İ2009 Professional Organizer -
Lea Schneider is the author of
A Mom to Mom Guide available at
one-on-one organizing advice via phone and email through Organize Online
division at her company website,
Organize Right Now.
Her advice is featured
here at What's Cooking America in a monthly column. You may have read her
expert organizing ideas in Woman’s Day, Natural Health, College News, and
Better Homes and Gardens Kids’ Rooms magazines and newspapers. She is a member of the National Association of Professional
Organizers and the Association of Food Journalists.
Organize Right Now LLC
Member National Association of Professional Organizers
Organize Right Now
Check out all of Lea
Schneider's helpful home and kitchen columns at
Organizing Kitchens, Pantries, Menus and Meals.
The following is an excerpt taken
A Mom to Mom Guide,
written by What’s Cooking America’s own professional organizer Lea
Photo Credit: washing the
child might not grow up to be a cook or even to like cooking but
hopefully they will. Even so, every adult should have some basic
skills. With obesity taking over America, if you don’t teach your
child to prepare some basic healthy dishes, you are sentencing them
to a life of take-out. It isn’t only expensive but threatening to
weight, heart-health and is linked to cancers, according to articles
and news reports.
very least, your child should know how to keep a kitchen clean and
sanitary and the importance, how to wash produce and some basic
skills that will allow them to get by – scramble an egg, make a
salad, bake a potato, cook a piece of chicken, boil some pasta and
kitchen, the organizational lessons, your child learns are many.
They learn the good use of space and keeping like items together.
They can learn to organize space by learning the place for
everything in the pantry and the cupboard.
also learn about planning ahead. On a larger scale, planning for a
week’s worth of meals and grocery shopping in advance is a great
time saving and a time management technique for you. It is also a
lesson in goal setting. In a smaller lesson, preparing a meal or
even a recipe is a lesson in organization. You must gather all the
items, follow the instructions and pay attention to time needed. You
can’t bounce around from step one to step four (which certainly some
folks try to do when organizing!)
Here’s some hints for organizing your
kitchen to be child-friendly:
Kitchen Cabinet: Choose a lower cabinet and empty it. Into it, place all of the
kid-friendly dishes. Put in it the plastic Spiderman bowl,
Barbie plate and sippee cups. Add a container to hold the
child-size flatware. Put in a napkin holder with napkins. Not
only can they set their place at the table and get a cup when
they want a drink but they can help empty the dishwasher and put
their own clean dishes away.
If you have young children and there are some things you do not
want to them to constantly help themselves to, then you might
place the snacks on an adult-height shelf. Take a clear box and
place an assortment of approved children’s snacks, such as
granola bars, at a lower level for them. Likewise, if your
children pack their lunches choose a lower shelf and place all
the items that they may take in their lunchbox.
Have a snack zone in the
fridge. Add a bowl of fruit that everyone likes, such as grapes
or oranges. Add your small vegetable nibbles, containers of
yogurt or pudding, cheese sticks and so on. This keeps everyone
from rummaging through the fridge and also keeps them from
eating ingredients you have planned to use in meals.
Add a sturdy stepstool to the kitchen:
Dragging a chair over isn’t only
dangerous for the child to stand on but short sighted. You are
hoping to teach your child to help often in the kitchen so you
should buy a safe stool.
Once you’ve arranged your kitchen to by
child-friendly, check back next month for organizing tips for
working with children in the kitchen. See you then!
Check out the second part of this article at
Creating A Child Friendly Kitchen
(Tips for working with kids in the kitchen) -
There are a
zillion benefits to working with your child in the kitchen. Not only
do you get that precious one-on-one time with your child, you get to
teach many important life lessons.