Below are just a few items that were taking up space in my pantry. My collection of cook books, solidified Karo Syrup, and the hub's muscle, meal replacement, crap.
Okay, the cook book collection has gotten a little out of hand. I can hear you now, "A LITTLE, JEN?!?!?!" And the solidified Karo Syrup was stuck in the very back of a corner that has not seen daylight for 72 months. Poor neglected, disgusting, Karo Syrup. And the muscle, meal replacement crap... well those things just annoy me. We have 3, count them, 3 of those stupid, humongous, plastic, bottles. They are too big and oddly shaped. But I have to keep those things, cause the hubs likes to keep his manly, chiseled, shape.
(click on image, below, to get a close-up look at the solidified Karo Syrup. It's for entertainment purposes.)
A lot of "experts" recommend emptying your entire pantry onto your counters, when you are cleaning and re-organizing it. I can't do this. It's too much chaos for me and I know I will begin to hyperventilate. So I worked on one shelf at a time.
I emptied the shelf and then wiped it clean.
Below are some pictures of my favorite organization tools that I used for my pantry.
- Shelf liners - protects the shelf surface and much easier to keep clean. And check out the black and white shelf liner that I bought at Target. Cute!
- Containers - containers are just plain awesome. They make me feel like Martha Stewart, you can put labels on them and they help preserve your food items.
- Shelf Risers - they provide an extra surface to place pantry items and they help use un-used space. Love those things. I buy mine from Walmart. Cause Walmart is the land of cheap.
- Baskets - The basket in my pantry holds my Scentsy square things, lighters, and other junk. Baskets are also great because they can hide your crap.
- Label Maker - "Oh label maker... hallowed be thine name!" If I didn't fear the possibility of being institutionalized for labeling the items in the kitchen garbage can, I would.
- Buckets - Good for food storage and I love the lids with the spin tops.
- Place "like" items together - pastas and cereals together, baking items together, canned goods placed together. It provides for a cohesive environment!
- Place heavy and large items on the bottoms shelf.
- Place items that you do not use often, on the top shelf.
- Throw away expired food items!
- Donate your unused crap! It's a waste of space and energy.
Organizing and cleaning your pantry can save time and money! You will save time by not having to dig through unnecessary containers and the items will be easy to reach. It can help save money by you knowing what exactly you have in your pantry. Take my Karo Syrup, for example. I had three bottles of Karo Syrup! I had no idea I already had an opened bottle hiding behind some boxes of pasta! I'm a genius.
My challenge to all of you, except for Kim, (Kim already cleaned her pantry! She is an inspiration!) is to get cleaning, get chucking, and get organizing! And I promise that every time you open your pantry door, you will feel the merriment of pantry bliss!
Or is that just me, who feels that way?