Organizing Bloggers Kitchen Tour :: My Kitchen Baking Zone

Welcome to the Autumn Tour 
of Organizing Bloggers' Kitchens !!

As a professional organizer,  I am excited that I get to share both my love of organizing with you, as well as the creatively frugal ideas that I use to simply keep my sanity in my own home.
Maybe you can use some of these ideas, too? Today, we’re in my kitchen.
I am one descendant in generations’ worth of bakers. Bakers that bake in bulk.
One corner of my kitchen is the baking zone.
If you find yourself walking back and forth as you bake to retrieve items and ingredients, 
you may need to re-think the location of these things.

Store items in a way that makes sense and saves steps. 
Almost all of my baking necessities are within arm’s reach in this corner.

I love having my dry goods in these glass containers. 
With a glance, I can tell if I am running low on something.

Last year, I was about to put this wardrobe mirror in the yard sale pile. 
As I added this lamp, I thought, “There must be some way to get more light in this corner!” 
I remembered the mirror, measured it to see if it would fit, and here it hangs across from the window, reflecting light and doubling my dry ingredients! 
It also gives a whole new meaning to “watching what you eat”.
I found the jars and metal scoops at Wal-Mart.

I used to have dozens and dozens of cookbooks. but got tired of trying to remember which recipe 
was in which book. So, one day, I opened them all up to the one or two recipes in each book 
that we actually liked, copied them down onto recipe cards, and now I only have a few cookbooks.

I mostly get my recipes from the internet, so I use my iPhone a lot as a "cookbook".
Yep, my iPhone!

When I see a recipe I want to try that I’ve pinned on my Pinterest HERE, I plop my phone in this vintage sugar bowl (which has long since lost its lid) and have a paper-free means of making something.

If it passes “inspection”, it gets written down and put into My Recipes cookbook.  

Let me show you the insides of the cupboards.

The top shelf holds the least-frequently used items, the pastry mat and rolling pin, cookie cutters, and icing stuff.

The middle shelf holds the smaller measuring utensils.

And, of course, the lowest shelf holds the larger, heavier measuring bowls.

This is the cabinet to the right of the one above.

Paper cupcake liners.

Sugar, cocoa, salt, baking soda, and baking powder are kept here.
These are also handy because their lids have a slide closure so I can neatly pour out the contents.

The bottom shelf holds spices, extracts, and my favorite: sprinkles.

(As you may have noticed, I put many of my ingredients in matching, see-through containers.
I don’t like the surprise of running out of something mid-measure!)
Below the spices cabinet is the utensil drawer.
These are really, actually, truthfully ALL the items in this drawer, and the only items I use.
I decided a long time ago to keep the most-used items, because the rest was clutter.

The lower left cabinet contains all of my casserole and pie dishes.
Again, these are all I use and are plenty.

The cabinet to the right of the casseroles houses more pans and necessities.

In the bottom oven drawer are Below the oven are flat and flat-ish pans.
I use the cupcake pans A LOT!

Here’s a tip to keep your pans like-new: wash them immediately after you’re done baking;
and put them in the still-hot oven to dry; this reduces rust.  

To the right of the oven, the lower cabinet door holds the oven mitts.

And a picture holder is very handy to hold recipe cards while baking.

And a silver urn is very pretty to hold tall utensils.

As you can see, the refrigerator is to the left of the baking zone, so I can easily grab the eggs, milk, and butter, which makes a nice work triangle.

I am blessed with an over-sized rolling kitchen island that was once an old kitchen cabinet, now on casters, which I topped with a butcher block table top, and placed four bar chairs around.

We eat here for most meals.
(The dining room receives some attention for special occasions.)

On the backside of the island is storage.

I keep the baked goods packaging supplies in here, furthest away from the baking corner, 
because I use these the least.

Other pictures of my kitchen.  

Across from the French doors is the pantry.  

Some thoughts I’ve gathered as a professional organizer on kitchen organization:
  • Many times, things that are stored in cupboards aren’t actually needed in the kitchen; for example, fancy china, serving trays, special occasion utensils, crystal bowls, or vases. Move these to other areas (perhaps the dining room) to free up shelf space for your more frequently used items.
  • Go through your cookbooks and remove the ones that you don’t like or use. Get your loose recipes into a 3-ring binder, divided into sections.
  • If you don’t have a separate pantry, make use of stepped organizers, sliding shelves, and turntables inside your cabinets. Baskets work well to keep like items together. Labels help the family to know where to store items and make it easier for them to help to put groceries away after a shopping trip.
  • If you are spending more than a few seconds searching for a particular utensil, then it’s time to purge your drawers of the unused items. Ask yourself what is really necessary. You may need less than you think that you do.
  • How many dish towels and oven mitts do you need? These linens typically take up precious drawer space. I suggest seven towels, one for each day of the week, and four oven mitts: two square and two hand mitts. Hang them on the inside of the cabinet door nearest to their use on hooks or over-the-door towel bars.
  • More kitchen hints HERE.
  • And a re-organized walk-in pantry HERE.

I pray that each of you will have a beautiful day making your home!

The Kitchen Tour- 
click on the links below to see the rest of our  organized kitchens 
(and make sure you're following me on Instagram HERE 
for a great giveaway --hint: it's cash!--
that starts at 8am EST 10/1/14):

Click the Organizer below to be taken to their post:


Home Staging -- A Boy's Bedroom

I often get asked if a child's bedroom ought to be kept staged as a child's bedroom.

In a smallish house, a child's room ought to be more versatile 
and perhaps be staged as a guest room or office. 
In a larger home, the room can be kept as a child's room.

 What needs to be considered is the buyer market for the home:
  • Is it a family friendly neighborhood?
  • Are the buyers looking for plenty of indoor play space?
  • Are there good elementary schools in this home's district, that would attract buyers with children?
  • Does this home have 4 or more bedrooms, so that other bedrooms may be the versatile ones?
If the answers to these questions are yes, then stage one or two of the bedrooms as children's rooms.

Here are some BEFORES/AFTERS of a young man's room I recently had the fun of staging.

This home had been on the market for FOUR months before I staged it.
It sold in 11 days after it was staged and relisted.

This room was dark, but the chalkboard was way cool, so we lightened the room and kept the fun.



This room had a cool vintage Road Trip/ Travel theme which I kept.



The closets were simplified, too.
All the extra "shelving" was removed: concrete blocks/planks, blue plastic bins,
and shoe hanging rack.


During the staging of this home, this room went from "occupied" to vacant, 
when the family moved to their new home two states away. (This is why the closets are so empty.)
It's okay to simply stage the closets for fun!


Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Make sure the room is clutter-free, so the resident young 'un can keep it neat for showings. Limit them to their favorites, and work with them.
  • Pretend you're a child again: create ECPs (Emotional Connection Points), not only for the adults, but especially for the child. Make a few "play stations" or vignettes that a buyer's child would take interest in. The real estate agent wants to hear the children say, "Mommy, this can be my room!"
  • Remove anything monogrammed or personally linked to the resident child for safety reasons.
  • Widen the age gap: (You can't do much about a crib)-but as much as possible (with what you have to work with- and this is not always possible) try to make it hard for a buyer to guess the age of the boy living in the room. The room should be as appropriate for a 3 year old, as it is for a 10 year old.
  • Suggest to the seller parents that to ease the transition and stress of selling, they reward their child(ren) for helping keep their rooms nice.

Have a beautiful, blessed day making your home!

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Are you thinking about listing/selling your home soon?

You can find all my advice and help to get your home ready and SOLD quickly
and for more money than you thought, in my staging book!

Click HERE to read all about it.


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