Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Lenten Cleaning: Kitchen Cupboards

I had several items on my to-do list yesterday, including my routine cleaning of the kitchen (refrigerator and floor), but it was all put on hold when I discovered a nasty surprise at about 8 AM: I was innocently reaching for a dishtowel, but instead… evidence of mice! Evidently, overnight a group of mice had a jolly time racing through my kitchen cupboards, but acting very irresponsibly by not cleaning up after themselves!

Fortunately, I had already made supper and had bread rising, so my other plans for the day were put on hold as I bravely worked section by section, emptying drawers and shelves, scrubbing the cupboard and all its contents. As a reminder, here’s what my kitchen cupboards look like:

I love this old cupboard, but because it is so old there are gaps that allow mice or other creatures to find their way in from the basement or under the floor. Until yesterday, I hadn’t had any visitors, but now we’ll be filling in those gaps as soon as possible!

It took me all day and countless buckets and sinks of water to clean everything to satisfaction. I also did a huge amount of decluttering! My kitchen table was full of a few extra appliances (rice cooker, anyone?) and gadgets and accessories (huge dip bowl that looks like a chili pepper!) that I just don’t use or need. My goal was to have the bottom shelf in the lower section completely empty, and I almost managed! All that’s there are several large serving trays, a basket, my Christmas plates, and a few extra settings of flatware!

I didn’t take any before pictures because, well, that’s just gross, but here is what everything looked like when I was finished (minus the dishes and mugs still drying in the dishwasher):

Left space for my crockpot which I was using. Look at that wide open pace on the bottom!