“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”
― William Morris
― William Morris
I've been meaning to do something about that kitchen for a while. Yesterday I got to work. I wondered if an island was the answer - but my oddly shaped kitchen just couldn't squeeze one in. I really don't like having a lot of things out on the counter top, but the things I really use needed to be on hand - quick and easy to access. Feeding 8 people a day out of a little kitchen with no storage to speak of can be discouraging. I always feel a mess - disorganized because I truly do not have a place for everything.
Yesterday I moved the coat hooks from the wall next to the door to the wall perpendicular to that. We had a wooden rack there with some collectible odds and ends, but honestly all it really collected was dust and I'm just not in a place in my life where I need to display random items. The secret to keeping a small house feel clean and uncluttered is that less is really more. Stuff on every surface makes the entire place feel claustrophobic and I can't hardly breathe when I look around.
So I took that wood rack and hung it above the oven and moved the vast majority of my pantry to the rack. Sure, it is stuff out in the open, but I don't know - I think it looks organized and it is certainly practical. This freed up space in my one cupboard for that new set of mixing bowls my cousin gave me (that I love!) as well as my crock pot. I was storing it in the basement, but the up and down was a nuisance. Keeping it on the counter top wasn't ideal, either - I need all the space I can get! It now fits under the cupboard with the bowls, pots and pans and the large storage containers for whole wheat and white flours that don't fit on the rack. Already things feel so much neater - and my counter stays clear and ready for work.
My next plan is to tackle our produce situation. These photos are taken midweek in our produce consumption, and we have another peck of apples in the refrigerator. I want to find some bushel baskets, still trying to find the best price. If anyone local knows where to find them so I can save on shipping, that would be great! The plan is 3 bushel baskets under the side table to house the fruits and vegetables that stay out of the fridge. Again, out in the open but organized and not unattractive.
The last part of my kitchen organization will be a proper shoe rack. We have a shoe mat under the hooks, but there really isn't space for 2 pair of adult shoes and 6 pair for children. I need to find one that stacks up a little bit, so I'll be looking for that this week. Someday I would love to have a mudroom, but in this house I have a small corner in the kitchen to keep those things organized.
Looking forward to Thanksgiving and the cooking I'll be doing, I can breathe a bit easier in an organized kitchen - and be grateful that I really do have just what I need. A kitchen to feed my family out of, and the ability to make it work.
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