The boxes that once held our home have been slashed and broken down to flat, lifeless, 2D objects yet the items they once held are still making a big impact in our life. Our goal was to unload all the boxes – no problem (except the two boxes that still sit in the office; those are a problem). All the boxes are empty and the bonus? everything is piling up in the kitchen on a shelf that came with the house. I’m pretty sure that all of it is piled up here because it’s on it’s way downstairs, but someone didn’t have the enthusiasm to actually take it downstairs.
For some reason, and I blame it on living in tiny apartments until now, we will avoid any task that involves up going upstairs or downstairs. The laundry is downstairs and our bedroom is upstairs. We may have bought a few more laundry baskets to try and do laundry less and our room may be the only place in the house where we haven’t done any actual moving-in.
I recently read The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin where she made a ‘rule’ to do anything that doesn’t take more than a minute to do. For us, that means taking the laundry downstairs, putting our shoes in the closet, hanging our jackets instead of throwing them over the couch, and filling up the Brita pitcher with water before we put it back in the fridge. All these little things, when left undone, can create a bit of chaos so we started using the one minute roll as well. Everywhere except the shelf in the kitchen! Time for a new goal : Organize the kitchen dump zone, where everything that doesn’t have a designated home (or belongs in the basement) lands.
The shelf in the kitchen came from the basement and belongs to the home’s owner and since we were desperate for counter space we brought it up to tie us over. It had collected the fruit bowl, dinner plates that don’t fit in the cupboard, a box of lightbulbs, a tool box and drill, and a lovely hydrangea that is waiting to be planted.
First thing I did was take the dreaded descent into the basement. I gathered all the tools and lightbulbs and general ‘garage stuff’and took it downstairs where it belongs. I then vowed to implement the ‘one minute rule’ to make sure that this tool pile-up didn’t happen again.
And just like that, I had my shelf back.
It was a breath of fresh air. And then it was a very long exhale as I realized that the shelf seemed unwarranted, and that I needed to make it useful. I had been wanting to move the coffee machine and accessories off of our counter to make more space, so I decided to make a coffee station on the shelf.
Now we’re talking. I liked that I was able to bring all of the coffee supplies together and free up some space on the kitchen counters. Was I in love with it? No, but it was much better than where it started so I decided to move onto the built-in hutch.
At least the hutch wasn’t full of tools. There were a few things that gathered that didn’t belong: two spice racks from Ikea, vases, a flashlight, and doggy-doo-doo bags. So as I did with the shelf, I took everything away that didn’t belong.
The plates that used to be on the shelf fit nicely on the hutch but looked a little out of place, so I added the rest of our collection. I added the vintage radio for a splash of color and my ‘deer’ friend for a bit of decor. The jar on the bottom is the most important as it is home to a variety of dog treats and we all know that a happy dog is a happy home.
I bought the cracker jars at Wal-mart and found the labels at World Market. The style of labels on the right were pre-printed and the jar on the left is a chalkboard label. Did I mention that World Market is quickly becoming my favorite store?
I was happy with my progress thus far. I had a nice organized hutch and a coffee station shelf. Buuuuuuuuuut, I didn’t really love the shelf.
So, I brought in it’s replacement:
The Ikea shoe cabinet. This cabinet is amazing! The drawers pull towards you and you can slide in your shoes. We haven’t really found a great place for it in our house where we can actually use it as a shoe cabinet, so I was happy to bring it in and replace the shelf. It seemed to fit perfectly; both the white color and the size.
My sister-in-law came over and came up with the brilliant idea to put wine bottles in the cabinets.
Now that I was content with that corner of the kitchen, I only had one corner left: the butcher block.
I quickly tidied up the butcher block corner of the kitchen by hanging the knife magnet and adding a picture.
The cook books found a home on the bottom shelf of the kitchen cart.
And Archer found a home right in front of my camera.
The entire dump-zone organization wasn’t as awful as I imagined it to be. It really consisted of taking everything that didn’t belong in the kitchen away and then re-situating what did belong until I liked what I saw.
There is a list accumulating with projects that I want to complete in the kitchen including paint and add curtains.
I’ll keep you posted on any other updates!