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Tag Archives: kitchen organization

Recipe Binder Ideas

Whenever I start a new project I like to see what others have done. To be completely cliche, there’s no need to “reinvent the wheel”. I’m working on a recipe binder this week, so of course I scoured the web to see what I could find. Here are some links from which I’m pulling ideas.

One of my favorite organizing blogs, iheartorganizing, provides her helpful tips for organizing a recipe binder using recipes collected from magazines or printed from online sites.

This binder from includes suggested categories, and printable downloads (always a favorite feature for me!).

And then there’s Martha (Stewart). She always has clever ideas, like her above use of photo protecters for recipe cards. A word of warning about the link, it takes you to the beginning of a click-through montage of kitchen organizing tips. This one is number 34 of 47. It is well-worth looking through!

This binder from Flaming Toes absolutely amazed me. I don’t think I have it in me to do this, but if you are crafty there is a detailed how-to for this really cute hand-covered binder.

Here’s another how-to that blew my mind (in a good way) from Crate Paper Blog. They show step-by-step how to make your own binder from the “ground up”.

If you’re like me and you prefer to purchase a binder, I found these from Klassy Kitchen on Unfortunately I had already purchased mine from Target. I love the design on these.

I realize the above is not a binder picture, but I borrowed a photo from another fun organizing blog I enjoy, My Color-coded Life.  Check out the link to read some good home-organization tips. Number five is her use of a recipe binder to make holidays simpler. . . a really clever idea!

This last binder how-to is my favorite, because it comes closest to what I plan on creating with my binder. From Decor-ganized Crafts, it combines meal-planning with recipe collecting. I have my ideas, now it’s time to start creating.

Command Center – Part 1

Here is what I’ve been working on this week:


A binder. . . woot-woot!   Inspired by an idea I saw on the iheartorganizing blog, I am setting up part of my family command center in this binder — a home-management binder.  Using binder dividers I created 10 sections. Section 1 is schedules with my overview of the day, week, and month. Section 2 is school information where I keep the kids’ reports, co-op schedules and similarly related items. Section 3 is for church information — volunteer schedules, kid’s programs, etc. Information related to the kid’s sports and extra-curricular activities are in section 4. Section 5 is contact information to keep important numbers and addresses, along with emergency-contact information. I included plastic baseball card holders to add any business cards I might want to keep as reference here. Section 6 is home-maintenance and improvement projects. This is where I will keep record of what and when we have had maintenance and improvements completed, as well as a list of projects we have planned. I placed baseball card holders here also for any related business cards we might collect. Section 7 is Meal Planning (I’m not sure I’ll keep this in my binder long-term — I have plans for a meal-planning calendar later). Section 8 is Finance for budget-planning sheets and also bills. I used a plastic sheet protector in this section to place bills that need to be paid, along with the check-book.  Section 9 is my personal section for things I need to refer to — my training schedules for running, book-club information, a list of blog ideas, etc.  The final section is for my husband to do the same; it is yet to be determined if he will use it. 🙂

This binder has cleaned up my refrigerator, which was previously littered with schedules and flyers; and it seems to be taking care of part of our paper-piling problems. The rest of our paper and book-piling issues I addressed by spending some much-needed time cleaning up my hutch. I added three baskets purchased at Target this week.

Using free printables from Better Homes and Gardens, I labeled the baskets.  The first is “To Do” for things I need to take care of immediately — letters to mail, items to return, magazines to read and file.  The rule for this basket is that it cannot get full; if it gets above the rim it needs my immediate attention. The second I labeled “In Use” for things I regularly use but want to keep with-in easy grasp — our family Bible study materials, the kid’s church club booklets, the magazine I am currently working my way through, and our management binder.  The final basket is labeled “To File”, which is self-explanatory.  I would like to get some matching vertical files to use in this basket so the papers don’t look so unsightly. Again, the rule is that this basket cannot get too full.  I actually need to do some filing!

Today’s project is the top two shelves of the hutch (there’s a reason I didn’t show a full picture). 🙂 I’ll keep you all posted!

De-cluttering Counters – Part 1

I began working in ernest today on my kitchen counters project.  I started with my worst corner first.  Some time ago, I had the idea to use my cookbooks as decor for my counter.  It started out cute, but then got out-of-control; the cookbooks started taking over. I also love those cinnamon-scented pine-cones that come out every Christmas.  They might be a bit cheesy, but it’s just not Christmas without them. This year, I didn’t know where to put them, so I stuck them in my already crowded corner. Needless to say, that area needed some serious help!

Browsing magazines, books, and the Internet for kitchen ideas, I came to the realization that these beautiful kitchens have one thing in common — the counters are clutter-free.  This is my goal this week — beginning with this corner, I am de-cluttering the counters. The pine-cones were the first to go; they had long since lost their scent and were always just an after-though, never really having a place.  Next, I took a good look at the spice rack.  I’ve had it for several years and the spices that I regularly use are empty.  The others have long since expired.  It too had to go (I’m washing it up and holding on to it for a bit just in case I come up with a brilliant idea for repurposing it — any suggestions?).  I removed the cookbooks from the counter completely. I will display a few of the nicer ones on a shelf; the others were either donated or went into the cupboard.  I then tidied the knife block and placed it closer to the kitchen sink, where it is most frequently used.

Notice the utensil holder to the left.  It’s a large cookie jar that I have jammed full of all my wooden spoons, ladles and spatulas.  I like keeping things handy so I can grab what I need as I’m cooking, but this is ridiculous.  I needed to pare down. First, I had to look at what I really am using, and get rid of those that I’m not.  I didn’t love the white cookie jar, so I used a cute water pitcher instead.  It adds a bit of character and color to my counter.  Finally, I moved it next to the stove-top so it is with-in reach while I cook.


My corner is now de-cluttered!

I even found a use for my shells (see previous post).  I had a nautical-looking piece I’m already using in my decor.  I simply added the shells.  It took 5 minutes!  I’m not sure why I waited so long. 🙂


I still have some work to do, but I’m feeling good about that corner.  My next dilemma is how to hide or disguise our Internet box.  It has to be in the kitchen because of the location of the outlet, but it is UGLY!

Any ideas?