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Saturday, April 23, 2022

Ideas to organize the pantry

Searching for ideas to organize the pantry?  Well, we are excited to share our ideas to organize the pantry, ours no longer looks like the mess below!   

Should I be embarrassed to show you these pictures?  Probably so, but I figure most of us have pantries that look like this so who cares?  I am only too happy that it no longer does!

What a mess, how embarrassing! 

I finally organized my pantry this week!  Can you believe it?  I have been opening that darn door to the left and thinking oh hum... when will I take the time to organize this?  

Now, if you do not love organization you may not get the high I get when I see everything all lined up and in order.  It may be a sickness, I actually love to see things organized... although, with me, sometimes things may not always stay so organized like I anticipate.

I can tell you that our bathroom closet looks like it did the day I organized it though!  I thought about that and wondered why I was able to keep that darn closet so organized when I can't seem to keep anything else in order?

Do you see how I had items stacked on top of each other trying to shove it all in there?

Want to know the secret I came up with?  I am only too eager to share it with you since I figured it out myself, only took me until my 40's to figure it out.  Can you imagine the organized life I could be living had I not figured this out sooner?

Ok, the secret is... ready for it?  Drum roll please.... storage containers, boxes, and labels... it all works for me.  I can try to keep a shelf organized until I am blue in the face, but I cannot seem to keep it together for some reason.  So last week I ordered clear plastic bins and can I tell you how much I am glad I did?  Oh my gosh, talk about life changing!  

The baskets were a good idea at the time and I already had them, but I found some expired items, and do you know I had things in them I had no idea I had?  LOL

Are you like me and cannot seem to stay organized?  I can only tell you how happy I am that I have finally figured out the secret to a happy organized life.  Now to only get the rest of our home in line.  Oh just you wait rest of the house, I am coming for you!  

You would think growing up with a mother who always has everything in place and labeled, and organized in style to the nines would have rubbed off on me, but NO... it did not.  My sister and I used to laugh about the clear shoe boxes in our mother's closet with the printed labels, and how she had her winter wardrobe and summer wardrobe all organized by color.  We were like pff... who has time for all of that?

Well guess what?  We are finding as adults maybe mom wasn't the organization "General" we thought.  She just may have been on to something afterall.  My sister and I were having a conversation one day last week over the phone, shopping for items together.  Yes, it is a thing, we shop together over the phone... another story for another day... and we both picked up the clear bins.  We were both so giddy when we had our projects completed telling the other how happy it made us to see a portion of our home organized.  

Yeah, now we're talking.  I can see it all, can you?

Now?  We both want to see our entire homes like this, only do not tell our mother, she will say, "I told you so".  So we both have a plan now and we will not stop until we have everything organized.  Won't our momma be so proud?  

Amazon has tons of clear plastic bins to help you get started!  I cannot wait to make my next purchase.  I know it will take some time to collect them all, but I cannot tell you how much easier this makes life.  I am already reaping the benefits.  

Do you see how many almond flour packages I have in there?  Three... what a waste!

Reasons why this pantry is going to be life changing:

  1. You can pull the entire bin out to fill it, or search for what you need, no more moving multiple items around searching and searching for what I need.
  2. I even have one in the fridge with my bottles of water in it.  How much easier is it to fill?
  3. Do you know I even thought about spills in the fridge.  It will be easier to clean out a bin instead of tearing everything out of the fridge to remove the shelf and clean it and then put everything back in.  I will only need to simply remove the bin, clean it out and put back in.
  4. I even picked up perforated clear plastic bins and put my onions in one and potatoes in another.  The air can still filter though the bins, but I can easily see what needs replenished since it is clear.  
  5. I am actually going to save time and MONEY being organized.  How many times have I shared that I pick up things on our grocery orders I did not need, but was not sure if I did or not?  No more items going bad, I can see what I need.  

Now you may be saying to yourself, come on Cara, this is going to change your life?  Organization is going to do that for you?  Yes, I actually think it will.  It just makes me feel better, and I feel like I can spend less time figuring out grocery orders, and figuring out what to make for dinner based on what we already have at home, and do you know how many multiples I found hiding out in the pantry?  

I am mapping out my next project now, organization for the fridge!  I am thinking condiments in one bin, water in another, yogurt, cheeses, anything that is prepackaged can go in these bins.  The possibilities are endless!  I am getting so excited just thinking about this and sharing the results with y'all.  

I should be embarrassed to share this with you, but I am all about being real.  I could not even open the other side of this pantry because I have another project that is waiting in the wings and it was hindering me opening the right door to the pantry.  How sad is that?  

We need supplies for it, but it will be another organization piece that I am only too excited to get started on.  We will be building this piece, but I cannot work on it just yet.  Sanding, and cutting wood, and being around all of those shavings and dust just cannot happen for me just yet.  I am hoping we will be able to get to it soon though.  I have been patiently awaiting this project since I had the idea pop into that crazy brain of mine.  

Ahhh... now doesn't that just feel better?  Do you not feel relaxed?  It is like I just went to a yoga class and a massage all in one day... I feel as loose as a goose since this pantry is all in order... now to organize the world... or just my cozy cottage.  

More tips:
  • I used a dollar store pail from years ago to put all of our popcorn in, I actually had 2 boxes of popcorn in the pantry.  Not that I would know about them both being in there, lol!
  • I was already using clear storage pieces, I pick up Lock and Lock containers when I see them, I use them for brown sugar, regular sugar, any items that have already been opened like crackers, cereal, you can even store your milk in them if you do not like your milk to be stored in the items they come in.  
  • I was only able to fit two large bins on each shelf, so I filled in with the smaller perforated bins, and I actually did stack my larger things like tomato juice, and tortilla chips in the middle so I could utilize all of my space.  
  • I was able to separate my gluten free foods from my husbands regular items, if we had littles with food allergies like me, I could label a bin with their name on it so they always stay safe

Just to give you an idea of what I found in our pantry as I was going through it:
  • 3 (1 pound) almond flour packages, at $10/pound how fast do you think I can use them, better get baking Cara
  • 2 boxes of popcorn, both opened
  • 3 gluten free bread crumbs, I was completely surprised by that one!
  • 3 gluten free pancake mixes, all opened, seriously Cara?  I do not even make pancakes that often!
  • 4 bags of dates, who needs this many?
  • 4 bags of dark chocolate chips, again, get baking!
  • 2 jars of salsa
  • 4 jars of sweet/spicy mustard - what in the world?
  • 2 jars blackberry jelly, we do not even consume jelly.  I think I need my head examined

Do you see what I am talking about?  I did not even know a lot of these items were in the pantry.  I think I was so used to just pulling from the front, I never really looked at what was in the back.  I did have to throw some items away, but I am feeling pretty confident I will no longer need to do this.

I hope this inspired you and show if I can do this, you can too!  I really think the bins and storage boxes really help me.  Cheers to an organized life, and keeping it that way!  

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