The kitchen and food preparation used to be in a separate room, hidden in the back of the home and food was transported to the dining area. Today the kitchen is often the heart of the house, open to the living room, sunroom, dining room and even play area. The kitchen is a source of total nourishment. We gather there, we cook and we eat there. Regardless of whether your style is ultra-modern or an old country kitchen, they still have the same needs for uncluttered, clean space with adequate lighting and ease of movement.
In the kitchen the food, storage methods and tools all contribute to your health and the health of your home. Today I will discuss organization as it relates to healthy living. Many of us need fundamental and automatic organization because we do our own cooking and serving. An organized kitchen can save time.
Furniture that functions well is essential to an organized kitchen. Cabinets, dresser and armoires can add surface and storage space to a kitchen. Walk in pantries are wonderful but we don’t always have the space. This is when those pieces can really come in handy. The top shelves can hold special ingredients along with measuring cups and food preparation staples. The bottom can be used for towels and dishcloths, place mats and food wraps.
To de-clutter your kitchen begin by following these steps:
· Clear your counters
· Leave the coffee pot, toaster, canisters and salt and pepper shaker, whatever you use on a daily basis
· Evaluate everything and if you do not use it daily (like the waffle iron), put it away
· Mount your television set if you watch it. Put it in a different room if you do not.
· Find a cubby hole for mail and school papers and establish a weekly ritual to sort and disburse.
· Make sure you wash your dishes immediately after eating, run your dishwasher nightly. Empty your dishwasher first thing in the morning before dirty dishes can stack up.
· Designate containers. Cooking utensils, fruits and vegetables all can be placed in baskets and stored on the shelves of an island or bakers rack that is open and can easily be seen.
· Clean as you go while cooking.
· Place several garbage bags at the bottom of the can so you don’t have to search when you empty the garbage.
· Write the purchase date on your herbs and spices.
· Hanging cookware on the wall can be attractive and save time.
· Have twin trash cans for easy recycling.
· Add a bookcase to the kitchen for your favorite cookbooks if you have space.
· Place a magazine rack near the kitchen table for breakfast reading and establish a ritualized time to empty it out.
· Fruit stands and cake stands are handy for storing fruit decoratively.
· Hang some of your collections on the wall. Cookie cutters, platters and cups all double as display.
Don’t just throw things on top of your refrigerator, it is okay to put things there, but plan it so it looks nice, like baskets, flowers, boxes, something that looks nice besides a hodge podge of whatever you need to get off the table tops.
Convert a kitchen closet into a pantry. If the kitchen is small, put a glazed glass door on to open up the space. Other options for the door are screen or to paint a door with chalkboard paint and leave notes or allow children to create art for you there. Your pantry should have good lighting. Under cabinet lighting works nicely in a pantry. Use the pantry floor for storage space too. Basket, paper towels, jars and water bottles can utilize this space that is often ignored.
There are so many clever ways to add organization and storage to a kitchen. You are almost always rewarded with time saved and frustration avoided when you know where to find something and everything is in its place!
I’d love to hear your results after you get cleaning and organizing!
My ideal kitchen would be without a microwave, bpa’s, gmo’s and chemically manufactured "food"!
Now, go take a look at your kitchen! What can you throw in the dumpster to make your kitchen work for you?