I have a lesson in sanity for you today.  From me to you, because I’m very kind for someone who sometimes kills things with her bare hands.

The lesson I have for you is this;  if one day in the future you decide you would like to have built in bookcases in your home, and you ask someone “How much would it cost for you to build built in bookcases for me?“, and they say “142 million dollars.  Plus materials.”, hire them on the spot.  No matter what number they throw at you, my advice to you is HIRE THEM ON THE SPOT.

Billy bookcases the built ins


This is no small job.  You know how you read blogs and they say LOOK!  Ikea Billy bookcases, are SO easy to turn into built ins!, know these two things:  a) chances are the person writing the blog didn’t do the work themselves, they got someone else to do it and b) chances are the person writing the blog didn’t do the work themselves, they got someone else to do it.

If I had more time, like a week off, I would find this process much easier to stomach because I could just wake up, work on the bookcases until I fell over into my nail gun, had a horrible accident, went to the hospital, got admitted for nail gun wounds, convinced them I needed to be held overnight due to risk of infection (and possible emotional imbalance) and get a nice meal served to me in bed.  But that’s not the case. I have only evenings to work on the bookcases.  And nobody brings me meals or pills in a little paper cup.

Even when I’m not working on the bookcases and I’m doing my actual work of taking pictures of jars of pickles or writing a super fantastic Gift List for you, I’m thinking about doing my bookcases.

corner of billy bookcases built ins

Partly because I really, actually, like doing it and it’s kindda fun.  And partly because I’M SICK OF BEING IN SUCH A MESS.

I’m still not in trouble though.  You know how I said I had until December 1st to finish them?  Well, I still have time.  No, I don’t have a special time travelling machine that I’m willing to admit to.  What I have is a hidden week.  You see, I write my posts a week in advance. Which means I’m writing this post that you’re reading right now, on November 23rd.  A full 7 days until December 1st actually arrives!  I know. Imaginary time travel due to Internet blog scheduling is mind blowing. These photos were all taken on November 21st and 22nd.  Soooooo I still have 7 days to:

Finish the trim.

Install the crown moulding.

Caulk everything (including filling all those extra holes for shelves in the bookcases)

Prime it and paint it.

Plus whatever else pops up.

One of the things I hope pops up is my screwdriver.  I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time looking for my special screwdriver that I love so much, which could be just about anywhere in this mess.


Nope, it’s not up there.



And nope it’s not up there.

As an example of one of those things that “pop up”, take this for example. I cut all my wide trim pieces a little too short.  All of them. Which means I had to buy all new MDF boards and cut new ones.  Or did it??  If the hardware store had been open at midnight when I discovered this, I guarantee I would have gone right up there to buy more MDF, but because it was closed my brain went into overdrive trying to figure out how I could fix my mistake.


I cut little slices of MDF and glued them to the bottom of my trim, then pressed them into place.



You need to see how gross things look before they look great so you realize that when you’re home doing things and you think OMG THIS IS A DISASTER, you won’t feel bad.  Of course things look like a disaster. They aren’t done.  I mean, how does your hair look when you’re only halfway done drying it?  Like a disaster.

And by the way, with regard to killing things with my bare hands, that fruit fly had it coming.