Renovating my Kitchen Started in My Heart

It has been a long time since I gave any updates on our homestead house remodel and that is because there has been nothing to talk about until now.  As embarrassing as it is to admit, I am real and you know I will tell all—I have been a spoiled brat!  I got so used to the lap of luxury in our big white farm house rental that I became frustrated with the lack of things getting done in our new home.

I will tell my story…

I HATE clutter! 
I allowed myself to cry over it a number of times.   I am a reformed slob, so I feel like I can’t even function with clutter anymore now.  I am obsessive about organization and cleanliness.  I was upset because I was promised a homestead that was finished.  I was comfortable in the fancy rental and did not want to move.  I moved because I wanted to chase a dream with my husband.  It was exciting and while remodeling it was such a thrill to see things come together and then—BAM!  Nothing!

It burned me, I was designing cabinets and when the cabinet man skipped town I thought we would be working on them in the evenings, but I was wrong.  My husband worked full time and in his spare time he was outside making pastures, brush hogging, cutting down trees, and tearing into other projects laying around the fields.  I kept looking out the window thinking, “What about my cabinets?”  Silently longing for my projects to be done.  The trim around the floor, the windows, and the cabinets.

Trying to maintain composure, contentment, and humility, I lied to myself, I would paste a smile on and go about my business while my impatience grew into my heart like a cancer that bred all kinds of frustration and bitterness.  Little did I know, I was spoiled.  The enemy is always lurking around to play with our minds and we get sucked into the lies.  I just started believing them.  I can’t tell you how many mornings I would wake up to my cluttered mess of a sloppy kitchen and I would cry to my husband saying “I am so sick of this clutter and mess.  You promised we would not live under construction, YOU PROMISED!”

Every time he would look at me and say, “You always tell people that you are like a pioneer.  Be that Pioneer woman—you are smart, creative, and besides, people live in far worse situations all around the world.  Just listen to yourself for a second.  Be thankful for what we have, we have so much!  We are blessed beyond measure!”  He repeated that phrase many times, and it became like a record spinning in my mind until I just cracked, Praise the Lord!  At first I would resist the truth of his words for the shear redundancy of them.  I would cringe back with my frustration.  But just recently those words of truth penetrated my heart and I learned from them.

Well, he was right.  What a deal!  I simply fussed over nothing.  I am smart, creative, and I am blessed!  I am living out in the country on a homestead, my family is healthy and I have Jesus!  What more could you need?!  When others are suffering in all kinds of terrible ways, I am blessed beyond measure and I have a roof over my head, a loving husband, and all the things that so many others pray to attain!  While others live with loss, disease, and hopelessness, I have hope!  What a fool I was to let a dumb thought steal another minute of my precious time.  I thank God for giving me just what I need and nothing more!  For not letting me have my WAY but His!  For teaching me patience and giving me a husband that can help me see what I am missing.  And when you miss it, you are missing out on life!

It is never too late for an attitude adjustment!  Yesterday in honor of his lovely instruction I got busy in my kitchen.  I remodeled it with no money, no new decorations, but just with what I had and the sweat of my brow!  I was being resourceful.  I am a PIONEER Woman!

I rearranged, cleaned behind things, and said goodbye to all the clutter.  The first thing I did, since there were all these little things piling up on the wood shelves, I hauled an old dresser in and started to fill the drawers with cups and utensils, lids and measuring cups.

The beauty is that you can just shut the doors and drawers of that dresser and away the clutter goes!  Who needs cabinets anyway?
No cabinets and no pantry scream for cute glass containers to store my pantry goods.
Old boxes hold plates and bowls.
I even have a nice place to keep all my many jars and overflow of extra pantry items.
Spices and canned goods are right at my fingertips.
I made a kitchen island working table.  Found it out in the old wood shed.  It used to be a work bench and the top was covered with thick grime.  What to do…
I bought a piece of clear plastic for $5 and covered the surface after power-washing it.  I simply stapled it to the table so it would not fall off.  Now I am close to my sink and stove while I work in my kitchen.
And the best thing about my island is that I have a place to put my baking sheets, bowls, and my pots and pans. And if I need an extra hand, well, that vice may come in handy to hold something in place while I work.
The stove is working hard and looking more and more rustic as we go.
My sink clutter solution…
I found a brown plastic bin to organize all my homemade cleaners, scrubby pads, and trash bags.  And I can slide it out when I need something.  I even plan to make a cute curtain to hang around the base of the sink just to hide my bin away along with the pipes that just do not look that rustic.
I do not know what you think, but I can sure say that I feel that my kitchen renovation was a success!  I am glad the Lord first was able to renovate my heart.  Now I am off to enjoy the fruits of my labor, make some breakfast in my pioneer kitchen with a REAL smile on my face!  A smile for all that I have to be thankful for each day!

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27 thoughts on “Renovating my Kitchen Started in My Heart”

  1. I know this is an older post, but I LOVE this kitchen! We were considering building our own home or yurt and I was wondering what it would look like to use reclaimed furniture in the kitchen instead of the typical expensive kitchen cabinets. Then I found this post. I love it! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I love your YouTube videos they are such a blessing to me. they have inspired me to be a better helpmeet to my husband and a better house wife / mother to my children. Too many times we are encouraged to acquire more things. But with your blog/videos you teach to be content. Blessings to you and yours. Hope to see more videos!!

  3. Your new kitchen is so beautiful! I love all the rustic items and shelves. It is so roomy and comfortable-looking too. Best wishes and enjoy that wonderful new renovated room.

  4. You know what? I think you should ditch the idea of cabinets all-together. I think it might actually look too modern in your lovely country kitchen!

  5. Thank you sooo much for this. My attitude has been lacking also, because, like you, I hate clutter and chaos! Getting my home together seems like an impossible, never ending chore, and I just long to come home to a clean, cozy space at the end of the day! My family seems less than motivated- but I need to change MY heart.

  6. Dear Erin, you are indeed an inspiration. I have just finished doing out my kitchen cupboards like you I was fed up with not getting things done but also my husband works full time. I decided this morning to stop moaning and do something productive. A nice tidy kitchen and what I thought was clutter is a blessing, jars of goods to feed my family. It’s good to dream of something better but we mustn’t miss out on what we already have. I pray that I may have more patience and appreciate what I have. God bless you Diane x

  7. We have so many similarities! I was thinking as I read this- everyone in life needs a coach, someone who like your husband is beside a friend or family member and can be encouragement and truth linked together to help another person in a needed way. I have been that frustrated person with my husband and I hate myself when I am because he is too such a good man, the best I know, trying to do the best he can with more necessary projects than the ones I want done. I print off your blogs for encouragement and remember them because we are so similar in trying to fix up a trashed country place and be godly wives/mothers. Let’s all be encouragers! I need to encourage my oldest son in his schoolwork and not discourage him as he struggles through it!!

  8. K-love’s Radio encouraging word for the day?
    ‘Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.” Proverbs‬ ‭4:23‬ ‭(NLT‬‬)
    Then I read your blog….I love a God thing!! Have an awesome day ☀️☀️
    PS. And I seriously love your pioneer kitchen makeover!

  9. Dear Erin
    Thank you so much for sharing. What you have done is amazing and very fulfilling. I ones had to organize a kitchen with bits and pieces and the most amazing things happened. I even got hold of an old broken dish washes whiched I used for my plate cabinet. Curtains are always a winner. I covered every rack or opening that should be covered by doors with curtains. I used the same material and it gave a clean and smooth and very cottage like feeling to my kitchen. The neat thing about the curtains is that it holds out dust and looks beautiful. I was really asking myself the question if I still like a kitchen with beautiful white rounded of cabinets or my beautiful curtain covered racks.
    You do amazing and you open truth in my heart. God gave me a new challange and that is to cope with a teeny tiny little kitchen, having a household of five. We just need to put our empty cups in the sink and the kitchen looks overloaded, but with an honest heart I can admit that not one day the kitchen got the best of me, I guess God’s training in my life on this area shows.
    Of course, I do spell out this area, I still have a long way to go, for one, not always to feel like a failing mother.
    I thank God that He never gives up on us and that He shows us real life.
    God bless you for helping us to open our hears to Him and to truth. I was just thinking this morning that I am getting sick because I cover my feelings with lying exceptence. It is a hard one for me, because if I can except something I can go with it, but it must happen out of the right heart and mind, not forceful. I guess, first seek the kingdom of God and all these will be ad onto you will be the appropriate verse for me.
    Love your blog so much. It always makes me feel that I can overcome and do it, JUST DO IT.

  10. Thanks so much for sharing your heart! Just went through the same difficult lesson. Can’t wait to meet you in person. Your pioneer kitchen is beautiful and full of rustic charm. Love the clever island!

  11. LOVE IT! Your kitchen is massive! Thank you for the wonderful reminder that beauty and order begins in our heart, then manifested outwardly. We built our home 11 years ago and are still “finishing” it. The LORD taught me and continues to teach me to be grateful, one day at a time and to make the best of each space. With prayers, creativity and elbow grease we continue on. <3 Love you sweet sis! Keep shining for Him. 🙂

  12. Great ideas! There are times when I am tempted to feel sorry for myself in my circumstances, I think of my sisters around the world who are hauling water from a creek, washing clothes on the rocks by a river, scrounging for food to cook for their families, and living in mud huts full of bugs, etc. etc. It is learning to be content in our circumstances. It takes practice (grin). I love your kitchen! You’ve done a great job..so creative.

  13. Erin, I have to tell you, the beautiful “old dresser” is what my eyes first saw in the first photo! I love it! I love antiques and all I thought when I saw the dresser was, “Oh, how beautiful!”

  14. I LOVE your transparency! Your share your struggles so that others can learn! Your kitchen looks awesome! Love you my sweet friend!

  15. I recognize your biggest glass jars…did you find those at Wal-Mart? I need to get some of my dry goods into glass jars. We recently had a scare with a mouse in the pantry and I don’t want to risk that again! Thank you for the heart check up. I am with ya. We got news of another sibling group that needs an adoptive home…and the failure of the summer has been riding me for the last couple months…I couldn’t think about trying again…but I was convicted over the last several days that I needed to obey and be willing. God will provide what we need when we need it. He always does. <3

  16. Keep on keeping it real girlfriend!!! lol I love that you used what you had, and I like it when furniture is used in a different way 🙂 Blessings friend!

  17. Thanks for sharing this, it was a blessing to read, as it reminds me of my life and my attitude, I really needed this, love your ideas for your kitchen, it looks great, by the way I’m reading your book now and loving it! Thanks for being a blessing!

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