I was honestly going to work on my pantry and linen closet last week. Instead, I did a project I’ve been putting off for months, and it inspired a week of doing more with less.
My three boys were all sharing a bedroom up until the beginning of September. My oldest boy, who is 9, was begging for his own room, away from his twin 7-year-old brothers. So we decided that since we rarely had overnight guests, he could claim our basement guest bedroom as his own.
Just one problem: The basement guest bedroom closet was full of stuff that didn’t have a place anywhere else. There was nothing special in there. Just stuff a cheapskate wasn’t ready to part with because she might need it someday. Life was busy, so I just didn’t deal with the closet. For the last couple of months, oldest boy did not have a functioning closet of his own.
So when I announced to my family that I was going to work on the pantry and linen closet, my oldest boy asked if I would please give him a proper closet space. He even offered to help (sweet boy). So I decided to grant his request. But then I had to find space for that stuff and our home office closet (the only really “big” storage closet we have in the whole house) would have to be cleaned out to make room for some of that stuff. And then, I realized that there were some things that could go in the twins’ closet if it were arranged better. So, yes, one little project quickly become a whole house upheaval.
But this was the result:
We took 4 bags and two boxes of items of clothing and household goods to Goodwill. I filled one tote bin with items to sell at next summer’s garage sale and promptly took pictures of items I wanted to sell soon on a Facebook selling group. And the boy got his own closet. And we gained some much needed space and order to our closets.
It felt pretty good to get that project out of the way.
And then…. After just a few days of wearing his new winter coat, my son informed me that the zipper pull had come completely off the outer layer of his jacket. (Why can’t it happen to the inside layer?). So I did what any cheapskate would do, I called my mom who is pretty handy with these types of things. She attempted to fix it, but unfortunately, the piece actually broke.
I had NO intention of buying a whole new winter jacket at a time of year when I’d have to pay full price (and waste a perfectly nice jacket). So I took it to a seamstress in town. Two minutes and $5 later, the zipper pull was replaced and as good as new. Well worth doing!
I then made a trip to Home Depot. We had two really slow bathroom sink drains and I didn’t want to pour any (more) expensive chemicals down the drains to try to fix it. I was actually looking for a sink snake (or auger), but the helpful guy in the plumbing department said I should try a sink drain plunger. I figured that for $2.50 it was worth a try.
And it worked beautifully! I just had to cover the overflow hole in the sinks and with a few quick plunges, the drains were cleared! I was totally blown away by how well that little gadget worked and was thrilled I didn’t have to use any chemicals.
Cleaning things out and finding ways to fix things inexpensively inspired me to find more ways of doing more with less. I reviewed our family budget and realized we needed to work on eating out less. I worked on menu planning and coupon clipping to bring down our grocery budget. I set the thermostat back a couple of degrees to trim our heating bill.
And I will get to that pantry and linen closet. I swear. And when I do, I know it will lead to me doing even more with less.
What projects have you been tackling around your home?