Ever since I put together my cleaning schedule a few weeks ago, I've had cleaning up and cleaning out on my brain - especially since I put that schedule up right smack on the front of the fridge. No out of sight, out of mind for this girl. Plus, it's pretty to look at and fits in nicely next to my magnetic fridge organizer.
One of the items I put on the monthly part of the list was cleaning out the fridge and freezer. The fridge got a nice clean-out a couple of weeks ago (Um, it's amazing how well those old/expired items can hide in the back corners. Those sneaky things...), but the freezer needed a little more TLC than just a nice clean-out. Let's just say it had some organizational issues - as in it had no organization at all.
Ahh! Crazy mess alert!
Before we get into the solution to this little organizational nightmare, can I just whine for a minute? Make a plea to all the freezer designers out there? Why oh why is there only one measly wire shelf? Do you really think this is a functional design? Please, please do something to make this precious space a little more functional.
Whoa. Ok. Reeling it in...I just had to get that out.
I decided that in order to utilize that one little wire shelf well, I would need some bins. Preferably ones that cost very little money. Enter the dollar store. The one near me always has a great selection of small plastic bins, buckets, boxes, etc. that are perfect for this kind of job. We'll get to those in a minute...
The first thing I did was clean out the freezer - quickly, before any significant melting could happen - by pulling everything out, throwing old items away, and getting rid of anything we knew we wouldn't eat. I love having a clean slate to work with before doing any organizing.
(P.S. You can just ignore the junk on the top of the fridge and the items in the freezer door. Just keepin' it real here - I haven't gotten my organizing hands on that stuff yet.)
I moved the shelf up a notch so that four plastic bins would fit, and did a quick wipe down with some all-purpose cleaner before loading everything back up again.
Here's how it looks now with the new bins!
I loosely grouped the items in the bins by category knowing that we generally keep the same types of items in our freezer. I'm keeping it flexible for awhile though, just to make sure I'm really sold on this bin system. If I decide I like it, I'll probably label the bins by category.
For now, starting from the top left and moving clockwise: the first bin holds bread and snacks, the second bin holds ice cream (yep, that needs its own bin), the third hold meat, and the fourth holds vegetables. We keep a bag of ice in there too because the ice from our automatic ice maker tastes yucky :(.
So for a total of $4 (bins were $1 a piece) that's how I cleaned out and organized our freezer. Do you have any tips or systems that have worked well for yours? I'm always open to suggestions!