Thursday, March 1, 2012

40 Bags - bag #24

The "medicine" cabinet before. We call it the medicine cabinet because that's where the medicine belongs, but there are other things that live here too:
  • bottles of lotion, insect repellent, and sunscreen
  • first aid supplies
  • vitamins
  • small tools like tweezers and nail clippers

and on the very top shelf (because I don't use them very often) are all my baking "fancies". Things like:

  • sprinkles, jimmies and colored sugars
  • food coloring liquid and gel
  • decorating bag tips
  • a cookie press

I clean out this cabinet about once a year but it gets messy again pretty quickly. What's wrong with it is that it's hard to find what you're looking for. I think that happens because there are so many different categories each with their own large and small tubes and bottles. There's a lot of stacking things deep in this cabinet. When things are stacked deep it isn't evident where a thing goes when you want to return it to its place, so items get shoved anywhere that seems more convenient.

Stacking things deep is a problem for me. I should remember this about myself and try to stop doing it. Do you think there might be a 12-step program for people who stack things deep? I have things stacked deep in every cabinet, closet, and drawer in this house.

While purging this cabinet I combined opened multiples into single bottles (throwing away the empties), took away the things that were here that belong elsewhere in the house, discarded all expired pills, potions and elixirs, and generally put the place to rights again. I didn't get what would normally be called a "full bag of trash" but I'm calling it bag #24 anyway.

I'm learning about containers from the organizing blogs . I didn't "get" it for a long time because it seems like adding containers to cabinets make less room in there for your stuff, and it doesn't seem efficient to pull out a whole bin - filled with baking supplies, for example - when you only need the baking soda. It might work for this cabinet though, but it will take some getting used to and the retraining of myself and my family to grab the "first aid basket" instead rifling through the whole shelf to come up with only the box of band-aids and tube of ointment. The top shelf is so high that I have to drag a chair over, and even though I had the stuff there somewhat contained, it still wasn't easy to pull things out or put them away. I've bought some deeper baskets with handles on the front hoping that will make it easier. Another thing I'm learning about containers is that they make a reliable boundary - you can only have as many bottles of sprinkles as will fit in the sprinkles basket. Even after re-organizing this cabinet I have too many sprinkles. Maybe we will make cookies this weekend and use up the excess?

It makes me feel bad when I see my poor Mr. Dub trying to get his vitamins out of the cabinet every morning. As you can tell in the picture they are all just pushed together on a shelf. I've put them all on a lazy susan. I think it will be more convenient for him. (It will only be convenient for him once he gets used to it being different from how it's always been. There might be an adjustment period to be borne. He hasn't ever complained about how it was, and there is risk in organizing a man without his consent.)

Here is the medicine cabinet after:

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