A Revolutionary Dish Rack

“This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Rubbermaid, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #RMDishRack  http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

Revolutionary-Dish-Rack

I’ve never wanted a dish rack sitting out on my counter top, which is why I would call the Rubbermaid dish rack ‘revolutionary’ because my mind is now changed.  I know, it sounds dramatic, but seriously, this rack is pretty & looks great in my kitchen.  No more nasty stained, flimsy plastic dish racks that are not even close to sturdy enough for expensive cookware, flatware and pots that need hand washed.  No more eyesores sitting out on the counter top, and no more risking your most loved dishes being ruined by piling them in the sink or sticking them in the dishwasher.

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This rack is sleek and made with much thought.  There are no sides on the rack so it can hold large platters and cookie sheets.  It is perfect for bar ware and good enough to be a holding spot for your precious china as  it air dries or as you hand dry each piece yourself.  The silverware container is removable, so if not needed, removing  it provides even more space for plates, pan & platters.  It also makes it very easy to clean.  I especially love the wide rows, they are all the perfectly spaced with the back two rows giving even more room for pans.  It resists mold and mildew with Microban, which is an antimicrobial protection product.

Rubbermaid-Dish-Rack-Target-2

The Rubbermaid Dish Rack was so pretty that while I was at Target I had to buy 2 of them.  I was able to get one for 15% because I am a Target Cartwheel card holder & they were having a special offer. Are you familiar with Cartwheel?  I simply downloaded the app to my phone and whip it out during check out for them to scan.  I’ve been amazed by the savings through Cartwheel.

So what did I do with my second Rubbermaid Dish Rack?  

I used it to organize my daughters art supplies!  The minute I saw that it did not have sides, I knew it would be the perfect thing to organize supplies & hold canvases, frames, mats and finished projects.  The removable plastic container for utensils is perfect for her paintbrushes, pencils and markers.  She loved it and it is modern & cool enough for my 13-year-old to be ok with having it in her room.

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One more idea I had for the Rubbermaid Dish Rack was to use it when we eat buffet style.  It would look great sitting on a buffet table holding plates in between the rows, and flatware in the utensil section.  The little foot up front is a perfect place to lay a pile of napkins.  I would even take it outside to set up for a buffet style picnic!  

As for storing the rack when not in use, I plan on adding a hook in my pantry to hang it.  Again, it is pretty enough that I don’t mind looking at it and don’t feel like I need to hide it away.  I want it out in the open, easy to grab.

So how would you use the rack?  Has poorly made dish racks kept you from using one?  What do you think of this Rubbermaid dish rack?

Organizing My Pantry & Some Tips For a Efficient & Simple Kitchen

New Nostalgia's organized pantry
 

Now that the kids are back in school, I am eager to continue on in my series of Minimalizing Our Home.  I can’t tell you what a difference it has made in the areas I have already organized/minimalized. It has been so very easy to keep those areas clean and tidy.  It motivates me to get busy and continue on in my mission of embracing the slow life.  Part of living life to the fullest is eliminating that which takes up precious time, and for our family, that means anything excess that I would have to deal with.  
Everything we bring into our home will need attention, whether it needs to be put away continuously, dusted or cleaned, or simply sitting there taking precious space in our home.  Because of this, I have become very thoughtful about what is worthy of my time and attention, and have enjoyed getting rid of anything that does not fit in that category…hence my minimalizing series!
Before and After organizing a large pantry
Back to the pantry, it is a space that really is important to keep tidy.  In my pursuit of health, I need to know what I have available to feed my family, and make sure it is accessible so we will actually eat it or I will actually bake with it.  
I love mason jars for this very reason.  With a glance I can see what we have and how much of it we have.  My kitchen is plastic free for the most part.  I don’t trust what is in plastics, and mason jars are just so cute and easy for me to store and use.  I keep all the lids in one big bowl, and the empty jars on one shelf.  The small jars can stack which really helps with storage.  I love not having nasty, stained plastic containers and lids of every color and size.  I love the simplicity of mason jar lids.  One bowl, very accessible.
Basket and spices

As you can see, I use mason jars to store my dried goods.  They are great for rice, nuts, seeds, coconut, & nutritional yeast.  I also love using a lazy susan in my pantry for the few things that come in their own resealable bag.  I also keep my peanut butter there, which I use every day so it needs to be in an easy- to- grab place.

The basket holds all my tea.  I like that I can quickly grab it and have everything I need for tea.

Under my tea basket are my place mats.  Again, easy to see and grab when needed.

Shelf for foil and wax paper
This little shelf works great for storing my foil & wax paper, etc.  I keep my extra boxes of tea underneath.

Using containers for certain foods

I like using containers to corral certain foods.  I have 2 white tubs on this shelf.  One is for pasta, the other is our snack bucket.  I keep bagels and bread in between the white tubs and the brown wooden tub holds all our nuts.  See the wooden clothes pin sticking out of that wooden box?  This is another way I simplify my kitchen.  I keep a large mason jar full of wooden clips and use them as chip clips.  I like that they are all the same neutral color, and it gets rid of bright colored- plastic chip clips that are all sizes and hard to store.

Salad spinner and rice cooker

This shelf holds some of my larger items.  My salad spinner, rice cooker and large salad bowl.   I keep clipped bags of chips in that large wooden bowl.  I also keep our cereal and oatmeal on this shelf.

The very top shelf holds any paper products we have, and I have put hooks up to hang our mop, broom, dust pan, mop bucket (in corner, not seen) and a plastic bag dispenser.  The wire basket holds my hand blender and potatoes when I buy them.  I have a large lazy susan for small appliances up top.

Organized pantry with trash can and mops
We recently invested in a larger trash bin with a swivel lid.  It works SO much better than this one in the picture.
Door to kitchen containing a hanging shelf
This door is in our kitchen right next to our pantry.  It leads to the garage and to our downstairs.  Our kitchen does not have much storage space, and our pantry is small, so I bought this over-the-door organizer about a year ago.  I keep hand towels & dish clothes in the bottom rack, as we only have 2 drawers in our kitchen…yep…I said 2!  I will share with you in an upcoming kitchen post how I deal with that!  Kids straws (Momma uses glass!) and our daily vitamins in the rack above that. Coffee & coffee filters on the next shelf. Above that are ingredients that I use often in my baking…baking powder, baking soda, salt & cocoa powder.  I usually keep vanilla there, too.  And again, extra tea boxes!  I love tea!
White organized kitchen and sink
While we are on the subject of baking, it is really helpful to be super purposeful about where to keep  ingredients if you want baking to be a “piece of cake” so to speak. I keep my flours and sugars out on the counter, then just need to turn around and grab the rest of my dry ingredients from the door organizer in the pic above.  My measuring cups and spoons are all right there.  Having everything so accessible has made a BIG difference in my motivation to be more purposeful in whipping up healthy foods for my family.  It makes me WANT to bake.
Recap of tips:
~Use mason jars–they are good for environment, they replace stained plastic, are see-through, and use the same lids which can be stored in one area and simplifies the kitchen.
~Use wooden clothesline clips as chip clips.  They are cute, small, and can fit in a mason jar for storage. Get rid of those big, multi-colored plastic chip clips!
~Use hooks to get your mop, broom and feather duster off the floor.  I have added more hooks against the pantry wall that is hidden for my girls lunch boxes.  Hooks are great for using vertical space.
~Use a holder to corral plastic bags.  This frees up a drawer or shelf/cupboard.
~Keep things that you use often front and center.  Be thoughtful and purposeful about where you place each thing.  This keeps your kitchen running efficiently and simplifies the baking/cooking process.
~Keep like with like.  Pasta together, nuts together, cereal together, vitamins together, snacks together, small appliances together….I really should put all my boxes of tea together…seeing them separate in the pics above is now driving me crazy!
~If you are low in drawer space, get creative with storage.  Use racks for foil, etc.  Use baskets for dish towels/dish cloths.
For More Minimalizing/Simplifying Posts:

Got any more kitchen tips for me?

Are any of these tips helpful for you or “jive” with you?