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I seem to have a yearly break down in my systems of organization.
I can get systems set up, rooms de-cluttered, schedules made and being used, etc. for about 6-9 months and at that point, they start to disintegrate. I fight desperately to hang on to them, but generally it is of no use until I set aside specific time to really re-organize and figure out some new systems or get back into my old ones. Once a year seems to be the key for me, and lo and behold, its that time again! My routine has gone out the window with a baby who's nap schedule is changing, more homeschooling to add into our day, a hubby who's come home from the corporate office to being just down the hall and numerous other life changes.
Not to mention that in the midst of one of the busiest Fall/Winter seasons we've had, my kitchen has just come apart. My recipe collection is a mess, my meal planning is not coming together as well as it used to (due to disorganization), and my pantry is chaotic and bursting at the seams. I'm still working to fit blogging in to my life in a more balanced and minimal way, I've got a book that I'm trying to get complete and published, and now garden season is steadily approaching yet again!
Forget my visions of completing my throw pillows and organizing all of my digital photos (so much for a slower season!)... I'm all about practicality right now. How about you?
Here's what I have in the works for January, as I work on these areas in my own life and will be sharing some of what works (and doesn't work!) for me:
- Meal planning- How to keep it quick and simple, doing either weekly or even monthly plans, and even through special diets.
- Recipe organization- To help keep meal planning easier, I'm revamping my system of recipe organization. This includes my recipe binder, as well as lists of our favorite meals. I will be using several different lists from ListPlanIt to help me with it and I'll share exactly what it looks like as I finish my system up.
- Food prep in the real food kitchen- Cooking from scratch requires planning sometimes, so that we remember to soak beans and grains, make condiments, keep enough bread or other baking on hand, etc. I'll discuss some methods for making sure these things happen and your meals continue to flow smoothly.
- Kitchen storage- Fermenting/soaking/rising foods, leftovers, frozen foods, and the biggie... BULK storage!
- Preparing for spring gardening- Planning what to plant and where, seed starting schedule, etc.
That will definitely take all of January, but I'm so excited to cover these topics and work on these areas more in my own home as well! In the beginning of February, I will be attending the Blissdom blogging conference in Nashville, TN. After I return, I'll be continuing on in mid-February, on topics like adding to the homemaking binder that I'm beginning this month, and completing a new daily routine/schedule for a new season of life.
To accomplish a lot of this organization, I am excited to announce that I am working in partnership with Jennifer of ListPlanIt once more (you can read my review of ListPlanIt here)! She has graciously offered to allow my readers print access to a few specific lists that I will be using in some of my kitchen organization, and you can look forward to another giveaway from ListPlanIt as well.
Lastly, one request to all of you:
Don't share your tips and techniques in the comments just yet, but if you have something helpful to share with my readers in either of these areas, please send either a brief tip (2-3 sentences) or a descriptive photo (I would LOVE to get lots of photos!) to me at stephanie (at) keeperofthehome (dot) com. Thanks in advance!
- Bulk food storage (especially in small spaces or in very creative ways!)
- What do you do with all of your ferments and soaks? Where do you keep them? How do you remember them?
Any other requests for specific topics or things you'd like to see addressed? What are your biggest struggles in any of the areas that I listed above?