Kitchen Organization

The truth about the Kitchen:

The kitchen is the heart of the home.  This is the place we are making memories with our family and friends.  It’s also one of the most heavily used areas.  If it’s cluttered it’s harder to maintain the kitchen and feel peaceful.

Charlotte Mason, a childhood educator said that it’s important to feed our children’s bodies however it is just as critical to feed our children’s hearts, minds, and souls everyday.  Some children only receive a bean a day of “nutrition for life.”  Children are hungry for 3 sturdy meals of knowledge and wisdom a day.  Those meals of wisdom can come from a discussion around dinner or from a healthy dose of work everyday done by your child for the family.

As a parent you can feed your children’s minds while you cook, eat, and clean together.  Declutter your kitchen to create an amiable working space for cooking and visiting.  Read and prepare your mind for interesting and loving conversations with your children.

Girls connect with others by “talking.”  Boys connect with others when “doing.”

For example, girls seem to open up and talk spontaneously if you give them the time and show that you are available.

But, boys like to move their muscles, wrestle, etc.  Getting boys to communicate helps when they are doing something together, such as eating, working, walking, jogging, or cleaning together.  The kitchen is the perfect opportunity to connect with your children alone and together.  You could cook with one child, eat with everyone, and clean up with one child one on one for some great conversation time!

Have at least one meal together everyday!

Recently, I heard of a lady whose husband was in jail and her 3 sons were in gangs.  She started to prepare dinner for her boys every night and her 3 boys pulled themselves out of their gangs.  Perhaps, it was because they knew they had some food waiting for them so they had somewhere to go and someone to that cared about them.

Clear off your counters and only put back the items that you love and use at least more than once a month.  Give away or put the clutter in long-term storage in your basement or garage, etc.

If you struggle to clear your counter tops, then try the following:
  • Imagine you are trying to sell your home and clear the clutter!  When staging a home for selling, it’s recommended to remove whatever you can to make the homes appear larger.  Remove appliances you hardly ever use, take the leaf out of the table, remove dead plants, things lurking on the top cupboards, and find a way to hide all those phone cords for a clean, fresh look.
  • If you don’t know what to get rid of then imagine you are taking a photo of your kitchen for a Better Homes & Garden Magazine.  With that mentality it’s easy to see the slime and grime and throw away that broken ceramic doodad that you probably will never fix.
  • We tend to get blinded to our kitchens.  Often we don’t see how quickly the clutter catchers and urgent piles are growing.  Look at your kitchen with a discerning eye and a notepad and pen.  Make a list of top 5 hot spots and tackle one each day and you’ll be done in less than a week.
water cup hooksHang up a water cup for each person in their “color” to have less dishes to wash.
This was a simple project to buy some hooks and screw them under our kitchen cupboard right next to the sink in the “drinking region”.  Here’s a close up on those hooks:
labeled kitchen cupboardIt’s critical to label so everyone can put things away correctly.

Another idea would be to put a drinking fountain in the home.  This might sound crazy but if you have a lot of children and you have the space -it might be a great solution for you.  You could acquire a used drinking fountain from a school surplus sale or off craigslist, etc.  Or maybe you could install a kitchen sink with a drinking fountain on it!  Who knows – just remember to think outside the box when creating organization solutions for your home if money is tight.

labeled kitchen cupboardShoe boxes and plastic containers work great for organization.

For more great tips and photo ideas see pantry organization and food storage organization.

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