I decided to move onto the kitchen since I’ll be hosting holidays. I figure that having my kitchen organized will make that craziness a little less stressful (don’t get me wrong, I love hosting my family, but having a large group over is always stressful).
The refrigerator came first, because I haven’t gone grocery shopping in awhile. My advice is to save emptying out and cleaning the shelves to when your fridge is nearly empty. Besides, it helps you put together your shopping list… and what you don’t need. Like we’re jammed packed on condiments and salad dressings (except we don’t have any of caesar for Logan).
I chose to empty our fridge shelf by shelf. When something was in a spot that didn’t make sense, I just left it on the counter until I was ready to figure out where to put it. Like I said, this is all much easier and faster when you’re fridge is nearly empty! And you don’t have to have your food out or your fridge open for as long.
Wipe off each shelf and clean out the drawers. Make sure you wipe the sides too, because I found tons of crumbs stuck there.
I always get frustrated with this step when it comes to food. I hate getting rid of food that’s been forgotten for too long (like the mini-bagels that are now dog treats). But this isn’t a time to beat yourself up about the yogurt that started molding or the veggies that are limp. Celebrate the fact that you’re cleaning everything out and then get organized so it happens less! This is also a good time to consolidate… like combining 2 of the 3 apple butters you have. You know, for example.
It sounds obvious, but sort all of your food into groups. It’s easier to use them when they’re in a group that makes sense.
I used to think this was a silly step for a refrigerator. I mean, why put more containers in a fridge when everything all the food is contained and there are drawers. But when I didn’t have yogurt floating around my fridge getting lost, I realized the basket I put all of them in really helped. I also put all of our cheeses in a container, which has been a huge space saver. Adjust your shelves so they work for what you need. This also might be a good time to pull out your label maker. If multiple people are getting things out or putting away groceries, it’s a good idea to label the containers so people know where to put things back.
You can’t tell much of a difference in my before and after pictures, because I desperately need to go grocery shopping! But I did get rid of about a gazllion crumbs, several bottles, nasty vegetables, and the stale-dog-treat-bagels. Now even more space for when I do go shopping!