Friday, November 18, 2011
Last year I posted different things I do to stay organized with things like laundry and cleaning and menu planning. Now, I thought I would share a few things I do in the kitchen.
One thing that's important to do when you have a lot of little ones is to try and delegate some responsibilities to them when they are old enough to have some. Setting the table is one of these tasks that I was anxious to get the kids doing. When I started my dishes were in a cabinet up on the wall. They couldn't reach them so I still had to get all the dishes down for them. I decided that as much as I hated the idea of having my dishes in a bottom cabinet, it was the best solution. This way they are all able to reach the dinner dishes and can set the table themselves. It's also a great way to practice counting! I thought I would hate this but I'm so glad I did it and the boys like being helpful in this way.
Another tip I have is to keep one drawer in the kitchen that is OK for the little ones to play in. I have one drawer dedicated to just plastic cups and each of my kids as a toddler loved going in there and playing. It keeps them out of the other drawers and gives them something to do while I'm busy cooking.
My last suggestion for the kitchen is a snack basket. With 4 boys who are constantly asking for food it often feels like all I'm doing is getting people food. I made up a basket of snacks that I don't mind them having so that when they are hungry and want a snack they know they can either go to the fruit drawer in the fridge, grab a yogurt or go to the snack cupboard in the cabinet. These are all options that are low enough for them to reach and since I am the one who chooses what goes in the snack basket I'm not worried about what they are choosing to eat...it's already "mom approved"! And they really like seeing what's in the basket that week. When they receive candy from grandparents, etc. I don't let them eat it all right away. I usually give them one piece then put the rest away. From time to time I will put candy in the snack basket as a treat and they love it when they are surprised with candy as an option!
I would love to hear the ideas your family uses to make things more efficient and organized in the kitchen!