Many of you journeyed through our kitchen remodel in the fall via Instagram stories and I FINALLY got to organizing it! After 13 years in our house, we decided it was time to remodel our kitchen for two reasons: more pantry space and more light (it was so dark!). We didn't have the option to add more cabinets or space so we had to get creative. We moved appliances around, bailed on the microwave (those take up so much space!) and focused on function along with all the ways to bring more light into our space (under cabinet lights and light countertops, cabinets and backsplash were key to this!). But back to the pantry . . . we decided to make it more of a "working pantry," meaning, we have all of our appliances in it behind closed doors and even added our countertops inside because we had extra from our slab (but just a tip, if this isn't an option for you, we were going to do butcher block which I think would have been just as pretty). See the closed pantry below. 

We kicked off 2018 with some other changes in our kitchen, specifically, what we are putting in our bodies. My daughter was diagnosed with a gluten and dairy sensitivity at the beginning of 2017, and I came to realize that this past year we have been eating the same ten things over and over again.The biggest problem with those ten meals was they had very little nutrients in them. This happened namely because our "go-to meals" were not an option for us anymore.  And many of our "go-to meals" were from Cara Clark's cookbooks and Dr. Furhman's Eat to Live cookbook, both focusing on high nutrient foods. I knew we had to get high nutrient foods back in our diet and one way we could do it was to have the healthy food visible and accessible.

My great friend, Stephanie, has a serious gift in organization so she helped me navigate this project. Knowing my end goal of healthy eating, she knew clear glass containers would be a good fit for our family. She said when you open the pantry and see the healthy stuff right at eye level (looking pretty!), you tend to reach for it! And I couldn't agree more! The glass containers are from Target and they come in a set of 4 (for $21.99). I didn't us the largest container in the kitchen, but put it to use in my office to organize our crafts. The labels were so easy to apply and are totally custom and available at this Etsy shop! The baskets contain many things I don't use on a day to day basis and those are also all from Target. And in case you are wondering, all of my spices and canned goods are on the other side of the kitchen, next to our stove.

As far as all of our snacks (we love our snacks over here!), they are in three out of the six drawers. The other drawers hold our glass containers, bowls, mixer, baking pans, etc. 

Our bigger bags of snacks go in the big drawers and I keep the unopened bags in one drawer, and the opened in another.

I do feel that we are eating so much healthier now that our pantry has some order in it. Our last pantry was so small that the healthy stuff would get pushed to the back and the not so healthy stuff always found its way to the front. Drawers help this as does shelving that isn't too deep. Another bonus to an organized pantry is I want to keep it clean and since everything has it's own place, it's so much easier to do so! And you know what less time in the kitchen gives you? More time with God! :-) 

A few more pics below . . .  

Making Time With God Doable when You’re In a Funk

Funks happen. Days we feel off, and no chocolate or Netflix binge can turn things around. The reason behind our funks could be as simple as not getting enough sleep, absorbing enough sunlight, or eating enough veggies. But oftentimes the root lies much deeper, where psychological, emotional, or relational issues are to blame.

And there’s nothing new under the “funk” sun; people have been getting into funks since forever. Jonah got super down when God didn’t destroy Nineveh. Jeremiah wished he was never born. David couldn’t even be pulled up off the ground at one point. And Jesus, He was a “man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief” (Isaiah 53:3 KJV).

I once experienced a two-year period of funkdom (as my dad would call it). I was living on the other side of the country, far away from cultural familiarity, lifelong friends, and my large family. The decision to move was for our good, to give our kids a “country experience” and to perhaps set ourselves up financially so we could retire with ease one day. But the initial excitement soon turned sour, and whether I was grieving my old life or couldn’t handle the humidity (not sure the exact reason for my funk), I wasn’t having any of it. 

After repeated episodes of sobbing on the floor of my closet, cat in one hand and phone calling mom in the other, I came to the conclusion: who is there but God to turn to, who besides Him has the desire, patience, and ability to comfort me? So I redirected my tears and replaced (most) of my closet shenanigans with a daily quiet time—more like cry time—where I made a fool out of myself before God, desperately clinging to Him and His every Word. This was something I scheduled every morning out of necessity—same time, same place, same funk.

And you know what came out my quiet times with the Creator of the universe? A love for my new town? No. An instantaneous move back “home”? Not for two years. A less sassy attitude about my circumstances? I wish. Rather, God told me He loved me. Not just any ol’ declaration of love, but take the most romantic, heartfelt, time-stopping, nurturing, Charles Ingalls/Colin Firth “I love you” you’ve ever heard in a movie or read in a book—and multiply by 50 thousand. It was as though I felt God’s heart burst for me. And I discovered for the first time that His “unfailing love [really] is better than life” (Psalm 63:3).

Sweet friend, I sure hope you’re not in a funk today. But if something petty is bugging you or something too-complex-for-words is tormenting you, get alone with God and call to Him in your distress. And because of your funk, you’ll find yourself receptive to His I-love-yous in ways you’ve never been before. I promise (more importantly, He promises), when you draw near to Him, He will draw near to you (James 4:8).

For you have been my help, and in the shadow of your wings I will sing for joy. My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.


There is so much Easter can teach us. Of course the biggest take-away is the sacrificial love of our God. How wide and long and high and deep He loves us, that He would sacrifice His son so we can spend Eternity with Him. And for Jesus to rise again, giving us the confidence in our forever home, is the biggest gift we will receive in this lifetime.

But one piece of the “Resurrection puzzle” that gets little attention is today—Saturday. Some Christians call it Holy Saturday. The day between Christ’s death and resurrection. On this day, God teaches us that waiting can be hard. God teaches us that waiting requires hope and trust. And He teaches us that He is working in our waiting.

Can you take a minute on this Holy Saturday, and think about what the disciples must have been thinking today? They likely were fearing death. Fearful they would be arrested for claiming Jesus as their Lord and professing this from their “rooftops.” But their grief was likely stronger than their fear. Did they still have hope? How would they continue to live in a world of darkness without hope in their Savior? How could they go and make disciples of all nations? They simply could not move.

Luke 23:49 says, “Those who were close friends of Jesus, including the women who had followed him from Galilee, stood at a distance and watched." While everyone ran away to grieve. They just stood there.

Have you ever been so hopeless that you couldn’t move? Maybe you are there right now. Remember that while you are standing still, God is still working. Remember that just as the disciples only needed one more sleep to realize Jesus would conquer death so they could have life, He is working in your “Saturday” too.

And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.