Organize Those Pantries and Freezers with Freshtape
By Amy Trauntvein
I received some of the freshtape labels in order to share my review with you. My opinions and pictures are my own.
What is Freshtape you ask? Freshtape is a new food-saving way to keep your opened food bags fresh AND organized! Freshtape replaces the chip clips, twist-ties and tape that we all use to keep food fresh, and free from freezer burn, but do these items REALLY do the job we want? Admit it, after a few days, things don’t taste as fresh as when they were first opened, expecially if you live somewhere that is humid, like me. Enter Freshtape! The reusable, recycleable BPA, phalate free “stickers” to reseal all those opened, half used packages that fill our pantries and freezers! And since they are recloseable and reusable, you throw away less food that has gone bad and you save money! Now you’re talking my language!
My opened and half used baking ingredients…
Look how nice and organized my half eaten chips and snacks are!
They even work perfect in the freezer for all those veggies and fruit and waffles and meat and bread and….
Don’t forget to Eat Your Vegetables!
And even better, they are made right here in the good ole U.S. of A.! I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America…… Oh sorry, got caught up in the moment for a sec.
Did you notice how fun the prints are? My favorites are the animal prints…
and the Retro Housewife prints! Aren’t these cute?
And look at my drawer before and after Freshtape.
Before with 13 chip clips…
After with 28 Freshtape! I love finding extra space, even in a tiny little drawer.
I’ve enjoyed reviewing Freshtape and would recommend them to anyone, because face it, we ALL have opened, half eaten bags and packages in our kitchens! My only suggestion, would be that I wished they had a smaller size too, for those smaller items/bags that need to be re-closed. Other than that, I was very pleased and happy with this product! You can find them at getfreshtape.com on Facebook and on Twitter.
Love To All! ~Amy
I have been married for 23 years to my awesome hubby, Todd and we have 4 equally awesome kids who keep me young! Our favorite thing to do together is travel. I enjoy gardening, yoga, walking and saving money! I am very active in my church and am currently serving the children, and I love volunteering at my kids’ schools doing whatever I can to help the teachers and staff.
Chalkboard Labels For Your Pantry Baskets
I got my labels completed for my pantry baskets…. I told you I was going to do them!
There are so many uses for this chalkboard contact paper. I have several other things in mind!
But I want to show you how I made these simple labels for my baskets in my pantry.
I took some of my old business cards (they are such a good size for so many things) and used those for the basis of the chalkboard labels for the baskets.
I cut the chalkboard contact paper so that it would go over the sides just a bit and would fold back and cover the entire card.
When I fold it over I make sure to make a crisp edge and I smooth it out so there aren’t any air bubbles or creases in it.
Then I trim the short edge of the card. I do pinch the edge so that the contact paper adheres to itself to seal the edge.
I used the hole punch and punched a hole in the center top so I can hang it.
I used the same color chalkboard marker and basic design so that they matched the jar labels I made and showed you yesterday.
I looked for twine to tie the labels on, but evidently we didn’t have any. I found some fishing line and decided that would actually work really well.
It won’t show much and it will take care of the problem I worried about … getting through the thin basket weave.
And it looks like this:
I was pleased how they turned out… what do you think?
One of the other little things I did was to use these little buckets that I hung from my wire over the door can holder.
Remember I mentioned that I didn’t like the baggie that was holding the chip clips in my pantry? That I was sure there was something cuter? I decided this was cuter!
I had a 2nd bucket that I used and wasn’t sure what to put in it….. but had an onion sitting on the pantry shelf and thought… ok.. done!
So of course I made labels for these pails too. I used the business card as the stencil and cut out a piece of the chalkboard contact paper. I wrote the name on it with the markers and stuck it on the side of the bucket.
I think they turned out cute too… don’t you?
Adding little touches like this, makes your pantry look a little cuter, but it also makes it functional by letting the family know where to put things away.
And of course that makes me happy!!
You can find the Chalkboard Contact Paper, 18″ x 6′ and the markers I used Liquid Chalk – Works like a Marker Dries like Chalk – Set of 8 Earthy Colors at the two links I have here. They are affiliate links, but that’s not why I’m giving them to you. I had a hard time finding both products and thought I’d make it a little easier for you all.
This post was revamped and reposted from 4/7/2011
Springtime Can be Busy Time! Organizing and DIY will help
How is the spring finding you? Busy? Anyone graduating soon? Weddings to plan? Vacations to go on? It seems like so much starts happening this time of year. If things are organized, it certainly helps. DIY projects can help save you money!
We have one graduating this year and have vacation coming up in just a few weeks. It is amazing how time is flying by!
Thanks for linking up to my blog last week! I have three bloggers that I am featuring because I loved what they linked up.
Julie from Redhead Can Decorate did an entire kitchen make over. It looks awesome. I’m going to go back and look around her blog some more, her premis is that she can decorate for affordably.
I like some of the ideas that Dagmar from Dagmar’s Momsense found for organizing. She found pictures from around the web of things she would like in her perfect house. This shelf has magazine holders as the base for storage. Cool idea!
Closets! Who doesn’t like organized closets? Margo from Joyful Homemaking redid her closet for $150.
Link up to my Linky Party! I’d love to see the ideas you create yourself or find from other inspiration online!
1) Link to your specific post – not your blog
2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (url code under button tab )
3) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning or DIY or crafts or decorating are WONDERFUL!
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6) By linking up to my post, I might use your pic (with link and credit to you) next week in my post!
Looking for other link parties? I have a whole list of them. Thumbnail via day above and keep scrolling down to find a more extensive text lists by day on my link party list. If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple. If You Are On A Reader and Want to View All the Great Link Up’s on this post please Click here
This party will be open until May 13, 2012 at 11:59pm est.
Organize Your Kitchen Cabinet
Kitchen cupboard organizing can be tricky. Usually we find ourselves with too many pots and pans and not enough storage for them. There are many solutions. If you have the space and nice enough looking pans you can get a pot hanger and hang them for some kitchen decor.
I’ll show you what I did to reorganize my pots and pans.
I use the pan protectors inbetween my pans to try and protect them. I have my George Foreman Grill and crock pot in the back.
I wanted to find a solution for storing our large pancake griddle. Right now I am keeping it in the bottom drawer of the washing machine! I know.. crazy huh?
Step 1: Clear everything out and clean the shelves
Step 2: Sort
What do you need? Look at that item and ask yourself:
1) Have you used it in the last year? Do you like it?
2) Is the surface of the pan intact (teflon shouldn’t be scratched or peeling)
3) Do all the lids fit pans? Do you have any old lids or damaged lids you don’t use, but have kept?
If there are pots and pans that are in good shape, but you don’t use them or like them – donate them. Anything else may be able to be recycled.
Step 3: Put in organizing items if you have them.
I had 2 lid organizers that mounted to the inside cabinets from my old house. I never used them because I thought we were moving and didn’t want to lose them.
I also had a white white wire rack that I had used at some point. I got those 3 things and my handy dandy 3M Command Strips (so love these now!) and went to work.
I used the Command Hooks to mount the lid organizers to the inside of each door.
The other side
I did find that some of the lids did not work well in this. The two larger lids for my orange pots and pans did not both fit. They kept falling forward. I was able to use one of the lids. The other one I put on the pan it went with.
Here is the final product! See the wire rack I put in the back? I was able to put the smaller pans on that shelf.
I put all my Rachel Ray pans on the left. They are the most used and pans of choice. Notice I tried to turn the handles so they would be easy to get out of the cupboard. I also tried to do minimal nesting of the pans.
I also had the red pan that I reviewed and really love, but it was a single and we also use it frequently. So I put up another hook and hung it on the wall.
Be careful if you are putting something on the wall or the door of your cabinets. Be sure that you can close them easily when they are on there.
I put the lids on my two dutch ovens and put them on the upper shelf
I still had room for my crock pot on the top shelf and my George Foreman on the bottom.
Now that I have all those lids out of the bottom drawer of the stove… what do you think I did with that?
Yep! It fit great. It will be so much nicer than using the washing machine drawer. lol
Ok…. time for you to tackle your pots and pans!! I want to see your before and after pictures!
I Love Your Comments!
I liked this post up to these lovely blogs
Do You Keep Everything Including Part Of The Kitchen Sink Under Your Sink?
It can be difficult to organize underneath your kitchen sink because you have to deal with the plumbing and disposal underneath it.
Under The Sink Before:
My previous organizing used some odds and ends baskets. I have an old ice container on the far left. There are several cleaning gloves, cleaners, fire extinguisher, and other odds and ends on this side.
On the other side I have the plastic container that is supposed to be hung that holds plastic bags. The wire basket used to hang on the door of another house under the kitchen sink.
Step 1: Clear everything out from under the sink
I have officially decided I do not like the shelf liners that are not contact paper. I decided to try them for the first time…because that is mainly what I find now and “everyone else is doing it”. lol I have this style and also that bumpy kind of padded open holed shelf liner (do you know what I mean?) It pulls up, I’m constantly trying to smooth it down. Obviously here, you can see how well it looks. Ugh! This is going in the trash.
Step 2: Clean the empty cabinet
Clean out your cabinet while you have it empty. I would have liked to have put down contact paper, but I didn’t have any and did not have plans or time to get it today. What is frustrating is that I spent a lot of money on all the shelf liner I bought just a few months ago when I got my new kitchen.
Today I will leave it plain, without any liner.
Step 3: Sort through your items and get rid of things you don’t use, that are old or expired or need to go else where.
I had two Soft Scrubs and two powdered cleaners. I kept one of each here, and moved the others to one of the bathroom cabinets. I also had a couple odds and ends that I didn’t use anymore that I disposed of.
Step 4: Replace the items that you are going to keep, things you will use.
I ended up going back to Old Time Pottery and buying a couple more of the plastic baskets for my refrigerator. The red ones fit, but they were just big enough that if you didn’t make sure they were pushed all the way back, then the refrigerator door wouldn’t shut. I was just a little concerned about the kids remembering to watch for that, and didn’t think it was worth taking the chance of having spoiled food. So… I had 2 of the large red baskets to play with.
The other red plastic basket did not fit on the other side of the cabinet. It wasn’t too tall to fit under the disposal, but with all the tubing under there, it did not work. I cleaned out the other little red basket that I had been using and used it for the right side.
Step 5: Utilize as much space as you are able.
I could stack baskets or get some kind of wire shelves to make a 2nd level, but I don’t happen to need that kind of space. I do however, have several things that I planned to hang on the doors.
My problem now is double fold:
1) My husband isn’t home to hang these items for me
2) When I look at the doors of the cabinets, the items I wanted to hang aren’t going to fit properly. There is a ridge in the inside of the door and the items I wanted to hang aren’t wide enough. ugh!
So…. I needed to think of something else because I was determined to get this completed today!
Here is what I figured out and I am thrilled with it!!
Enter….. Command hooks by 3M (this is not a review for them by the way)
I had a few packs of different sizes of hooks. I used these sticky hooks and hung this wire rack I got at Old Time Pottery.
It worked perfect for the cleaners I use most often in the kitchen.
Be sure that you can close the door with the placement of anything on the door.
I’m really excited that I was able to get this done! If this doesn’t hold, I’ll let you know that you might need stronger hooks.
Now I’m excited to try the other door.
I want to see if these hooks will work to hold up this bag holder.
I was able to mount the bag holder, now to try the wire basket.
That worked also. I put cleaning tools in it. If you knew how excited I was!!
I have one more thing I have to figure out a solution for. I have 2 pair of rubber gloves. I tried just laying them in the basket on the door (no, too bulky). I tried them in the big red plastic basket, but again they just looked junky.
So….. I decided to use the hook solution again. But how I got them to stay up was my new dilemma. But….I came up with an idea that I think will work well for the long run.
Check this out! I used a binder clip to hold the pair of gloves together and then hung that from one of the Command hooks.
So this is what I ended up with.
I used the inside of the cabinet to hang the gloves.
Here is what it looks like:
Here is the whole cabinet
Looks a little better doesn’t it? I love that I was able to use those Command hooks and put up the things I wanted on the inside of my cabinet doors.
Now I want to see underneath Your Kitchen sinks!
I’d love for you to link it up to my Organizing Mission Monday Link Party
It will be open until April 9, 2011 to link to, so you have time to work on your pantry and refrigerator
I LOVE your comments
I’m linking up to these blog parties
A Bowl Full of Lemons - One Project at a Time
House of Grace – Twice Owned Tuesday
Thrifty Decor Chick – Before and After Party
Tip Junkie - Tip Me Tuesday
Handy Man, Crafty Woman – Wicked Awesome Wednesday
I’m an Organizing Junkie – 52 Weeks
Organizing In The Kitchen This Week
That will still be my focus this week. Last week I showed you pantry organizing and refrigerator and freezer organizing. If you haven’t yet organized those, please try to get to those this week. You will think about it every time you open your refrigerator or freezer this week I’m sure of it! Especially after that trip to the grocery! lol
I’m going to be showing you a few organizing products this week that are low cost and make good solutions for organizing some things in your cupboards.
See My Featured Bloggers For This Week!
Marcie from Timber and Lace used baskets with chalk board labels for her pantry.
I love the look of this! Wouldn’t this be a wonderful pantry to have? omg… the shelves, the cubbies on the bottom, the counter top!
Marci, does not separate all her products out into separate containers either (like me). She sounds very much like me with the realistic part of having that awesome look. So the inside of her baskets look like this.
You can see the rest of her post on her pantry organization here.
Stephanie from Create Order organized her refrigerator.
She also used baskets in her refrigerator to organize. But she utilized baskets for those skinny shelf spaces and they work perfect for that.
Go look at the rest of her post called I knew It Was Only A Matter Of Time
Be sure to stop by both of my featured bloggers today and give them some “comment love” and mention you saw them here!
For those of you who were featured this week, please pick up your button (code below the button) for your blog!
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Link up to my Link Party
Link up any organizing or cleaning post to my link party!!
But this week I encourage you to start working on your kitchens! I’ll be working on some fun labeling and organization of kitchen cupboards this week.
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(You can also pick up this button off my sidebar, if this one isn’t working right for you…)
1) Link to your specific post – not your blog
2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (link just above underneath my button)
3) I’d love if you’d follow me on google and/or FB. The google is new and I’m trying to build it
4) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning
5) No sales pitches or web sites.
6) If I feature you I will use one or more of your pictures with a link back to your blog.
8) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.
Be sure to check out my list of link parties
If you have a link party.. please link it up! Underneath the daily buttons there is a list of text links I have compiled too! (Many more there!)
If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple.
This will be open until Saturday night April 9, 2011 This link party is continued from last week.
I LOVE your comments!!
I might be in a bit of an Ikea mood for a bit! lol I went last Saturday and saw several items I’d love to have – but I don’t have any place in my small house to put them.
I’d Love To Have THIS!
Think of all the things you could use it for! What do you think? Do you like it? Could you use it?
Yeah, my Kitchen Isn’t So Bare Now
So what do you think? This kitchen remodel is coming along isn’t it? Do you like my new cupboards? I do.. and that is what matters since I have to see them everyday! So… I’m glad I like them. I actually love cherry. But with a small kitchen, and one we probably won’t be in for more than another year or so, I went with the maple.
Here is the other side. I still have no sink to use. We are eating out mostly – thank goodness Dave’s kids are with their mom this week. That is helpful. But having no sink or water in your kitchen really throws ya.
Yes I can pour that bowl of cereal and eat it, but then to rinse the bowl out…. I have to use the bathroom sink. Of course I have to make sure there are no food particles in it. So I have a nice little bin with dirty dishes that can’t wait to be washed!
The cupboards are configured the same way. The one thing I have noticed is that my drawers are different. I had 3 drawers before. Now I have 4. You might think… oh good more drawers. They are in the same amount of space. I had my silverware in the top drawer. Then the 2nd drawer down was our bread drawer, the 3rd drawer was the cookies and snack food. Now I have 3 thinner drawers and only 1 big one. I will have to rethink this. What I should do is just get rid of all the cookies and junk and then I wouldn’t have a problem…. we would all lose weight and the world would be a perfect place. LOL Oh yeah… like that will ever happen. (Believe me, if it does I will be blogging about it!)
Jerry from Brand Homes is doing a great job on my kitchen so far… Thanks Jerry & Mike
Before You Can Build It – You Have To Tear it Out!
So begins the tearing out part of my kitchen remodel. It is so strange to see your cupboards with no counter top and no sink. This is Jerry Brand of Brand Homes working on taking out the cupboards. They had to take things apart with care. He is using some of this kitchen to help a woman who can’t afford a home – that has MS. Cool huh?
Here is the other side. It almost looks like a design on the wall where the glue was for the back splash. Are you ready to keep going?
It is almost like my kitchen is stripping you know? lol Eeek gads Edith! Where did my kitchen go? LOL They were having a time getting the microwave off. Evidently there is a safety catch that hooks the microwave to that metal frame. When you first put the microwave up, it enables you to screw it in place without having to worry about it falling. But they couldn’t find the release on this model and had it just sitting there with nothing apparently holding it up. They had taken out all the screws and it had them baffled for a few minutes.
Here is the other side. The pass through ledge is gone too.
On the picture below – Ewww… look at that mess! Actually you can see the flooring had been cut out where the sink counter had been. There is water all over from the connections… and then all around it is wet and dirty looking from …. their shoes, the cabinets…. but of course not because there was anything the least bit dirty on my floors! Oh heavens no! (lol… and if you believe that… then I’ve got some property to sell you!)
I didn’t have any water today, so I knew with this bladder I wouldn’t be able to stay in the house. So I ran some errands and sat at COSI’s eating my favorite salad – their Signature salad. (If you haven’t been to one.. you should go and try that salad.. and no this was not sponsored… but I sure wish they would… LOL!)
Tomorrow… you get to see the new cupboards…..
Clearing and Cleaning
I needed to make space to clear out every cabinet for my kitchen remodel…l I mean …. EVERY cabinet in your kitchen! I don’t know about you, but I do not have a very big house. I knew I would need every bin and surface that I had for several days. Here is my dining room…. ready to go. I am going to use the chair seats also… to put things on.
So it can now look something like this mess!! The only possible thing organized at all is that I have my coffee put set up (not in this pic) on the left corner… along with a toaster and cutting board. So I can make my coffee in the am. Hubby and kids can make toast…. the cereal is there too. So at least we can have those couple of luxuries while we have no kitchen.
Now.. get a bucket of soapy water. Unless you are a fantastic cleaner (and I am not! I can organize.. but I’ve said before, I have never claimed or will ever claim to be a great cleaner) you will have some serious cleaning to do. Get that step stool out and clean out the cupboards.
You may not have to if your cupboards are being scrapped. But my builder Jerry Brand of Brand Homes has been volunteering to help turn a barn into a home for a woman who has MS. He is going to take my old cupboards and use some of them in her kitchen. So I had some cleaning to do. I’m sure they will still need more cleaning than what I did… but clean the shelves and outsides if so.
When they pull out your stove and dishwasher, refrigerator … just wait to see what that floor looks like! Also the side of my stove was a mess. Obviously things had dripped down between the counter and my stove. Ewww!
Having white cabinets is not advisible if you have 5 kids at home. I still have to clean these. …. and that filty microwave! Yuck.
So before you do a remodeling job… plan where all your things are going to go. Get ready to do some cleaning… and get ready to not have a kitchen sink for awhile.
Disclosure: This project is not being sponsored in any way.
It Really Needed To Be Done
You might be thinking, “Well… that doesn’t look bad”. (Or you might be thinking… OMG she is right.. She HAD to redo it). Actually when I look at this picture I don’t feel a kitchen remodel had to be done either. But there are things you can’t see in this picture…. but look below and you’ll see more!
Notice the missing drawer to the right of the dishwasher? I used the space for the bottled water… Why not use that space right? The cabinets were made out of melamine, not wood. There were a couple other doors that had small cracks on them. The kids like to open them and while they make things in the kitchen I’ve seen them put their knee or foot on as a prop. Or lean on them… This stuff isnt’ that sturdy.
This cupboard door was warped from the heat of the toaster below. If you look close you can also see where the edge if peeling at the inside bottom left of that same door. There were a lot of edges doing that on the drawers and cabinets.
These are things that need to be taken care of before you can put a house on the market. Especially THIS housing market. We aren’t planning to move right away. We are thinking about it for 2012 after my step son graduates. We would move up to our farm (and that kitchen needs to be remodeled too!)
But we thought we might as well do it now and get a little enjoyment out of it ourselves. Oh… our disposal also decided to die. We have been wanting a deeper sink. This one is like the cheapest one you could put in a house.. It wasn’t deep at all. So… new sink, new disposal… you might as well do the rest of the kitchen right?
Here are the samples of what I am going to use in my kitchen. My dream kitchen would have cherry cabinets and granite counter tops. But… this isn’t my dream kitchen. With it being a galley style kitchen, it is narrow and we knew we couldn’t go very dark. It would make it look too small.
You can see the maple cabinets we are getting. The counter sample is a laminent from Wilsonart. The tile it sits on is the back splash.
I called in a friend and fantastic house builder and he also does remodeling too. Jerry Brand of Brand Homes to the rescue! I know I can trust him and I know he does quality work.
It is hard to tell what your kitchen will look like… these are the only samples I have to go with. Hoping I like it.
It is all being done this week… so I’ll take you along with me to see it step by step.
Simple solutions can make much needed room
Organizing your kitchen cupboards can be made easier with extra space. We are always wanting it, but may not have the resources to remodel our kitchens. Here are a few ideas that don’t have to be expensive. I’m getting the ideas from my Sister’s kitchen (which I would die for!!) but these cabinet ideas can be used in any kitchen cupboards.
You can’t see all of Sis’s kitchen in this picture. There is another area behind me that also has counter, sink, cupboards. (You’ll see that in another post) She’ll want me to let you know that things were still not all put away from the party she had last night for my Dad’s 80th birthday – usually the counters are clear.
But I did want to show you some other ideas for storage. Many of us can’t have kitchens this deluxe, but there might be some simple solutions that you can do to your own cupboards that can increase your storage space.
This cupboard is on the backside of her island. But look at all the extra shelves that were built. You see so many of this size cupboard that are all open – or they may have a small half shelf in the back. But this gives all kinds of extra storage. All those platters and trays that can be so hard to put away.
Here is another one that the shelves are more spaced out to accommodate the taller items. I would guess these are adjustable shelves, although this picture doesn’t show the holes.
Here is another example. These are some extra dishes she has – not her everyday dishes.
Here is another idea that you can use in your cabinets. This pull out wire drawer works well to be able to store smaller things and still be able to get to them. But that space above is not wasted! Then if you have taller items there is still room in front of the shelves for those.
If you are having custom cabinets made be sure to keep these ideas in mind. Make sure they make holes so that your shelves are adjustable.
Check your cabinets. Most cabinets do have adjustable shelves. USE them! You can make more room in your cabinets. If you know someone even a little handy it wouldn’t take much to make extra shelves. Just good measuring and a couple of shelf holders that you can get at your local hardware store and you are in business.
Even if you aren’t able to have a kitchen this big and nice… you can find extra storage in your cabinets by making extra shelves.
More ideas from Sis’s kitchen coming up later this week!
Don’t you wish you had more cupboards in your kitchen?
I know I sure do! Insert SlideDeck So how do you organize those kitchen cupboards when you have a small house with 7 people living in it? Believe me….I know it isn’t easy! This cupboard looks ok now….but you should see it if one of the kids or my hubby puts dishes away. The bowls aren’t stacked anymore….you might have that big yellow one on top of the smaller ones.
On the left…forget putting the lids in the slots they are supposed to be in and the plastic containers were they go. Aren’t you supposed to just throw them in that side?
Organizing can be really hard to maintain, especially if others aren’t as on board as you. It is all about the maintenance, but we aren’t going there today…today we are just talking about some ways to try and organize those cupboards.
I love using baskets in cupboards. You can see the red ones up on the upper shelf. That is a hard place to get to things and it is a narrower shelf, so it doesn’t hold as much. Those baskets hold the other plastic containers and lids that you accumulate. They make it very easy to pull the basket out and get to what you want. They help keep things confined so that it isn’t falling all over your cupboard…and they are inexpensive!
Do you use it?
If you find there are things in your cupboards that you haven’t used in ages ….or you don’t have a lid for it and because of that you don’t use it (and you will!!) then get rid of it. Why should you use that precious space on items you don’t use anymore? The general rule is if you have not used it for a year or more then get rid of it.
Organizing kitchen cupboards isn’t necessarily hard to do. But keeping it that way can be what is hard for many.
Organizing Your Refrigerator
Do you open your refrigerator and see something like this? Or does it look worse? Old food, expired left overs that the lids have popped off of. Several containers of cream cheese because you forgot you had some in the back?
Your refrigerator can breed all kinds of things! It is just like anything else….it needs to be kept up.
To Organize and Spring Clean your Refrigerator:
1) Take everything out of your refrigerator.
2) Pull out the shelves and wash them with warm soapy water. Pull out the drawers and do the same. You can also use vinegar to clean.
3) Be sure to wipe down the walls of the inside of the refrigerator.
4) Go through all your food. Throw out anything expired.
5) You can adjust your shelves so that they work best for you. Maybe you need some shelves that taller items (milk, bottle of wine or pop) can fit in. Some others can be a smaller space between the shelves for things like eggs, cream cheese or dips.
6) I like to put my condiments, salad dressings, mustard, ketchup etc in the door.
7) Keep your lunch meats, cheese etc in drawer. Be sure to keep them covered with plastic bags or plastic ware to keep fresh.
8) Try to keep like items together.
9) Clean the outside and top of the refrigerator before you are finished.
10) If you like your children’s pictures or artwork on the outside of your refrigerator…..I suggest one magnet with either a picture of them or one piece of their artwork only. It will seem much more special if there is one item per child and you notice it rather than a bunch of stuff that is all cluttered.
Spring Cleaning – Organizing those pesky plastic storage containers
I have to admit that even at my house these plastic storage containers end up messy. I am usually good about putting them in their place…..but I have 7 other people in the house and although for the most part they do great…..there are times when that dishwasher is being emptied that it is easier to just “throw it in” instead of taking the time to stack it.
Here is the video that I did last year on organizing your plastics. But the same with any organizing…it’s all about the maintenance.
Tips To Prepare Meals Quicker & Easier
I have to admit that I am no diva in the kitchen. In fact, I really don’t care for cooking. I have to do it…so I do. If someone told me that I could have a free full time cook …I would jump on that one!
I live for fast and easy ways to make meals. Since I do not like to cook, I want to get in and out of there fast…not spend all day preparing a meal that is gobbled up in 10 minutes and then I have as much time cleaning the kitchen afterwards. (I know….very poor attitude). I admire those woman that do cook like that and believe me I wish I was one of them…..but alas, I would much rather spend my time organizing my office than making a meal. (yes…kind of sick isn’t it? )
So to that I say…here are a few tips that I have learned over the years that can make throwing a meal on the table an easier chore.
1) Pre-chop onion and peppers. Do several while you have them out and while you are crying over your onions anyway. Then divide them into 1/2 cup portion sizes and put into small freezer bags. I store those little freezer bags inside one larger one for the onions especially (to help reduce any smell). Then when you go to make a casserole or such you can just grab a baggie out of your freezer and you do not have to take the time (and smell and tears) to chop your onions.
2) When making a meal….double it if it is something that can be frozen. Make a huge batch of chili at the beginning of the fall. Then freeze it in individual servings if you want or dinner size portions.
3) Freeze food in freezer bags to save room. Years ago I did the Make 30 meals for the month in one day deal. The way they suggested storing your food was in freezer bags. You can cool it down a little bit and then put it in a freezer bag (chili, tomato sauces etc…work) and lay them flat to freeze. You can get oodles in your freezer.
4) Think about your dinner that morning. Grab any frozen meat from the freezer and have it thawing during the day so that when dinner comes you don’t have to use the microwave to thaw your meat. (that still takes time)
5) Use your crock pots. I love mine. Throw everything in first thing in the morning. Dinner is ready in the evening and your whole house smells good all day long.
Guest Post from SnoWhite
I am giving my Gem of the Week Award to SnoWhite (isn’t that cute?) from “Finding Joy in My Kitchen.”
This cake looks soooo good! She gives the step by step pictures (which I love) to making this cake. You will have to go see the whole process. You can see it very simply by clicking HERE.
Does your messy pantry need some Organizing?
Denise from Musings from Mommyland asked me if I could help her with ideas for organizing her pantry.
I do not have a fancy pantry (one that you could drool over that all of us would love to have…you know, the kind that most of us could make into a home office.) and thought I could benefit many of you best by showing some of the inexpensive ways that you can add “space” to your pantry without having to spend an arm and a leg to do it.
These wire shelf additions can also be used on non wire shelving. Some of the ones on the top shelf and floor can be turned upside down and used to hang from a shelf also. Be creative.
If you have an idea you would like to me help out with, please let me know.
Organizing My Coffee – Medicine Cabinet
I know it is strange to have your coffee and your medicines in the same cabinet….but with a small kitchen you sometimes have to do some things that you may not do in other kitchens. This is kind of the “Morning Start” cabinet. My husband gets his vitamins everyday before he leave for work. I also have the ibuprofen and cold medicines handy. The coffee maker sits right below this cabinet and so the coffee supplies and the mugs along with the travel mugs are in the right place here.
Organizing my Baking Cabinet
These are the “Before” and “After” pictures of my baking cabinet. I didn’t purchase anything to do my kitchen today. I just sorted through what I had and got rid of things that I didn’t use. Then I cleaned everything. (It needed it). I put everything back in with some order.