Pantry Organization

Ever since we have lived in this house, I have been so frustrated with the lack of storage.  I don’t even have a drawer in my kitchen to put my dish towels and dish cloths in.  It really drove me crazy.  One day when I was browsing some blogs, I saw that someone had used a three drawer Sterlite system for add storage in their pantry.  I thought that was a great idea, so I went out and bought one.

Here is a glimpse of my pantry before and changes.

When we moved in (almost four years ago), I bought the door rack to provide extra storage.  It was okay for a while, but ended up getting really annoying because things would fall out of it.  I decided to try a different storage idea for the door…a shoe organizer!  I have used a shoe organizer for years in our computer room closet.  I use it to hold cords, wires, spare computer parts, etc.  I am really LOVING all the extra storage provided by it and the three-drawer organizer.

 

 

 

While the shoe organizer isn’t the prettiest accessory, it sure is nice to have the extra storage space!

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The Spice Cabinet Re-Do

I posted this on my family blog, but thought I should add it here.

I’ve been reading a lot of blogs about organizing.  I have been so aggravated lately with the lack of space in our house so I decided to do something about it finally.  I plan on doing several blog posts, but today I’m going to talk about the dreaded spice cabinet.

We do a lot of cooking so we have a lot of different spices, salts, seasonings, etc.  I have tried many different things to keep the spices organized (i.e., lazy susan, raised trays, etc).  Nothing seemed to help, mainly because we never seemed to put things back where they were supposed to go.  The raised trays are a great idea, but I found that they were more of a pain since all the jars seemed to fall down when I’d reach in to get something.

After reading a few blogs, I found one of those blogs that totally made a light bulb go off in my head!  So, here is the before picture of my spice cabinet:

And, here are the after pictures.

I wanted the magnetic spice tins, but they are SO expensive.  I found a place that you can order the tins from and bought magnets on Amazon.  I had seen several people who used cookie sheets attached to their cabinet doors or just used the side of their fridge.  I wanted to have a piece of metal that would fit the door.  I ordered online and it was fairly inexpensive.  The total price for the tins, metal, and magnets was around $60 I think.  I know that seems like a lot, but it is so worth it to me to be able to just open the door and see the spices right there.

You may be able to get the metal cheaper at Lowe’s or Menard’s.  Someone told me after I ordered online that they have it there.  They sometimes have pieces small enough to fit a cabinet door that are not necessarily cut to fit exactly.  I should have checked that before I ordered, but I was so gung-ho to get going on it that I just went ahead and ordered!

Stay tuned for more organizing posts!  I’m on a mission!  ha!


Cleaning the oven —

Recently, I have been reading a lot of cleaning/homemaking/organizing, etc blogs.  I noticed a trend on a lot of them.  A whole bunch of people use Shaklee cleaning products.  Now, I’m not one of those people who is all freaked out about using traditional cleaning products and worried about all the poisons that are in them.  But, after reading many, many blogs and hearing about the non-toxic Shaklee cleaning products, I decided to give them a try.  It wasn’t because they were all natural and non-toxic.  Mainly it was because of how concentrated they are and how well they clean.

I purchased the Shaklee Basic H2 concentrate and the Scour Off cleaners.  The Scour Off is a pinky-purply thick paste.  It has a very very mild smell…somewhat cherry bubblegum like.  The first place I used it was on our bathtub.  I was impressed by how little I had to use and how well it cleaned.  On several blogs, I had read about how well it works to clean ovens.  You can see for yourself here and here, here.  I was skeptical, but decided to give it a try today.

First let me say, my oven is self cleaning, however, in the four years that we have lived here, I have never ran the cleaner on it.  I absolutely hate the way it makes your house smell and how hot the oven has to get in order to burn off all that grease and stuck on/burnt on food.

So, here is an embarrassing glimpse at what my oven looked like this morning.

Yuck!!!  I forgot to take pictures of the process, but what I did was took out the grates, then swept out all the loose burnt crud.  Then I sprayed some H2 degreaser all over the inside of the oven and the door.  I let that set for a minute or two, then I got a stainless steel scratcher (that’s what we call them) and rubbed some of the Scour Off all over the oven.  I let that sit for a minute or two, then I used the scratcher to help loosen the stuck on gunk.

Here are the after photos.

Can you believe the difference?  I feel like I have a new oven again!  In the pictures, I can see a few spots that I missed, but I will get those later.  The whole process took me about 20  minutes.  That included taking the oven door off and then back on.  I’m sold on Shaklee Scour Off!
(NOTE:  I was not paid to say this.  I purchased the products on my own and just genuinely like how they work!)