The holidays are a busy time of year, and even the most prepared household experiences a disruption in routines. There’s a general sense of disorder when the festivities are over. So, as the new year approaches, we long for a fresh start. Taking some time to reset your kitchen will help you step back into normal (or new) routines with ease.
3 Quick Tips to Help Prepare Your Kitchen for a New Year
These three simple tips are all you need to get your kitchen in order and help you set up for a successful start to the new year with less stress.
1. Plan Some Meals
You need to eat. Period. After turkey feasts, limitless chocolate, and way too much of our traditional holiday goodies, we’re stuffed to the brim. So we sink into our easy chairs and declare, “I won’t need to eat till next year!”
But the reality is, you’ll wake up tomorrow and your body will require nutrients so you can function. There’s no getting around it. Taking a bit of time to plan what you’ll eat is half the battle and makes the rest of these tips easier.
Start with your leftovers. Plan to eat them or to transform them into new meals. This avoids waste and helps clean out your fridge.
Will you be entertaining for New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day? What are your plans for those dates on the calendar? Do you need to plan your meals for those days?
Even if you don’t want to practice regular meal planning throughout the year, do make a meal plan for the first few days of the new year to help you start fresh without too much effort. You might be surprised and decide it’s a valuable practice you want to continue!
2. Grocery Shop Strategically
Grocery shopping during the holiday season can be a tiresome task. Traffic and shoppers slow down the process and it simply feels more stressful than any other time of year. Your meal plan is the first step in reducing that stress, so you’re off to a great start!
Use your meal plan to create your grocery list for the first week of the new year (including New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day). What ingredients do you need to prepare the meals in your plan? Do you have enough of everything on hand? What items do you need to buy and which stores do you buy them from?
Few things are more frustrating than gearing yourself up for a big grocery shop, driving to the store, and finding out it’s closed. Before you head out to buy your groceries, find out if your grocery store’s hours are different during the holidays. Some grocery stores are closed on New Year’s Day, for example.
Plan when you’ll do your grocery shopping and which store(s) you’ll go to. Avoid shopping when you’re hungry. Choose a time when you can do your shopping without feeling rushed. And if grocery shopping is overwhelming for you, consider recruiting a family member or friend to help.
3. Clean & Reorganize Your Kitchen
With your food for the week on hand, it’s time to clean and organize your kitchen to make food prep a breeze.
Start by putting away any holiday decorations. Launder your holiday table linens, box up your holiday tableware, and store it all away until next year.
Next, wipe out your fridge’s interior before putting away your fresh groceries. Toss expired foods and organize the crisper drawers and shelving to accommodate your food for the week.
Starting the year with a clean kitchen makes it easier to maintain a clean kitchen every day of the year. With the holiday clutter and fresh groceries put away, give your kitchen a fresh start with a good deep clean. Use this helpful daily kitchen cleaning checklist as a guide.
The key to simplifying kitchen cleaning is to keep the kitchen clutter-free and organized. See also:
- 9 Ways to Organize Your Kitchen to Make Eating Healthy Easier
- 15 Easy Ways to Conquer Kitchen Clutter
Give Your Kitchen a Fresh Start for the New Year
Now it’s time to spruce it up with a few touches to compensate for the emptiness after the holiday decorations are gone. Start by adding a vase of fresh flowers to your kitchen counter or island, then check out these tips for adding colour to your kitchen.
With your food stocked and your kitchen clean, organized, and fresh-looking, you can sit back and look forward to a productive week. It feels so good to be prepared!
Struggling to organize your kitchen? Need more storage space? Time for a kitchen makeover? Contact the experts at Riverstone Kitchens & Renovations for a free consultation about how to optimize your kitchen in the new year.