I don’t know about you, but I can spend hours cleaning out my pantry, just to have it a mess again in a few days. It is so frustrating! I’ve been trying to come up with a system that works to KEEP my pantry organized. If you can relate, then How to Organize Your Pantry and Keep it Organized is for you!
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1)Follow these 5 easy steps in my previous post to get your pantry organized.
You’ve emptied everything out, sorted into like items, organized and purged, decided how you want to store things, measured, and purchased the items that you want. Now how to keep it that way:
2) A place for everything and everything in it’s place
Be strict about what you place in your pantry from here on out. This has always been my weakness. I would allow myself to shove whatever miscellaneous thing that didn’t have a spot somewhere else in my house into my pantry. It very quickly became a junk room instead of an organized storage space for kitchen needs. If it’s not kitchen, meal, or paper good related, don’t let it in!
3) Does it work for your family?
Re-evaluate what you’ve done so far. Does everything have a spot, or bin, or container? Do you need to re-sort items to have them fit better? Does your system make sense to your family, and are they putting things back where they go? What may be a logical place for me to keep the cereal may not be a logical place for them. I try to tweak my system to meet their needs so that everything gets put back where it’s supposed to. If the kids consistently put the box of cereal in a certain spot, that becomes the spot that I’ll adapt to. I’ve found it’s easier to work within their habits than to start new ones-when possible!
Can the kids reach everything they need to on their own, and open the containers by themselves? If not, consider moving their snacks to a lower place, and putting them into containers they can easily open. This will save you a lot of time and hassle, and the possibility of something shoved in where it’s not supposed to go, or broken if they try to reach. Can you easily access what you need on a daily basis? If not, some rearranging may need to be done.
Make sure that there is some flexibility in your system. I tend to stock up when something is on sale, and there needs to be room for that. During the holidays, I tend to purchase more baking ingredients, so there has to be a place to put it. I try to purposefully keep a few extra baskets and some space on the shelves for these times. My pantry also tends to ebb and flow throughout the month based on where I am in between bulk items trips to Sam’s Club or Costco. There are times when there seems to be a lot of space because we are out of everything, and then times when it is packed to the gills because we just stocked up. My pantry is large enough to accomodate these things, but maybe have a secondary location for bulky things like those huge packs of paper towels and toilet paper if yours is not.
On a trip to Home Goods, I once found a very large rolling basket that fits under my bottom shelves. I would have loved to line the whole bottom with these, and link them for you, but I have yet to find another. Keep your eyes peeled for some, though, because they are amazing! It fits so many rolls of paper towels, paper plates, boxes of Ziplock bags, etc.
Get the Look!
I hope that you can learn from my successes and failures, and that this helps you organize your pantry, and keep it organized! Once and for all!!!