Long Overdue

When we moved into this house over five years ago, I unpacked all our old laundry room gear from our old house, shoved it into the new house’s laundry room closet and shut the door.

Soon after moving here I made the switch I told you about in this post to a healthier way of keeping things clean around here.

Well, when I started using the Shaklee Get Clean Laundry line, I basically took all my old laundry supplies, pushed them against the back wall of the closet shelves and placed all the Get Clean Laundry goodies up front so I could use them easily every day.  And I left the closet like that.  For five years.  (Why do I do stuff like that???)

Anyway, I recently tackled it and wanted to share this quick little project because it was something so small but it really made me feel so good when it was done!

Here’s a quick before and after to get started.  The left picture is the before – stuff randomly all over every shelf.  The right picture is the after, which I will show the details of below.

closet before afterAs my husband always tells me, if you’re going to make an omlet, sometimes you have to crack a few eggs (and make a mess).  Here’s almost everything pulled out of the closet.  Wowzers.  (To see what my laundry room really looks like – check out this post!)


Now look at this close up shot.  Check out the LAYERS of dust on the lids of these items.  I’m not sure they have ever been used in the 5 years they have sat in that closet.  Gross.


Since I’m outing myself publicly here, I’ll also share this icky find:


That’s a plastic lid from when I used to use more “traditional” (chemical-laden) laundry detergents.  I have not used those in almost exactly 5 years.  Which means this nasty, dried-goo measuring cup lid has been sitting in this closet for that long collecting dust and just being gross for that long for no reason.  Obviously, this closet was in need of some serious attention.

I found a random bottle of lotion in there:


First of all, I’m not sure I even remember ever buying this brand of lotion… it must have been a long time ago or something.  And secondly, WHY was there lotion in the laundry room closet of all places????  No clue.  Tossed that sucker into the trash and moved on.

Yet another embarrassing find:  a broken long-handled duster “thingy”.


I know it’s been broken for a long time.  (I used to use it for dusting ceiling fans but use something else now.)  Why was I saving something that was broken?  Was I going to fix it?  (Cue hysterical laughter…. I’m not sure I’ve ever fixed ANYTHING in my entire life.)  So into the trash that went as well.

I was feeling good about tossing things out so I got rid of a good portion of what you saw above that I’d taken out of the closet.  I was feeling lighter already!

Here’s an example of some old laundry products I tossed out.  This one was bleach.  I haven’t used bleach in quite some time (I use Nature Bright in its place now). I was curious so I looked at the bottom… check out what I discovered:


Yep, that bottle definitely expired in 2010.  Seriously.

Next up, I put my Shaklee Basic H Organic Cleaning Concentrate to work and I sprayed down and wiped out the closet shelves, walls, and floor using the All-Purpose mix.  I also sprayed and wiped down all the actual bottles of laundry soap, fabric softener, etc.  I wanted the closet as well as all of its contents to be squeaky clean so I could start over and make this closet work for me.

Then I put all the newly cleaned items I wanted to keep but rarely use into a box so I could still store them “just in case” but so I didn’t have to look at them all the time.


I made use of the super tall ceiling situation in this closet by putting in some Costco sized paper towels and such.  On the second shelf I decided to put some random extra cleaning supplies like Swiffers, as well as an extra scrub brush and a lint roller – both of which we rarely use but I didn’t feel like I should toss out.


Not sure if laundry room shelves are often pretty, but this next shelf is the prettiest one I’ve ever had!


What you see on this shelf from left to right:  Fresh Laundry Fragrance Free Concentrate, Fresh Laundry Soft Fabric Concentrate, Nature Bright, Soft Fabric Fragrance Free Dryer Sheets, some extra Hand Wash Concentrate, an orange spray bottle filled with plain water for times when I need to dampen an article of clothing and toss it in the dryer to remove wrinkles, (or – ya know – restart a load of laundry AGAIN!) and in the front a small bottle of straight, concentrated Basic-H Organic Super Cleaning Concentrate.  I have multiples of most of this stuff because I never want to run out.  I do a LOT of laundry around here!  I always seem to be tossing one of these items into my online cart when I’m placing my order.

The next shelf isn’t as beautiful, but its beauty lies in the fact that it holds all my cleaning supplies in a caddy and a bucket that I can quickly grab and carry to any room of my house whenever cleaning needs to get done.  I will post next week a detailed view of what’s IN there and why having it all in one caddy makes my life a lot easier so check back for that post!


This next shelf is extra tissues, paper towels that didn’t fit up top, and some rags I use for cleaning.  (Again, come back for the post about the cleaning caddy above for more on that or check out this old post that explains a part of what I do with those handy little suckers.)


Last, I slid the box of “things we don’t really use but I felt like we should keep” under the bottom shelf.  (That long stick thing is a lint trap cleaner that I bought and have never once used, which is why you see that it still has the tags on it.  But if the dryer lint trap ever seems reeeeeally clogged, boy am I ready!)  😉


So here it is again – the before and after:

closet before after

(*Note:  the only thing missing is the vacuum.  That spot is still its home, but I left it out for the sake of the photo so it wouldn’t block the shelves and the contents of the closet could more easily be seen here.)

And then I stood back and admired my accomplishment.  For a long time.  A really long time.  I know it’s just a little laundry room closet and all, but I stopped to admire that darn thing at least 5 additional times after my kids went to sleep that night.  I just stood there in the quiet looking at how organized it was and silently patting myself on the back.  It feels so good to check something off the list.  Especially something that’s been on the list for that many years.  😉

Between this little project and the spice cabinet, I’m feeling good about all the little things I’m tackling around here.  Still lots to do though… but isn’t that always the way?