Another Organizing Feat! – The Pantry

We have our children earn money in order to buy gifts in our family.   That includes holiday items, like Christmas too.  This gives more meaning to each gift as they had to put hard work and effort into earning the money.  There have been some birthdays where some boys did not buy a gift because they chose to put it off to little to late.  It was a lasting lesson that could have only been learned by them.  So when it came time for our children to earn money for their presents for their brother, whose name they drew, and for their Mom & Dad, we posted a list of jobs on the refrigerator.  We made sure we listed hard to easy jobs and counseled our older two children not to take the ones meant for the younger boys.  One of those items was to organize the pantry.  I guess I didn’t make myself clear as I thought this was a job for one of the older boys, but my, then 7 year old, decided that he would call that.  He started off good, and even had the younger children helping him to unload the pantry shelves onto the kitchen floor. My nervousness started kicking in when I saw that instead of just emptying everything, they were building cities with the boxes and cans.  I can’t believe I didn’t get a picture of that one.  The younger kids got bored and it was soon left up to my son to finish the job he started.  It took him FOREVER and it was a job that looked like a 7 year old did it.  Meaning to go back and “tidy” it up a little after the week had finished, I let it go and called it a job “well done” for his age.

HAH!!!!  Here is what it looks like today:

My well intentioned thoughts never amounted to anything and chaos has since reined since nothing was really in an easy to get place.  Items have been thrown in there by my children and me, I have to admit, as I kept thinking to myself, I need to get that done today.  🙂  Haven’t we all done this many many many times?  I guess the one thing that I can say about myself and My Heart & Home, is that I have always been real.  There is no “pretending” that I am all put together all of the time and I say it like it is.  So welcome to the reality of my pantry today.  My goal is to get it organized once again, hoping to help you in the process, with some pantry hints and helps.

So join me today on my journey.  I will be organizing while my son is napping and will take after pictures with some close-up shots of how I get everything put together.

And now, I am going in . . . . . . . while listening to our theme song “One Step At a Time” of course!


Cans are all put in the can stack racks so everyone can see exactly what goes where.  I keep my flour in the big tub at the bottom with the yellow gama lid, the sugar with the blue gama lid and my powdered milk with the orange gama lids.  Indispensable items!

Threw away most of my boxed items and put into resealable containers with labels, some fancy, some not.  My boys eat a lot of Ramen Noodles so the second to top shelf is dedicated to that item.

On my door I have the over the door shoe holder where I keep all my jello packets, oatmeal packets, rice packets, popcorn packets, seasoning packets.  Do you get the idea? 😉

Using a smaller shelf rack I have been able to stack items that usually are not stack-able.  I like to take the cracker packages out of the box as they just take up room.  This also hides them just a little from the boys so my husband and I MIGHT have a chance of actually eating a few.  I keep all my chocolate chips in another rectangular container as well.

A simple shot of my containers

I hate it when the bread gets squished so I have a basket that hangs from the shelf to give us easy access to bread and keep it fluffy!

Life is good, but now I realized I need to add just a FEW more things to my shopping list.  It’s amazing what you find you DO NOT have after organizing your food space one again.  Just a small reminder, this is a job that must be done at least quarterly.  Plan it into your routine, as spaces like these rarely stay pristine, especially if you have children, and double especially if you have teenage boys raiding the pantry because they think they need to grow a few more sizes this month just so they can get new pants.  🙂

Posted on January 11, 2011, in Before & After Pictures, Food Storage, Step Three and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. I love the bread basket. Where did you get them? I need one just like that.

    • Alisa,

      I honestly can’t remember. It was so long ago that I have no clue. It had to have been at someplace like Target, Walmart, Kmart, etc. Since that is usually where I get my totes and organizing stuff, unless I can find it at a bargain store.

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