Sunday, January 20, 2013

Home Organization Challenge: The Kitchen

On Monday, I launched a "Home Organization Challenge" and started things off with a focus on the kitchen. The idea is to tackle a little bit each day until the task list is complete. Having a deadline really helped me because it meant that there was no room for procrastination. I approached a couple things each day, and dedicated about an hour a day to getting things done (including today).

When I started this challenge, I really did not think that my kitchen was as bad as it really was, and I have to confess that it was a lot more work than I thought it would be. Everything on the surface seemed clean and organized within reason, but once I started pulling things out and reorganizing things, there was a lot to do. The kitchen was a great place to start, since so much seems to happen in the kitchen and it is the view from my sewing studio.

I created a space for the different activities in the kitchen and really wanted to have the countertops as clear as possible.

My family and I tend to eat a lot of fresh produce, so there is very little in the way of cans or boxes with dried goods. With the exception of some died pasta, various types of rice, tuna and a few cans of beans there really is not much in our cabinet. I was therefore able to condense the food panty into one section of the cabinets.

Originally this cabinet had a mishmash of dishes, but now it makes a wonderful little food pantry. I was lucky to find some great glass jars at the dollar store, which is the perfect size for the cabinet.

Glass jars $1.00 mini jar, $2.00 for the Small (not shown), Medium and Large jars at the local dollar store. Surprisingly good quality and works really well for my little panty. 

The biggest challenges were cleaning the glass stovetop, which gets wiped at the end of each day, but still had a lot of baked on residue. Another challenge was deciding which items had to go and sending them off in a donation box.

Now every nook and cranny in the kitchen is clean and everything has a place. I did not want to use a lot of harsh chemicals, so I relied a lot on some natural home cleaning agents.

Here are my partners in grime fighting. Okay maybe that was a little cheesy, but you will be amazed at how much cleaning power is in white vinegar, baking soda and lemon.

This is not a decorating blog; but the idea here is to get organized, which can help create an environment where creative thinking and an opportunity to create becomes a lot easier. When you are the person that is constantly asked where things are in your home, it is obvious that things need to be better organized to accommodate all members of your household. I also find it very distracting to work from home when I think about how many household things need to get done. If you also work from home then you can also relate to having a clean, organized home as a great way to welcome clients.

Next week's challenge:

Week 2 - The Living Room

To Do List:

  • Sort and purge items into four categories; keep, donate, trash and other room.
  • Dust, wipe clean, and polish.
  • Clean windows and drapery.
  • Clean lamps and other light fixture(s).
  • Clean and organize entertainment or media centre.
  • Clean television screen.
  • Dust electronics.
  • Spot clean sofa where needed.
  • Wash walls and trim.
  • Wash vent covers.
  • Mop floors, vacuum or otherwise clean floors.
  • Organize cabinets, shelving or other storage areas.
  • Sort books, magazines and DVD's, and purge unwanted items.
  • Create a donation box with items that are in good condition.

Remember to take before and after pictures. Visit our new Pinterest board for cleaning tips and tricks.


  1. I absolutely love your site.. Great colors & theme.
    Did you build this site yourself? Please reply back as I’m looking to create my very own site
    and would like to know where you got this from or exactly what the theme
    is called. Thank you!

    Also visit my blog - gardening

  2. Thank you and thanks for the visit. I started with the "Simple" theme that is provided, but I have made a number of changes and have customized the template with some CSS and other graphic elements. I like your gardening site, and I wish you all the best with its' development.

  3. I really love the Glass containers. Form which store did you get those.

  4. The containers that are labeled and used in the cupboards are from the dollar store. The ones on the counter top were purchased from Solutions some time ago.

  5. I'm also interested in the jars. Was a family dollar or dollar tree - I think there's a store called "dollar store" I went to both family dollar and dollar tree and didn't find them - can you give me the number of the place you got them and I can inquire with them as to where to get them locally.

    1. I got the jars at a Dollarama. The company has locations across Canada. Here is a link to their website, where you can locate by postal code or town. I have seen the jars at several different locations outside of my town, so I assume that it is something that is part of their general inventory. I hope this helps.

  6. What's the height of the large jars?

    1. Hello Arpi! The large jars are 8 1/2 inches tall. They fit great on my shelves, but there is also a taller jar that is 10 1/2 inches tall.


Thanks for your comments!

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