“Let’s Get Organized” Series – Installment 4
Welcome back to the 4th installment of my “Let’s Get Organized” series! So far, we’ve touched on must-have food items in your kitchen, organizing (and eliminating!) paper clutter and neatly displaying your tot’s artwork. Since the kitchen has been such a problem area for me, please forgive me if I linger in this room a bit longer. I desperately need an intervention when it comes to organizing and neatening my pantry.
I have a terrible admission. Sometimes when I open the doors to my pantry, things tumble out. Wait, allow me to rephrase this statement. When I fully open the doors to my pantry, things tumble out. (Because the doors always stay sort of open. There’s too much crap to completely close them.)
What kind of things you may wonder? Let’s see. As I open the Disaster Zone with trepidation, ready to protect my head from falling objects, I spy the following items:
- Cereal boxes. A whole boatload of them. Last week, I actually had THREE boxes of Banana Nut Crunch, all of which were open.
- Birthday hats. We haven’t celebrated a birthday in this house since August.
- A plastic bin filled with baggies of (probably petrified) snacks from God-knows-when. I’m afraid of the contents of the Plastic Bin.
- Several gift bags containing – well – more gift bags. These take up virtually the entire top row. That’s ribbon that you see in the photo hanging down. It’s been that way for probably months and I’ve just now realized it…
- Tupperware and knock-off Tupperware. You have about a 50/50 shot of locating a container that has a top. Tops tend to be fairly essential to keeping your food fresh, wouldn’t you say?
- A glass bowl with a lovely assortment of items ranging from cookie containers to empty plastic Easter eggs.
- A contraption of unknown origin which I have never used, probably belonging to Mrs. Peterson 1.0. Maybe this is a snow cone machine? Clearly, not an item that needs to be readily available.
Before you form a terribly negative opinion of me and my cleanliness, let me say in my defense that this pantry is – by a mile – the messiest area in my home. (Except for the garage. The garage would need its own series.) My family members do not live in squalor.
Having said this, when I take the time to actually LOOK at my pantry, I am frankly appalled. I need YOU, my dear readers, to hold me accountable to the task of tidying this war zone!
As I write, I realize that I am beginning to feel a bit overwhelmed at the enormity of this task. All I can do is take it in bite-sized pieces so I can do it the RIGHT way.
My Game Plan
- Step 1 – Get some storage containers. I know that we have some of these laying around, probably in the garage…duh, duh, DUH (scary music). If those don’t work, I don’t need anything fancy. These could be a suitable backup plan:
For any food item that hogs space (or those that do not stay as fresh in their respective containers), I’ll want to have airtight containers in a variety of sizes. Something like this:
- Step 2 – Grab a big a*s garbage bag.
- Step 3 – Remove everything from the shelves one shelf at a time and toss the expired/science project-esque petrified food items into said big a*s garbage bag. (Anything more than one shelf at a time could send me into a spiral of hopelessness.)
- Step 4– Assess the Tupperware. If there is no matching lid, I’ll toss it. With what’s left, I have some options for organizing them.
If I simply cannot neaten them up at this point, I may have to buy a matching set of containers. The advantage, of course, is that I can just about guarantee that a set will stack properly. If I must, I’ll choose something like this:
- Step 5– Relocate the non-essential items (i.e. birthday hats, gift bags, machine of questionable use) to an area of the house that is slightly less conveniently accessed. Is it really so hard to schlep to the crawl space for one of these items? I don’t think so.
- Step 6 – Place what’s left back onto the shelves in their respective see-through containers and ensure that the cookies are not on the bottom shelf within the reach of young, sugar-addicted tots.
And there you have it folks! This task is somewhat daunting, but is one that will surely reap many benefits. The time has now come for me to put on my Big Girl Pants and get to work.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out this website for more ideas!
Readers, if you have successfully made over your pantry, I’d love to hear your suggestions! Come back next week to go on my closet makeover journey…hooray!
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