Wednesday, February 1, 2012

It's About to Get Ugly

The temperature hit 70 degrees on my back porch before noon.

What happens to folks when the weather turns warm? I don't know about you, but I want to start my spring cleaning.

Don't get me wrong, I know this warm-ish weather will be short lived, but it still gave me the itch to clean, sort, donate, toss and organize. After I saw this post on The Bitten Word about cleaning out their junk drawer, I was hooked and had to do some sort of cleaning or organizing. So I picked something I could do in a couple of hours.

Most of my kitchen is pretty organized. It has to be because I cook nearly every single day and I need to be able to find utensils and ingredients quickly.

I have three large utensil crocks on my counter: one for whisks, one for wooden utensils and silicone spatulas, and one for large spoons, metal spatulas and metal tongs.

My bulk spices are organized in a cabinet...


Every day glassware and dishes have their own space...


And for dining and special glassware, cookbooks and serving items, my hutch is the go-to place...


Like most people, I have a junk drawer where all those little odds and ends wind up - a couple of screwdrivers, a tape measure, marking pens, dog nail clippers, a small bag of twist ties - stuff like that. It's not particularly organized, but I know what's in there and I can usually find it quickly.

But I have an ugly secret. I have this other drawer, a drawer where every single utensil and some duplicates, for lack of a better place to put them, wind up in The Drawer....

Utensil drawer - Before

This is the what I picked to organize.

I started by removing everything from the drawer and laying it all out on the counter of the kitchen island.

Utensil drawer contents

This is what was in there:
  • 4 wine bottle openers
  • 6 pieces of espresso machine measuring equipment for an espresso maker I no longer own
  • 3 cheese slicers
  • 1 ice pick
  • 1 extra pair of kitchen shears
  • 6 chip clips, not including the magnetized chip clip on the side of the refrigerator and the chip clip on the open torilla chip bag in the pantry
  • 26 cheese and dip spreaders. Yeah, you read correctly - 26
  • 3 pairs of pliers
  • 6 nut crackers
  • 4 nut picks
  • 8 corn cob holders
  • 2 bottle openers
  • 1 bamboo sushi mat
  • 10 sets of restaurant chopsticks still in the wrappers
  • 4 sets of restaurant chopsticks apparently used, then washed
  • 1 homemade fork that Tom made on the job the day he took his lunch of leftovers and forgot to take a fork
  • 6 mini-knives
  • 1 grapefruit knife
  • 1 small serrated knife
  • 2 pairs of tongs
  • 1 syringe (no needle)
  • 1 dual package of bamboo skewers, 12-inch and 10-inch
  • 10 metal skewers
  • 1 large pot thermometer
  • 2 small metal ladles
  • 1 wok spatula
  • 1 very dull boning knife
  • 1 very dull paring knife
  • 6 wooden handled steak knives
  • 1 decorative vegetable cutter
  • 1 large, very cheap serrated knife
  • 1 homemade salad tossing fork and spoon


In the end, I started with three piles: keep for The Drawer, keep and store to stock our camp trailer and donate. The donate pile was the biggest. And I even wound up throwing some items away.

And what a huge difference...

Utensil drawer - After

The ice pick looks lonely in its own little cubby. Maybe I should put it in with the syringe just to keep it company.

1 comment:

Katy ~ said...

Well done! You are an inspiration.

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