Friday, June 8, 2018

Five on Friday - Decluttering Update (Kitchen)

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As you all know, I’ve been on a mission to simplify this year.  I have been working diligently to get every inch of our house cleaned out, organized, and rearranged for maximum functionality.  While the kitchen was already working pretty well, there were a few pain points that needed addressing, and I also wanted to clean it out completely because, well, I said no inch of our house would go untouched.  And so far it hasn’t.  :o)  I’m happy to report that the kitchen is pretty much done with the exception of a few cosmetic changes that I would eventually like to make (hello, back splash and new paint!).  And now for the update…

O N E – Drawers

Aside from the closet, the drawers were the most important thing to tackle.  There were several drawers that were just cluttered and hard to open and close.  I do use most of the stuff in our kitchen so there wasn’t necessarily a lot to get rid of, but everything just needed to be reorganized.

We use cookie cutters a lot, mostly for cutting the kids’ sandwiches into shapes for their school lunches, so I keep all of ours in a drawer right near where I prepare the kids’ lunches so they are within arm’s reach.  The problem I was having with those is that half of them are for holidays which means that we don’t need those all the time, but since there are so many, they were always getting in the way and covering up the ones that I do use on a daily basis.  The solution?  A drawer divider!  These are AWESOME, y'all!



The left side now holds all of the every day cookie cutters and the right side holds the cookie cutters for the holidays – fall, football season, Christmas, etc.

I have one main drawer for all of my cooking utensils/measuring cups, etc. and it was working okay, but the organizer on the right that I was using originally had become too small for the amount of stuff in there, so I took it out and used two drawer dividers instead.  I now have a section for utensils, a section for spatulas, a section for measuring cups and spoons, and a section for lesser common used items (top left in the back). 



We have a separate set of cabinets and drawers between the fridge and the door that goes out to our garage and that area has always been used for junk drawers and other odds and ends.  We have three drawers in that space.  One was being used as a drawer to house all of the things that we take with us on the go – sunscreen, sunglasses, Maui’s leash for taking walks, etc.  The second one was holding matches, lighters, coupons, and twist ties (such a random assortment!), and the third one was a traditional junk drawer with notepads, pens, paper clips, etc. 

The drawer that holds our things that we take on the go was completely out of control.  It was pretty much impossible to open it and close it because there was too much stuff in there.  We LOVE sunglasses in our family and each family member (aside from B) has multiple pairs that we all actually wear, so getting rid of them was not an option.  


Soooo, I completely cleaned out the second drawer and turned our on-the-go drawer into two drawers.  I bought these organizers (you can also buy them in this setthis set or this set) and each person in our family now has their own compartment – Brian’s is up top for his sunglasses, Maui’s is middle row on the left, mine is middle row on the right, Jacob’s is the bottom left, and Olivia’s is the bottom right. 

Everything else moved to the second drawer.  The top bin holds bug sprays, the middle holds sunscreen for the kids, and the front holds sunscreen for me and B.  The picture doesn’t show the updated sunscreens because I rearranged a couple of things since I took the picture.


I. Love. These. Drawer. Organizers.  

They are perfect for our drawers and they come out to just around $1 per organizer so you can configure and organize any drawer to your liking for $4 - $5.  Not too bad!

As for the stuff that was originally in the second drawer, it all got redistributed.  The matches and lighters got moved to the “grilling utensils drawer” which also happens to be closer to my candle on our island that I light every day (now I don’t have to walk as far to get the lighter every day), the coupons got thrown in the trash because they expired in 2010 since we never use that drawer for coupons anymore, and the twist ties got put in the utility closet under the stairs (more on that later).

The junk drawer was already pretty organized, but it needed a little bit of help.  I was able to use the old organizers from the second junk drawer to put in the third junk drawer to make it completely compartmentalized.  I was having problems with the stuff in the back sliding around and sometimes falling down into the cabinets below, so now the stuff won’t slide.



And finally, we have a buffet table next to our table in the eat-in kitchen.  One drawer stores our salt and pepper shakers and napkins for setting the table and and the other drawer was turned into a mini school supplies drawer since the kids always use the kitchen table for homework, drawing, and coloring.  Friends, this drawer was a HOT mess before I got to it.  

And now, with the help of a few more of my favorite drawer organizers, it looks like this:

And all the mommas said amen!

In addition to all of this, I also had some utensils in drawers that just didn’t make sense so they all got moved to drawers with like items and everything is just so much more functional now.  I also got rid of all of the loose super sharp knives that we had that didn’t belong to our knife block.  I had no good place to put them and I was always worried about someone cutting themselves since they were just loose in a drawer, but I never use any of them, so BYE, FELICIA!

T W O – Cabinets

My cabinets were pretty well organized already, but there were a few that were causing me pain.  My pots and pans cabinet was a wreck and I was constantly having to remove five things just to get to the one thing that I needed, so I rearranged some things, and BOOM, pain point gone!  And unfortunately I forgot to snap a “before” picture of this one… all you get to see is the “after.”

Another situation that was driving me nuts was our cups and glasses situation.  We have a TON of cups/glasses/mugs/thermoses/travel cups/wine glasses/etc.  and since we have so many they were pretty much everywhere.  I had two doors of cabinets for all of our basic cups and glasses, and then all of the travel mugs and thermoses were shoved in two tiny cabinets above the stove (which I couldn’t ever reach without a step ladder), and the wine glasses/margarita glasses/copper mugs/beer glasses/champagne flutes/etc. were spread all over the place – in the buffet table in the formal dining room, on the wine rack, on the bar cart, in the cups and glasses cabinet, etc.  I never knew where anything was.  SUCH A PAIN. 

Since B and I do enjoy adult beverages and we do enjoy drinking said beverages in the proper glasses, I didn’t want to get rid of any of them, but I wanted to put them all somewhere together.  I cleaned out the two cabinets next to our liquor cabinet (in that same set of cabinets by the fridge and the door that leads out to the garage) and I put all of that stuff somewhere else.  Paper towel rolls went in the cabinet above the dishwasher since the paper towel holder is right under that cabinet, and napkins went in the cabinets below the counter just under where they were to be with the paper plates, plastic silverware, etc.  Then all of the adult beverage glasses went into those two cabinets.  Now all of the wine glasses, beer mugs, champagne flutes, tumblers, copper mugs, margarita glasses, martini glasses, etc. are all in ONE place and they are right next to the liquor cabinet.  #MakesSense

I also organized our koozies in a basket because they used to loose on the shelves in the cabinets which was awful.  The basket was already on hand because it was one of the things that I removed from my office during its major clean out.

The final cabinet that needed some lovin’ was the kids’ cabinet.  We keep all of their plates, bowls, cups, etc. in the cabinets under our kitchen island so they can reach them any time they need to.  However, it hadn’t been cleaned out in years so it was still stuffed with sippy cups, bibs, and other baby items.  I got rid of all of this stuff:

And the cabinet went from looking like this:

To this!


I also got rid of all of this stuff from the rest of the kitchen cabinets... BYE!

T H R E E – Fridge

I stay on top of the fridge pretty well because I just can’t stand the thought of having expired food in there, so there really wasn’t that much to do there.  I did, get it cleaned out and straightened up a bit, I added this organizer to hold the kids' juice boxes and pouches, aaaand I finally cleaned off all of the old junk on the outside.  We’ve had letter and princess magnets on the outside since the kids were babies and they haven’t touched them in over a year.  All of those went in the trash and now we have a nice, sparkly fridge!  I do still put the kids’ artwork and school work up there, but I’m so glad to have those pesky magnets gone.  They were always getting knocked down and we were always slipping on them on the floor.  Sigh.




F O U R – Closets

Oh boy.  The storage closet under the stairs was by far the worst part of cleaning out the kitchen.  We have a closet in our kitchen underneath our stairs that serves as a utility closet.  It holds our kitchen trashcan, extra plastic bags, cleaning supplies, trash bags, coolers, batteries, paint, candles, light bulbs, indoor tools, electronics that aren’t in use every day, etc.  And before I got it organized, it was a MESS.  Just awful, y’all!  I could barely see the floor!


Well, a few weekends ago, I pulled everything out and got to work.  We got rid of so much stuff, y’all!  The tool shelf that was overflowing was cleaned out and most of the tools that were in there were moved to Brian’s big tool box in our outside utility closet.  All of the screws, nails, twist ties, bolts, etc. were separated and put into an organizer similar to this one, and all of our light bulbs and fireworks (we always keep sparklers on hand… you never know when you might need to be festive!) were organized into a plastic bin and labeled.  All organizers that were already being utilized were cleaned out and we can actually close the lids now, and I also got rid of old paint, old spray paint, old cleaners that we’d had since 2009 that we never use anymore, and a whole bunch of other stuff.  Now…I can easily get to anything I need without shuffling a bunch of other stuff around AND I can see the actual floor of the closet!

We also put the fireplace tools back out by the mantle since the kids are grown now and we don’t have to worry about them pulling it down on themselves.  (Well, at least we don’t think so, anyway.  Cringe.)

Every shelf is now organized and categorized. 

Top shelf – trash bags and coolers

Second shelf – repair stuff (tools, extra parts to items in our house, and other stuff like tape, glue, and command hooks) 

Third shelf – power items (light bulbs, extension cords, and batteries)

Fourth shelf – emergency stuff (flash lights, lanterns, weather radio, phone with a cord in case cell phone service stops – if you don’t have one of these I highly recommend you keep one on hand in the event of an emergency because 911 works on these even if you don’t have home phone service! – candles, and sparklers, which let’s face it, these are not for emergencies… I burn them every day, BUT they would also be handy in the event of an emergency.)

Fifth shelf – communal technology that we don’t use every day (noise canceling headphones, DSLR camera, external charger, DVD players for car for road trips, selfie stick, etc.)

Floor underneath the shelf – paint supplies (paint, spray paint, drop cloth, paint brushes, etc.  It would be nice to be able to put these outside, but the heat would ruin them.)

And all cleaning supplies are on the left side of the closet.  I ADORE this hanging rack for our broom/duster/mop and I also love this plastic bag holder.  #GameChangers

I also got the tiny little coat closet by our garage door cleaned out and organized as well.  

Before, everything in the door organizer was just piled in a heap on the floor and we could never find ANYTHING.  It was awful.  

F I V E – Pantry

I always stay on top of keeping the pantry organized as well because I just can’t stand when our food gets disorganized, so it wasn’t in bad shape either.  I did throw out a few things that were expired and I rearranged a couple of things, but other than that, it was already to my liking.

I added this over-the-door organizer a few years ago and it has been a total lifesaver!  We just didn't have room for all of the food in our pantry, so this enabled me to utilize all free space.  The door organizer now houses all of our snack items!

Whew!  Another long post from me!  If you want to follow along in real-time be sure to follow me on Instagram!  I have lots of footage of all of this saved in the “Simplify” highlights in my bio.  And be sure to keep checking back here because I’ll be doing another decluttering update soon!

And if you missed any of my other declutter updates you can see them below!

Happy Friday!

*Linking up with A Liz Adventures and Carolina Charm for Five on Friday, A Little Bit of Everything for Friday FavoritesMeet @ the Barre for Friday Favorites, and Cup of Tea for High Five for Friday.


  1. I am seriously so excited to set up my kitchen, and you better believe I will be getting some of those dividers and organizers - those things just make me so happy. :)

  2. Looks fantastic. Oh I know what a food feeling this is. I love having dividers in all my drawers. otherwise, what a mess, lol! Happy Fri-YAY!!

  3. There’s something fascinating about seeing how others organize! I love those little $1 plastic bins you mentioned- they’ve been a lifesaver for me. Great job!!

  4. I am inspired to organize my junk drawers now! I've had to take about all the ink pens and hide them because my boys kept taking them all, and the little one writes on things he shouldn't! But now I'm thinking I need these dividers!

    Also, the over-door organizer for hats and gloves is awesome! I hate having that stuff on the table all winter, or getting lost in the shuffle.

    Now if only I can get to organizing my scrapbook/crafting room!

  5. Oh my word Lindsay, you have done so much!!! I have to say your drunk drawer before picture puts my current situation to shame hahaha! I actually just got rid of so many kid cups/plates it was crazy!! Happy weekend!

  6. Wow! You have done a lot of work! I cleaned out some stuff while Dustin was gone because he can't get rid of anything and I could throw everything away haha!!
    Sarah at MeetTheShaneyfelts

  7. Everything is looking great! Love the drawer organizers. I have a shoe pouch organizer in my coat closet too for things we use often.

  8. You have a talent! This is awesome.

  9. Alll of this organizing has me inspired!! I love the craft drawer! I need to desperately organize our craft area!!!

  10. Those little drawer baskets are life savers! Nothing like an organized kitchen. You must be so proud of how great your house is looking!


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