Monthly Clean Home Challenge: Clean Out Freezer

Welcome back to the Monthly Clean Home Challenge daily task!  I am on a quest to maintain a clean and organized home in less time and the goal is simple; four daily tasks, four weekly tasks and one additional quick task each week day. 

In no particular order, here are the individual tasks I am tackling each day this month:
  1. Make cleaning supplies
  2. Cycle clean appliances
  3. Clean out cars
  4. Clean out microwave
  5. Wipe down cabinets/appliances
  6. Wipe down trim/doors
  7. Clean out one drawer
  8. Clean out fridge
  9. Clean out freezer
  10. Vacuum under furniture
  11. Vacuum mattresses
  12. Clean oven
  13. Clean out one closet
  14. Wash out garbage can/recycle bin
  15. Wash windows
  16. Scrub grout
  17. Clean out one cabinet
  18. File paper piles
  19. Purge bathroom toiletries
  20. Clean out pantry

Today I am chatting about the extra task:  Clean Out Freezer

When I cleaned out our fridge, I mentioned that beyond just a quick clean-up, it also needed to be organized.  We purchased our side-by-side last fall and I had just been waiting to make the time to put some good storage and systems in place.  Well, the freezer was in the same boat.  Although it was much worse....

Seriously!?  You guys say you like to see my messes, so here you go!

Even while our fridge was a bit messy; it wasn't bad enough to cause us to over-purchase all that often.  Other than shredded cheese that is, seemed like we always had plenty of that...  We typically eat fresh foods and produce and do a pretty good job with our meal planning and purchasing.  Until the freezer comes along.  I have needed to take care of this mess for far too long.  Once the organization {or lack there of} was out of control, it only continued to spiral.  We no longer had any idea of what we had, and every trip home from the grocery store meant tapping into our mad Tetris playing abilities.  And what is up with us completely neglecting the available door pocket space?  I think once it was already bad, we just figured we would need an abundance of time to clean it out and fix it.  But that was far from the truth, this quickie freezer refresh really didn't consume too many minutes out of my day, but the results were incredibly worth the time I did invest.

The process I followed today mimicked the fridge process from a few weeks ago.  As with any cleaning/organizing project, I gave myself a blank slate to work with and emptied everything out onto the counter.  After the interior was wiped down, I quickly categorized the frozen foods; reviewing the expiration dates and assessing how much of each product type we had.  Once I knew how much each category contained, I was able to determine the best way to store it all within our given space and current container situation.

I quickly placed each item back into a bin by category.

Hello organized freezer!  Already a bajillion times better!

I was almost nervous that once things would be organized, they wouldn't fit any longer.  But I found packages of frozen berries that expired in 2012, so I was able to make some space.

Of course, the goal is to ensure we don't end back where we started.  Some label love to help the entire family stay on the same page {since cough cough, I am not the only one who puts away groceries or utilizes the freezer}, and the clear bins should assist us in gaining a quick inventory of our belongings before a trip to the grocery store.

The top shelf contains a bin with our breakfast items and all of our "quick" lunch meals to the right.  We like to whip up a batch of homemade waffles on the weekend and freeze those for the week ahead so the bin helps wrangle those along with other breakfast goodies.

Other bins hold chicken strips, vegetables, fruits and potatoes {hash-browns/french fries, etc...}.

The bottom drawer was perfect for oversized packages of frozen meets and seafood.

The labels were created by digging into my label stash and finding some decorative Martha Stewart options and pairing them with my clear label maker tape.

I even made sure to utilize the door now!  Such a happy ending to what was a not-so-happy freezer!

Looking for something?  Check out my favorite cleaning products below:

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