Saturday, March 05, 2011

Minimalism and Simplicity - The Kitchen

Perhaps because people are cracking up over my drawer photos (well, just the guys.. ha) I thought I should add that I was inspired by Kath at KERF to do this post. She shared (much better) photos of her kitchen and it gave me the kick in the rear to finish mine up!

I finally feel like I've dwindled the kitchen down to a comfortable level. I thought I would share my "after" photos. Unfortunately I don't have the "before" photos of my cupboards and pantry stuffed full of unused items. My wine glasses and martini glasses used to be kept in a separate room because there were too many to fit in my already cluttered kitchen. That was my last 'let go'.. how many wine and martini glasses do I really need? We don't ever entertain.. and probably won't start any time soon. And if we do I can ask someone to please bring some glasses for me to borrow for the evening. Right? :)

So here are some photos. No, it's not always this neat, but I have been trying to leave it looking like this at the end of the day so I wake up to a fresh start each morning. All you other stay at home moms know just how much time we can end up spending in this space any given day.

Nice clear counters. Not the case in the 'before' photos. (Making some chicken broth.)

Ah, my favorite spot in the kitchen. The beloved coffee bar. The white bins on the bottom hold 'office' items like envelopes, our check book, stamps, note cards, stapler etc. The basket on the left is a place I can put random toys found on the breakfast bar until they can be placed in kid's rooms later. The basket on the right holds all my teas.

 Where I keep track of what's up at Che Mount. The family calendar and the filing system. All "to be filed" (upstairs) items go here along w/ kids homework, currently the kindergarten registration paperwork and a drawing to frame. 
 This pantry used to be a nightmare catch all for things I couldn't find a place for. It's since been pared down to 'essentials'.. though Tom and I just had a discussion about some of the attachments for the stand mixer that are rarely - if ever - used that will likely go. I am following his lead on this as they are really his things.

 There are more glass food storage containers that fill in some of the bare spots, but they are all currently in use in the fridge.
 I keep the most used pans (small sauce pan and omelet pan) in the cupboard above the microwave along w/ our hot pads.

I could probably stand to downsize my spices, but I'm not one to throw things out. 

I've got to say that I'm pretty proud of myself for completing this task. I usually find all kinds of excuses to keep things and I've been pretty aggressive in the kitchen and feel so much lighter now. I'm not constantly moving things to find the things that I need to use quickly. I'm able to keep the counters clean because they aren't covered in stuff. I try really hard to use the same coffee and water cup all day. I'm pretty good with that.. I also have a favorite spoon (weird I know) and paticular bowls that I like so I will wash them after each use and reuse them... downsizing my dishwasher load.
On a separate but similar (to dishwasher duty) point. I just changed up my laundry routine and it has cut it at least in half. I now have the kids bring their laundry baskets downstairs (they are 4.5 years old now) and I wash all the laundry. I fold mine and Tom's and I just dump Jason and Lily's into their laundry baskets and then will either have them carry them upstairs or will place them in their rooms and have them put their clothes away. I was wasting my life folding tiny little clothes that only ended up in balls on the floor or in the drawer as they chose what to wear. So why bother right? Jason loves the responsibility of it... it's a bit of a struggle with Lily, but I have let it go. It's just not a battle worth fighting... 
As I get through the rest of the house I'll take some pictures here and there. Another load building in the back of my car to be dropped this upcoming week!


  1. Very kitchen could really stand a pare down like this, but I just LOVE kitchen gadgets. My grandma used to be the Tupperware distributor for the entire state of Arkansas, and I have a feeling I have inherited that have to have a gadget for every little thing from her!!

  2. Anonymous8:30 AM

    Oh my gosh - that just makes me want to clean my kitchen! It looks wonderful!!

  3. Oh my goodness...NICE JOB. I've only lived in my house for a little over a year now and EVERY ROOM already needs an overhaul! I said that was going to be my project this week (spring break), but have already deemed it to be more appropriate for summer! HA!

    Way to go on getting that DONE!

  4. looks beautiful! I got rid of a bunch of glasses, wine glasses, and mugs last year. Felt great! Love your spacious kitchen... :-)

  5. ya wanna come over to my house/kitchen???;-)

  6. Soooo, when are you coming to my house to organize? ;)

  7. I would LOVE to come to your house and help you clean out / organize!!! :)

  8. This post totally cracked me up—with all the pictures of the drawers and cabinets. Give my children 5... no 3 minutes in your kitchen and it will look like a war zone. They can turn minimalism into downtown SOHO dance or post-Darmstadt new complexity musical rhetoric.

    I don't even know what I am talking about, so don't try to figure it out. Okay, really I do, but I am quite insane.... as are my children.... but in a good way.

  9. Mark.. don't be fooled... there is NO ZEN in this house. I have my own whirling dervishes to be sure of that... :)

  10. Very nice! The pictures of all of your drawers cracked me up too!

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