Monthly Book Giveaway - February 2023

My Home #5: How to organize a kitchen that works for you


This is part 5 in a 13 part series: My Home

An organized kitchen is a time-saver.

Let me state right up front (but please don’t stop reading) … I did not get the housekeeping gene!! My mother kept all of those to herself, I think. 

So, here I am at 64, and I have yet to find an organization in my kitchen that works for me. I think that could be read “having everything handy”. 

My kitchen table left the room years ago and, in its place came this work station. We (and, as “we”, I mean “Rick”) made this table out of an old waterbed frame, some 4x4 posts, some plywood for shelves, and some sliding shelf brackets, which I love. 

I have moved this table to different spots in the kitchen so many times over the years, trying to find the best way to keep it functional without blocking the open space for walking through the room. 

Organizing my kitchen is always on my mind but never hits the priority list. Stage one happened today!

Stage 1

What is the look that you want to achieve?

For me, I want a relaxed, rustic, old-time feel to my home. With that in mind, everything should contribute to that feel, unless I choose otherwise.

I do love my gadgets, and air fryers and stand mixers probably aren’t fitting with that rustic look that makes me feel good. They would be my compromises - conscious choices.

The next step is to know how you work.
I don’t do the minimalistic look and having everything hidden away definitely does not work for me. Instead, for me, I want everything to be easily accessible and I love the look of jars on the counter, filled with cooking ingredients. 

If I could have one wall, floor to ceiling (or better yet, a walk-in pantry), filled with jars of stuff, I would be a happy homesteader. But .. 
 We work with what we’ve got 

Step 2 

Storage containers: how are you going to organize things? 

I live in an old house and winter definitely turns my home into a homestead for mice. Argh. 
But, again, we work with what we’ve got, so I need to mouse-proof my storage - the foods, the utensils, well, everything. 

Mason jars are my best friend. Jars with lids that seal help to keep the mice and insects out of my foods. I love the:
  • Mason jars and regular ring lids
  • Mason jars with metal sealed lids
  • Mason jars with hinged lids
  • Mason jars with handled pouring spouts 
I used to use Tupperware all the time, but last year, the four-leggeds ate through a lot of my containers, so I had to switch to glass and metal. 
We do what we have to do. 

Consistency: as I said, I didn’t get the housekeeper gene but I have to say that consistency in organization does look nice. AND it makes it very easy to organize things. Just buy more of the same thing, just in different sizes. Simple.

Storing what you aren’t using
Whether we are talking appliances or food ingredients - if you don’t use it every week, can it be moved to a less-handy location? 
This may be:
  • Top shelves that are harder to access
  • Lower shelves that are harder to access
  • Another room
  • A friend in need 

One of the great things about community-sufficiently is that people share. Let’s say that you use an Instant Pot frequently and it sits prominently in your kitchen.

If a friend just wanted to use one for a special family event, they could borrow it for the day.

You don’t need a special storage space because you use the appliance regularly and your friend doesn’t need to find a storage spot for that once-a-year use! How efficient is that. (Of course, you don’t have to do the appliance-sharing but it’s something to think about.)

Out of sight; out of mind

“Out of sight, out of mind” works great for things that you don’t use frequently but, if you are anything like me, if it is stored away somewhere, I won’t be digging it out to use it, unless I have to

Somethings need to be kept handy so that they are used. 

For me, the first thing that comes to mind is my little compost bin.  If it isn’t t handy, I KNOW that I will toss the food scraps into the garbage bin instead of gathering it for the compost pile. 

Know how you think, how you work and work with what you’ve got. 

And “what you’ve got” is you! 
This is YOUR home, YOUR homestead, and it needs to work with you, for you, and reflect the image you have for your home…. Even if you didn’t get a housekeeper gene. 
- Debbie


These products are what I use and all opinions expressed here are my own. This list may contain affiliate links from which, at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission if you choose to use my link … and if you do, know that I appreciate you!

a simpler life