Welcome to Hell

Liveblogging The Kitchn Cure Fall 2014

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Day 16 & 17 Task: Clean and Organize the Under-Sink Area; Clean the Trash Can

"What's wrong?" my boyfriend asked sitting on the couch, watching my eyes glaze over while I stared in the direction of the sink. "You don't look so great," he said, starting to get concerned. The next two Kitchn Cure assignments were not going to be fun. Not fun at all.

As we head into the last week of the Kitchn Cure, two unglamorous tasks await. You thought cleaning out the freezer was bad? The trash can and under-sink area are my least favorite cleaning areas in my apartment.

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After chugging a glass of water and putting on some painters gloves (I couldn't find my cleaning rubber gloves!) I tackled the under-sink area and trash cans in one day. If I was worried about any unexpected critters in my kitchen (as any New York apartment is wont to have), they were going to show up in the trash can or under the sink.

Day 16 Task: Clean and Organize the Under-Sink Area

The first thing I did was take out all the things under the sink. It's a deep hole, so I had to crouch and reach far back, blindly going where I've only gone once before. This is the loot.

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I threw out a bunch of old cleaning products that I never use, including bleach, tile cleaner, and some wood cleaning spray. I'm trying to stick to a simple list of cleaning supplies based off of this helpful list from Sara Rae.

I'm sensitive to the smell of chemicals, so I started getting a little dizzy as I cleaned out under the sink. I didn't see any bugs or rodents, however.

a clean and organized under-sink area
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To keep things a little more organized, I invested in a simple plastic cleaning caddy that holds all of my cleaning supplies and sponges. It makes things a whole lot less intimidating down there, don't you think?

You might have noticed that the ceiling of the under-sink area is, however, collapsing. I've contacted my super to see if this can be fixed, but who knows when (or if) that will actually happen.

Cleaning the sink was a breeze after finishing the under-sink area.

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I made a list of all the cleaners I think it would be nice to have. The one I need most right now is a new dish soap – do you have anything you love? I'm particularly looking for something that is a little on the thin side but smells great.

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Day 17 Task: Clean the Trash Can

The next task was cleaning the trash can and recycling bin. My boyfriend cleaned out the trash can a month ago, so it wasn't as bad as I was initially expecting.

Trash can and recycling bin before photo
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I used a simple water and soap combination to clean off any gunk.

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After I cleaned the trash can, I started on the recycling bin. I really like that you can remove the inner bin from the can. It makes cleaning a whole lot easier.

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I scrubbed the faux-stainless steel recycling bin down with some soap and water as well.

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Ta-Da! A clean trash can and recycling bin. I added a trash bag to the recycling bin to make clean-up a little easier in the future.

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And that's it! I made it to the other side of what I expected to be the grossest part of The Kitchn Cure challenge. It's all smooth sailing from here.

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(Image credits: Ariel Knutson; The Kitchn)