The spice cabinet is one of the areas in my home that I struggle to keep neat and organized. I think it’s because I use it while I’m busy cooking and don’t have time to carefully put the jar back in its rightful spot. Dinner is cooking, after all! So every now and then, I just have to make time to clean up this space in my kitchen cabinet.Continue reading “One Of the Most Difficult Places To Keep Neat!”
A Fresh Start in the Fridge
Last week on Instagram I saw Ree Drummond (Pioneer Woman) do a reel showing how she stocked her refrigerator. She started with a fridge that clean and empty. Then she added all new, unopened grocery items –
- Bottles of water
- Piles of fresh lemons and limes
- Cheeses of every kind
- Several kinds of meats
- Deli meats
- Veggies of all sorts, all washed and wrapped
- Freshly roasted chicken
- Homemade soups and hummus
- And lots more
It was pretty incredible to view the video, but as I watched, I wondered what “regular person” could really purchase all that so they could end up with that lovely, satisfying result? What do you think? Could the average person fill their fridge like that all at one time? I don’t think very many would be able to follow her example.
But I have some good news! I have a few ideas for you today to help your fridge be as organized and lovely inside as Ree’s – and it will cost you nothing extra!
Since we’ve just come through the holidays, perhaps your fridge is nearly bare. Great! Or maybe it’s still full of little leftover containers of this and that. That’s okay.
- Start by emptying the shelves one at a time. Analyze each food item as to whether it should stay or go. Check the expiration dates and pitch anything out that’s old.
- Once the shelf is empty, wipe it down with hot, soapy water. Then begin to put the items for that shelf back in.
- Keep like items together – condiments, salad dressings, sauces, dairy itms, etc.
- Place each item with labels facing out so it looks uniform.
I like using vinyl placemats in my fridge because it makes it easy to wash. I plunge them into the hot, soapy water, then dry them and put them back in their spot! You’ll notice the turquoise ones in the picture below.
I like putting my blueberries and strawberries into Mason jars (after the berries have been washed). They stay fresh SO much longer that way! You’ll see the jar in the left drawer below. They also look pretty displayed in the fridge that way! Mason jars are also great for leftovers!
I try to keep all the leftover containers together on one shelf, that way nothing gets forgotten, and it keeps the fridge from getting cluttered up with little dishes.
Start the new year with a fresh start in your kitchen by taking what you have and getting it clean and organized. You’ll be inspired to keep it that way. There’s something very satisfying about opening up a freshly straightened up space – especially something as big and important as the refrigerator!
Is your fridge full or empty now that the holidays are past?
Back Porch Refresh
Now that things are warming up, we are spending more time on our back porch once again. This is an outdoor room that we just love and use a LOT! But like every other room, it needed a spring cleaning! I was amazed at how much better everything looked after I scrubbed down every inch of this space. Not sure why I’d never considered the need for a deep spring cleaning out there! Oh, I always wiped down the tables and wash the linens, but it needed lots more!
- First I pulled everything out of this space except for the swing.
- Using the hose, I gave the concrete slab a cleaning, using the spray nozzle on high. I had to go over it several times to remove all the dried worms (!), and bird mess!
- Using soapy water, I washed down all the chairs, the swing, the posts on the porch, and the siding on the house.
- I sprayed both sides of the outdoor rug. It looks brand new (see picture below). These outdoor rugs are worth the price! They really take the weather and all the elements well! I got mine at Lowe’s.
- The glass door was washed.
- All the summer toys were inspected, and then either put back in place or were pitched to be replaced.
- My swing cushion is on its way to the laundry mat this week.
- I added annuals to my containers.
Everything looks and feels so clean and inviting! I only wish I had taken a before photo, but I hope that my “after” pictures will inspire you to scrub down your porches, too!
I am looking to replace the cushions on my furniture. We store them away during the winter, but they have a weird feeling that doesn’t wipe off. Do you have outdoor cushions that you love? I’d be so thankful for your suggestions!
Later this week my front porch will get the same treatment! Do you need to refresh your porches for summertime?
Getting the Most Done Each Day
It was 10:00 in the morning. I was dressed and ready for the day and I had already:
- Taken care of the cat (If you’re a cat owner, you know that your cat will make sure that happens first!)
- Swept the floor in the laundry room
- Thrown in a load of laundry
- Made the bed
- Cleaned the bathroom
- Wiped off the mirrors in the bathroom and bedroom
- Made baked oatmeal
- Emptied the dishwasher
I had also had my time in the Word and prayer, and my husband and I had also been guests on a podcast before 10:00! I was thankful that these things were done, because the rest of the day was also full of responsibilities. Not every day is as busy or productive and “My life is not about checking off boxes!” (I say to myself each day!).
My life is driven by my relationship with the Lord. I desire He direct my steps each day so that I can live my life for His glory. But God is a god of order and beauty, so that motivates me to live out each day in the same way. I don’t want to be driven by the constant demand of household chores and duties, but I desire to be the Keeper of my home so that it runs smoothly and efficiently.
In my years of homemaking, I have learned that the most adequate way to keep that happening is by having a daily routine. Most every bullet at the top of this post is done every single day of the week. I could do most of those things half asleep simply because it’s part of my daily routine.
Getting my day organized by doing the same things every day keeps my meals prepped, my laundry clean and the house in order. Here are some of the other things that I do every single day:
- Put away my clothes when changing.
- Clean up the kitchen after each meal.
- Clear off any clutter from the kitchen counter.
- Wipe down the stove top after cooking.
- Spray the fridge, microwave and kitchen trash can with window spray.
- Empty the trash.
- Do one load of laundry.
- Fold and put away the laundry as soon as possible after it’s dried.
- Empty the litter box.
- Sweep the floor.
- Clean the main bathroom.
- Straighten up the living areas (family room, living room).
The picture of my family room at the top of this post is my view while I’m writing. I did nothing to this room when I came in here today, and we use this room every day. It stays neat and clean, thanks to my daily routines. Without that, things would be a mess!
What do you need to add to your daily routine in order to be more effective as the keeper of your home? Make an evaluation of your “problem areas” then make a routine that will keep things in check. I’ve heard Whitney say many times that she has a routine for each day of the week – a day for laundry, a day for watering the plants, etc. That’s also helpful!
If I can give you suggestions or help, don’t hesitate to ask in the comments, or feel free to email me. My email address is in my contact page.
Here are some other cleaning posts (done in our previous home) that might spur you on to do some deep cleaning.
Refresh your home with routine!
Cleaning Upholstered Furniture
Spring cleaning is so rewarding! However, if you want to ruin the look of that freshly cleaned room, just neglect a dirty piece of furniture! A stain that’s obvious, a grimy arm on a chair or an ottoman can make us cringe. How do I know? I have an off-white ottoman in my bathroom that got a water spot on it. In an attempt to fix it, I did a little dabbing at it, which only increased the size of the already noticeable stain!
I went searching for a way to clean it and I found a method that promised me a clean surface if I followed this process, step-by-step. Guess what? It worked!
- Using a spray bottle, I sprayed the entire surface with warm tap water.
- I put 4 parts water to one part stain remover into a spray bottle and sprayed a small surface at a time, rubbing in a gentle circular motion with a white cotton cloth. (If you’re cleaning a colored fabric, I would test a hidden area before cleaning)
- Into a spray bottle, I added 1 cup sparkling water and 1/2 cup white vinegar and sprayed the surface of the fabric. The vinegar breaks down the soapy particles and the carbonation in the sparkling water will bring it to the surface, as well as any deeper dirt. I Gently scrubbed the fabric again until the rags stopped pulling dirt from the surface. The sparkling water works wonders!
I’m so glad I took the time to address the stain! I had been hiding it under a throw, but now, I can keep it cleared off and show off it’s beauty!
What piece of furniture comes to your mind as you read this post? I hope you’ll try this method!
Refresh your soiled upholstery with a good spring cleaning!