Post # 1
I’m thinking about writing up a list of kitchen rules to post on the cabinets in our kitchen. Darling Husband and I live with his parents (the list would be subject to their final approval, of course), and his siblings are often home on weekends, so that’s a lot of people using the kitchen… and not a lot of people cleaning it up! Do you have kitchen rules, either written down or unspoken? Which are the most important to you? What violation of your kitchen rule bugs you most, whether or not it’s a really “important” thing?
I think my biggest concerns in the kitchen have to do with cleanliness and food safety — stuff HAS to be refrigerated in a timely fashion, the rags should be rinsed thoroughly and spread out along the sink divider to dry between dish washing sessions, not left in a nasty ball on the bottom of the sink. I’m also REALLY picky about treating the pots and pans well… we splurged on All-Clad and they are supposed to last for a lifetime.
Stupid things that bug me are when people leave the cabinet doors open, or just leave trash on the counter or sink. Plastic bags that held raw meat need to go straight into the trash! I’ve seen pizza crusts and egg shells just hang out on the counter for a day and a half before I finally just threw them out myself. Gross.
Post # 3
yikes. that is a lot of people using one kitchen! I think the biggest concerns are food safety and your pans. If you two bought the pans, you should absolutely get to dictate how they are used. And food safety should be a gimme… I mean you should be able to have confidence that everything in the fridge is safe to eat!
We are very clean with our kitchen. Dishes are done by the end of the night, kitchen counters washed down, food goes away immediately, etc. Its just easier to keep it clean than to let it get a mess and try to get it clean later.
Post # 4
Oh, food safety! I lived with 3 girls at one point POST college and they were the WORST! The icky stuff uncovered in the fridge, cake batter left festering on counters, ewwww
Post # 5
My only kitchen rules are NO metal utensils on my non-stick pans! I take pride in my Calphalon set, so that is a big no no! (DH is great about this By The Way.) I also have a rule that the dishes are NOT to be left to soak. We have a ceramic set from BB&B and if you let ceramics sit in water then put them in the dishwasher, you will see cracks all over the glaze. It’s called “crazing” and happens when waterlogged ceramic is heated. So my Calphalon ceramic bakeware and our dishes are NOT to be left soaking. Instead they are all rinsed off immediately, and scrubbed with a non-metal scrubber. (Actually metal scrubbers are off limits in my kitchen!)
We also have two sponges, one for dishes, one for the countertops. I don’t want to use the same sponge on both, that’s just gross to me.
Other than that, we’ll let the dishes sit for days, that doesn’t bother us much. We have dish nights three days a week, so they’ll get done within two days. We’re fine with that. Darling Husband sometimes forgets to put the sour cream back in the fridge, so I have to throw it away. But it’s much easier to regulate when there’s only two of you in the kitchen!
Post # 6
There’s only 2 of us in our kitchen, so we don’t have any actual set rules. We both do things in the same fashion, so our rules are more unspoken I guess.
Post # 7
- Wedding: June 2010 - Ceremony - First United Methodist Church; Reception - My parents' house!
I hate when he leaves food from food-prep in the sink. JUST SHOVE IT DOWN THE DISPOSAL, PLZ. I’m weird about that. :p
Post # 8
@Scissors same here. Something about those little peelings or whatever just drive me nuts.
You know what I’ve found? Sharing a kitchen with someone means it gets cleaned less. I know that sounds weiiiiird, but you always want to blame the other person for the mess. When I lived alone, my kitchen was always spotless. Now, like Mighty, we do the dishes every other day or so.
Can’t wait until it’s “my” kitchen again!
Post # 9
- Wedding: January 2011 - Vintage Villas
I’m totally OCD about my kitchen. I probably clean it at least twice a day. It just bugs me if it’s not clean – even if the rest of the house is messy, I feel okay if the kitchen is clean. And on the other side of that, I can’t focus if the kitchen isn’t clean! I absolutely cannot cook in a dirty kitchen.
But…I’m kind of weird like that.
Post # 10
Wow that is a lot of people! Last time there were that many people using a kitchen I was responsible for, I snapped and got kicked out of my parents house! No joke, we had my parents, my brothers, my step-sister, her husband and six neices/nephews staying with us in the summer. At 20, I was done cleaning up after 12 other people. Forget that! (It seriously was about time I moved out, but that was the last straw towards independence.)
My mother’s big rule was to stay out of her triangle! Stove/sink/fridge. Get out!
Otherwise, Fiance and I have weekly stand-offs on dishes. We’re both of the “Oh, don’t worry, I’ll do them tomorrow” variety.
My concern with your situation is that I don’t think a set of rules will change the already set in behaviors. It sounds like you are coming in as an outsider to the way your DH’s family has operated for a while. I’m worried they might just snicker about any posted rules. In our house, whoever is bothered by it does it. So, even with rules, you might end up just having to pick up egg shells and trash anyways.
Post # 11
Wow, my applause to you for cohabitating with so many people, including in-laws. I can definitely sympathize with wanting to micro-manage the activity in a shared kitchen, it can be highly aggravating to have to prepare meals around other people’s messes, and especially rough if there is “confusion” over food ownership. As for posting the rules, though, I’m sorry to say my advice is don’t do it!
Your in-laws are the rulers of the roost in their own home, and you coming in and trying to establish a new regime of laws in that most prized place, the kitchen, could ruffle feathers in a big way. I know if someone moved into my house and decided, even with my permission, to post a whole new set of rules that would govern my behavior and that of my guests – and grown kids, always a sensitive subject – I’d be peeved. In the interest of maintaining a great relationship with your in-laws, I’m sorry to have to advise that you defer to them while you are living in their home, both in the kitchen and everywhere else. They will greatly appreciate the respect you show them for their sovereignty over their household, and will be that much more interested in returning that respect to you when you have your own home.