When things aren’t going quite right in my life I start organizing. I have no idea when this compulsion started, but I must say that creating order around my home is a great way for me to reclaim order in the rest of my life. Yesterday afternoon I started cleaning out the kitchen. While most things are stacked neatly in cabinets a few things have been driving me absolutely mad.
The pantry was the first thing I cleaned. I checked the expiration dates of everything and threw out a couple of items that were hidden in corners and long overdue. Boxes of cake and brownie mix went into the trash along with a few very old cans of soup. Everything else was taken out, dusted off and rearranged. For the record I do not need to purchase crushed tomatoes or chicken stock any time soon.
Next up the candy/cookie/dessert cabinet. This is one of those super slim cabinets that can’t really hold much of anything, yet I had it crammed to the gills with all sorts of half opened boxes of corn starch, baking powder and assorted candies. Not to mention the cupcake holders that have been sitting in there since my son’s first birthday and the cookie cutters that haven’t made an appearance since Christmas. I packed all of that stuff into a plastic container and sent it into the basement. I’ve decided to keep more essential, every-day items upstairs in the kitchen, everything else can be retired to a different location, so it’s out of my sight and out of my hair.
This ultimately means that I’m in for a world of hurt when I decide to clean out the basement, but for now it’s out of the way of every day living, which gives me more room to breathe.
I moved on to the rest of the cabinets. I figured out how to stack things better, group glasses and bowls and get rid of more stuff I don’t use on an ongoing basis. An hour and a half later everything was placed back into the cabinets in a more organized manner.
With the kitchen clean I took a stab at the coat closet. It’s amazing how much stuff is in the closet that is never used. Two large table cloths have been hanging in there, which I probably haven’t used in two years, along with a bunch of coats my son outgrew last year. For the time being I moved the coats and table cloths into a different closet that isn’t in the main hall. With all of them moved out of the way I have plenty of room to hang our coats, scarves and hats this winter.
I’d like our livable spaces to contain as little as possible. If we are wearing two coats each this winter than I don’t want to see more than six coats hanging from the rod in the closet. Everything else needs to get moved elsewhere, otherwise it just gets in the way of living.
I plan to spend the next two weeks or so cleaning out the first two floors of our house. I can spend an hour or two of my son’s nap each day sorting, cleaning and purging. This is the perfect time to clean. I can move the summer clothes downstairs and start moving sweaters and sweatshirts into the closet. I can weed out what fits from what doesn’t and get rid of anything that we just don’t need anymore.
I’m beginning to wonder if my mood sways with the seasons. As the cold weather moves in I want to create a cozy home, full of life, love and void of any clutter.
Photo Credit: Crate and Barrel (because I bought these exact bowls a few months back)