I had a very productive day yesterday. I got up at a reasonable time, dropped off a ton of rolled change at the bank (over $200 worth...amazing how it adds up), got in a workout, rested up a bit, and then started on the project pictured above. I'd been planning on doing this for a while, but only got around to it yesterday.
Our house came equipped with a number of shelves in the basement. There's a whole workbench full of shelves, plus the wall pictured above, and two other 8 ft. long shelves in another area of the workroom, closer to the laundry area. Of all the shelves, these were the best utilized. They held all of the extra paint for our house, all of the painting tools, and other odds and ends for house upkeep. They're also the most convenient, and were generally the least nasty. Parts of the basement workroom weren't left too clean by the former owners...I can't even identify what may have been left behind on some of the shelves by the workbench. It's so gross cleaning up other people's messes...We've been in this house for nearly three years, and I've probably been putting off a version of this project for just as long. But with the baby coming, it needed to get done...not only because it never would once the baby got here and also because we can use the space.
My plan was to clean off all of the shelves (except the workbench...those are nasty and might take some heavy duty work) and put down contact paper or something. They're all basically just plywood shelves and you'd be amazed how much dirt and dust plywood picks up in a basement. I wanted to get them clean and give them a more cleanable surface for the future, and move the paint and supplies to the two shelves over by the laundry area. Once that was done, it would open up the shelves in the picture for baby stuff. I've taken to affectionately calling these shelves the BJ's Shelves because they'll be nice for storing anything we happen to buy in bulk. I'm envisioning diapers, formula, baby food, wipes...whatever...not to mention anything else BJ's sells that we happen to pick up along the way. It will ease up some congestion in my pantry, and eventually in the baby's room as well. They're nice, sturdy shelves and they just weren't being utilized efficiently.
So, over the course of about 2-1/2 hours yesterday, I wiped the shelves down (thank God for disposable Clorox wipes...I could just dispose of the nastiness) and put down some cheap contact paper from Wal-Mart. Because the shelves are just plywood, I don't know how well it will stick long term, but frankly, I don't care if I have to tack it down or superglue it at some point. At least something's there now to cover the plywood and leave a smooth, easy-to-clean surface. It was a very rewarding project and I'm glad I got it done. It looks 100% better and it makes the basement that much less icky. Now if I could just be that productive every day!