|pantry cupboard before|
I discovered quite a bit of food hiding back there that I canned when the garden was going great guns in 2009. (See my garden blog here). I actually did about 20-25 minutes on this project, first emptying the shelves and wiping them down to get the chunky stuff out (including a dehydrated baby mouse.....mmmmm could that be a new snack treat for cats?) Then scrubbing the shelves with hot soapy water. Then of course wiping off each jar and can and checking the seals and expiration dates. Then deciding how to rearrange things. I pulled everything over towards the left so that I will see and use it. I found several jars of various pickles, the really, truly, last jar of pickled eggs, several jars each of hot pickled peppers, applesauce and pear butter. Along with a couple of jars of bean soup and potato soup.
When my timer went off the first time I set it again, because I wanted to finish this project and be done with it. When I was done in the cabinet there was still time left so I used it to wash down the side of the stove and then scrub up some groddy stuff off the floor.
While I was down under there with my head in the cupboard I believe I found where the mice have been coming in. I thought they came in around the gas line but I put a blob of expando foam on that years ago. I couldn't figure out where they kept coming from. Well, looking at things it looks like the shelf boards have shrunk away from the walls of the cabinets in some spots and there is a crack that is probably big enough to let a mouse through. So caulking those all up will have to go on my never ending to do list.
Those cracks are probably also where the spiders and scorpions are coming in also. Though I have many less scorpions now than I did when I moved into this house. In the beginning we were over run with them. Over the years I have been plugging up every hole and crack I can find with either expando foam or regular caulking. Now I only have one occasionally, maybe 3-5 in the house in a year, as opposed to that many every week. So if you have scorpions or other things in your house, seal up every crack you can find. Look around every place there is a break in the wall of your house, like water, drains and gas lines, around windows and doors. When I redid my spare room I sealed all the joints where the walls met in the corners as well as where they met at the ceiling and floor before I put up the new sheet rock. Has drastically reduced the number of critters coming in there!
Now, for all of my American readers and friends, Happy Independence Day!!! I'm Damn Proud to be American!