January! When the year turns, and our determination to stick to resolutions is never greater. The most popular resolution is eating healthy – and by that we mean “the most commonly resolved upon decision” rather than “the thing we most want to do.”
If you, like millions, share that resolution, more power to you! If by this week you are already side-eyeing all the junk food at the grocery checkout, come sit by us.
Jokes aside, within a week of New Year’s Day, eating healthy can be challenging for anyone. There are still tons of holiday leftovers, you’re only finally done putting the house back to rights, and still stepping on pieces of tinsel and pine needles. And that’s just for starters.
We’re not health professionals, and cannot advise anyone on diet. But as a cleaning company that has witnessed and taken out more than our fair share of post-holiday trash out to the curb, may we make a few suggestions?
Clean out the fridge
Clients often ask us to clean out the fridge just before the holidays. The better to make space for the Thanksgiving turkey and more. In fact, Clean Out Your Fridge Day is an actual thing. But we would argue that January should be a mini-fridge clean out event.
It’s easy to get visually overwhelmed by all the stuff in the fridge, push it to the back, start over, and end up with the remnants of cranberry sauce you intended to do something with back on Black Friday.
More immediately, it’s easy to continue overindulging, when maybe what you really want to do is freeze the rest of that gravy or mac and cheese for a really wintry snow day when you want to expend minimal energy. Everyone is bound to have a few.
Clean out the pantry:
Just as important as the fridge is your pantry. There are any number of reasons why we don’t eat as healthfully as we used to – we’re busier, fewer people cook at home as much, it’s easier to buy ready made food, and more. But over the years we’ve noticed that as storage gets bigger, kitchens don’t get any tidier. If anything, there’s just a nicer door to hide more of everything that we buy in bulk. Including food. Which is why every spring, without fail, our “deep clean” appointments begin with our walking past stoops and trash containers full of large bags of past-expiry food.
Invest in pantry organization:
Get clear containers and unpack food into them so you can see what you have on hand. It might sound like a silly, expensive way to make the plastic and glass container people wealthier, but if you can see what’s in your pantry, you might make wiser choices.
You’ll know what you have and what you need to get more of. Certainly, you’ll know when the flour has moths or that emergency stash of Parmalat is bulging. Because, yes, our deep clean appointments often include food that went bad, and smells or looks like it in the trash.
Even worse? The fresh food that went bad in the fridge, because the new bag of carrots landed on top of the old ones that got pushed to the corner and eventually … well, let’s not go there.
Shop after you’re done cleaning and organizing:
You’d be amazed how often we come back after the holidays to find a box of unopened supplies—usually in everyone’s way, especially the client’s—because the first bag of sugar disappeared into the recesses of the pantry and the second one was therefore bought in a panic. Then there’s the twos and threes of butter or yogurt that end up taking extra room in the fridge. Better to clean out, organize, and then shop. Not only will you spend less money and eat healthier, you will be less overwhelmed when you open your pantry and/or fridge to eat or cook.
Still side-eyeing the junk food? Definitely come sit by us. But hopefully, you have a cleaner kitchen upon your return home!