I've been working on getting the kitchen tidied... and keeping it that way! A week or two ago, I shared the photos of our re-arranged, de-cluttered, and organized living room and children's room and said I'd have kitchen photos to post once I got things finished up in there.
It took longer than I anticipated... somehow, piles of various papers that never got filed away make organizing a very tedious task! Add to that the fact that my kitchen seems to get "filled up" daily with things like dirty dishes and trash, it's a constant job even without "build-up"!
But, I finally was able to square away all the loose ends, getting some over-due thank you notes written, paying the last of the bills, and filing away recipes and such.
One of the things I changed in the kitchen was the top of my fridge. We used to have water bottles, cereal, containers of baked goods, and open bags of chips or snacks on top of the fridge. Even when completely organized, it still looked untidy. It was also difficult to see what was really up there... so somethines we found a bag of stale chips that we had forgotten we opened. (Since we don't eat chips very often!)
So, I took everything off and put the stereo up there. There is also a can of pens and pencils, and the stereo remote. That's all that's there, and it looks so tidy! It's also nice to have music in the kitchen. :)
My DustBuster hanging on the wall is a frequently-used tool, which I plan to mention more in my upcoming post about actual cleaning tips. :)
Here you can see my dry-erase menu board on the wall. The wooden cutting board on the table serves as either a cutting board or a place to set hot pans of food when we eat. (It was from a garage sale, hence the odd shape!) I hang the childrens' bibs on the back of the chair after mealtime, unless they're ready for the laundry.
Here is my stove (with teapot), a utensil cannister (really saves on drawer space and makes for good accessibility, although I generally dislike having things out on the counters!), butter dish, and dish drainer full of dishes. In the rare event that I actually have all my dishes washed, dried, and put away, the drainer can be stored under the kitchen sink. Otherwise, it sits out and the dishes air dry.
This is the end of the kitchen! The counter here is the one that was being over-run with junk! :) The door you see leads to the basement. On the other side of it, there are a few hooks where I hang our jackets and a plastic bag holder (for grocery bags). My cook books are on the top of the cupboards. Not my ideal location, but I needed to move them there in order to have more room on our living room bookshelf. :)
And lastly, my little trick I discovered: I can set my bottle of dish soap behind the kitchen curtain and it's out of sight but still easily accessible. :)
Now, the way to keep the kitchen looking tidy like this is actually really simple: Stay caught up on dishes, bill-paying/papers, and trash. Staying caught up is easier than getting caught up!! :)