Week 2 of Declutter Challenge and we are working on the Kitchen and Laundry room. This time the checklist includes 30 items commonly found in kitchens and laundry rooms that you can most likely discard and won’t miss! At the end of 6 weeks, you will have checklists of more than 100 items that you can toss! Think of it as a Decluttering Scavenger Hunt! Print off your Declutter Checklist for Kitchen and Laundry Room and let’s get busy.
If you are new to this Declutter Challenge, pop over to week 1 where we dive into our bedrooms and bathrooms.
If you haven’t joined the Declutter Challenge yet, you can do that here. Once you join, you will receive:
And before you dive in, check out these 10 questions to ask yourself when deciding what to keep or what to discard.
Enough small talk, let’s get busy!
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So, let’s be truthful here. Decluttering the kitchen, in fact, decluttering any room, is not a one and done proposition! It has to be an ongoing analysis of what equipment and tools you really need to get done what you need to get done.
The kitchen is particularly prone to clutter because of all those alluring kitchen gadgets that convince you they will make your time in the kitchen all so much more enjoyable and productive. AMIRIGHT?
While I do try to weed out unnecessary tools and gadgets on an ongoing basis, the truth is that I am more productive when I am motivated to make a bigger splash…like when I am committed to a Declutter Challenge. And have something to guide me, like a Declutter Checklist for the Kitchen, really does help.
First, make sure you know where your kitchen discards will be going. Do you know a young adult who will be setting up their own home soon? Does your church keep a stash of items for families in need? It really helps me let go of items when I know that they will be going to a good home. Don’t forget to pop over to see suggestions of where to donate or recycle your discards.
In my case, my daughter will be setting up her first apartment soon, so it is easy for me to set these aside for her.
If you are anything like me, you can’t throw out a good jar! Especially ones of certain sizes…my weaknesses are pickle jars and small jars. I convince myself that ‘Oh, that is such a perfect jar size! You don’t come across those sizes all the time so I need to keep it for when I am sure I will need it!”
And then, 2 years later I have 10 pickle jars that have never been out of the drawer. Sound familiar?
It’s really easy to toss a jar when you don’t have a corresponding lid, so start there. Or if you have a lid without the jar…out it goes. I know it hurts a little to throw out a perfectly good Clausen pickle jar with a perfectly good lid. But, come on…we need to be strong here.
Really think about how often you use those jars and other storage containers and how many you REALLY NEED and recycle the rest. PLUS, rest assured that you will be buying more pickles soon and so can have a new jar if you really need it.
How many rubber spatulas does a family of 4 (when the 2 kiddos are home from college) really need? When I pulled them out of the drawers and counted them I had 8! I really had a hard time justifying 8, so I easily weeded out 3 that were a little ragged around the edges and 1 that was a duplicate.
Go through your tools and see what duplicates you have or tools that you really just don’t need anymore. (My daughter is thrilled that she will be gifted the mango corer. She used it all the time in high school, but it has sat idle for 4 plus years now!)
I know it’s painful to throw food out, but if that jar of jam has been sitting there for 2 years and hasn’t been eaten yet, it most likely will not get eaten. It isn’t saving you money by just sitting there so go ahead and make the tough call.
Use this time to go through your freezer and refrigerator and make meal plans to use the food tucked in there. This declutter is coinciding with my ‘Zero Spend January’, so getting creative with leftovers is what I’m doing this month anyway! (Which reminds me, if you need motivation (or just a lovely read) on using every part of everything you bring into your kitchen then read An Everlasting Meal by Tamar Adler.)
Sadly, it is also coinciding with my Dry January, so that’s another story altogether! 😉
And don’t forget to look in the pantry! What is lurking in there past its ‘best by date’?(I am actually a little loose with those dates…but you know what I mean)
My son is a world-class consumer of Sriracha and panics when a bottle is nearing empty, so he opens a new bottle. Before we know it, we have multiple bottles of sriracha open!
This little gadget comes in so handy! I use it in the kitchen, in the laundry room (for soap and detergent) and in the bathroom (for shampoos). It has been through the dishwasher more times than I can count and comes out like a champ.
OK, I am going to call out my SIL here (hope she forgives me!). When we worked in her kitchen this past fall, her family of four had 20+ mugs. I encouraged her to weed that down to 2 per family member. The same goes for casserole dishes, bowl, etc… If you have 5 casserole dishes, what is the likelihood that you will need all 5 at one time?
Items that seem to accumulate and turn into clutter quickly are mugs, travel mugs, water bottles, and plastic cups. If you go to any sort of company event, you will most likely be given one. If your family has a reunion, chances are there will be a mug, water bottle or plastic cup given. Really take a good hard look at all these.
While you are at it, toss the soy sauce packets…unless you want to pour them into your soy sauce bottle….you be you! I won’t tell.
Does your library have a used book sale? If so, they will love to have them.
So I’m using the ‘laundry room’ as a catchall for various rooms and storage areas. In my case, I’ve also lumped in the chest that sits in the hallway that I store stuff in.
Laundry rooms are notorious catchalls for whatever hasn’t made it to its rightful home or for which you haven’t figured out a home. Start there and put away or toss the stuff that doesn’t belong.
It seems extension cords, cords that come with electronic equipment and timers are something that accumulates in our home. Weed through those and figure out how many you really need.
Through this declutter, I am donating 3 extension cords and 8 timers and recycling a pile of electronic equipment cords that have sat in a drawer for years.
So, like you, I was alarmed at how many of those timers we had accumulated over the past 30 years! 😱 Often you don’t realize how many of an item you really have until you have them all in one place.
Tell me you have shopping bags filled with shopping bags, both plastic and paper. I mean, you never know when you will need 50 paper bags with nice cord handles…right?
C’mon friends, let’s toss 75% of those. Don’t get crazy and toss them all, I mean…you never know.
What are the chances you are really going to light one of those tea votives with only 1/4 of the wax in it only to have to replace it in 15 minutes with a full one?
You are on a roll now, so while you are focused, tackle that junk drawer.
What has been sitting in there for a year and never touched? What duplicate/triplicate of items are in there?
I am guilty of stashing unused packs of that floral food that comes with flower arrangements. But, since every time I get a floral arrangement, I get a new pack I think I can part with my growing stash.
So grab your Declutter Checklist for the Kitchen and Laundry Room and get after it!
Let the Decluttering Scavenger hunt begin! Pop back in with your successes or challenges! How many items were you able to check off of your list?
If you signed up for the 2020 Declutter Challenge, you received a link to the PDF in your email inbox. If you didn’t sign up for the challenge, but still want the Bedroom and Bathroom Declutter Checklist, you can grab it in the Subscriber Benefits Library, where all of the checklists will eventually land. Or, you can click the button below to subscribe to the Declutter Challenge. You can join the challenge at any time and will receive one email a week for 6 weeks with each of the 6 checklists.
Leave a comment below answering one of these two questions. On February, 28, I will randomly draw one comment from all 6 of the posts for the gift card. That way if you fall behind, you can still catch up. You can enter twice for each post if you would like, answering each of the questions related to each post.
Please know that I welcome each and every comment that comes my way.