I'd like to introduce you to my pantry. This picture was taken after I had already started taking things out of it. After my head met an unknown object that originated from that top shelf, I figured I should probably start removing items as quickly as possible in the interest of human safety. Just try to visualize the top shelf looking like the rest of them.
Here is a closer look at just how crammed those shelves were. Looking back on it now, I can recognize that this may appear to be a scene out of "Hoarders".
I grabbed my friends Trash Can and Recycling Bag and got to work. Good thing I called in those friends, they saw a lot of action during this mission.
For example, there was this: Unknown package of something. I'm pretty sure it was pudding or Jello, but have no idea what flavor or anything.
Or, there was the container of Easy Mac that expired in November 2009. Yes, that's sad. But, it gets worse. . .we've moved twice since then. So apparently, we packed up expired food and moved it with us. Twice. Nice.
Yes, you read that right. In case you can't make it out fully, the expiration date listed is 12/31/2006. Umm. . . .I have no explanation that would sound the least bit rational. The only thing that I can say is that I have cleaned out my pantry since then. I just missed this somehow. I won't even tell you how many times we've actually moved since 2006. How this got missed all those times, I'll never fully understand. Yikes!
There were also some less gross but equally interesting discoveries during Mission Pantry Takeover.
That's ALOT of applesauce!! I don't know what's worse: the fact that I apparently thought that a giganormous (yes, it's a word. . at least in my world) can of applesauce would ever actually have a use in this house or the fact that a giganormous can of applesauce was able to hide in my pantry completely undetected.
Pretty much my plan of attack consisted of the following:
Empty each shelf and scrutinize every single item taken out of the pantry. Anything that was unidentified (jello or pudding? Your guess is as good as mine!), expired, or stale (like the 12 bags of opened half eaten chips?) immediately met Mr. Trash. Any boxes or packaging that were able to be recycled met Miss Brown Paper (Recycling) Bag. Throughout the entire mission, Mr. Trash, Miss BPB and I worked tirelessly together to divide and conquer.
Once all enemies had been identified and disposed of, our POW's needed to be assigned their places of captivity. Therefore, each shelf in the pantry took on a "theme" of sorts. The top shelf was designated for any "breakfasty" items (cereal, oatmeal, pop tarts, etc) as well as any stockpiled snack items (unopened bags of chips, cookies, etc). The second shelf was where pastas, rices, sauces, and baking items were to be held.