The Kitchen is Open

purpleragmarlaDear Friends,

This week we have been focusing on our kitchens and getting rid of our clutter. Many people have asked me why I started with my kitchen sink. Well it is quite simple really. My sweet darling just wanted to be able to get a drink of water or make a pot of coffee without having to deal with a sink full of dirty dishes. He was so sweet about it too. Please just leave one side open for me.

Our kitchens are the heart of our homes. Think about the joy that comes from this room when the whole family is in there. Now think about every one avoiding it like the plague when it is messy. Hadn’t you rather have a room that was joyful than a room that was unpleasant to be in.

Lots of good things happen in a kitchen besides cooking.
1. Children get homework at the table while cooking is happening.
2. Games are played around the dining room table.
3. Projects are worked on.
4. Family meetings.
5. Wrapping presents
6. Grocery landing area when you get home for the store.
7. Financial Planning
8. Paying Bills
9. Income taxes.
10. Plan your trips and holidays
11. Birthday parties
12. Showers for babies
13. Meet the boyfriends
14. Coffee with a friend
15. Committee meetings
16. Card parties

Then there are all the things we do while cooking.

17. Planning menus
18. Making Grocery Lists
19. Looking a cookbooks for ideas
20. Making salads
21. Cutting up veggies
22. Decorating cakes
23. Baking cookies
24. Helping Mom make recipes
25. Learning to set the table

Here are some other things we do in our kitchens on our dining table.

26. Arranging flowers for the dinner table
28. Folding clothes
29. Sewing
30. Cutting out patterns
31. Art project with your babies.
32. Scrapbook pages.

So you see when the dinner table and the kitchen is dirty or messy;  it keeps us from doing family activities in our kitchen.  I want your kitchen to welcome you and invite your family to join you in having fun in the kitchen. Make your kitchen a place of memories by keeping it clean and ready for spontaneous family interaction. You can do this and it all starts with your kitchen sink.

Don’t let that mountain of dishes discourage you from using your kitchen as a place of joy, good memories and love.  DO NOT EVER use the kitchen as punishment either. Washing dishes is not sentence for being bad. No wonder the kids run when you mention starting dinner. Dinner is a good way to get the family involved. That is if you don’t have to clean up after last night’s dinner.

As in our daily routines, the before bed routine is the most important. Cleaning up the kitchen after dinner; starts your day with a wonderful feeling the next morning: This is essential to keeping your kitchen ready for fun.

Now I have a few simple habits to practice when you start cooking in order to keep your kitchen from getting out of control. You know the avalanche of pots and pans, dishes and mixing bowls that clutter all your counters as you begin preparing a meal.

1. Make sure your dishwasher is empty before starting to cook.

2. Start with an empty sink too. Then fill it with hot soapy dish water to wash a few dishes as you go.

3. Use your timer!!! So you don’t burn things and don’t cook on high

4. Don’t do two things at once. If you are in the kitchen do not leave while you have things on the stove!!! We tend to burn lots of food because we get sidetracked.

5. Don’t prepare more than one thing at once. Stay focused, do the prep work and then put it on to cook. Then pick up and put away all the ingredients, trash, and compost. CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELF AS YOU GO! Let the children help you: Delegate! Children love to cut up veggies and make salads. Be careful allowing children to handle raw meat. Wash everyone’s hands often with soap and very warm water.

6. Have a plentiful supply of clean dishtowels. Put out clean ones every evening.

7. Wash up or put in the dishwasher all the prep dishes before you sit down to eat your meal.

8. Set a pretty table with the good dishes, fancy glasses, good flatware, candles and real napkins. Treat your family like company. Children love to set the table. They learn by doing. Then dinner becomes a childhood memory instead of pain.

9. After dinner have everyone clear their own place by taking their dishes to the dishwasher.

10. Finish the kitchen clean-up which will only take 15 minutes if you have followed these few tips.

11. Then shine your sink and turn out the light then say. Wow! Just look at our wonderful kitchen. You won’t even need a light because you will be shining from the inside out with pride!

Make your kitchen the heart of your home by keeping your sink shining and your dining table open for conversation, inspiration, and love!

Are you ready to FLY with your family in the Kitchen?

FlyLady

I have been decluttering a drawer each day this week. Babysteps to getting rid of clutter that seems to invade a kitchen.

We have a new book to help you get energized in the New Year. It is written by my sister Paddi. Hidden Treasures is a self-help book that is written in a novel format. It has already helped many FlyBabies get excited about FLYing into a NEW YEAR!

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Do you have a calendar that is efficient for your family? Don’t Procrastinate! We will run out of them soon!

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