As spring is quickly sliding toward summer, I am finishing up my home lightening. Today I tackled the linen closet.
When I first saw the linen closet in our newly-purchased home, my first thought was, “Wow. That’s the skinniest door I’ve ever seen. I hope the closet is a bit bigger.” And it is. But only a little bit.
When we moved in and I looked at this little linen closet, I asked the first question that I always ask, “What do I want to live here?” My answers were:
- linens (sheets & blankets)
- household supplies (as many as would fit after the other items were in!)
I took a look at everything today to see where I could lighten up. I started with the pile of blankets on the bottom shelf. These are the ones that don’t live downstairs in the blanket chest and include a few hand-made quilts that I don’t want the boys playing rough with (as they inevitably do). I had already pared my blankets down when we moved to just enough for what our family needs, so I left the blankets right where they were.
Then I looked at the sheets and pillowcases. These are the spares. The ones I pull out when we have company. They’re all in pretty good shape and again, I pared them down to the bare minimum when we moved. Check.
Next stop, the towels. Everyone in the house has 2 bath towels. One hangs in the bathroom and one lives in the linen closet. On wash day, one comes out of the linen closet and goes in the bathroom and the other goes in the wash. And then back on the linen closet shelf when it’s clean. Simple. We also have an assortment of beach towels. They’re looking pretty worn, so new beach towels are on my wish list. I’ve been keeping an eye out for sales…
And then, the medicine shelf. This one is high up in the closet, for obvious reasons. I keep all the bottles and boxes in two clear storage containers. And we have a grab-and-go first aid kit that we take with us on trips. We actually use a fishing tackle box (an idea I got from my parents years and years ago.) It’s the perfect container!
The medicine shelf is where I spent the most time today. With my reading glasses on (that print is so small!) I checked the expiration dates of all the medicines. Anything expired, old, or no longer needed came off the shelf. If it was an empty bottle or box, it went into the recycling. But if it had any medicine in it, I put it in a bag that I will take to a medicine take-back location. Our city’s police department will take old, unused medicines. You can check and see if there is a take-back location near you. It’s important not to throw medications in the garbage or flush into the water system. The potential harm to the environment isn’t worth it. Also, remember to use a black marker to cross out any personal information on an old prescription medicine label.
The rest of the space in the closet is for a few of our household items that need storage space. This includes the humidifier, spare batteries, child-proofing supplies, etc. If you’re wondering where the gigantic pack of toilet paper lives… it’s in the garage.
And my skinny little linen closet is back in shape. Lightened up and ready for the next family need.
Speaking of which… what are the twins doing?