Reorganizing the “Under-the-sink” area

Do you dread opening the cupboard doors underneath your sink? Is it the massive clutter of cleaning products, or the pile of unsorted garbage bags that scare you away? Do you look at that space and wonder how to make the most use out of it? Well, so did I. Sadly enough, there weren’t many pictures or ideas about it that I could find on Pinterest, which is why I decided to make my little venture into the area the first organizational blog post. I’m terribly sorry for not adding any “BEFORE” pictures, but I’m sure you can all imagine the insane amount of build-up that lies in that area. To be honest, I don’t much like documenting the before, but I promise to work on that so that you guys can see what the actual improvements are to the areas that I’m working on.

This project probably took me about 2 hours of actual work, not including the time it took to locate and buy the new items.

Step 1: Empty out the entire space! I had someone watch my children in another area of the house for safety reasons while doing this, and I’m going to suggest that if you have little grabby-fingers around, you do the same. This is a really critical step though, so please don’t skip out on it or skimp. I took every single item out and washed down the area.

After it was emptied.

After it was emptied.

Step 2: Toss the things you don’t use. I seriously had some cleaners in there that hadn’t been used in over 5 years. I kept them because I always thought that maybe, maaaaybe one day I would use them… but come on. I think a general good time is about 6 months. If you didn’t use it when you did either your fall or spring cleaning, or any time in between. Toss it. It’s taking up precious space, and you don’t need it. One of the harder choices was to toss my old dish rack. I mostly run the dishes through the dishwasher, so there isn’t much to be washed. I had an older thick dish rack, that took up almost an entire cupboard. I found a little lime-green folding dish rack at a clearance sale when our local Zeller’s was closing down. Probably the best choice I made in this respect was purchasing that new dish rack. If you can toss your old one, I suggest you do so. There’s only so much space below your sink!

Step 3: Measure everything! I measured the areas underneath the pipes, underneath the built-in cupboards, between the pipes and the built-in cupboards, the height of the area I had to work in, and the width. Write them down so that when you go shopping for any organizational pieces, you’ll be able to make sure things will fit in place. The last thing you want to do is get home and find out that “oh-so perfect” rack won’t fit unless you put it in slanted…

Step 4: Begin the actual organization of the area. I bought a shower rack (that is supposed to hang behind the shower head), a short width-adjusting rack, a three-tiered rack and a sink basket. Because of my set-up, it was easy to figure out where to put the new things I had bought. The last thing to do was to decide where to put everything.

Step 5: Putting everything back in place and finding everything a home. This is obviously a very important step, and it’ll probably take the longest to do. The way I handled it was to figure out how often I used the item, and put it in a place according to that. I started by putting all of the lesser used cleaning products into the sink basket, that way when I’m doing any serious cleaning I can just pull the whole thing out and it’s portable. The second thing I did was put the stuff that gets used every little while away. Vacuum bags, garbage bags, recycling bags, etc. I put these all easily within reach. The key with these items was to put them somewhere where they wouldn’t get covered or buried so that I could avoid having to go searching for them when they were needed. Lastly, it’s time for the everyday items. I put these on my most commonly used shelf, as well as on the shower rack. That way I simply open the cupboard door and have everything I use constantly at my fingertips, which also makes it easier to put it away.

Everyday use area.

Everyday use area.

Left-hand side of my area. Medium-use items.

Left-hand side of my area. Medium-use items.


Two weeks after original organization.

Two weeks after original organization.

I found that this area needs to be “tidied up” about once every month or so. It’s generally only me that uses it, so I tend to put things away in the right spot. Although I have found that when my boyfriend uses things, I need to clean up after him a little more than I would like, lol. It’s okay, at least it means he’s helping :).

Hope this helps you out!

Barb

Advertisements

C25K

I won’t lie… it’s not my first time trying the C25K program. I started it about a month or two ago before my children both got pneumonia and were in and out of the hospital a lot. HOWEVER, this time, tonight I did notice that I could actually finish it… you know, without the feeling of totally dying. That was a proud moment. I finally really did something to break my lack-of-activity streak and get back into the groove of things. Hopefully this is something that will be able to be continued and built on until I’m up to going to the actual gym and working out there. Plus, I have a goal of running in the Bluenose Marathon next year with my best friend Sarah. I have almost a year to get ready for it, so it really should be doable!

I brought my dog Ember with me for the first time tonight. It was a little tough at first. Ember is insanely high energy, and she was going crazy! But, as we started running, she started to get worn out little by little, and at the end she was actually a really well-behaved dog. A great companion since I seem to be unable to get anyone else to go with me!

I’m not much of a runner, and I never have been. However, C25K is a program that can actually motivate me to start running. Even though at the end I’m REALLY waiting for the last bell noise to tell me I can stop running, I’m actually discovering that I enjoy it! If you haven’t downloaded it already, I strongly encourage you to do so. It’s a free app that you can get for any smart phone (I believe). If it can motivate me, it can motivate you too! Let’s do this together, one foot in front of the other.

Ember and I just after our outing.

Ember and I just after our outing.

Ignore the date stamp, I replaced my batteries and didn't reset it!

Ignore the date stamp, I replaced my batteries and didn’t reset it!

We all look at the mirror and say that we want to make certain changes from time to time, but the only way to make them is to take action. Now is your time!

Thanks for reading,

Barb

Welcome to my blog!

Hey everyone,

Just wanted to put a quick note up to explain what this is all about. My life is not disastrously terrible, I swear. My children are healthy, I have a roof over our heads, etc. However, I feel that my/our lives and house could really use some general improvement. I want to share this with the world, as a means of keeping myself in check, hopefully motivating myself to really finish some of the stuff I don’t want to do, and to keep going with the things that need to be done. AS WELL as a means of motivating others in situations similar to mine to change their lives as well. We’ll do it little by little, so everyone can keep up. If there’s something you want me to blog about or try out, etc. feel free to let me know. You can reach me by e-mail at 3toa10life@gmail.com.

A little bit about myself is: I’m a mother of two beautiful daughters, and I live in an older farm house with my boyfriend, my children, my father, my uncle, and various other people depending on what seems to be going on at the time. I do some photography work, as well as work for Canada Post (please don’t get angry with me if you didn’t get your mail today! Haha). No, but seriously I enjoy my work. Sometimes, I don’t take pictures of my beautiful children playing and looking adorable simply because the background is a terrible mess that I call my home. Why am I telling you this? Because I’m not perfect, I have flaws, and we’re going to at least work on these faults to improve ourselves. I have a lot of things to deal with and work on, but it never seems as though there’s enough time to finish everything. This is a universal story, that I know doesn’t only apply to me. So if you can relate, follow along!
20130428_123428
This blog will follow along on many different paths, farming, a journey towards health, clean(er) eating, home improvement, crafts, and kids. Why? Because this is what I’m working on. If you want to make a change, this is the time for you!

Thanks for reading,

Barb