Cleaning and Organizing Bug…

Well I’ve been bit.. by the cleaning and organizing bug. I think it has something to do with all the canning I have done. You know canning can make a mess of the kitchen.. so in-between canning jobs I have been deep cleaning my kitchen and everything I scrub and clean I think of the other areas in my home that need attention.

One of those areas is my laundry/pantry room. The problem is not the laundry part but the pantry part. Actually I use the room to store my cleaning supplies, small appliances, misc food stuffs, and some pots and such. It also becomes the room where things get tossed and shoved and stuck without order. It was driving me crazy every time I looked in there. 

Today I could take it no more.. So I did something very brave.. I took before pictures so you could see my disaster and then took after pictures to show that it is possible to reclaim a disaster!!! LOL..

OK.. here we go...

When you walk into the room to the left are the shelves where I store my kitchen and cleaning towels, wash cloths and rags, plus my cleaning supplies and equipment and my vacuum attachments and things like plastic trash bags..

It was so lacking organization that I cringed every time I was searching for stuff.. I began this project by removing everything on these shelves and going through it all. I had a bunch of stuff to toss out and found things I thought I lost.. LOL.. I washed down the shelves and the back wall and then began to put things back..

The 3 white baskets on the bottom shelf hold my kitchen and cleaning towels and wash cloths. To the right of that are my cleaning supplies. On the next shelf up on the right the first clear plastic tote holds my vacuum bags and attachments. Then I stack full size towels (used to clean up big jobs :), the next clear plastic tote holds cleaning equipment like brushes, squeegees and such.. prior to this they were just being tossed on the shelf.

Now comes the long shelves… When you step into the room these shelves are right in front of you.. Below those shelves is a counter and a sink and yep, the counter was full of stuff too…

Yea a real mess.. I did the same thing.. took everything off the shelves, sorted through it all, tossed some things, found better homes for other things, washed the shelves and the wall behind and then began to put it all back..

Also next to my washer and dryer (to the right when you walk in the room) I have my plastic buckets with their gamma seal lids that hold my wheat, oats and other grains. Here you can see the before (as well as the end of the counter) and by the way the little white basket you see at the end of the first shelf holds the used cloth napkins.  When we are done using them they get put in that little basket until they are washed..

And here it after I cleaned up the area, washed down the buckets and reorganized it all…

When I was done I vacuumed all the corners and edges of the floor and did a super good scrubbing of the floor..

When my hubby came in he was not only shocked but very impressed.. :)  The only other area of my home that currently is still a disaster is my basement storage area..  It gets this way every year.. and I do the big toss and clean there too..  When I do get to that room I will do the before and after pics too.. 

But for now, I plan to tackle my kitchen baking cupboards (as I mentioned in a previous blog)..  it's a small project in comparison..  :) 


  1. You just made me feel so much better! Of course I have 2 kids not 8 but who is counting? ;)

  2. What a lovely accomplishment! I just love cleaning, tossing, and organizing. It is such a wonderful feeling to simplify and see the end result:) I just finished my annual fall cleaning and doing just those same areas in my house. The laundry/pantry/mud room is such a catch all. I agree after canning/harvesting is over you really feel the need for a purge!! Enjoy ~ Kelsey

  3. I've just had an attack of the clean and organize bug, too, but I'm not nearly as brave as you. I'd never do before and after pics! Maybe after we remodel, but certainly not before!!! . . . . Looks great. ~Liz

  4. I thoroughly cleaned our home yesterday, and it is so satisfying when everything is in it's place, and you can sit down at the end of the day enjoy and relax in a clean, organized home!
    Cleanliness is next to Godliness - I find this old saying to be so true because a messy, disorganized home brings stress to all who enter, while a clean, organized home is pleasant and inviting and soothing to the soul.

  5. what a great pantry/laundry area it looks great! You are very inspiring, thanks for being brave and sharing the pics!

  6. You are so brave to show before pictures! With open shelves it is so hard to keep them neat - with closed cupboards we can be messy and no one notices.:) It is so fun to organize and it gives such a good feeling after doesn't it?

  7. Very nice! I recently did the same thing and took before pictures but decided to delete them!!

    Nice to see how things are organized! Way to go!

  8. I'm a half-messy, half-clean person...and my linen closet actually needs some organizing and cleaning up. I've thought about using one or two shelves for pantry items and the rest for laundry unusual combo...but my kitchen is rather small...and I don't really use all the linen closet for linens. ANyway, I loved your before and after photos of the pantry...even in it's messy state it looks good :) :) I'm glad you got something done and your hubby was happy with it too :) :) Have a lovely week!!! Love and hugs from Oregon , Heather :)

  9. looks so nice and clean! I am doing that on my house ,also,throwing out a lot of stuff. I am 72 so we never get thru cleaning!
    I love your emails as you are such a wonderful
    stable family in this day and time and reminds me of my kids growing up and all the cooking and cleaning that I did. It is so good to read that there are still wonderful, godly women like you!
    God bless you and your wonderful family. Geri

  10. Crystal,
    Great job on all the did a great job. It was fun looking at all the pictures.
    That's sweet Tobin was proud of you. You worked hard and it looks great.
    I hope all is going well.
    I love ya my friend,

  11. Doesn't it just plain feel good to look at the results of cleaning? Love it.

  12. Lisa (frugalmomntraining)October 16, 2010 at 5:03 PM

    Great job! Now I need to do mine.

  13. What an inspiration! I feel overwhelmed at times and the easiest thing is to put those blinders on when going into my pantry but reading and seeing your pics has me motivated now! : )

  14. You are so brave to show us the befores! My house needs alot of deep cleaning. I recently made my own soap and absoulutly love it. It turn out right the first time and after four days, I just had to try it. The rest is curing on a rack. I hope I never use store bought soap again. Might have to try your new recipe. Thanks.

  15. Saved as a favorite, I like your website!


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