I’m still working on a project list for the summer, but I don’t need a list to know I won’t go far without an organized refrigerator/freezer and pantry, much to my complete and utter dismay. Cleaning out those areas is one of those annoying, foundational chores upon which the rest of my projects rest. The truth sucks.
I could have the sparest, cleanest, most organized house on the planet, but if we only eat junk outside the home, it’s all for naught. I don’t need to do the math to know we waste more on eating out than we do on knickknacks from Target. The WMP is a project of less: less stuff, less waste, and ultimately less stress. Most of my stress centers around food (for a lot of reasons).
I easily get wrapped up in projects and work; I always have, and I likely always will. I’m trying to do better in that regard, but until I figure out how to balance work/life for longer than a month, I need a plan in place for those days when I pull myself away from the project of the day, shocked to discover it’s 5:30 and I skipped lunch.
I can’t create a plan if I don’t know what’s in my kitchen, and I won’t know what’s in my kitchen if I’m shoving aside leftovers and expired bottles of condiments.
So many, many condiments.
I cleaned out the fridge differently this time around, and this new way is the way I will do it from now on because it produced a faster sense of accomplishment. Before, I would attack the fridge as a whole and pull out anything expired or spoiled. Next, I would discard leftovers and items I didn’t like or want. I finished by putting the “keep pile” on the counter and deep cleaning the fridge. I didn’t get a sense of achievement until I finished the job.
This time around, I worked in sections. I pulled out all the condiments, as seen above in all their excessive glory, and purged the pile. Then, I deep cleaned the condiment section of the fridge, and returned to the fridge all the condiments that made the cut. I did the same with the center of the fridge, the vegetable and fruit drawers, and the meat and dairy drawers. I washed all the doors, drawers, and shelves.
I didn’t as much food to keep as I expected. Before I started cleaning out the fridge, I asked my procrastination monkey to google phrases like, “recipes with orange juice and heavy cream” and “how to use up balsamic vinegar.” Monkey was sad to hear I wouldn’t need the special pinterest board he created for food about to spoil. He put a lot of work into it! That’s okay! I’m going to have him make a pinterest board devoted to condiments, because apparently that is the only thing I buy.
How embarrassing. A house full of condiments and no real food.