Hello my loveliest of ladies!
I am teaming up today with some of The Blended Blog–gers girls for some fun in our kitchens. Lest you think I am cooking, let me straighten that out from the start. This isn’t a recipe exchange post…although we are going to be doing this fall, so stay tuned. Today we are checking out what’s in my…
kitchen! Welcome. I have always liked the quote below and I would say it is true of our house.
I am not a fancy cook and usually follow a recipe only once, then kind of wing it from then on. But I try to love my family through the meals I prepare, however simple.
Let me show you around a bit. I thought you might be coming, so I cleaned up a little. Actually, the tidying was just part of my spring cleaning that ran all the way through July. I had to do it in fits and starts. Cleaned the outside of the cabinets with Murphy Oil Soap and water, then shined ’em up with Pledge. Actually, my builder said Endust is the best furniture polish to use in the kitchen but I keep forgetting that when I grocery shop. Just the way I roll.
Then I cleaned out the insides of the cabinets, and it is a good thing I did! This is the cabinet where I keep cake mixes and ingredients I use for baking.
See all of those boxes lined up on the counter? Take a closer look.
Can you read those expiration dates? No. Here, let me help you.
Yup, you are reading right. That box of Betty Crocker banana nut muffin mix was/would have been better if it was used by 27 July 2010. The Pillsbury Moist Supreme sugar free, devil’s food chocolate cake mix was better any time before July 03 2013. Oh, it hurt me to read those ‘better if used by’ dates and then carry all of these mixes out to the trash. Like throwing away a $15 bill. If there was such a thing.
But here’s the deal. It isn’t that I haven’t cleaned my cabinets in 3-6 years. It’s just that I didn’t realize a cake mix or muffin mix would expire. And we have been on a perpetual diet of some sort since spring of 2010. So I kept waiting til I got skinny to bake.
Here’s that same cabinet after I tossed those mixes. And went grocery shopping to buy “fresh” replacements.
See that Lucky Leaf apple pie filling on the bottom right shelf? I am going to use that tomorrow to make a cobbler. To heck with dieting.
So, we’ve seen the sweets cabinet. This is the salty cabinet. Snacks, chips, nuts, crackers. Before spring cleaning on the left and after spring cleaning on the right. Not much difference…just filled it with more. More snacks, chips, nuts and crackers. To heck with dieting.
Moving right along, I give you the pantry. Before:
My Prince sometimes grumbles that we have enough food in the pantry to sustain us for months (he doesn’t know about the expiration date fiasco on the baking mixes). I know we do have plenty of food – expired or otherwise. But I was raised by a mother who had what she called “the grocery store” in a spare bedroom of our house. Flats of canned goods and dozens of boxes of toothpaste (does it expire?) and packages of toilet paper, bottle of soda. On every can of soup or veggies, she would write in permanent marker the date it was purchased. And she used everything accordingly.
She was a child of the depression, though. I’m not. But I did live in Panama for six years. We were never sure what would be available at the commissary. Often depressing.
I am pleased to report that I didn’t find too many expired surprises in the pantry. A few packages of water-packed tuna in crazy flavors. No doubt a staple for one of my diets. Artichoke hearts in a jar. We don’t eat artichoke hearts in or out of a jar. Not sure where they came from. Here’s the after-summer-cleaning pantry pic.
About the same. Minus the mysterious tuna and artichokes and Purrsnickitty. You will be relieved to know that Snick hasn’t expired.
The spice drawer is my pride and joy. Some of my best OCD-inspired organization.
I saw this idea on Pinterest and loved it. Alphabetizing one’s spices makes it so much easier to find the one one wants and to see which ones one might be running low on. That’s a lot of ones.
From Adobo to thyme.
My cookbooks are in a cabinet above my frig. I rarely get them down. I usually put them up there and forget them.
Oh, look. There’s a Weight Watcher’s cookbook up there. Hmm. That has been the diet of choice for the last two weeks. Might need to get that one back out. Or not.
And that’s my kitchen. With the exception of the inside of the oven, micro and dishwasher. None very impressive and all three free of expired food.
So is the refrigerator. I clean it more than once a year during spring/summer cleaning. Probably because I am more aware of expired food in the frig. It is much easier to tell when a bag of grapes is beyond its prime. Or when a package of ground beef is graying and old and ready to be retired.
See those stripy things? Those are el cheapo plastic place mats that I use on the refrigerator shelves. If, no, make that when…WHEN there is an accidental spill, those place mats really make clean up a breeze.
So there you have it. The good, the bad and the expired of my kitchen.
Waaaaay back in July, some of the TBB-ers blogged about their junk drawers. I was just jumping into summer cleaning mode and could barely get my junk drawer open. Well, I am happy to report that I did get it tidied up. In fact, I tidied so well that what was two big junk drawers is now a large junk drawer for general…junk…and a smaller drawer for tools, batteries, hardware we need in the house on a regular basis. I used the second big junk drawer for place mats. The ones that I use on the table. Not in the frig.
Now to keep everything neat, clean and not past its expiration date.
Would love to have you share pics of your kitchen, pantry, spice rack/drawer. Won’t you join us? You can link up below or share pics on social media using #TBBWhatsInMy.
Hope you will hop over to the blogs of my friends Katie at The Mishaps and Mayhem of a Solitary Life , Sheila at Making the Most of Every Day, to check out their kitchens. I’m heading over there, too. Follow me!
Hugs and kisses,