I use my kitchen A LOT. I'm trying to learn to make more things homemade. (Pasta dough, pasta sauce, chicken stock, etc...) A large portion of our meals are from scratch. The kitchen is where I spent most of my time (when I'm not playing with the baby...but there are times when he'll play happily on a pad on the kitchen floor while I do whatever) So, when it came time to start really organizing I chose the kitchen first.
I had a bunch of Rubbermaid containers in the cabinets. These were frustrating because I was always hunting for the lid that matched whichever container I needed. Half the time I couldn't find it. My solution?
I bought a couple of storage containers from Walmart (I think the big one was $6 and the smaller one was $2) I put the lids in the smaller one and the actual containers in the larger one. I put them in a lower cabinet instead. Voila! Easy, organized, and kid friendly. I put the glassware baking dishes up where the containers used to live:
Now they're out of kid reach and easy to grab!
I also found a neat way to store plastic grocery bags. It's called Grocery Bag Origami and it's really easy. Now my bags look like this:
So much better than a mass under the sink. And now I can use that space effectively! (I put the blender there)
Other tips to keeping a clean kitchen:
- When making dinner make sure that your dishwasher is empty or running. Keep a sink full of hot, soapy water. That way you just have to drop dishes in and they immediately start soaking. While dinner is actually cooking you can load the dishwasher with some of these dishes.
- Put everything away each night. That way you don't have to clean up right before starting to cook again. (It was frustrating me to have to clean seconds before dirtying things up again)
- Make it a habit to do SOMETHING every single time you enter the kitchen. Got 5 minutes? Spray and wipe down the surfaces (counters, handles, etc...) Got 10 minutes? Unload and load the dishwasher. Did you just heat up a mug of water for tea or hot chocolate? Take a second to wipe the inside of the microwave. (the steam will help loosen the stuff inside)
Little changes are what matter. Don't feel like you have to change everything at once; you won't stick to it. Vow to make 1 or 2 changes this week and go from there.