WFMW – Consolidate, consolidate, consolidate

I don’t know if you’ve heard (he he) but I LOVE containers! What I also love though and what you might not know is that I love to use those containers to consolidate. I love just saying that word. Anytime I can consolidate many things into one thing, thereby taking up less space makes me very very happy. Which is why I love grocery day. Well not the actual grocery shopping really, but the putting groceries away part. Again weird, trust me, I know!

Case in point….I turn this:

into this:

Or this:

into this:

Now come on doesn’t that just say fun to you?

So I have this thing where I can’t have two boxes of the same thing in my cupboard. Would drive me mental you see so I conveniently use a larger size box of the item to consolidate all the little boxes into which means I only have one box of bars not three in my cupboard. Marvelous baby!
Now I know what you are thinking, why not just continue to buy the bulk box? Well sometimes I do but we all like different ones so if I’m buying different little boxes I just open them all up and throw them all in together “like with like”. I just keep the big box in the cupboard and keep refilling it. It doesn’t even bother me that they are all mixed up like that because I am so tickled they are all together.

I like to use the bigger boxes as my container instead of a basket in these instances so it is clear to everyone what exactly the purpose of the box is for. We can clearly see oatmeal is oatmeal and bars are bars. How’s that for brilliance? I’m kidding. Sort of 🙂
Seriously though, this consolidating thing is addictive. I’m obsessed with it and don’t even get me started about how snakey I get when there are TWO boxes of the same thing opened at the same time! I MUST pour one into the other and shove the whole thing back into ONE box. I MUST or I can’t go on with my day. I’m like that when I lose my favorite pen too but you’ve probably heard enough “freakness” for today 🙂

So until next time, happy consolidating my friends!!
Don’t forget to visit Shannon for many other tips and tricks!

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Filed under: Organizing


35 Responses to WFMW – Consolidate, consolidate, consolidate

  1. 1
    Judy in Australia says


    You’re a woman after my own heart!! I do exactly the same as you, re consolidating. I also can’t pass up a box, tin or container in my daughter’s recycling box, (I often do her housework) without giving a lot of thought as to how I could put it to some other use. I love re-cycling!!

  2. 2
    Sincerely Anna says

    Wow, I learn so much from you! And I love that you got to use the words consolidate and containers often in this post. I know you’re just giddy!

  3. 3
    Trista says

    Sounds like a great idea to me!!!

  4. 4
    justabeachkat says

    You go girl! Always great ideas here. That’s why I come back again and again.


  5. 5
    The Lazy Organizer says

    I hear ya. And if you can’t make it all fit in one box then you have to eat the extra until it does fit. Bummer when it’s a chocolate cheesecake we’re talking about right?

  6. 6
    tgabc says

    I do the same thing since we have limited cabinet space. It works great!

  7. 7
    Marcia says

    Hi Laura

    I don’t go to your extremes 🙂 but I don’t like lots of cereal boxes. Those drive me crazy! I do love throwing away extra boxes.

    how’s your week been? Are you busy?

  8. 8
    Debi says

    Oh, I really can relate. At least on the two open boxes of the same thing part. Just one of those things that drives me totally bonkers! The disapproving looks have gone a long way in remedying the situation, but it still happens from time to time. And then I find I MUST consolidate, too. MUST. But it doesn’t seem to bother me if the boxes aren’t opened.

  9. 9
    mistihollrah says

    I’m on the same page as you! I don’t like boxes in my cabinet either-I repackage almost everything too!

    I have one of those pull out cabinet insert, I have a rubbermaid container (bigger than the shoebox size) and it holds all of our ceral bars, granola bars, etc. I have 3 or 4 different brands that I purchase when I do my regular shopping at Sam’s and when I get home, I empty all of them in that container. The kids pull it out & pick out what they want!

  10. 10
    Ladybug says

    I do this too! LOL I also love to buy the larger Tupperware clear containers and consolidate into these and then label the front. They stack so nicely! 🙂

  11. 11
    Sandy says

    I could have written this post! ha
    I pack as much as I can into the larger boxes.
    Love all the tips and tricks,Laura!
    For Reluctant Entertainers

  12. 12
    Twisted Cinderella says

    I consolidate too. I use clear plastic containers and baskets a lot.

  13. 13
    Jammy says

    Another great idea!! I don’t buy too much prepared, but at times I give in and do for the kiddos, and I like the clear rubbermaids, too.. 😉


  14. 14
    Ginny says

    I do this too!

  15. 15
    Barb says

    Happy consolidating. You crack me up, Laura. But I hate having two boxes of something in the cubbords, too. Great idea. Of course. 🙂

  16. 16
    Michelle says

    I do the very same thing! I don’t, however, buy the larger box to start and then just keep using it. That’s an idea that I never thought of. I do consolidate though, and would never DREAM of having 2 of the same thing open in my cupboard!
    Thanks for the tips, as always, and thanks for the response about the shoe organizer/boots.
    Have an awesome day! 🙂

  17. 17
    The Fritz Facts says

    I am so excited that I found your blog! I am working to consolidate my house, and it takes time. One room at a time!

  18. 18
    Christine says

    This cracks me up! It’s a great idea, and I can just imagine you obsessively stuffing and switching to get everything in one place!


  19. 19
    tAnYeTTa says

    you are so perfect!!!!!!! i have to post my questions to you soon 🙂

  20. 20
    Shirley - Choosing Voluntary Simplicity says

    And I thought I was the only one who did this!

  21. 21
    Qtpies7 says

    Oh my goodness, you would go MENTAL if you looked in my pantry and saw 11, yes ELEVEN, OPEN jars of peanut butter.
    I can’t have just one, because we must have creamy and chunky, but some like extra chunky. Well, we don’t always eat it, but we always get it through WIC. So the kids put things away and they put it at the front, and just open what they grab. Seriously, its driving ME insane and I have to be one of the least organized, and least caring about it, people out there!
    I’m thinking that I need to start storing the new ones in the basement or something, I just don’t have much of a pantry to deal with.

  22. 22
    Dandelion Momma-Janis says

    Great idea! This will work great in my small kitchen! Thanks for sharing! Blessings to you!

  23. 23
    Cyndi says

    Okay, this I need to do. I just noticed two open boxes of the same type of granola bar in my pantry. AND, it’s less fattening than simply *eating* what’s in the extra box, just so I can throw the box away…


  24. 24
    Susanne says

    Sit down Laura. You won’t believe this. That is exactly what I do! Me. Little ‘ole unorganized me. Can ya believe it?

  25. 25
    Mama Pajama says

    I must do this sometimes or we’d have no room at all. We tend to overbuy…a lot. Hot chocolate mix, oatmeal, cereal bars, it’s a great idea! I just did it with trash bags…OK I’m done : )

  26. 26
    Sarah says

    I feel the same way about consolidating. I do a lot better with my kitchen cabinets than I do with clutter elsewhere in my house.

    You would LOVE LOVE LOVE Tupperware Modular Mates. Please, for the sake of your own happiness, march over to and use the search box to look them up. The Rectangulars and Super Ovals are precisely the depth of a standard kitchen cabinet. 2 Super Ovals stack precisely on top of a Rectangular. The heights are proportionate, so a Super Oval 1 stacked onto a Super Oval 2 will be precisely the height of a Super Oval 3… or a Rectangular 3, for that matter. They are genius. And airtight.

    Ideally, you would want enough of these bad boys to do your entire pantry in them: dry goods, pastas, beans, granola bars, cereals, potato chips, candy, coffee, cocoa mix, tea, rice, flour, sugar, you name it. Then you get out your handy-dandy label maker and that’s when the fun really begins. I’m not even kidding.

  27. 27
    Melissa says

    I like to consolidate to a point I’ll put all the kids oatmeal together put I like my wieght smart oatmeal seperate. I don’t want the kids reaching in and grabing my oatmeal because they will eat it they don’t look at it they just open and eat. Also it would drive me crazy to Special K bars mixed with Nature Valley, I want all the Nature Valleys in one box put not the same box as the Special K. I try to just buy the same thing every time so my perfectionist side doesn’t rear it’s ugly head.

  28. 28
    Melissa says

    Sarah that is great, great. I love it.

  29. 29
    Lindsay says

    Haha I love it, I do the same thing! I use extra bowls, oversize mugs or plastic containers.

    My husband loves this because then all his snack -type goodies (granola bars, fruit roll ups, biscotti) are all in one place and he can just grab one. 🙂

  30. 30
    SherrySue says

    Laura. I’m very new to your blog and have found comfort in knowing that there are other “freaks” just like me out there who not only are aware of the addiction, but are willing to share the means by which they acheive thier “rush.”
    I absolutely love containers, consolidation, cubbies, boxes, buckets, the list goes on. I am also thrown immediately into the fetal position when two of the same box, bottle or bag of the same thing is opened. Aaargh!!!
    I was wondering too how you feel about pocket books with a zillion pockets? I say, the more pockets, the more fun. Those really pretty, HUGE, bags that are all the rave right now, may look good but when you’re trying to find something at the bottom of that cavernous vessel…forget it!
    I personally would have to buy or find a bunch of little bags to put in my HUGE bag making this lovely “convenience” 150 lbs.

  31. 31
    Linda says

    Sherry, I just discovered this blog. It’s fantastic! Your idea of the ultimate bag and mine are the same! Ah, to be able to use every square inch and see it at a glance. 🙂

  32. 32
    Valerie says

    Brilliant! Thanks for the tip. Can’t wait to implement it : ) Great site. Thanks!!!

  33. 33
    Lorie says

    OMG! You all make me so envious! Sounds to me like I need to hop on this blog train and get my life organized. You are all so jazzed about it, and I can never truly find anything. I can see I’m going to have an organizing/consolidating party at my house very soon!!

  34. 34
    Valerie says

    I love it! I like to buy bulk and put it in clear containers (canning jars, stuff from the thrift store) but for little snacks I have 2 large, semi-see through bins one for sweet snack and one for savory.

    I also need to do something about the cans of soda- seems to me that my family loves leaving the cardboard behind in the pantry when its empty instead of putting it into the recycling :-/


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