers, who were clearing out their house in preparation to move out of state. I made the deal, measured the cargo space in my car and drove the 20 miles to pick it up.
It didn't fit. If magic were real, you could have put them where they needed to go, but it was impossible to fit the second piece through the hatch opening once the first piece was in. Fortunately, we managed to load the cabinet part and there was nothing to be done but bring it home and arrange to get the hutch the next day.
I did that and I love the whole thing enough that it was worth the 80+ miles and hours of driving it took to finally get it all home.
Yesterday I cleared off the old rack. You guys, there was SO MUCH STUFF on there! Dozens and dozens of cookbooks, some dating back to when I was growing up. A bear-shaped cookie jar, sans head/lid for as long as I can remember, filled with cat grooming accessories and an impressive amount of catnip. Two sediment-filled bottles of plum wine that a friend made. My gigantic stack of recipe printouts that still need to be organized into a binder. The clay jar I use to store onions. I'm sure there was more I'm forgetting. It's truly a testament to how sturdy the rack is. I don't remember where it came from, but it's a quality item.
I got my husband to help me set up my new cupboard. The previous owners had simply set the hutch on top of the lower cabinet and called it a day, but in this house full of rambunctious animals, I felt driven to buy a pair of T-brackets to make sure the top couldn't be tipped over. I also needed to cut a hole in the back of the hutch so I could run the microwave cord behind it. That was far more of a hassle than I expected because it's very solid piece of furniture that's made of actual wood, so it required some effort.
Oh, and I dropped and broke one of the glass panes for the upper cabinet doors while I was trying to put it in. Getting a new one is now on my to-do list for sometime in the next few weeks.
Even with the hassles, it's been unexpectedly lovely to finally have a place for certain items like my teapots that really hadn't had their own spot up to now. Lots of the items in the upper cabinet had once been just sort of hanging out on a counter or windowsill and now they're actually on display.
I am so glad I started this home improvement project. Just imagine what I can do next year after all of these tasks are out of the way!