Refrigerator Cleaning

Refrigerator Before

After Cleaning

So, it was time to tackle the fridge. It had finally got to the point that it was really bugging me.  (That is generally what’s required to get me moving on any cleaning project!)  When I started, I was really stumped on how I could fix the problem. It is a problem that we all encounter with lots of different spaces, not just the fridge. How do I fix it and not just move the pile of (insert favorite word here) from one location to another? So, I deconstructed it.
I unloaded the fridge in its entirety, and I made some presuppositions:

  1.  The organization that I was about to do may not be optimized for every situation, but any forward progress was a learning experience on how to do it better for next time.
  2.  The organization that I perform at this moment will have to be revisited on a recurring basis.

Now, I have a friend that once said to me that he had a fifteen minute rule. i.e., any mess that takes longer than 15 minutes to clean up is too big, and must be cleaned up right then and there. (Thanks, Walter!) And while I do not know if this is a rule that he has been able to adhere to, I like it, and would like to find myself following it. That being said, it took me about 3.5 hours to clean this up. Which might give a clue as to just how bad it was needing it.

So, did I learn anything? Yes:

  1.  My LG fridge has adjustable shelves, but like most people, I do not take the time to evaluate the best position of those shelves. This is mainly because food comes in containers that are various sizes, and it can be hard to predict which sizes one might stock over the course of the food cycle.
  2. Small adjustments to the placement of the shelves can have a huge impact.  I came to realize (after much thought about the shapes and sizes that I was trying to place into my fridge) that improper placement of shelves can act as a nucleation site for compounded clutter.  In my case, I have had a few extra “tall” items that I have been trying to place in the fridge, but because I did not have the correct shelf placement, I only had one area that I could place tall things. –This was my clutter nucleation site. All of the small things had to yield to the placement of this one container size.

My current solution: I adjusted the shelf on the right by moving it 2 inches higher.  This now divides the space on the right into two equally spaced areas. With the added benefit of a half-shelf, the upper space on the right can be broken down into smaller spaces, currently used to shelter the eggs (see picture). So far, this small change has made a big difference in the form and function of the fridge. I will reevaluate after a couple of months to see if further changes are necessary.

Keep in mind that this may not work for you. It really depends on the type of containers that you are storing in your fridge; however, I’ll bet with a little bit of thought, your fridge can be better optimized, too!

Cutting a Watermelon

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Slicing in two pieces

So, I found out that my wife hates cutting watermelon. The reason? I can eat it about as fast as she can cut it.  So when I offered to start cutting the watermelon. She let me.  I stepped up to the watermelon with my knives and cutting board in hand and had an immediate revelation.  I had absolutely no idea how to cut a watermelon.

Now, my Shun knives are pretty sharp, and I have no desire to make a trip to the emergency room. So, I had to stop and think about this.  Here is the method that I came up with. (If someone knows a better way, please share)

  1. Wash the watermelon to get off any gunk on the outside
  2. Dry the melon so that it isn’t slippery
  3. Slice the melon in half. Careful with this one. I use a 8″ Chef’s knife, but wish I had a 10″ Chef’s knife.  This is just an awkward cut. Moving the melon as well as the knife causes the knife to work at its best.
  4. Once you have 2 halves, it gets a little easier.  Now that the melon is not as tall, you can section it with a slicing motion. Start by putting the tip of the knife on the board, and pull right through the melon.
  5. Once there are sections, it is time to remove the rind. I use a modified slice.  I put the section of watermelon on the board and I carefully slice in two separate arcs.
  6. Once the rind is removed, the meat can be sliced into pieces. (Be sure to use good technique. This part is easy, but good slicing practice)
  7. At the end there are those pesky end pieces. I slice triangular pieces, and then I grab my favorite spoon and finish them off. Yum.
    Sectioning the Watermelon

    Sectioning the Watermelon: I use a slicing motion

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    Removing th Rind: A modified slice

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    Slicing the Meat: Remember to use your slicing skills

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    Cutting Corners: A slice again