Like many others, around January 1st I come up with a word or a few words that I would like to define my year. A word to guide my focus and efforts if you will. This year I have kicked around a few different ideas and I can’t seem to narrow to just one. The one I will share with you all today however is LESS. I want 2021 to be the year of less. Less stress, less noise, less news, less social media, less negativity, and definitely less stuff.
The first step to getting to a life of less is to declutter physical things. I plan to start with the heart of the home, the kitchen. We moved into our new home this year and I have been amazed by the things I once thought I needed in my kitchen. I unpacked a plastic butter holder… no not a butter dish, a holder to put a stick of butter in while you butter tortilla shells maybe? I have not ever used it. Not even once. There is also plenty of evidence of a few too many mlm parties. I have more paring knives than I will dull in a lifetime along with a fancy apple peeler I can’t recall ever having put an apple in. Its just stuff, noise and it occupies my thoughts, space, and time. I need less and I am sure many others feel the same.
I have assembled a short list to help stay on task and guide the kitchen declutter process.
Clean Out Drawers
To help get started take inventory and apply The Minimalist’s 90/90 rule. Think about whether you have used the item in the last 90 days or if you plan to use it in the next 90 days. If not, consider donating the items.
- Junk Drawers- Junk drawers are a great place to start. It is an easy place to find things that are no longer needed and get the momentum going. Throw away all the old receipts, batteries, ketchup packets, phone chargers and screws that have no home.
- Utensils- Most of us have more utensils than we could possibly ever need. Donate the ones you never use.
- Kitchen Textiles – Assess each kitchen towel, dishcloth, oven mitt and potholder for stains or wear. If stained and worn ask yourself if its your favorite. If not, get rid of it. My favorite dishcloths to keep around are our Sticky Toffee waffle dishcloths. They are bleach friendly and made to last, so you don’t have to worry about stains.
Clean Out Cabinets
- Cookware- Cookware can quickly take up huge amounts of cabinet space. According to Martha Stewart there are only 8 essential pots and pans needed to get dinner on the table. Cast iron skillet, cast iron grill pan, roasting pan, straight sided sauté pan, saucepan, stock pot, Dutch oven, nonstick skillet. Evaluate what works for your family and edit your collection accordingly. Getting rid of a couple large items can improve cabinet space greatly.
- Dinnerware- Unless you have a large family, I have always been taught you should have 12 dinnerware place settings on hand. This allows for guests and breakage along the way. Anything more than that becomes clutter taking up valuable real estate. Get rid of the mismatched pieces that don’t stack well with the others.
And finally, organize. Make your space work for you! In an article posted by our friends at The Kitchen you can read about 35 practical but brilliant ideas for organizing the kitchen. Everything from removing unnecessary packaging to adding tension rods in your cabinets to create additional storage space.
Editing just those 6 areas and organizing the kitchen can be so refreshingly satisfying in the decluttering process. Here’s to a year where less is more!
Cheers to the new year!