Spring-Cleaning out Jars


I woke up this weekend like a bear coming out of hibernation. I awoke to the wonderful Spring sunshine pouring in through the curtains and walked into a nice living room full of light. Birds were chirping all around just like Snow White.

Then I walk into the kitchen, my favorite room in the apartment. But all I could see was MESS. Jars stacked onto jars. All of my dry foods sitting around and my cabinets barely closing because they are packed to the gills!

I’ve been dying to reorganize everything but the winter blahs killed every re-organize bone in my body. But not today! Snow White was gonna get some shit done.

It started out innocent. I wanted to spray paint the lids of my mason jars with chalk board paint in order to write what was in them…..couscous, quinoa, wheat bran and dashi start to look really similar when unlabeled sitting next to each other….and dashi (smells like fish) would be an awful mistake to bake into a loaf of bread.

I pulled out all of the jars, took out all of the lids and washed them so the dust and cooking grease would fade away to allow paint to stick.

While I am busy scrubbing at the lids, Brian begins to clean out our other empty jar cabinet and decides they all need a new home.


Maybe we should have paused at the thought of having an empty jar cabinet….But we didn’t.

In the process, 3 more cabinets of dishes, gardening tools and appliances are strewn about the floor, stove and seating.

LIDS_messy room_01

While the lids were drying, I turn to HB and say,

“WELL, since we are already spraying the lids, maybe we should spray all of our cabinet knobs and give them a new look!”

So now, jars of open food sit everywhere and the cabinets have to be fully defaced in order to get the knobs off.

LIDS_soapy knobs

I begin to carry everything up our rickety fire escape to the roof to start painting. I give them a couple of coats and come down.

“I may as well check the fridge for any lingering lids” I say, still feeling 100% motivated.

“Since I’m in here, I should just CLEAN the fridge out.”

More food goes to the countertops and floors. I then ask the HB to pull the fridge out a bit so I can take the last drawer out. As he does, I hear what sounds like one of the “rain sticks.” My eyes get large and I ask…

“What was that??”

No one moves and I just start laughing.

“Out of all the jars to fall off the fridge, why the sugar?!” I ask, still laughing.
LIDS- spilled sugar
So now, there are jars of food sitting everywhere, cabinets defaced and their contents hanging out, all the fridge food strewn about and NOW everything is covered in raw sugar.

Brian begins to clean it up while I go to the roof for coat two. When I come off the roof, I have a new thought.

“You know, we always wanted to add a chalk board to the inside of our cabinet door (the pantry door that’s the height of the walls.)”

So we begin to unscrew another component of the kitchen.

We wrap the remain parts of the door with wrapping paper and trash bags to keep the paint from spreading. That gets hauled up to the roof.


It’s a really windy day so every time to go up to the roof, I have to chase down about half of the lids that got blown away.

About three hours of cleaning, painting and reorganizing later, the lids are ready to go back onto their jars.

I give them a quick bath and let them drying in the remaining moments of daylight.

I wrote down the jar contents and water ratio instructions for grains and beans.

LIDS_CU on finished

Hours later, my kitchen is way more organized and much cleaner. Sometimes you gotta break shit down before you can rebuild it stronger. Now I just need another weekend to rest up from this one…

LIDS_WS finished jars