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Fall means cleaning the refrigerator
A Woman's View
Judi Tabler color mug

“There is a method to the madness when it comes to placing everything in your refrigerator” (Khloe Kardashian) 

And sometimes there is just too darn much in those upright boxes. It’s then that we must take everything apart and give the refrigerator a good wipe down. 

And fall is the best time to take a look and consider taking an afternoon to do just that.

During the summer and fall, because of Mr. Gardener-man who lives here, our refrigerator is stuffed with bags of peppers, tomatoes, okra, and the like. As a result, there are slimy veggies constantly turning over in the vegetable keeper. I barely keep up. But because we are continually picking, bagging, and storing, I decide to save our sanity and just crowd other foods around those vegetables. After all, the garden will soon be history. We live with containers piled on top of bags, stacked on top of each other, haphazardly stuffed here and there. Sometimes, they leak, or a lid falls off. 

Jam-packed. Hard to find anything. I tell you the utter truth. 

Often, I try to quickly close the door before anything suspect falls out. But, in the end, I rearrange the fruit, condiments, milk, and yogurt around the bags of tomatoes and peppers.  

Of course, throughout the summer, we wipe up here, and clean shelves there as the need arises. But there’s nothing like a thorough change of attack. Time to pay attention to the mess, and clean the old girl up right properly. 

Here are a few good quotes I wish I had thought up...

“Cleaning is my favorite way to relax. I clear things out and get rid of the stuff I don’t need. When the food pantry and the refrigerator are organized, I feel less stressed”, (Jennifer Morrison) 

“My refrigerator is powerful. In fact, it has a direct link to my overall well-being.” (Kris Carr). 

Absolutely true. But we don’t need the mess. 

Just recently, a frustrated Fred got tired of looking inside our jampacked refrigerator with really, little edible food, and he cleaned out the refrigerator. When he showed me, I peeked in and felt such well, elation! Yes, I know I am blaming the garden veggies for the mess, but he might tell you differently. He sorted through three bottles or containers of mustard, six salad dressings, two jars of pickles, two or three bottles of lime juice, several cottage cheese get the idea? The bags of garden veggies were removed. 

I’m generally not going to clean out the refrigerator until the last option. It’s at the bottom of my cleaning list. Everything else comes first; washing the clothes, feeding the dog, reading a book, eating a bowl of popcorn. Get it? 

So, back to Fred.

When Fred cleaned out the frig, the extras or the strays either hit the trash can or were moved to the old refrigerator, Betsy, in the garage.  But, you know and I do too, that it won’t be long before the compartments are in disarray again. 

So, why try? Who cares if there are three or four of everything? Several jars of garlic, olives, etc.

So, if you don’t want to clean your refrigerator this is for you. “My theory on housework is, if the item doesn’t multiply, smell, catch fire, or block the refrigerator door, let it be. No one else cares. Why should you? (Erma Bombeck, one of my favorite writers)

The refrigerator is a talebearer, it is an analyzer, a revealer of the soul, and shows who we really are. That’s scary.  

Judi Tabler lives in Pawnee County and is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune. She can be reached at