Thursday, March 27, 2014

33 Monthly Clean Home Challenge: Clean Out Pantry

Welcome back to the Monthly Clean Home Challenge daily task!  I am on a quest to maintain a clean and organized home in less time and the goal is simple; four daily tasks, four weekly tasks and one additional quick task each week day. 

In no particular order, here are the individual tasks I am tackling each day this month:

  1. Make cleaning supplies
  2. Cycle clean appliances
  3. Clean out cars
  4. Clean out microwave
  5. Wipe down cabinets/appliances
  6. Wipe down trim/doors
  7. Clean out one drawer
  8. Clean out fridge
  9. Clean out freezer
  10. Vacuum under furniture
  11. Vacuum mattresses
  12. Clean oven
  13. Clean out one closet
  14. Wash out garbage can/recycle bin
  15. Wash windows
  16. Scrub grout
  17. Clean out one cabinet
  18. File paper piles
  19. Purge bathroom toiletries
  20. Clean out pantry

Today I am chatting about the extra task:  Clean Out Pantry

Well, this month you have seen a lot of our messy areas.  In fact, you may be wondering what actually is organized around this place we call home.  And although our fridge and freezer were a bit of a disaster going into this month, I am happy to report that our pantry organization is still going strong.


Just over a year ago we took everything out, lined the shelves and organized things the way we thought they would make the most sense for our family {you can catch up on all of that here}.  Although there are times when the pantry is sparse or a bit overstocked and cluttered, it has been really easy to maintain and we have been really happy with the way it functions.

Each week while we are meal planning, we take a look at our existing foods and try and plan around those before purchasing anything new for the week.  Because we keep the process quick, there comes a time when the pantry just needs a good cleaning out.  This closet is used every day, multiple times per day, so it tends to get dirty.  The shelves receive a lot of traffic, crumbs and an occasional spill, while the back corners of the floor seem to be a magnet for dust.

As you can guess, I started by emptying everything out of the closet.


And taking a couple of minutes to wipe down all of the individual shelves {we are still LOVING The contact paper covered foam core by the way}.


Once all of the shelves were clean and splatter free, I moved onto giving the floor a quick vacuum.


With everything feeling shiny and new and smelling of fresh lemon, I was selective about what was returned and had the opportunity to evaluate where everything was being placed.  I found some items that were beyond expired to an embarrassing extent {sugar cookie mix from 2011 anyone?}, proving the importance of doing occasional pantry sweeps.



One more day of this monthly cleaning challenge!  Don't be surprised if you spot me running up and down a random set of stairs with a boombox on my shoulder playing the theme song from Rocky on repeat when all is said and done!


Looking for something?  Check out my favorite cleaning products below:


33 comments:

  1. I just caught up on your older pantry post. I wondered how the fruit stored in the pantry works for you? We don't have any non-bedroom closets and don't have a pantry. I am hoping to have something built to help combat the food storage issue and have been considering a shelf for fruit - we also have so much all the time and we don't have enough counter or hanging space to coral it all.

    Also, what is in the basket with the handle above citrus (in old post)? Potatoes?

    Glad you have a pantry system that works well for you! Makes such a difference.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi JC!

      The fruit works OK in the pantry. The kids and I love fruit, so we eat it pretty quickly. I find that apples seem to stay fresher in the fridge, but if we have extra we keep them in the pantry and eat them from there first. Otherwise, clementines and bananas and even pineapple all are stored in the pantry and I appreciate having the extra counter space.

      xoxo!

      Delete
  2. Hello from Cyprus Jen! I love your posts and have just subscribed and will be getting posts in my mail :) Love, Theano x (p.s. just liked your fb page too... feel free to see who I am at www.facebook.com/Theaxessorize)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Love the visual of you and the boom box and the Rocky theme song - hope you saved your grey sweats from the 80s!!

    This has been such an informative and inspiring series, Jen. Thanks so much.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hahaha! Yes! And I just may have to crimp my hair too!

      Delete
  4. Where did you get your produce bibs? They look like the perfect size to fit in my narrow cupboard.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Lindsey!

      It is from the Container Store: http://www.containerstore.com/shop?productId=10027640&N=&Ns=p_sort_default|0&Ntt=stacking+bin

      xo!

      Delete
  5. I love this series Jen! I'm sure you will continue to do this challenge personally when it's over, but will some of the tasks rotate? Or do you think this list is a good representation of things that should be done once per month?

    Thanks a ton for all the inspiration and tips :)

    XO,
    Brandy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Brandy!

      I absolutely hope to continue to do one extra task per day, as I have really loved the outcome this month. Many of the same items need to be done at least once per month, so they will most likely just be on rotation and hopefully just keep getting easier as time goes, and some months might require me to focus on a few new things. I think the concept will stick, and the tasks will be flexible. :)

      xoxo!

      Delete
  6. Looks great - can't wait to start organizing my pantry. Could you tell me where you purchase the labels for your totes bin, and cereal containers? The only vinyl labels I seem to find are not completely 'clear'. They have a cloudy look to them. Thoughts?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Dana!

      I use my Silhouette die cutting machine to cut and create all of the vinyl labels in our home. I am guessing that there are some really great sellers on Etsy that provide similar labels or could maybe whip up something custom for their customers. :)

      xo!

      Delete
  7. I love your pantry. Can I just buy yours and put it where mine is? Thanks for the motivation!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so sweet Mari! Totally wish it was that easy! :)

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  8. Can you show how you made the foam board/shelf liner? I have the same terrible wire shelving. Did you glue it??? Just put the liner on top??? Thanks :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Jennifer!

      We cut the foam board to size and then lined it with the shelf liner and just placed them on top of the shelves. Because the pantry has a wall or edge on all sides of the shelves, they don't move around at all. You can find all the details in this post here: http://www.iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2013/02/kitchen-pantry-update-part-2.html

      xo!

      Delete
  9. I'm already a neat freak but your monthly clean helped inspire me to help my boss get organized! Today we cleaned under her kitchen sink.... 3 bottles of pledge, 4 of soft scrub, 5 empty, 7 bottles of febreeze, 7!!! And one bottle of shampoo?! Whew!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No way!? That is so awesome to hear! Thank you Nicole! And give your boss an extra high five from me! So exciting!

      Delete
  10. I just discovered your blog last week while on Pinterest. I absolutely love this site and your organizational skills and ideas. I have already order bins from the Container Store website and will start my fridge and freezer project.

    By the way, can you tell me where I can purchase the cereal containers and the snack containers with the blue lids?

    Thanks,

    Audrey

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So happy you found me Audrey!

      The cereal containers are from Target: http://tgt.biz/P9RywE and the containers with the blue lids are from the Container Store: http://bit.ly/1f3oZL7

      xoxo!

      Delete
  11. The pantry looks great! I was wondering where you purchased the straws in the jar in the door?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Ann!

      I have been seeing them all over lately, but still find them to be the least expensive on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1mdCM3c

      xoxo!

      Delete
  12. I'd love to know what the "embossed metal" is on one of the shelves -- love it! Thanks for any details you can provide.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello!

      We lined our closet with it years ago as it made it much easier to keep the walls clean. They are plastic ceiling tiles and we purchased them at Home Depot. :)

      xo!

      Delete
  13. Love it! Also love the rectangular containers with the chips in it. I have round ones only because the square or rectangle ones I found were too big. I think this size might be the ticket!! Where did get them?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much! The containers are from the Container Store: http://www.containerstore.com/shop/kitchen/foodStorage/canisters?productId=10029918&N=74062&Ns=p_sort_default|0

      xo!

      Delete
  14. So that's the prettiest pantry ever! I have been dying to make some vinyl labels for my pantry containers ever since I got my Silhouette about a month ago, and after seeing yours, I'm going to have to get on that ASAP. They really make a big difference! Loving this series, Miss Jen! Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

    ~Abby =)

    ReplyDelete
  15. How do you get your pantry to smell lemon fresh???

    Love your blog, Pinterest and Instagrams!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Diane! The cleaner I used was a combination of distilled water, citrus castile soap and lemon essential oil, so it always smells so good when I clean with it. :)

      xo!

      Delete
  16. I've been looking in, and have to let you know that you've inspired me. Most of the cleaning projects that you've exhibited only take a short period of time to complete. I'm joining the club. Thanks for the inspiration!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hi Jen, great ideas, as always! Can you tell me the brand of your over-the-door rack and where you bought it? Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Joan!

      I used this organizer: http://amzn.to/QyTxfw

      It was a little too long {got in the way of the door knob}, but you can adjust the height and remove pieces, so we just used the bottom two baskets in our nearby coat closet instead. :)

      xo!

      Delete
  18. I have a lot of spice and I wanted to know what do you recommend storing it. I store it in my pantry but it just looks disorganized

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Think about using magnetic spice tins, which you can use on the side of the fridge or pair with magnetic sheeting in the pantry to save space. Also, there are great tiered shelves to help organize spices as well as pull down options. Even drawers can work as a great spice storage alternative!

      xoxo!

      Delete

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