Kitchn Cure: remember that?

A while back I posted about my efforts to whip my kitchen into shape via the Kitchn Cure. I even blogged about the first week. Maybe (okay, probably not) you are wondering where weeks 2-4 went. Well, I finished those too! But, it turned out that deep-cleaning your kitchen is EXHAUSTING. Yes, even with a tiny kitchen that was not exactly disgusting to start with. So I lost the energy to actually blog about it. But, I was scrolling through my photos recently and was reminded that I had actually finished the thing. So here’s a quick little recap of the Cure.

First, I should acknowledge that for me, the final three weeks stretched out to five, bringing my total Cure time to six weeks rather than four. I first began to run into trouble cleaning the oven:

The Cure estimates you will spend about an hour cleaning your oven (plus an overnight application of baking soda paste). I am pretty sure I spent quite a bit longer, and this task stretched over several evenings, with a final Saturday cleaning session to get it wrapped up. Still, in the end, it did look much nicer:

I also cleaned a number of small appliances (toaster oven, dehydrator, food processor) with a little more thoroughness than usual:

Reorganized my pantry:

Emptied out and cleaned my cabinets, then put things back nicely:

And then completely ran out of steam and failed to photograph the cleaning of my under-sink area, floors, surfaces, or trash can. But I did actually do those things, promise!

One thing I did not do? Download the 20 min/day monthlong cleaning guide that’s recommended to keep your kitchen tidy. I cannot fathom having that much time available just for cleaning the kitchen. And some of the chores seem, frankly, excessive. What on earth are you doing in your fridge that it requires cleaning every two weeks? Since finishing the Cure, I’d say M. and I have collectively spent an average of maybe 10 min/day on kitchen cleaning outside of the routine “hey, we cooked a meal, time to do the dishes and wipe down the surfaces we dirtied”. The kitchen is fine.

Despite that little hiccup of the last chore, it was a good six weeks of cleaning and organizing and I’m happy to have done it. It’s been a few weeks since I finished, so I can report on whether or not the Cure is “sticking”. My thoughts?

1) The Cure helped me get back into the habit of doing a little bit of housework each evening, which I like. It’s nice to come home to a cleaner space and when there’s only one or two things out of place, housework doesn’t seem like a very daunting task.

2) But, some of the tasks were just too much for a weeknight. Nothing like finding yourself elbow deep in oven soot and baking soda paste and 10:30 at night, with a 5AM alarm and 9AM conference call looming, right? If I do this project again, I’ll be developing my own timeline for each week’s tasks, and if that means my Cure extends by a week or so, oh well.

3) Staying power: My new pantry system is sticking pretty well. We’re also trying to “shop the pantry” a little more over the next few months, and having things sorted and organized is making that much easier. In other areas, the cabinet interiors are also still looking nice, as is the oven. Much of the surface cleaning, obviously, does not last as long and has already been repeated once or twice since I finished the Cure. I find I’m more conscious of the grub that quickly builds around our cabinet handles and have been finding myself giving those areas a quick wipe-down while I’m waiting for something to finish cooking.

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