Monday, January 16, 2012

Organized Home Week # 3: Pantry

I have been working on maintaining and thinking through the first two weeks of this challenge.  We are spending a few weeks in the kitchen which is a great thing!  The first week was counter tops.  That is hard right now with bottles and this and that on the counters.  So, my goal is to get it under control first and make it suitable for what it is doing right now.  In about a year I can reevaluate that again.  My cabinets and drawers for the second week are another thing.  I am trying to figure out what needs to take a hike and what really needs to stay.  I am on a purging binge right now so I should probably take advantage of that because I am such a just in case kind of person.

However, this week we focused on the pantry or food storage areas in our homes.  YES!  Mine was desperately needing a good makeover.  Stock-up overloads and just not thinking about putting thing away made for one big MESS.  One of those pantries where things just randomly fall when you move something.  Yes.  It was that bad.  I went through everything and put it where it belong and grouped things.  Tossed out spices galore.  Found a few food items that we will not eat before expiration dates and hopefully a couple of families I know will be able to make use of them.

Here's where I get vulnerable.  Before (UGH!) and after pictures of the pantry.

Shelf 1: I have to heel some pans and cutting boards here.  Not my favorite but it works.  The very top of the stacker needs some more love as that is where my cake decorating and cookie cutters are.  I have some containers that I will use up there and will hopefully have room for another box of cutters that I have up there.  That would be great!  Creating more room in other spaces and getting everything together!

Shelf 2:  The spice shelf.  Kill me.  Seriously, I think that I had some spices that were well over 10 maybe 15 years old.  Yes, really.  They are gone now.  There are some that still may be a little too old but we will roll with it.  Gone is the full bottle of Lemon Pepper that I have been toting around all these years.  You know, just in case.  I am going to look into acquiring some air tight containers and start buying spices in bulk unless I use it often enough to buy a jar, etc.  Over time the containers will all look the same and there will be less waste.  I may even remove the spice stacker that I have in here that causes a stadium effect here.  I think about a Lazy Susan but wonder if I will lose space?

Shelf 3:  This is where I keep most of my baking items and a coupe of random things.  I invested in some Tupperware awhile back and here it is.  I had some wasted shelf space and opted to make the most of it by putting some extra items that are completely sealed in the back of the containers (two bags of powdered sugar, and bisquick) and that helped some.  I can see it back there, too.  No worries of it being forgotten.  When I took the pictures I forgot two things on top of the containers that go on the spice shelf... oh well.

Shelf 4:  Drinks, grains, and canned items.  Not much here.  I took the bags of open rice, beans, and lentils and put them in an air tight container and the closed ones are out.  I need to move a bag of pasta back up to the top shelf but that's not a big deal.

Shelf 5:  Storage stuff, dry goods, baby food, and some miscellany.  Pretty simple and I finally can see it all!

Shelf 6 (the floor):  What a horrid mess, right?  Now it is clean and somewhat organized.  The bummer side is realizing we only have one bottle of Powdrell's BBQ sauce left.  Oh well.  We don't go through it too fast. We have time to restock.

Well, there it is!  My pantry is also where I keep my family calendar, some Scripture to encourage, and I think this is also where I will figure out a way to display my pantry inventory.

Inventory.  I had hoped to get to that today but a nap took precedence for sure.  So, maybe tomorrow.  I have the rest of the week to get that completed.

Do you have pantry tips or suggestions?


  1. So pretty! I'm pantry is a horrible mess.

  2. Just looking at your accomplishment makes me want to take a nap! Great job from Steph Jaques!

  3. That looks great, I'm tackling mine this morning! I redid mine 2 years ago organizing it with bins I got from walmart and have lived with it long enough to tweak it a bit now. My biggest tip is to label it, bins, shelf, whatever you use, I'll try to find the post that inspired me and forward it on to you.