Organizing kitchen an open and shut case
TRUTH be told, I’m a bit messy. I move too fast to linger over what seems at the time to be unnecessary neatness — such as putting things away — and I suffer the consequences.
But my kitchen is well ordered. Here, I insist on tidy cabinets that show off pristine stacks of dishes, as well as and canned and dry goods and spices that all have a place. My family kitchen also has a vast collection of cooking accessories, so I am thankful for the many solutions to divide and conquer every space, from the largest cupboard to the smallest drawer.
Rolling shelves take the guesswork out of what lies at the back of the cupboard. If you have a lower cabinet with an awkward inner space, a Lazy Susan-style spinning shelf works wonders. Drawer dividers or cutlery trays make the most of wide drawers. Use tall narrow spaces for cookies sheets and broiler pans. Create storage under the kitchen sink with small baskets that can be stacked around pipes. Prepare designated spaces with containers that are easily accessible for garbage, compost and recycling.
If space allows, consider a work table. March’s design offers hanging space for cooking tools and a storage shelf beneath. A work caddy on wheels gives you freedom to move it wherever needed.
Open or shut cabinet doors is a personal choice, a combination works well — open display cabinets will encourage you to stay neat. If the kitchen is the hub of your home, make sure it works as hard for you as you do in it.
Dear Debbie: I am making a transition from working outside the home to having a home office. I cannot decide where to set myself up. It feels strange to be working at home and I need some help to get organized. Thank you, Manuella.
Dear Manuella: You raise a very good question. More and more men and women are working from home, and yet situating the home office is often an afterthought, lodged anywhere there’s some extra space. Considering this is where you earn a living and will be spending many hours, it is important to take the time to make this space conducive to busy mental activity as well as ergonomically comfortable and inviting. You should look forward to spending time in your home office.
In her book Mind, Body, Home: Transform Your Life One Room at a Time, fengshui consultant Tisha Morris describes the energy flow in a home that makes a serious impact on how we live and feel. Morris says offices located on the main level have more yang energy and generally feel more accessible to the public. Home offices located on upper floors are more introspective and work better for writing, healing or creative-based business. Set up in the basement only as a last resort, as this below groundlevel space might lead to feelings of inadequacy and difficulty moving your business forward.
So look for space on your main floor or higher to give your business the importance it requires to flourish. Have natural light and a view to the outside if possible. Paint the walls, buy a good desk and chair, and make this room a priority. Debbie Travis’ House to Home column is produced by Debbie Travis and Barbara Dingle. Please email your questions to email@example.com. You can follow Debbie on Twitter at @debbie_travis.