Pantry Sparkle

20140604_102023Got a dark, unorganized pantry?  We have the solutions to make it sparkle and stay organized! You will save money and time when you organize your food and kitchen organization.

Here are Nancy’s tips and check out the photos below:

  • What You See is What you Get: if I can see it in my pantry or cupboards I won’t buy it again on accident—when it is in my basement
  • Location, Location, Location: put most used things where they are most accessible—not in the basement (take cereal out of boxes and stack bags behind the cereal in the shelves)
  • Once a Year Means Not Here: prime real estate needs to be used for things that get used all the time.  Things that got used once a year got moved down to the basement and the food got moved up. Take this chance to purge and decide if you use things often enough to keep it at all.
  • Divide and Conquer: I added more shelves in my cupboards and my pantry to give me more space to organize (love Lowes).  See the photos below. You just have to add cleats to the wall and put new shelves down!IMG_1323IMG_1324
  • Let There Be Light: Mr Beams battery operated motion detection lights added the light I needed to my pantry and to my shelves.  After several months of use, I have only changed the batteries once.  I used the Mr Beams LED Spotlight and the Mr Beams LED Motion Sensor Slim Light for the places you need to reach in to.

OK so here is the cute stuff:

  • Paint the walls in a bright color so the pantry makes you smile!
  • Use a bright color for the shelves (white) so you can see everything more easily)
  • 20140604_102002Paint old bread pans and 9×13 cake pans to sort your foods. You can add cute chalkboard stickers and write what’s inside on the end. If you don’t have old bread pans, check out the local thrift stores and garage sales or ask friends and neighbors if they have old ones.
  • Use see-through containers so you can see what your foods are (these are from IKEA)
  • IMG_1325Use baskets to wrangle the things like bags of pasta, rice and beans (these are from the dollar store but I had them before–no need to purchase new stuff)
  • Use lazy susans for the corners to get the most out of your space.  Mine are from IKEA and only cost $9 each–a great price.
  • Go up as high as you can!

Check out our past show on Pantry Organization!

FYI:  The pantry is still organized and looks great 5 months after I organized it.  Doing this motivates the kids to keep it clean!

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Digital Organization

Before the holidays, learn how to manage your digital life including what types of files to save, where to save them, how to make backups and what tools to use.

  • Dropbox (Nancy’s favorite because photos load from her phone directly on to Dropbox)
  • iCloud
  • Google Drive
  • Microsoft Sky Drive (Windows 8)
  • Hard Drive Backup: LaCie Iomega  You can even make your own personal Cloud.
  • Data Disaster Plan—Send to a relative in a different state
  • If you have multiple copies of the same file on your laptop, invest in a program that finds multiples to get back disk space

Making Summer Work

Summer is a transition out of regular routine.  Are you a planner or not?  How do you make summer a success for you and your kids?  We discuss how we face summer.  Some of us are planners and others are “free range.”  Learn the benefits of both styles and how to find your own style for success.

Germiest Places in Your House

Where are the places that a cold or flu pass most easily in your house? It might surprise you that the salt and pepper shakers are one of the biggest culprits in your house. Did you know that your credit cards could be giving you more than airline miles with every swipe?  And you might not know that your shoes could me making your family sick.  It isn’t just enough to wash your hands this season.  Listen to learn more and then check out these resources:

Job Charts for Digital Natives

Our kids are digital natives and the old job charts with stickers just don’t cut it anymore.  Stacey and Shelly love a FREE online job cart designed to help parents and kids bridge the digital divide and come to a consensus on job charts.  This is one your children will want to use and is so flexible that you can set it up to meet your specific needs.  It emails you when jobs are completed and even allows you to reward kids through online ordering.  Greg Murset, creator of www.myjobchart.com discusses why he created it and we tell you what we think of it!

The Body Snatchers–Kids Moving from Tween to Teen

Wonder if your creature living in your child’s room really genetically connected to you?  He used to be your son, but now he is an emotional mess.  Maggie Stevens, author of Parent Fix, discusses how to weather the tween years and the transition to teen years.

Bringing 1 Million Parents Home

Ally Loprete discusses her goal to help 1 million parents home and how you can make it work if you want to leave the traditional workforce and be home with your kids.

Check out her site Our Milk Money, the online directory of self-employed parents who offer products and services in your area.

Managing the Chaos in Your Home

Professional Organizer and Podcaster Laura Lawrence explains how to organize the chaos of paper and other things coming into your home to reclaim peace, sanity, and possibly some extra cash! Check out more of her podcasts!

And Check out what her expertise did for my kitchen!