Kitchen organzing can be priceless

Industry experts say that a well renovated kitchen can increase the resale value of a home by 20% – 25%. But, if you aren’t selling your home any time soon you might want to consider organizing and optimizing your kitchen to best suit your immediate needs.

Organizing inside the cupboards, pantry, fridge and freezer can reduce stress and lift the spirit substantially. Begin by thinking about optimizing the cupboards with turntables, risers and pull out drawers. Be sure to label the top shelves and you’ll never stand there wondering where the ladder is or what’s on that shelf again!

Rubbermaid Storage

Rubbermaid Food Storage

Kitchen Pull Out Shelves

Custom pull out shelves can literally change how your kitchen functions

The cost of a three-hour investment with an Expert Organizer is approximately $200 – the return on your investment will be priceless.

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Quick Tips for Moving

It can be challenging enough to coordinate all the details to ensure a smooth move so here are a few tips to make the ‘day’ itslef so much smoother:

1. Pack a separate bathroom and bedroom box and move these in your car – this will ensure you have toilet paper on hand for those unpacking as well as ensure your first night is comfortable

1a. if there is more than one bedroom – request the movers to load the bedrooms onto the truck last so that they are unloaded first… then the bedrooms will be set up first

2. Map out before hand where the receivers and phone lines will be installed – this allows you to know precisely where the installation folks should drill holes into your new home

3. Have plates, cutlery, cups and napkins bagged separately along with a cooler with cold beverages in your car so that no time is wasted when you take breaks and feed your moving crew

4. Be sure you have a phone charger in your car with an adaptor to plug-in once your indoors

5. Tape signs on the doors of each room with the ‘name’ of the room that matches the ‘name’ you wrote on the boxes so that the movers can accurately get the boxes to the right location

Clearing closets helps shed pounds?

Does clearing out space create room for new ……or help you shed pounds?
In a recent impromptu conversation on Facebook with David Cohen he openly shared with me that after clearing out his closets he weighed in 4 kilos lighter at Weight Watchers that week. Is there a connection, you ask? David says “I believe that there is a connection to ridding yourself of the old so the new can come in” He was tackling the kitchen when we started messaging back and forth so I asked him if he’d be willing to share how it ‘feels’ when he was finished.

A kitchen can generally take hours of focused work to complete – there are the cupboards, the fridge, stove and all that cleaning with sudsy soap and water to take care of. I was so excited when he got back to me and here is what he said…..

”Ok the kitchen is complete, threw out 5 bags of recycling, 4 bags of green bin…cleaned out, cleared up, made space…cleaned ovens, stove tops, cupboards, laid down new vinyl in the cupboards, put in new tin foily things in the elements (Stove top)…dusted, vacuumed, washed floors…cleaned the fridge and freezer too…what a feeling, I am exhausted but happy! There you go you wanted to know how it felt and that’s my answer…I have two more tasks to do and my deep clean spring clean is done! Oh and to me it’s about letting go of the past to make room for the new…are you finding your clients are doing this as well Deanne? Let me know…take good care, thanks for being a sounding board!”

Thanks so much for sharing your process David – I can just imagine how exhausted you were but I guarantee that the days ahead (in your kitchen) are going to make you feel like you are on cloud nine. You’ll want to maintain the little things like touching up the stove, wiping out the fridge periodically, etc just to maintain all the work you put in.

In answer to your question about the kAos Group clients letting go of the past to make room for the new – yes, they do want to let go of the past (or at the very least archive it) because that is an essential part of the organizing process. But when it comes to letting go of stuff (not particularly food items :)) you can’t always ‘let go’ until you know what you have. We prompt our clients to group like items together first and then you can comfortably and confidently rid yourself of the extra. In regards to making room for the new – let’s use an office as an example – the papers can’t all be shredded (remember we need to keep documents for tax purposes) so we create filing systems that can be easily archived so that the day to day filing system is roomy, easy to access and has lots of open space in the “new clients” section as well as “receivables”.

My final thoughts:
1. Pick one place and work on it till it’s done – you’re better off over estimating the time you think it’ll take
2. Have the supplies you need (if it’s the kitchen get the little foily things)
3. Celebrate your achievement – write, blog, note it on the calendar – something to honor the work you’ve done
4. Do maintenance spot checks on the areas you’ve completed – 15 minute focus times can maintain your efforts
5. Make room in your life for new things by dealing with the old stuff

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Are Those Spices Still Good?

Have you ever opened your kitchen cupboard and realized that your spices or dried goods have been there for quite some time? How long should you keep these items? How long do your spices maintain their flavor?

Here are some guidelines to help you get the food in your kitchen up to date.

Oils
Vegetable oils last for approximately 6 months when stored in a cool dark place. Nut oils last 3 months but should be refrigerated.

Vinegars
Red wine, white wine and aged balsamic can last up to one year when stored in a cool, dark place.

Beans & Grains
Lentils, peas, and beans can be stored for up to one year. Cornmeal should be stored in the freezer for freshness.

Baking Ingredients
Extracts last several years and yeasts lose their potency after approximately one year.

Sugars
Store in well sealed containers. Double wrap brown sugars to keep them moist or add a slice of brown bread to soften up hardened sugar.

Vegetables
Onions and garlic last approximately one month in the pantry. Dried mushrooms will last several months.

Spices
Store in airtight containers away from light and heat. Spices will lose their flavor naturally after approximately one year or faster if stored incorrectly.

kAos Group is in the business of organization – they work closely with clients to help identify inefficiencies – the clutter and disorganization that prevents professional and personal growth – and help clients streamline their business and personal lives to reduce stress and increase productivity.

Visit www.kaosgroup.com for more information