Whisk away the clutter in your kitchen
I like to consider myself somewhat of a clean freak. My floors are clean enough to eat off of, I sanitize my phone twice a day, and I carry hand sanitizer with me at all times. I wash or disinfect my hands whenever I enter a home or car, and always disinfect hotel rooms and airplane seats before using them. However, for as good as I am with keeping germs away, I cannot say the same about clutter.
Our house is a magnet for clutter. The worst room: the kitchen. Luckily, as the new year rolled around, I began to figure out ways to cut down on the clutter. The trick was starting small and making it habitual. If your kitchen is over-flowing and you are running low on cabinet and counter space, try these tips:
• Give it away. Donate everything you haven’t used in a year or more. If you have something that you think you cannot part with, move it to storage. If you place it in a bin in your storage shed or closet, and you still don’t miss it later, it is time to go. I also like to make a habit of picking one or two items every week to donate. I start a box of donations and take them once it’s full. I also place items in here from my closet, from my daughter’s toy collection, and my husband’s closet as well.
• Start small. Tackle one thing at a time. Start with one cabinet shelf. Then move to the next until you are done with that cabinet. Then move to drawers, going one at a time. You do not have to do this all in one day. Do one a week if that’s all that your schedule allows.
• Shelve it. Floating shelves can fit almost anywhere you would not typically imagine for storage. For instance, a floating shelf above the window can keep items up and away yet still easily accessible. Use this to store aesthetically pleasing, occasional-use items like serving platters, cheese boards, wine decanters or cookbooks.
• Check your calendar.
Every night before garbage day, my husband and I do a sweep. We clear out food and condiments that we know will go bad in the next few days. Doing so keeps our fridge clutter-free and also helps us to keep tabs on expiration dates. As a bonus, this twice-a-week ritual always gets the ball rolling, and we end up clearing out additional, non-food clutter as well.
Have a comment or question for Joanne? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.