Okay…enough of the funny stuff. Here are a couple of tips that might actually help:
1. Special spot for Glasses:
Make personalized coasters from 4″ tiles and place them near the sink. (Home Depot or Lowe’s have these) Teach your family to rinse thier glass and place it on thier coaster until the end of the day. This strategy cuts down on the glass farm that can quickly grow out of control. We have used the method for years and it works quite well.
2. Use Your cabinets:
Who says the inside of your kitchen cabinets have to be unused space. These days there are a variety of over-the-door type of bins and shelves for organizing. You can also install cork or paint the inside of a cabinet with blackboard paint for a handy spot for lists and those necessary, but annoying scraps of paper with important info on them.
Same product, different use–I like it!
3. Don’t overlook the Fridge:
Refrigerator magnets–I am okay with having the lived-in look on the side of my fridge, so I am a big fan of magnetized clips. I like keeping the front clean, but the side is up for grabs. I store my bills to be paid, my grocery list, and my recipes for the week in this way. I understand that this is a big no-no for some. Out of sight is out of mind for me, so visibility is a plus for this girl.
4. Conquer Paperwork: We are all familiar with these tips, yet I struggle to consistently follow good advice.
- Open mail at the recycle bin
- Take advantage of paperless options when possible
- Small plastic drawers are great for storing kid’s schoolwork
- Create an accessible and easy to use place for processing paperwork you can’t get to right away
Products and Blogs:
- How about this for a cute little tuck away file system:
Is it a hand-bag? Is it a file box. Yes. (For any of you who have wanted a file bag like Larissa has…I found a place to get them.)
I wasn’t able to copy a picture, but you can click here to see what I am talking about:
This is an attractive and portable spot for creating a Command Center for that paperwork that piles up on the counter. This bag is a little price ($59), but like I said, I know a lot of folks who have been looking for this bag. There are other options of decorative file boxes-see the Martha Stewart line below. Ikea is also a great source for this type of thing.
- In my search for solutions, I found a great blog by a gal who definitely has the gift of organization. Here’s a big shout-out for Jen Jones. Her blog is called iheartorganizing. In this post, she does a great job of tackling paper organization with a household notebook. In fact, check out her entire series on her paper challenge project. Good stuff with lots of show-how pictures.
In another post, Jen reviews the Martha Stewart line. For folks who dream about useful products, this will be a happy place to go:)You may also enjoy checking out the Martha Stewart Avery line of office items at Staples:
One thing I really like about this line is the vertical files–yes! This is good!
Martha Stewart Home Office™ with Avery™ Vertical File Folders 24532, Assorted Black Patterns, 9-1/8″ x 12″, 2 Tabs
Here is another idea from this line that I like:
Martha Stewart Home Office™ with Avery™ Small Shagreen Pocket 24507, Brown, 8″ x 7-1/4″
Product Number: 24507
Hang shagreen pockets in a variety of places with either the built-in adhesive or grommets and included push pins. Their stylish finish makes them pretty enough to use in the kitchen, office, or near the front door.
This is a great option for getting that ever-present paperwork off of the counter. Big smiley face:)
4. Develop the put it away as you go habit:
- If you open it…shut it.
- If you drop it…pick it up.
- If you use it…put it away…NOW! (The Swat-Method will work for this as well)
This method is very effective…if you can discipline yourself to be consistent. There will be no pile clean up if you never resort to the ineffective pile-method to start with. Ahh…there’s the rub, isn’t it? The discipline of consistency is so handy for many things in life isn’t it? Maybe we will take a dive into that subject sometime. It would be well worth a stop!
Good luck to all of you in your battle of the kitchen counter! Please chime in with other good ideas and websites. I know many of you have a few tricks up your sleeves that would be great to try!