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JANUARY 06 2020 / HOME
Keeping the kitchen clean and organized can be a nightmare! Especially when your kitchen happens to see more foot traffic than a 7 Eleven! For some reason, my kids and their friends really love to hang out there. I can only assume they think I’ll start cooking, maybe feed them, or that they might be the first to lick a spoon or a bowl clean? It’s either that or they enjoy watching me clean up mess after mess...after mess!
Believe me, I love to spend time with them. However, there are moments when I need some alone time in my kitchen. For those moments, I like to give everyone that’s in the kitchen a chore to do. It’s actually quite funny to watch! I can get about one or two chores out of them before they realize it and scurry off for the great outdoors! Honestly, I can’t blame them for hanging out in the kitchen because I enjoy it too. My husband and I have worked very hard to make it a fun space so keeping it clean and organized is very important to us.
Keeping a place that is open around the clock clean and organized is nearly impossible. However, the real key is not to overload yourself! Break everything down into small “manageable” tasks that can be done in 20 minutes or less. The goal is to complete about 2-3 tasks per week. You’ll eventually find that cleaning this way is a lot less stressful than doing everything all at once.
Below are some tips and tricks you may find helpful. Hopefully, these ideas will make your life a little easier!
Tip #1: Mentally break down your kitchen into sections. (i.e. Pots & Pans; Utensils; Under the Sink; Junk Drawer; Pantry, etc…) Choose one section that needs the most attention. Jot down 1-3 tasks you’d like to complete by the end of the week. Store info on index cards and move to the back of box once you’ve completed.
Tip #2: Remove clutter from only one section at a time. Set items aside and wipe the inside and outside of the cabinet to remove crumbs or residue that may attract unwanted pests like roaches or mice.
Tip #3: Organize clutter by how often you use the items discarding those you don’t. Everyday dishes should be stored at eye level for easy access. Separate glassware and plasticware to prevent overcrowding or breakage.
Tip #4: Purchase a utensil divider to organize cutlery and utensils. Keep sharp items like knives out of reach of tiny hands.
Tip #5: Get more space by utilizing hooks, stacking shelves or stacking airtight containers.
Be sure to label the product with its name and expiration date if transferring to an airtight container. White tape and a marker work very well in this case.
Tip #6: Think FIFO, (first in first out) when it comes food, spices, oils, etc… Leaving items in the cabinets or refrigerator past their expiration date can lead to mold & mildew. It also encourages pests and other rodents to set up shop.
Tip #7: Repurpose a sturdy box to hold seasoning or sauce packets. Purchase an inexpensive lazy susan to store spices or other small items.
Tip #8: Empty and wipe down kitchen appliances, toasters and garbage cans with a natural all-purpose cleaner to prevent smells or stains from setting in. Cut up old t-shirts and use them as rags instead of wasting paper towels.
Tip #9: Utilize drawer extensions that roll out for accessibility and more space under the kitchen sink. Use a small but strong tension rod to hang bottles or other items for added space. Consolidate and dispose of any empty bottles. Check caps to ensure items don’t leak and leave an unexpected sticky mess for you to find later.
Tip #10: Sit back and marvel at your hard work. Should you think of yet another item that needs to be done, add it to the list and check it off one task at a time.