2022 Kitchen Goals: Summer Update
June 28, 2022
Americana barbecue season is in full swing, the sky is still a little bit light when I start getting ready for bed, and the fruits and veggies are filling my fridge. It must be summer! And that means it’s time not only for a new tablescape, but also to take a mid-year look at my kitchen goals, and make some new ones for the next few months.
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The start of summer is controversial. Is it Memorial Day weekend? The solstice? Whenever you want it to be? For me, it’s when I step outside and it smells like summer; whether that’s a distant wood-burning fire, the petrichor of an afternoon thunderstorm, or just all the greenery filling my nostrils. We are definitely there.
When I think about my summer goals, it’s all about that relaxing and easy life. “Summertime, and the livin’ is easy,” as they sang in Porgy & Bess (or maybe you know the Sublime version better). I’m here for taking full advantage of what the season has to offer. But first, let’s take a look back at spring.
Spring 2022 Goal: Think Before You Bite Or Buy
In my original goal-setting post for this year, I explained that I am doing things just a little bit differently for 2022. Instead of setting four year-long resolutions, I have decided to focus on the seasons, and choose specific, measurable mini-goals.
For spring, I built on my winter goals and tried to be conscious about the decisions I was making, both when it came to what I was putting into my kitchen and into my body. The measurable pieces of this goal were:
Kitchen Low-Buy Wishlist
Instead of extending my all-out ban from winter, I gave myself a bit more grace in spring when it came to expanding my kitchen collections. To avoid impulse buying, I decided to use a wishlist approach, and then come back after a week to see if I was still interested.
It turns out I don’t need much. In fact, I only added five items to my wishlist the entire season, and bought three of them: an electric kettle, an outdoor grill, and a composting tumbler. The other two items I transferred to my Christmas list instead.
How What I Eat Affects How I Feel
For the month of April, I tracked my breakfast each day, and then made note of what time I felt hungry again or reached for a snack. From doing this, I learned that it’s a good idea to schedule myself a mid-morning snack. Lately, that’s been a banana or some fresh local fruit.
Otherwise, I didn’t continue any specific tracking into May or June. However, I definitely made some observations, like that I can’t just eat sugar for breakfast on weekends, or I’ll need a nap.
Fridge and Pantry Makeover Plan
I had a great three-month plan all laid out for this goal, and I sort of did a little bit of it, but not necessarily sticking to my target dates. I did create myself a sketch of my kitchen using a spreadsheet, and noting the areas that had potential.
The three biggest trouble areas: the back of the fridge (especially the top shelf), the kick area underneath the cabinets, and our dark and deep corner cabinet. I’m narrowing my focus to those, in addition to the pantry, when it comes to making any organization purchases.
Discover Previous Years’ Goals
How are your goals going? Check out this summer update for some ideas on resolutions all about your kitchen and food!
Summer 2022 Goal: Keeping it Fresh
Spring blooms so that summer can thrive. All the lovely and lighthearted flowers make way for the bold green leaves and abundance of goodies to harvest. Summer is peach juice dripping down your chin, grilled corn on the cob coated in butter, and the sound of fresh picked blueberries hitting the metal of a bucket.
My summer goal really leans into that fresh feeling, in more ways than one. First, in the literal sense, I am going to try to keep up with all of the delicious fruits and veggies we will be getting from local farms.
And then there’s the figurative sense of the word as well, keeping it fresh. That means coming up with new and exciting ways to stay interested and not burn out through the short but hectic season.
So I’ve broken this goal down into three different measurable action items:
- Keep track of fresh produce: I already have a kitchen spreadsheet where I keep track of all things fruit and veg. Part of this goal is to keep that list up to date, which includes checking it at least twice weekly to make sure it’s accurate.
- An organization focus on the fridge: Items falling to the back of the fridge was one of the areas of potential I discovered from my spring goal. In summer, I’m letting those other areas take a back seat, while I focus on organization solutions specific to the fridge. This includes sketching solutions and potentially buying the supplies to make them happen.
- Utilize creative resources: This is the part of the goal that leans more toward the figurative side of freshness. I really want to use the cookbook database Eat Your Books to discover ideas from my own bookshelf. I also would like to continue expanding my own recipe database by adding 5 recipes a week from my collection of meal-kit cards and magazine tear-outs.