“Where’s the pantry?” alternative ideas to a huge pantry

I work in real estate. It is my passion. However, being in this profession means I am incredibly picky (okay, I’m completely bougie), thanks to many beautiful homes I have toured. Don’t judge me for it.

I like nice things.

So, when it was OUR family’s turn for a big move, I was a bit biased, and well…downright bratty. My husband sent me pics of a home he felt really good about. The home had a purple door, so I of course was NOT interested. I mean, I’m the professional here. *pffft*

yep, that is purple alright.

I begrudgingly agreed to tour it with my husband. As soon as we opened the faded purple door, and were standing in that foyer, and it happened (picture the following experience in slow motion for full effect). I looked at my husband and we were both hit with an actual (not actual) bolt of lightning, from our heads to our toes.

For real. That thing I look for in my clients’ faces, the magic, you know? We felt it, and that moment, I knew it had to be our home. We had to fight other buyers for it, but eventually it was ours!

The home is in a great neighborhood, and was built in the early 90s. We LOVE the floor plan, the mature trees, the neighbors and feel of the whole house. It’s just SOLID, you know? We are so thrilled to live in that home! And yes, the door is now painted black.

But there is one small, teensy weensy detail:  THERE. IS. NO. PANTRY. *sad face*

Tall cupboard to the right of the ovens, where I store pretty much all dry goods.

What am I going to do with the lone tall and deep cupboard? We have 4 kids, and we often host friends and family in our home for parties or extended visits. Always dishing out food to the many random kids who come and go through our home. I love it, though! I am a self-admitted Costco junky who buys way more than I need (ask my friend Cynthia, who patiently attempts to teach me how to keep my kitchen organized as she cleans up after our crazy clan)! Where to put all of my duplicate jars of peaches and 8 jars of peanut butter (half of which are opened)?

There simply is not room for all of my crucial (not crucial) food items. I need ideas.

I turned to Pinterest, and found some GEMS. So, yes… I am in the planning stages of remodeling our kitchen. (Early planning stages, honey. Don’t worry.) Eventually, the wall in my kitchen that separates the kitchen from the formal dining room will be gone, and I’ll have a super long island with a lot more room!


Rob Lowe’s giant pantry in Montecito

I mean, who DOESN’T want a huge pantry? That’s one of the most impressive features in new homes, right? But I’m on the fence here. I may be considering an open kitchen with well-planned storage, some open and some closed behind gorgeous cabinetry, rather than a massive pantry. (Don’t hate me!)


Check out some of my shelving muses…

Found this simple and well-planned shelving from danslesac.co

I’ll admit, this concept makes me a little nervous… I mean, shouldn’t I add a huge pantry when we remodel?? Yet, it would steal valuable space from our living areas. And if the shelves are all planned at the right heights and depths, my storage will be rockin’!

Shown on Habitus Living

What is your vote? Bigger kitchen with smaller, shallow shelving or giant pantry, even if it makes your kitchen a little smaller?

Thanks for playin’! Heather

Search for homes on heatherjhomes.com

COVID-19 tips for homeowners before you list!

Hi guys! Who could have predicted such a roller coaster such as this to throw off your plans?

Are you worried about the housing market? You are not alone. Nobody has a crystal ball that predicts what is coming next.

During a pandemic, careers can change, family circumstances adjust, and people still need to MOVE. Even if interest rates go up & down, and home sales slow (I have not seen this in my area yet, but see it in other states), or sales prices decline, people still have to move for various reasons.

If you are ready to list your home, but do not want a crowd of buyers pushing in your door with dirty shoes and hacking on everything, you are not being paranoid. You are being smart!

The Utah Association of REALTORS® recommends:

I have heard from colleagues that some people are not taking COVID-19 seriously, and refuse to take care to disinfect, wear gloves or masks…etc. Please do not find yourself eating your words. There is no reason to feel silly for asking those who enter your home to take precautions. It is not unrealistic for you to ask that buyers remove shoes, use hand sanitizer, and avoid touching any surfaces. This is actually a GREAT idea!

Take care of yourselves and those around you! Provide a little basket of anti-germ goodies for your entry: booties, gloves, masks, hand sanitizer, wipes. The World Health Organization provides a quick infographic of who could be affected by the coronavirus. Please be careful out there!

When you only have a few minutes before a buyer is coming, here’s a to-do list for that last-minute rush!

Thank you for stopping by!

Heather Johnson


DIY Room-Freshening Spray Recipe to Try Today


After a long winter, there’s nothing better than opening the windows in your home to invite in fresh spring air. To give your home a boost, add a homemade touch…

*Cue natural home sprays*

scarlet sage image

Darling storefront, right?

Megan, our Director of Operations, with the help of her talented sister, Laura Ash, owner of The Scarlet Sage Herb Co. in San Fransisco put together some simple and lovely concoctions for home room fresheners. They were kind enough to let me share these with you. Enjoy!

First, mix these base ingredients:

¾ Cup water

2 Tablespoons rubbing alcohol

Essential oils (customize from the options below, or create your own)



Citrus Mint

10 drops orange oil

8 drops peppermint oil



Summer Citrus

5 drops orange oil

5 drops lemon oil

5 drops lime oil

5 drops grapefruit

Beautiful nature - lavender flowers and butterfly, butterfly on lavender


Happy Home

5 drops lavender oil

5 drops rosemary oil

5 drops lemon oil



Flower Garden

8 drops lavender oil

5 drops geranium

4 drops grapefruit



Add all ingredients to an 8oz bottle, shake well, happy spraying!

Thank you, Megan and Laura for these fun ideas!

Spring Cleaning Tips: Prepping Your Home to Sell

Spring is coming fast! It makes me happy that the sun will be much more present, but springtime also gets me in the cleaning mood.

Disclaimer: I am usually NOT a fan of cleaning, but I LOVE a clean house. It is truly such a gift for me when my home is free from clutter. My baby is 3 now, so she’s still a bit of a busy bee who likes to make a lot of messes. I am looking forward to a little less clutter in the future…please tell me it happens.


I need my house to look like this. Always.

Some life hacks that will help you clean out stubborn stains and organize your home in a way that helps it to feel clean: I HAVE THEM HERE. Step right up!

Ebay has some great cleaning tips that can help you stay on top of it all.

Tangent: I tried the Marie Kondo thing. She’s a genius. I’d love to know how I can make her methods work in a family of 6 in a medium/large home, not a tiny apartment in Japan.

Moving on…

For crazy stains that have been bothering you around the house, try these tips from The Indian Spot.  A couple tips: white chalk to remove oil stains, and vinegar to remove blood stains. My question is, how many people need to remove blood from their home? This is a frightening thought.


Some helpful blogs/sites…

Sand between my piggies (a fun name for a blog, right?) recommends several options for carpet stains.

Wrapped in rust recommends several ways to maintain a clean home.

She Knows recommends these life hacks.


What are some ways you get in the spring cleaning mood? Please share your ideas! Happy cleaning!

Home Winterizing Tips

In Utah, we experience winter in a variety of ways. It can be beautiful. And fun! But it can arrive sooner than expected!

Winterize your home before it is covered in snow.


My kids at Grandma’s house in the winter

There are days, like this one (shown below) a few years ago, where I felt spring, summer, fall and winter all in one day. It was special…ish. THESE WERE TAKEN ONLY HOURS APART ON THE SAME DAY in Utah.



THIS WAS IN APRIL. Crazy, right?

Well, you just do not know what each day will bring in the winter. So, I have collected a few tips that may help your home stay somewhat stable, even if the weather refuses to do so.

Here are 12 Tips for your Home this Winter… I had not thought of the ceiling fan trick. Worth it? I might try to add this one to the honey-do list. Sorry, honey!

Rachel from One Crazy House gives some awesome low-cost tips to help avoid drafts in your home. http://www.onecrazyhouse.com/drafty-house/

Here is a great infographic from Mint.com as well. Super helpful!

Wholefully shares a cool free winterizing checklist here.

Ace Hardware has this short little video with Winterizing tips.