My grandmother used to say, “Everything has a place and everything in its place.” I hated hearing it growing up as I was a messy child, but I began to understand the wisdom in that sentence when I started running a home of my own. I see the value in this bit of wisdom working in my life every day.
“Everything has a place.” I’m learning that if something doesn’t have a place, maybe I don’t need it. Honestly, if a possession can’t have a home, a place, is it important? These days if something is important, something I want to keep, I find a place for it, even if that means getting rid of something else. Everything should have a place and in my home, that place is not sitting on the kitchen table or on the floor – it needs to have a place that is accessible, easy to find, and a place that fits the possession. For example, if I need/want a mandolin to make my kitchen prep work easier than it has to have a home in a cupboard without being buried by other kitchen utensils. If I can’t find a place for it easily, I either need to cut back on some other possession or forgo the mandolin until such a time that I can find it a place.
“Everything in its place.” If I’ve done a good job of giving everything a place of its own, than those things should be in that place and easy to locate at all times. That means the mandolin is in its assigned place in the cupboard, the vegetable peeler is in the second drawer under the coffee pot, the bottle opener is magneted to the side of the fridge, etc. If I’m having trouble keeping things in their places, I consider if that place is the most appropriate or if I need to do a little purging to make it fit into is place better.
Despite keeping things neat, the greatest wisdom behind this little nugget from grandma is its effect on time management. If I have everything in its place and I know where those things and places are located, I save tons of time. I don’t have to look for things I need when I’m canning peaches or making dinner or trying some kind of home repair. I know where the phillips screwdriver or hammer is, without having to think about it or digging behind 10 bowls, 2 food processers (that I don’t use), a popcorn maker, and serving platters. If everything has a place and is in its place, I can move around without stopping and quickly move through my tasks.
There are times, of course, when I fall short, but that is rare these days. I make sure to use things, clean them, and put them back in their place without thought most of the time. Its a habit that serves me well, and allows the house to run a bit more smoothly. If you’re finding it difficult to find things, why not give grandma’s “Everything has a place and everything in its place,” philosophy a whirl. If it doesn’t work for you, you can always change methods to something that does.