Simplify your home: pantry and fridge

simplify button

So we are on to the next project on my Simplify project!  If you missed last weeks, it was cleaning out the clutter in my living room and there is still time to link up your living room clean-up if you want.  And for those of you worried that my “before” picture wasn’t really that bad, don’t worry, it only goes downhill from here. Sad smile

Next let’s tackle the kitchen.

Starting with the refrigerator and pantry today and then cabinets and counters on Wednesday.

I don’t know about you but after a month of holiday baking, hosting gatherings, and holiday leftovers… my fridge was looking very sad.

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And my freezer was stuffed-full and completely disorganized (not to mention had accumulated quite a stash Ziploc bags full of of unidentified meat substances covered in ice .)

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And I even pulled the fridge out to vacuum the coils and clean the yuckiness underneath – gross!

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I took everything out shelf by shelf, wiped down each shelf, and then checked expiration dates before putting it all back.

It’s also a good idea to keep refrigerators in good condition – you can find parts for them here.

So much better!

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Let me stop and mention something to for those of you thinking, “wow, her refrigerator/freezer is really full compared to mine.”  I am a couponer, which could also be defined as a stockpiler, or even a hoarder by others! Smile  I like to define it as being thrifty and only paying $40-50 a week for groceries because I stockpile when things are cheap.

So when cheese or cookie dough or cream cheese (which you see a lot of in the picture) are at rock-bottom prices, I buy enough to last me 6-8 week, as many as I have coupons for, or as much as I can use before it expires.  Like the Nestle cookie dough for $0.30/package – I can’t buy the flour, sugar, and chocolate chips for that cheap so I stocked up.  And it sure is nice to have it there ready to pop in the oven when I need to bake a quick batch for company or for a church fellowship.

If you want to learn more about couponing or stockpiling you can check out these tutorials over on my coupon blog.

Ok, next was the pantry.  I don’t know what it is (well, actually I sort of know, part of it is the stockpiling thing I mentioned above), but my pantry can get out of shape so quick! Sad smile

I re-organize it probably every 6 months and for some reason it always looks like this again 6 months later.  Here is hoping I can keep it somewhat presentable from now on!

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I think all of the holiday baking doesn’t help and neither does the “throw it in the panty to get it off the counter cause company is coming” help either.

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So again, I worked shelf-by-shelf.  I checked expiration dates, re-arranged, and organized things better into groups and containers.

I really wanted to make some room in my pantry for extra appliances so I could get them off my counters and out of my cabinets so I removed my canned goods and put them in a stock piling shelf I  have in the garage for extra canned goods, jars and other things that are temperature stable.

And I made a portion of a shelf just for my hubby’s lunch food and snack food so he can always find it in the morning as he heads to work.

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And here is the after!  Much better!

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I would love for my pantry to look like this with white wood shelves, some super cute paint treatment, matching organizational containers with everything perfectly organized and CUTE!

via House of Smiths

or to be this size!! wow!

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But remember, I am learning to LOVE where I LIVE with the budget I have, the space I have, the stockpile system I use to save our family money.

So my FREE organizational bins in the form of shoeboxes work perfectly fine for me! Smile  Maybe one day I will cover them with some cute fabric or paper or find some cute bins at a yard sale for cheap, but too many projects on the list to do that now.

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Here are the before and after pictures side by side:

Pantry

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Fridge and freezer

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So while my pantry and fridge won’t win any “pretty awards”  they are clean, organized, and functional.  And that works for me!

I am off to clean out my cabinets and clean off my counters! 

How about you?  Have you done any fridge, freezer, or pantry cleaning or organization?  If so ,link up yours below.

Linky will be open through Friday, Jan. 20th.

{cj}

 

Comments

  1. Great tips! I especially like your suggestion to be willing to try different brands. I’ve been amazed sometimes at how much I actually end up liking a new brand. I do a lot of couponing and so often I can get household supplies/cleaners free or nearly so. This allows me to try a lot of new brands too.

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