The January task in terms of cleaning and straightening the house starts in the kitchen. The kitchen is used to some extent everyday and from time we put a heavy load on its resources.
We don’t have many drawers in the kitchen but the ones we have are packed to the gills with table linens and utensils.
Some of the utensils are seldom used but when I need a cherry pitter I happy to have one. I’m going to try to be ruthless with useless items. Then I’ll organize so the most used items are easily accessible.
It can be easy to carelessly throw pots and pans and bowls into cabinets, so I plan to remove all the cookware and wipe off the revolving shelves. This year I did get rid of a bundt cake pan that horribly ruined a cake.
There is lots of space in the cupboard but frequently used pieces should be near the front.
Our pantry holds everything that needs to be easily accessed or, conversely, is seldom used. It needs an organizational once-over. I can organize canned goods by type, check expiration dates and get rid of foods you’ll never eat. Unexpired and shelf stable foods can be donated to your local food pantry.
One of the worst areas are storage containers without lids and lids without matching containers. We organize this a lot but it is difficult to maintain.
While I don’t actually have a spice rack I keep a number of spices and herbs in a narrow cabinet near the stove. I’m almost afraid to look at the expirations dates.
Refrigerator and Freezer
During the holidays the refrigerator and freezer were used and abused more than usual. We must eat or store the large volume of food that we prepared. Everything will come out and we’ll wipe down the insides and clean all the shelves and bins.
We have 2 sinks in the kitchen under which we store all manner of cleaning products. Some products like Goof-Off we seldom use but are absolutely necessary when a sticky situation arises.
Perhaps I can whittle down the products and reorganize the spaces.
I used to organize the house to-do list in one long list that I added to as I thought of something new. I cleaned up this list just after I posted this at the end of 2017. Over the years we have made a lot of progress which sometimes seems very slow-going.
Instead I decided to resurrect the hard rubber mats that I bought in 2013.
They had lost all their color.
Using some magnolia tree seed pods as a color inspiration I decided to brighten up these mats if only for the night of the party.
In my stash of old paint I found tan, coral, and red which I laid out on a piece of aluminum foil. Using a regular paint roller I rolled through the 3 colors allowing them to touch each other but not totally blending them.
I rolled the paint on each of the two mats being careful not to go over too vigorously so each color would in places keep its own character.
Since the mats were 3-dimensional the flowers once again appeared but in reds and pinks this time instead of blues and ochres.
When I moved into The Glade over 20 years ago the powder room was a dark room with overhead metal cabinets.
When we refurbished the we had the sink resurfaced.
I had always called it “Le Bibliotheque” (that sign is still on the door) because the wall looked like bookshelves in a library. The faux books and shelving gave depth to a very small, windowless room.
The new wallpaper is much lighter, “C’est Magnifique“.
We used the same towel bar, mirror, paper holder, and over head shelf.
We changed the toilet due to a crack in the base of the old one. The new toilet’s tank does lean against the wall like the old one did.
We repaired holes and added new baseboard and chair rail trim.
Now we have a lighter, brighter powder room. I’m calling it “The Grand Tour”.