Robin Laub, a Life Stylist

Check Expiration Dates!

When a new season rolls around, I roll up my sleeves and get busy organizing — and determining what needs to be tossed out. Here are some quick things to do to get your house in tip-top shape for Spring 2021. This will take time and energy, but it’s worth the effort. I promise! Ha! 


Area 1) The Fridge

The first thing I do is go through every item in the refrigerator and check all expiration dates. It’s funny, but my kids are obsessed with checking if my ketchup or pickle jars are past the expiration date. When I was growing up, my Mom would say a past expiration date doesn’t mean a thing, go ahead and still eat it or use it. Yikes! Not anymore. Start throwing out all the products with an expired “use by” date! Even the baking soda boxes, which help to eliminate odors. If it’s past the date, dispense it! It’s actually fulfilling doing this task. Ha!


Area 2) The Pantry

Check all of your dried spice jars and smell them to determine freshness. Not all spices have expiration dates, so use your best judgment. If you cook a lot, I suggest getting all new spices every year. Done!



Area 3) Bathroom Cabinets

Check all the medicine and vitamin containers for expiration dates and toss them if they’re past the “use by” date. Check also your creams and ointments and toss away the old stuff. These products are sometimes overlooked and then when there’s a need for Neosporin, it won’t heal your wound at all!  


Area 4) The Laundry/Utility Room

Check your cleaning supplies and re-supply them when there’s only a drop left in the bottle. Get rid of that suede fabric spray. Change out the sterling silver cleaner. Stock up on paper towels and use old towels for cleaning. Clean out the washing machine with Affresh tablets once a month. Instead of using Bounce sheets in your dryer, which can get your lint screens dirty, try lavender dryer sachets instead. I love the ones by ElizabethW of San Francisco.


Going through all four areas can be an all-day project. But when you’re all said and done, your laundry will be infused, you’ll have all new spices to cook with and great fresh products in your fridge. If you’d like some extra help or advice organizing for the new year, Just Ask!