A New Year Challenge! Achieving the Holy Grail: Keeping My Dining & Kitchen Table Clear in 2016


Confession time! I may be an organizer but my dining table and kitchen counter do not look like a magazine cover. They get cluttered. Why am I telling you this? I want you to know that you are not alone and there is nothing wrong with you. 

Getting organized is a multi-step process that includes decluttering, designating space and containers, communicating with family members, and most importantly establishing new habits.

Over the next few months, I am going to show you how I transform my space from a cluttered mess to a better working space.

During this process you will witness the ups and downs of figuring out WHY stuff always seems to land on my kitchen counter and dining table.

I invite you to go through this process with me. You get to weigh in on decisions for containers, shelves, etc. Ask questions and get some answers.

I hope that through this you’ll be inspired to tackle your own organizing challenge. You will see the real world process of getting organized. There’s no magical wands or a team of 20 people waiting behind the curtain to get everything done in thirty minutes!

The Problem:

My dining table and kitchen counter look & feel like they are constantly cluttered. 

Reasons why this is the case:

  • I live in a small townhouse so there is limited space everywhere.
  • My most used entrance opens right into the dining room and kitchen area.
  • We have an open space layout so anything in the dining room and kitchen can be seen from any other part of the first floor.
  • I have two young daughters that are 4 and 1 years old. The amount of art work and pre-school papers that come streaming through my door is amazing.
  • The dining table and my kitchen counter are the last spaces my one-year-old can’t access.
  • My husband and I rely on visual cues to remind us of tasks that need to be completed.

The Vision:

  • Have a dining space that can quickly convert from work & art zones to eating space in less than 10 minutes. 
  • Have kitchen counter tops with less than 40% of the surface covered with stuff.  I want to be able to look over into the other spaces of my active home. 

What’s Next:

Sort and list the categories of stuff that land on my counters and dining room table. Figure out if I need or want to keep it.  

Please join me on this journey, ask questions, and make suggestions in the comments below. 

Let’s do this! 


About Gabriela Burgman

Gabriela's mission is to empower her clients with the tools and motivation they need to get and stay organized. Prior to becoming a Professional Organizer, Gabriela worked in a photograph archive as well as several university archives, assisting offices, administrators, and retiring academics to sort through their files for preservation or disposal. She became a professional organizer in 2007 working as an independent consultant before joining Living Peace. When Gabriela is not learning new ways to organize photos or paper both physically and electronically, she is spending time on what matters most to her: visiting with family and friends, reading a good mystery book, or cooking a tasty meal.

2 comments on “A New Year Challenge! Achieving the Holy Grail: Keeping My Dining & Kitchen Table Clear in 2016

  1. I want to join in on the fun! I have a similar space with an open floor plan as well. Visual cues are key for me as well but it is a double edged sword. Being a visual person means I also get overwhelmed by too much in my line of vision! I have a large counter top in my kitchen with some open shelving right next to it. This is the spot where all my clutter ends up and it can be seen from every room in the house. I look forward to joining you on this journey to come up with a lasting solution. 🙂

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