My cupboards often enter this stage which I call - the DEEP DARK CAVERNOUS CUPBOARDS! I start losing things and buying more when I already have three! It starts to take longer to cook or bake. When those things start to happen - it's time. Time to ORGANIZE the CUPBOARDS!!! Hooray!!!!
Hooray you may ask? Well - I LOVE to organize! Okay I hate the process but the feeling I get after organizing something creates this sense of euphoria that is practically addictive! So I organize! That's just who I am. Sorry. Okay, I'm not sorry!
I DO have some tricks I have picked up that I thought I would share with you though. So whether you love organizing or hate it - you may actually LIKE these ideas because it will help you stay organized! At least for a longer amount of time! Now just so you know, Although I would probably be willing to cut off one of my toes to have cupboard systems like this, I don't have that option. So for now I will be content that I will probably have them in my mansion in heaven. (Have you ever thought about that? Takes my jealousy issues WAY down! But that's another blog post!)
Okay, wiping the drool off now and on to MY kitchen cupboards!
TA-DA!! God has BLESSED me! I mean that with a sincere heart - once upon a time, I had ugly cupboards and now I have beautiful cupboards. WHICH. I. LOVE!
1. BUY SMART GROCERIES! One of the ways that I organize my cupboard is by buying groceries. I buy groceries smartly by analyzing the containers! I am completely willing to pay up to a dollar more if it comes in a container that I can reuse for something else! For example, my FAVORITE chocolate ice cream is Country Rich (also one of the cheaper brands!) and it comes in these AWESOME square boxes. When they started that - I was THRILLED! It's the only kind of ice cream I buy! So I get lots of square containers that fit perfectly in my cupboards and I use them to store my flours which I buy in bulk. Another container I like to buy are the tall peanut jars. I use these for my smaller baking goods. Instead of having all of the small random size containers - I make use of the storage by making them taller and not wider. Saves space and they work well for using with measuring spoons too.
2. ORGANIZE by AREA. The picture I took is of my baking space. The things that I use for baking are ALL in that cupboard - or in the drawer under my baking space. My mixer is also on the counter under this cupboard. It is amazing to have ALL of your baking supplies all in one spot. TRUST me! I also have all of my spices next to my baking but also right beside the stove because I flavor while I am cooking more than I need them while baking. My next major area are the dishes. I try to organize these all around my dishwasher. When you're putting them away - it saves a lot of steps. But I also try to put my glasses close to the sink - that's where I use them the most! Then I have a spot for food - the pasta, the canned goods, the chips, the cereal - if I need food, it is in my pantry - the snacks are also in the pantry but grouped in a separate area so my family doesn't have to reorganize my cupboards just to find the crackers and fruit snacks. My pots and pans and bigger items go in the bottom cabinets - crock pots, griddles, blender, things I don't use more than once a month or less often all find a place in the bottom cupboards or on the tip-top cupboards where I can't reach easily.
3. Teach your FAMILY how to put things AWAY. The demise of an organized kitchen is often the people who don't do the majority of the cooking because they are unfamiliar with where things are kept. My husband occasionally helps me put the dishes away from the dishwasher and trust me, he likes to just put things wherever the wind blows him and I tease him about this problem constantly because he does this with EVERYTHING! It's one of those reasons that gives me purpose for being his wife. I'm fine with that! :0) HOWEVER, my children at the ages of 4 and 2 already know that things get put in their proper place, whether in the kitchen or their bedrooms. (By the way, I always know when my husband helps clean the kids' rooms too! hee hee!)
4. If you keep forgetting where it is kept - MOVE IT! If you haven't read my posts about moving, you may have missed that I have moved 27 times. Every time I set up a new kitchen I usually end up rearranging a couple of times because I find my hand going to a certain drawer thinking something is in that drawer and its not. For example, my mom is left handed and I am right handed. I SWEAR her kitchen is BACKWARDS! It's almost comical because in her kitchen, I cannot find ANYTHING! But guess what, she can't find anything in MY kitchen either.
5. Store BULK purchases somewhere else. I like to buy in bulk for several reasons, I like the money I save, sometimes the better quality and the feeling of a well-stocked kitchen. But I DON'T like storing it in the kitchen. So if I have bought 25 boxes of 0.25 cent Mac N Cheese - only 2-3 go in my cupboard - the rest goes somewhere else. I have shelves in my garage where I store extra beverages (which is right off the kitchen) and I have a chest freezer in my garage too where I store my extra flours and spices. For the other stuff, I have a large basement with shelves where I store other surplus purchases. It keeps my kitchen clutter-free and easier to know what is in my kitchen if it isn't stuffed to the brim.
6. Minimize. I hate small appliances that only do one thing. I will never ever own a salad spinner or a bacon microwave tray or a nut cracker. To me, those things can all be done by doing or using something else that I already own and why take up valuable space? It just makes it that much harder to find things. I try to find items that will be multi-functional and serve many purposes, not just one. Unless they are measuring cups - you can't see them in the picture because they are ALL in the dishwasher - but I use large glass measuring cups like nobody's business.
So there you go! What organization ideas do you have for your kitchen? I would love to hear about them! You can never have too many organization ideas in my mind!
In HIS Grip,
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