Day 5’s mission in this free 30-day series focuses on organizing kitchen counters. If you’re just joining, here’s the series overview. It contains links to the prior days’ missions so that you can find them all in one place.
Every day’s mission has four parts to it:
Keep It Clean
We’ve already ROCKed the entryway, coat closet, dining/kitchen table, and kitchen cupboards. Today, we’re organizing kitchen counters and dealing with the clutter that loves to collect there.
Ready? Let’s rock!
Organizing Kitchen Counters – Day 5
Gather Your Supplies
- Trash bags
- Boxes for items you’ll donate
- All-purpose cleaner (homemade version)
- Glass cleaner (homemade version)
- Granite cleaner (homemade version)
- Broom or vacuum
- Mop and bucket
- Floor cleaner (homemade version)
Removing clutter from our kitchen table on Day 3 and from our kitchen cupboards on Day 4 means we’ve already made significant progress. Today, after we’re done organizing kitchen counters, we will also give the kitchen a good cleaning.
- Throw away obvious trash.
- Gather things that belong elsewhere and put them in a box to deal with after we’ve finished this mission.
- Throw away anything that’s broken. (Except for your Keurig. Here’s how to clean a Keurig and fix a broken one.)
- Box up for donation anything you don’t use because you hate it or hate cleaning it.
- Put decor you no longer like into a donation box, too
Now, let’s do another sweep. On this one, you need to be ruthless.
- Give away the “someday stuff” — things you’ve convinced yourself you’ll use someday but never have.
- Move packaged food to the cupboards. Since you purged their clutter yesterday, you should have plenty of room.
Organizing kitchen counters is tied to how thorough you were when we decluttered the kitchen table and cupboards. If you’re still short on space, go back through those tips and be ruthless!
Clear countertops are easier to clean. If you don’t use something at least once a week, don’t keep it on your counter. Put away small appliances (stand mixers, toasters, even tea kettles) if you only use them now and then.
Use vertical space efficiently. Yesterday, I mentioned the use of magnetic strips to replace knife blocks and tiered baskets to hold produce. You can also maximize vertical storage with general store-styled tiered baskets to hold kitchen linens produce. A wall rail with S-hooks is a great place to hang utensils you use regularly, too.
Use “found” storage space, too. The space above your microwave turns into storage with a raised shelf. A row of mug hooks installed beneath your upper cabinet frees up cupboard space. Magnetic spice containers turn the side of your refrigerator into a spice rack while keeping them in easy reach.
Store seasonal stuff somewhere else. You don’t leave your Christmas decorations sitting in the living room year-round. Don’t leave your holiday serving ware in your kitchen all the time, either. Put these things where you keep your holiday decor. Or tuck them into under bed storage containers and free up more space in your kitchen.
If you don’t use it regularly to cook, serve, or eat food, it doesn’t belong in your kitchen!
Cleaning your kitchen is so much easier once you’ve removed clutter and organized it. If you’ve got the time and energy — or you don’t mind taking longer than 30 days to complete this series — use my Kitchen Spring Cleaning Checklist to do a thorough, deep cleaning.
At a minimum, do the following:
- Wipe the refrigerator and freezer shelves
- Clean oven spills
- Scrub the stovetop
- Spray and wipe the backsplash, countertops, and everything you’re keeping on them
- Clean appliance fronts
- Sweep or vacuum the floor then mop it
- Scour the sink
- Put out fresh kitchen linens and launder the dirty ones
Keep it Clean
Keeping the areas we’ve already ROCKed from turning back into a mess is an important part of this series. When the day’s mission is a tough one — like today’s — it’s tempting to skip this step.
Don’t skip this step!
Over time, you’ll realize that buzzing through your house daily to set rooms right takes a lot less time than trying to do it once every week or two.
The Entryway: Throw away trash. Collect anything that belongs elsewhere. Vacuum or sweep the mat. (This is the exact kind of thing I love to use my cordless vacuum for — it’s so much easier!)
The Coat Closet: Is everything hung up? Shoes on the rack? Toss any trash and collect anything that belongs elsewhere.
The Dining or Kitchen Table: Toss the trash. Scoop up anything that belongs somewhere else. Wipe spills.
The Kitchen Cupboards: Make sure containers are closed. Toss empties. Wipe cupboard and drawer handles.
Now, throw away the trash. Have your children do chores that kids can do to earn back anything they left sitting around where it doesn’t belong. Take your boxes of donations to your car so you can drop them off at your local charity next time you’re out.
Then give yourself a treat for sticking with today’s mission. You ROCK!
See You Tomorrow!
Our next mission on how to get an organized and clean home — Day 6 — focuses on the family room. If you’ve got a formal living room, too, we’ll be tackling that on Day 7. If not, then consider it a bonus day to play catch-up or rest.