Friday, May 31, 2013

Pampering your Pantry

SPRING into an organized summer!  Let's begin this first week of summer with a fully stocked pantry for all those hungry mouths to feed, and an organized pantry too. Whether you are living in a cozy cottage with limited pantry space or have a huge walk-in pantry with enough room to dance around in, you still need a "system" that will help maximize and/or minimize your space so that it is easy to see what you have and what you are lacking.
Most pantries I have organized have the following problems:
1. Shelves are too deep to see the stuff in the way back.
2. There is not a designated area for "like" things. Everything is stuffed together.
3. The space is so big we don't know what we have.
4. The space is so small we can't see what we have.
5. Lots of product has expired because there is no system in place.
6. My family doesn't put anything back where it belongs.
7. I don't have a place for my Costco/Sam's bulk purchases, so I stuff it in the pantry.
8. I rarely purge or inventory the pantry space, so everything just piles up.
If any of these problems sound like you and your pantry, then it's time for a little pampering in the pantry department. Your pantry should be a closet in your home that is tidy, easy to see what you have and easy to inventory when it's time to restock. 
Here are some suggestions for making your pantry space "sing" and help you find some freedom in this very important area for you and your family.
One thing I have found that helps organize messy spaces and helps me create space for more things, is by containing most things. If you are a family who loves "on the go snacks" you can regain much space by using baskets or bins to store all snacks together.  Purge boxes because they are bulky and dump all snacks into a bin. Boxes take up a lot of space in a pantry and when you have an open container like a basket or bin you can SEE what you have left and you will know when to replenish.
Also, containing pasta's and cereals and baking supplies in similar containers that stack well will help maximize your space and keep small things from getting lost in the way back.
Designate each shelf to a different category. This helps you know where to look when you are making pasta for the family dinner, or baking cookies for your Bible study.  Give everything in your pantry a "home" so that you know where it lives and where to put it back. Labeling your shelves is another way to remember where things live.
Your pantry (and your frig) are truly the "action central" of your kitchen.  These two areas should be stocked and ready for daily living, for last minute dinners and parties and for all those hungry mouths in your family.  When you have an organized pantry, and you inventory often, you know when and how much you need to replenish so that you are shop "ready" when it's time to visit your local grocery store. Also, when you inventory regularly, you save money and time. You won't be buying duplicates of items or find yourself running back to the grocery for that box you forgot. KNOW what you have and be prepared.
Pampering your pantry takes a little time and effort, but it's worth it to invest in some tools, some purging and some practice. ORGANIZE U ( loves helping clients pamper their pantries. Give us a call today and together we will SPRING into summer with a well stocked and organized pantry.
Happy Organizing!
Kim B.