If you missed last week’s post, I wrote about motivation and inspiration to tackle the new year. You might be wondering, “Did she start organizing and deep cleaning her kitchen like she stated?” The answer is yes, I did “start”. Maybe you returned because you wish to deep clean and organize along with me. I hope!
The only way I know how to truly tackle a project like this is to dive right in. Let’s start with the counter, because that is what people see, and that is what is going to give you immediate satisfaction when we are done and motivation to dig deeper.
So before you clear your counters off, think about what gets thrown on them that you don’t mind, and what doesn’t belong and drives you batty. Do you throw your car keys on the counter? Mail? Kid’s school papers? Utensils? Fresh Fruit? Bread? How many appliances do you store on top of your counter? Obviously you need a space to prepare food too. Think about what you use the most and what you want your counter to look like when we are finished. If it truly is a catch-all for certain objects like keys, then think about a cute bowl or basket to store them in. Same for mail and school papers. My bills go into a separate area, but coupons, newspapers and other items that don’t need immediate attention find a brief stay here in this magazine holder.
I kept it real in the above picture. As you can see, I need to purge through my magazine holder.
I don’t keep every appliance out, for instance, I store my toaster oven in a lower cabinet. It’s really not that big of a deal to get it out when it’s needed and put it away when we are finished using it. Now, my coffee pot (s) have a permanent spot and my beloved Kitchen Aid mixer has a spot as well, but I also view my mixer as a decorative piece, and once it gets a fresh paint job – it may become the focal point!!
Take a few moments to figure out what you want out and what you don’t. And by all means, if you have a gigantic kitchen (I don’t) you have lots of options 🙂 If you have a smaller kitchen like I do, and you have run out of cabinet space, then you may need to come up with creative ways to store your extra items. As we dig deeper in the next few weeks, I will share ways I organize certain drawers and cabinets. Open shelving and open racks are very popular if you have the wall space. They can be made to look very pretty and be extremely functional.
Clear your counters off, completely. Ahhh…. feels good already doesn’t it?! I’m sure you have your favorite cleaning products. Maybe you even use all natural products; I would love to hear your favorites. Now – I just have formica counter tops (right now), so if you have granite, quartz, etc. you know what is safe to use. I was introduced to La’s Totally AWESOME all purpose cleaner (As Seen On TV) last fall. You can even find it at the dollar store!! I always enjoy trying new products, and I’ve been happy with this 🙂 .
Once you’ve wiped your counters down, go ahead and polish your stainless steel appliances. My all time favorite stainless steel cleaner and polisher is by Weiman. You can find it at our very own Knapp and Steiner 🙂 . If you have white appliances – magic clean eraser! We aren’t climbing inside to clean the appliances this week, just the outside 🙂 .
A clean and cleared sink is important and a huge challenge. Keeping your sink cleared is going to help with the overall organization of your entire kitchen. Once that fills up and overflows on to the counter, then your mind set can plummet and before you know it the whole kitchen is a disaster. I know this is hard, believe me, I leave for work at 7 am and normally come home to breakfast dishes in the sink. We are a busy family and have ball games sometimes 3 nights a week. Arriving home after 8:30 and still needing to serve supper to an over hungry family doesn’t leave time to clear the sink from the morning. More is added to it while preparing your meal and before you know it, it’s 9:30 and you really just want to go to bed. I would like to challenge you to try and adapt a new habit for the family to clear the sink twice a day. Everyone needs to work together on this – that’s sometimes the hard part, when there’s homework and it’s late already.
Now the fun part, style your counter tops! Remember, only put back what you want to be there. Look at the pile that remains and figure out where those items belong and I bet you can purge as well!
You all probably think I’m obsessed with my 3 tier tray. They have so many different styles, some are baskets and could store your fresh fruit, tea bags, buns, candy, etc. They are made to be functional, I just chose to decorate mine for the time being.
Having a clear counter top is so important for the primary reason of having enough space to prepare food. De-cluttering a space can be calming and help you from feeling so stressed. We have enough stress in our everyday lives as it is. I love having a clean kitchen. I believe it sets the stage for the flow of your home. While I was at it, I re-decorated my shelves <3 . To some it may be to soon to be styling in “spring” theme, it’s my way of coping through the last months of winter, and I still have pine cones scattered about 😉
My next task will be cleaning and organizing the cabinets. I hope you find this useful and feel refreshed after. Thanks for keeping me accountable 🙂
Author – Martha Knake
Chief Editor – Emily Schunke