Thursday, November 18, 2010

organizing my way to an easier holiday season

 With the holidays just around the corner, I decided to tackle our food pantries.  We have two and they were both cluttered and unorganized and it was a project I had been putting off for a really long time.  But, we host Thanksgiving and Christmas and that means lots of people and lots of cooking and I was totally frustrated every time I tried to find something.  I knew having messy and disorganized pantries would just add to the holiday stress.  To my surprise, the project it took me less than 2 hours and I am so happy with the way it came out.  I can find things and it takes way less time to get my grocery list together.  

This pantry used to be a coat closet.  But, it's a bit too far from the front door to really be used for coats.  We converted it with Elfa shelving from The Container Store.  That project was about $100.  It made the space way more useful for our family since we do a lot of cooking and baking.  This space is just around the corner from the kitchen.  The things we store here aren't as critical to have inside the kitchen and they aren't things that we reach for when we're cooking. {Um, sorry I forgot to remove the tags on the large bins before I took this photo...Oops!}

I got all the bins at Target and the chalkboard labels are from Pottery Barn kids.  I love the way the chalkboard labels dress up inexpensive {and totally wipe able} plastic baskets.  Even though I have taken some grief from my family for the labels, they are the reason the pantry works efficiently.  If it were not for the labels, it would just be disorganized bins and I would still have no idea what was in there. 

This is our pantry inside the kitchen.  We use it for every day items and things we need to reach when we're cooking.  The white plastic bins are Itso brand from Target and the woven baskets are Pottery Barn Kids.  I love the lunchbox items bin.  It has all the pre packaged single serve items like goldfish and granola bars.  If we have a half full box crackers or snacks, we divide the rest into single serving Ziploc bags and they go in the basket.  It makes the morning lunch making a snap {the other thing that makes it a snap is that Mark does it}.

We decided to use these large bins for board games.  They were taking up a lot of space in Reid's room and this is closer to the Family Room and Dining Room where we actually use them.

I am still working on the other parts of the kitchen, but it makes me so happy to have an organized space to work from and I think that having this system is going to make the Holiday hosting much easier this year.


  1. You are like my long lost twin with your organization and labels. Love it!

  2. I did something like this awhile back -- it was so awesome to see the end result! I really love my "baking basket" for the holidays. Keeping all of the baking goods in one easy spot.Feel free to check mine out too Glad I found your blog. I just gave you a little plug on my Facebook page as well. Happy holidays to you.


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