Welcome to Penny Pinching Mom

Throughout this blog, you will find meal plans, date night ideas, daily routines, preschool activities, natural cleaning products, crafting and so much more. Essentially, I want to share how I make "everyday tasks" into something to look forward to - except for mopping floors, you're on your own for that one!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Project Simplify {week 2: the pantry & fridge - the finished product}

I did it! A complete overhaul of every cupboard in our kitchen! Phew! It took three hours and I am SO glad that no one was in the house all day.  I was able to focus and make all the noise I needed to (without worrying if Red was about to wake up!).  Have you heard of Project Simplify?  We are on week 2.

Lets start with some before and after photos...

The counters don't always look that bad (more often then I would like them to, though) but the cupboards are always that bad!

First I washed all the dishes, emptied all the cupboards and organized all the stuff into piles.  Boy, was I happy to find this!

Spice Cupboard
I had zero money to purchase a spice organizing system so I just kept moving things around until it made sense.  We made this jar of spice rub from Father's Day last year and now we can access it better.

We have a useless skinny cupboard beside the sink.  I put the spices that we use most often  on the bottom shelf, multi vitamins on the 2nd shelf and cake decorating/toothpicks on the top shelf.

I put a bright green label on the inside of the cupboard to indicate what spices were in there.  We have more spices than magnetic tins so now we won't be riffling through baggies of spices every night.

Any left overs that we rarely use or unopened packages were put into containers and shoved the very back of the highest cupboard.  I found we had a few duplicate bags of spices.

I am super excited about this discovery!  This is Playtex bottle that uses a plastic liner - so there is no bottom.  I was looking for containers to fill the Bulk Barn bags of spices with and saw these.  There were no nipples for these so I think this is the best way to re purpose them.  This way, I can take the baggie to the Bulk Barn, fill it and then just drop it into the bottle.

The bottom shelf of the pantry was particularly offensive.  So many random bags of flour and baking things I had no idea what was in there!

I was searching the web trying to come up with ways to re purpose something to store everything in.  The problem is that we are trying to choose our groceries that has the least amount of packaging.  That means the only usable containers we have are medium sized yogurt containers.  We go through a glass jar of apple sauce a week and they are the perfect container. I created round labels for all the containers, and took out rarely used baking supplies and put them in the newly cleaned out cupboard above the stove.  If you would like the labels, I have added them to my Google Docs for you to download.  They are formatted to be used with Avery round labels.  I also left some of the labels blank for you to customize.

I taped the cooking instructions on the back of the jars so I would always know the ratios for the beans and such.

Finally, I cleaned up the command center.  Here is our menu board, recipes, coupon folder, paper organizer and pens/scissors.
Well, last week, I didn't do any of the project.  This week I didn't finish the blog post in time to join the link up.  I think come next week I will be on top of things! LOL  If you are looking for more kitchen organization ideas head over to Tsh's blog. Next week challenge is a big one - closets!


  1. It's so darned satisfying to clean up the cupboards!

    I love your framed glass planner in the last photo! Did you make it?

  2. It is so satisfying!
    I smile every time I open the pantry!
    I did the make the meal planner. I am going to create a post with all the info about it and the whole "command centre" once project simplify is done.