The kitchen is often referred to as the heart of the home. It is the busiest place in the house, where guests and family congregate.
But do you know what congregates with them? Stuff, that’s what. And before you know it your counters are covered with clutter and all of your drawers resemble the junk drawer.
Kitchens are a magnet for clutter – it can be frustrating and cost you money. If you don’t know what you have, you’ll end up buying more.
- Take everything out of the cupboards, pantry and fridge. Throw away anything past its use-by date or almost-empty items you’ll never use.
- Sort everything into categories. Pasta and rice, sauces and marinades, canned veg and fruit. Put opened items at the front to use first.
- Mix things so you’ll use them. Eg, for small amounts of pasta – penne, spirals and bowties – mix them together and use in a pasta bake.
- When storing items back in the pantry, keep them separate. Use baskets or containers for loose items.
- Write down everything you have and keep the list in your handbag. It will save you buying more of the same at the shops.
- If you don’t use it daily, put it away.
- Keep the top of your refrigerator clear.
- Store your items in your cabinets in a logical manner. Imagine yourself using your kitchen before you decide where to store your dishes. It makes much more sense to have your dishes stored near your dishwasher rather than across the kitchen. Your coffee pot is probably better near your sink, your spices and pots near the stove, napkins and place mats as close to your eating area as possible. Don’t be afraid to rearrange the contents of your cabinets if you find your original placement isn’t working for you.
- If you have glass front cabinets or open shelving, make sure that the things that are visible are neat and orderly. If you have nice glassware, this is the place to store them. Decorative baskets can be used for hiding things that might not be attractive.
- Purge, purge, purge. Kitchen things seem to multiply on their own overnight. Go through your things with a critical eye and get rid of those that you don’t use. I finally got rid of some random mismatched silverware pieces I had been hanging onto. Do you have older pots and pans that you aren’t using? Cookie sheets that have seen better days? Cheap knives that don’t even cut? A thousand and one plastic water bottles? Get them out of your kitchen and reclaim that space.
- Pay attention to the details. Put your canned goods away with the label facing forward.
- Find a place to store and organize your mail other than the kitchen counter.
- Put your purse away in the closet
Get in the habit of always putting things back where they belong. If you put your things away after you use them you will never be faced with a cluttered mess again. Or until next spring!
Last but not least in our spring cleaning posts next week is Paper.