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Monday, February 7, 2011

Nightmare shelf: Posting my shame


That is all I have at this point. Maybe if I expose this mess, I will get it done. It's actually been on my mind lately. There are two shelves above this. Neither is in this condition. If I moved the yellow canister, there would be more of the same.

Someday, in the future I will post it...when it happens.

Cinnamon spill
See the cinnamon under the oil bottle? Looking at this shelf makes me tired. How many times have I spilled cinnamon and cleaned it up?

You bet! There is even a plastic-coated bin about 6"x10" also full of spices. The names of the spices are on the tops of the bottles since that is what you see (tops) of bottles of spice. See, I am making progress. No. Not really.

January 18, 2011--my deadline for getting this messy shelf and the rack cleaned and straightened.

Another shelf?
I think I need a shelf across the back of this cabinet to hold some of the spices. Don't you think so?

A pin for the pouches of mixes or whatever is absolutely necessary. Across the room I have a bin of unopened pouches. Nothing slides or gets lost. And, it looks neat.

Reward or penalty
This always works for me. What do I really want to do? Hmmmm.......go to a movie? Okay, that's it. I can go to a movie if I get this completed by deadline.

There is not another shelf in the kitchen that looks like this. Nothing even comes near. Okay, the shelf with the Tupperware looks as bad. But, that is always in flux, mostly out onto the counter or floor if I am not quick to catch it. Really, that does not bother me. This does.

Your turn
Do you have an area that is chronically messy? Is it something that you consider doing, knowing in your heart of hearts that you won't anytime soon? But, you always have plans and regrets? This represents a problem with cooking. It slows me down. Things fall over or fall out. This is my nemesis. What is yours? What can you not conquer? 


  1. Where do I start? Under the kitchen sink is a mess of cleaning supplies. The chicken coop and the goat and sheep barns will need a total cleaning come Spring. Garage - same! Store room, yep!

    I have a tupperware shelf and spice area, makes things easy and organized...if only the rest of the house was like this.

    Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting on the hard boiled egg problem, I really appreciate it.

  2. Chai Chai, honestly, I do have more messes. This seems to be the one that is worst and bugs me. Oh, here's a wish for all of us--fairies come in the night and clean up our messes!

  3. This is exactly how my kitchen shelves looked. The cinnamon thing drove me crazy. I finally came up with a solution that really has worked for me, and I have not had to clean up spilled spices for the last 3 years. I now put my spices in a deep drawer with the name on top of the spice bottle. I use a black sharpie or a piece of blue painters tape to label with the name and date. The blue painters tape easily comes off when you want to reuse the container. Lots of spices fit in a drawer standing upright. I even have room for my baking soda, salt, baking powder and so on. I buy these in bulk and use my own pint canning jars. Works like a charm. Wish I would have known about this years ago.

    As for the oils/vinegars or syrups/honeys, I put these in a shoe box or sweater sized clear plastic containers. That way I can slide the plastic container out if I need anything, drips stay inside on a piece of paper toweling and everything stays together and tidy. Kitchen cleanup is a breeze now that I am not re-cleaning the same spilled mess. Kathy

  4. Thanks, Kathy. I have seen and heard about people storing spices in a drawer, but I have never tried it. Your comment drove (lol) me to check. None of my drawers are deep enough for a glass bottle of spice to stand up. Believe it or not, I have never had a drip--not one so far. It is the cinnamon that I keep spilling! Or, maybe it just shows?

    I cannot safely pull a shoebox full or oils or syrups from the shelf...too weak and injured shoulder and hands.
    However, unless I hear of a better solution, I think I might measure the area I have to shove spices in there and purchase, used or new, a basket of metal, wood, plastic or wire to place in the shelf for spices. That I can remove.
    I really need to store that extra box of salt elsewhere!

    I lied? Liar, liar, pants on fire. A container of PAM decided to leak at the top ??? and got oil on the shelf. It soaked the salt box before I figured that one out.

    Thanks for the painter tape idea. Scotch tape leaves a residue that makes a new job for me--scratching off tape

    I would just put all the spice containers on a box or pretty basket on the counter, but spices need to be in the dark.

  5. Hi Linda,
    I also wanted to suggest keeping the spices and oils in the fridge in the same shoe box or sweater sized clear plastic containers. I know several people that do this and it keeps their spices and oils fresh. I do this with some of my oils that I don't use as often. The spices we go through pretty quickly so I keep them in a dark drawer.

    The clear plastic container is also handy for keeping condiments together in the fridge. I have two tall sleek stainless steel fridges from Europe (very energy efficient and a joy to use). Freezer on bottom of each unit. Lots of door space, but I usually use the door space for beverages, cut up snacks, breads and cleaned ready to eat veggies. The condiments in a container or three (yes, blush, we like our jams, pickles, mustard, olives and so on. I just pull out the containers I need then shove it all back in the plastic sweater box and back into the fridge when done. No more drips or leaks in the fridge now either.

    New here, but really enjoying your blog. Kathy

  6. Oh how I envy your refrigerator with the freezer on the bottom. That was how the one I bought in 1967 was configured. I loved it. This freezer is practically useless since everything falls/slides out. I do have a container in the freezer for smaller things, but sometimes there is an avalanche anyway.

    I have such a tiny refrigerator since it was all I could afford at the time. And, I keep it stuffed...not hard to do.

    I have four 64 oz bottles of Canola in there and several bottles of olive oil. I had to decant all of a gallon into several glass bottles because the lid was not airtight.

    When I get the spices sorted, I will have to figure out which ones need to be in the refrigerator. Somehow, I thought the moisture might harm them.

    Using the plastic shoe or sweater boxes in the refrigerator is a good idea, one I had not even considered.

    Two refrigerators is such a good idea, even for a single person like me. I know it sounds crazy, but it would be useful. I have produce gotten just for my three hens that ruins in the summer before I can get it to them. Plus, when I get produce to freeze or can, I need a place to hold it until I am able to can it, make jelly or jam, or freeze.

    Thanks, Kathy, glad to have your and your ideas.

  7. *chuckle* good luck getting it cleaned by January 18th! ;)
    (maybe that was wishful thinking? ha)

  8. Dmarie, I planned to take measurements today and did not. So, I went to Plastic City aka Walmart without them. I had a cart full of plastic to bring home and try in the shelves. But, I put it all back and decided to take the measurements back tomorrow. There is a plan in my head, better than I have had before, I hope. Keep your fingers


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