Getting Organized Together – March

Goals for getting organized in March – The Kitchen

They say that the kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where we gather to get our nourishment. It should be a place that’s welcoming, clean and organized.

One important rule to follow…

Break it down! Don’t do this all in one day! Make this into smaller tasks that suit your needs. If you want to do one item in one day, fine. But if you’re the type who still thinks that’s too big of a task, whittle away 15 minutes at a time. It will eventually get done. You’ll be amazed what you can accomplish in 15 minutes!

Where to start?

If your countertops and dinner table are difficult to find under piles of stuff, that’s the perfect place to start.

1) Start by grabbing a garbage bag and sweeping the area to toss anything you don’t need.

2) You may also want to have a box or laundry basket to put things in which don’t belong in your kitchen area. You can deliver these items to their rightful places when you’re done.

3) Put away anything you come across such as clean dishes, food items left on the counter, etc.

What should be left are mainly countertop appliances, dirty dishes, other items that are intended to live on your countertops (for now).

If you have a dishwasher, load it up. You can run it later if it’s not full. If you don’t have one, do yourself a favor and wash your dishes as soon as you can get to it. I’m being kind here because I don’t like washing dishes myself, and I wouldn’t want someone to tell me to wash them because it’s obvious they need to be washed! But, they need to be done, and the sooner the better, and then they’ll be off the counters and tables helping you to get a fresh start in your kitchen. Maybe take a break and then come back and wash them.

One last thing… now that the counters and table are clear of the excess clutter, give them all a quick wipe down. This will be enough for one day. You should feel proud of all the clear spaces you’ve created in your kitchen and dining area! Getting organized a little bit at a time can be very rewarding.

What next?

There is a lot of activity in the kitchen and dining area of any home. It gets messed up darned quick too! One way to help keep up with the activity is to put in place a daily routine. This basic daily routine will help you and your family get into a habit that keeps things more tidy. Here’s an example:

  • serve breakfast
  • unload dishwasher
  • load dishwasher with breakfast dishes
  • serve lunch
  • load dishwasher with lunch dishes
  • make dinner, load dishes as you’re able
  • eat dinner
  • load dishwasher
  • hand wash anything that needs washing
  • before bed, load final stray items and turn on dishwasher

I know that sounds so simple and common sense, but if you don’t follow it, you could end up with dishes still on the table from lunch when you’re trying to get ready for dinner, or dishes in the way where you need to prep food. Or if you don’t run the dishwasher regularly, you don’t have enough dishes when the new day rolls around. Your routine will obviously vary depending on who is home and when.

Tip – unload breakfast dishes from the clean dishwasher so you don’t have to put them away. Why put things away and then just pull them right back out to use?

Organizing Your Kitchen

Now that you got the basics out of the way to help things run a bit smoother, it’s time to actually look into our cabinets and drawers and getting organized. Please click on the link and go to the Kitchen Organization page. This page covers where to put items in your kitchen, how to organize your cabinets and drawers, make more counter space, etc. The detailed instructions are all there. Please take your time so you don’t become overwhelmed. Maybe start with your worst cabinet or drawer to see the most improvement and inspire you to continue on. Be sure to declutter items from the kitchen as well, especially expired foods and utensils and items that haven’t been used in a long time. You’ll be amazed how much space you might create!

Mail Station

For those of us who chase mail around the flat surfaces of our home, especially in the kitchen and dining area, please read this page which talks about how to organize your incoming paper mail.

Put your things away (yes, again)

Yes, I know I mentioned this previously, but we must continue to put our things away when we’re done with them. If we don’t at least keep up with this one organizing strategy, I’m afraid that by the time we get to June on our organizing venture together, the living room, bedroom and kitchen will be full of clutter again! And we don’t want that. If you can’t do anything more than pick up after yourself and put your things away 15 minutes a day, then so be it. I truly believe that doing that alone will make a HUGE difference in our homes. (I keep telling my 2 year old that, but she’s just not quite getting it yet!)

March’s summary for getting organized

So let’s review… for March, we’ll

  • declutter the kitchen and dining area to locate the flat surfaces
  • start a simple kitchen routine
  • set up an incoming mail sorting system for paper mail
  • go through our cabinets and drawers one at a time to declutter and organize them
  • do it in small sessions, not all in one day

Helpful resources for getting organized:

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