Wednesday, December 30, 2015

12 Day Declutter Challenge Day 3: Kitchen Nightmare

  Wednesday... I think this is my most loved/hated day of the week. It's B's last day off which makes me sad, but I don't have to do any lifting at the gym today which is glorious. The thought of my muscles getting a break is so joyous.  When I went to grab my cup out of the cabinet I could barely move my arms.
  But you know what they say "If it doesn't challenge you it doesn't change you".
Change, and Challenge! Those two words are so important to everything going on in my life right now. Today is Day 3 of my 12 day challenge to help declutter not just my life, but yours too. Day one we did our inboxes, day 2 was cell phones, and now we've hit the 3rd and hardest day of my challenge so far.

  Let's talk about the kitchen. In my house the kitchen is the busiest part of our home. When we enter the house, we always do it through the garage which is right off the kitchen. Plus I spend a lot of time cooking, so my kitchen is usually a mess. I come in from grocery shopping and try to put everything away as quickly as possible. Stuff just gets crammed in the cabinets with no real place or care. "As long as it's somewhere the dogs can't get it!" is usually my motto. I always end up buying 2-3 of something because I can't see it in the cabinet.... It was just a stressful disaster... 
  I know I am not alone when I admit that my kitchen cabinets are often a mess. It's apart of life... Especially when you lead a busy life like we do. We are human, we make messes! You don't have to pretend your perfect, or that your house looks like something from Better Homes and Garden.
  So again, let's talk steps!
Step One: REMOVE EVERYTHING FROM ONE CABINET AT A TIME. People say you have to lose money to make money, but in our case you have to make a mess to get clean. When I started clearing cabinets I made a really frustrating error. I pulled everything out of every cabinet all at once... My counters were full of shit, and it was overwhelming. So absolutely only do one cabinet at a time. I would start with food cabinets because those are the most time consuming. 
This is why one cabinet at a time is important....
   Step Two: Sort through all the junk! When I was doing the food cabinets I had a few rules.            
  1. Expired food gets thrown out. No ifs/and/buts. That should be common sense... I
  2. f I had two or more of something that I don't use often, and it was still good it got put into a donation box. 
  3. If I don't remember buying, it needed to go. 
  4. The stuff that gets used and eaten gets to stay. 
  5. If you are on the fence about something ask yourself "Am I going to for sure use this soon?" if that answer is no, that shit has got to go!

Step Three: Clean out the cabinet. I used Clorox clean up and just got the whole thing clean, and smelling nice. I wiped the cabinets completely dry before placing anything back in them. That's important if you have boxes, or soft packaged goods. ** Tip: make sure you disinfect your cabinet handles... They are gross, and this should be done often during cold and flu season.
Step Four: Find an organized way to place the items that you are keeping back into the cabinet. I did mine my packaging size and product alikeness. All my soups went together, rice together, beans, pastas, sauces, you get the idea. I also made sure that I put the things that I use the most on more accessible shelves. (That's because I'm a Hobbit)
 Step Five: After your cabinets are filled with what you are keeping put the items that you are donating in a bag, or box off of the counter tops. Clear your workspace so you can start on the next cabinet. *I did not do this. I made a giant mess of my kitchen, and it was hell to clean up. I can't tell you how much easier it is to do one cabinet at a time.
 Repeat these 5 steps for your food cabinets, and for your dish storage too. What I recommend for pots and pans is finding a system that actually works for you. I used to just toss my pans into one cabinet and it was a mess trying to get anything out... Now I have two small cabinets, and a large one devoted to my pots, pans, and bake ware. My pans, and cutting boards (Since they are flat) went sideways into a small vertical cabinet. My pots went into the larger cabinet and are set in there based on size. Finally, my bake ware and things I don't use often went in to a larger cabinet that was further away from the stove.

  The total time it took me to do this was 2 hours, and 15 minutes. Finding a system that works for you, and your kitchen is the most important thing in this challenge. There is a reason this is a challenge. Cleaning out cabinets is a total pain in the ass, but I promise it's worth it to have an organized, accessible kitchen! 
  Don't forget to like the official Raising Tater Facebook Page! 
Also, you can search our Instagram under the handle Raisingtater. We are having a "hashtag" giveaway. If you tag a photo of you decluttering and following the challenge with #12daydeclutterchallenge you are entered to win a shirt from our store! Happy decluttering!

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