Organized For Real! {How to Conquer Life’s Top 5 Chaos Hotspots.}

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Hi! I’m Susan from Living Rich on Less. Traci and I met a few years back. She is such a genuine, authentic person and I’m blessed to call her my friend.

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Traci and I at Haven 2014

Traci and I are both busy moms like YOU, and staying organized is not easy!  I asked if I could share a resource with all of you that has literally changed.my.life and helped me get organized for real.

It never fails. At the start of each new year, I have this feeling of being overwhelmed by “stuff,” followed by the need to clean and organize everything. Maybe you feel this way, too. In fact, maybe this feeling plagues you all year round.

How do you know if disorganization is weighing you down? If you answer “Yes” to any of the following questions, you need an organizing “life raft” thrown your way. (Good news! I’ve got one.) ;)

  1. Do you often feel like your finances, schedule and even your thoughts are out of control?
  2. Does the clutter and chaos in your home give you stress and anxiety when what you really seek is joy, peace and rest?
  3. Do you feel like your family’s health and well-being are suffering due to a lack of organization?

I can totally relate. For many years, I tried without success to keep myself organized. I’d do well for awhile then fall off the wagon. Things would pile up and my schedule, home and life would spiral out of control again.

I had trouble keeping track of stuff, trouble getting projects done on time, and trouble keeping anything neat for very long. I’d vow to do better next time. I’d embark on one epic cleaning and organizing binge after another, and the cycle of struggling would continue.

It wasn’t until I was injured by the clutter in my own home – yes, I was physically injured by my own mess – that I was ready to do whatever it took to get organized for real.

I started to get serious about finding organizing solutions that really worked for chronically messy and busy moms like me.

I discovered that if I regularly practiced a few basic strategies in five key areas of organization, everything else in my life seemed to fall into relatively good order. I began to experience lasting joy and peace, and I even started noticing that my home seemed more comfortable and my family was happier, too.

I shared my tips with friends and family members and they encouraged me to write a book about them. So in an effort to help others like me keep their crazy busy lives organized, I wrote the electronic book, “Organized for Real: How to Conquer Life’s Top 5 Chaos Hotspots.”

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This e-book is jam-packed with 76 pages of helpful (and practical) information about how to organize your mind, your schedule, your food, your finances and your home. And it is available for purchase today! I am so excited about this e-book because I truly believe it will be life-changing for many of you. The principles in this book have rocked my world!

To find out more details about the book, check out the brief video below:

 

 

 

 

To get your copy of my e-book, “Organized for Real: How to Conquer Life’s Top 5 Chaos Hotspots” and start creating the margin and beauty in your life that you crave, click the button below. Note: This e-book is currently on discount at 50 percent off for a limited time! Be sure to snag your copy now.

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Beginnings of a New Bookcase

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Hey friends!  I hope you had a great weekend!  :)

I wanted to show you a little something we are working on in our den.

We have this very weird space in our den that has left me stumped for over a year as to what to do with it.  When we added on the addition, we had this area by the steps that we decided to leave open because I wanted to be able to see the staircase easily. But that area has always been a thorn in my side as to how to decorate it.

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I thought about turning it into a gallery wall, but just never felt like that would look right.  I’ve had a piece of furniture there when my den was arranged differently, and I liked it, but now that my couch is in front of that area, it just looks too crowded.

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I was trying to find some pictures of this space so you could see what it looks like, but I don’t have many pictures of it because I have never really decorated (or liked) that area of our den.

Well, I have good news!!

We have come up with a solution for this troubled area, and I am loving it!

We are building bookcases!!

Here is what the space looked like when we starting drawing our plans on the wall.  :)

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We tore out the header (that we just built a couple of years ago!) so that the bookcase would be visibly all the way to the ceiling. 

The boys were extremely thrilled about this part!

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We patched up the ceiling, and Cy wired the bookcase so that we could have picture lights at the top.

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We gave the bookcase a fresh coat of paint, and now I am ready to style it!
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I threw some things on the bookcase so I could take a picture on my phone and send it to my sister.  I am going to have fun styling these shelves throughout the seasons.  :)

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Our picture lights came in the mail TODAY, so as soon as Cy gets those installed, and I finish styling the shelves with pretty Springy things, I will show you the reveal!   Yay!!

 

Have a blessed day!

 

Oily Chat2

 


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DIY-ing our Basic Brick Ranch in the Cottage of our Dreams (Part Five)

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When I started this series, I wasn’t exactly sure how many “parts” there would be, but it seems we are already up to FIVE!  Whoop!

Let’s keep going!  :)

house transformation series

 

This small 11 ft x 11 ft room is to the left of our guest bathroom.  It was Eli and Adam’s room when we first moved in, and then it became a junk room when the boys moved into the addition.

Here is what I am talking about…

office makeover

 

 

I knew when we converted this room into my office, that I wanted a lot of desk space and window seats under the windows.  So I showed my ideas to Cy, and he brought me dream to life!  (I love that man.)  You can see how we began building it HERE.

 

custom window seat

And more of the building process HERE.

custom diy desk

We gave everything a fresh coat of white paint…

It was looking better already!

diy custom desk

Once we finished the desk, it was time to add upper cabinets!

diy cabinet makeover

We reused some of the cabinets that we had left over from our kitchen makeover and added some open shelving in the middle of them.

diy cabinet makeover

You can see the whole tutorial HERE.

diy cabinet makeover

For the space below the cabinets, I built a large burlap memo board.

burlap memo board

 

I am so glad I did this!  I use this memo board like CRAZY now!  To see how easy it was to make, click HERE. 

burlap memo board

 

Below my desk, I had Cy build me a cabinet, and I turned it into a file cabinet.

diy file cabinet

I attached a metal file holder to a piece of wood that slides in and out of the cabinet.  You can see how I did this HERE.

diy file cabinet

 

I also made new cabinet doors for the old kitchen shelves I hung above my desks and the window seats.  You can see the complete tutorial of how I made them HERE.

diy cabinet doors

 

And you can see how I made my window seat cushions in less than five minutes each by clicking HERE.

diy window seat cushion

One of my favorite projects in this room was turning the old bedroom closet into my craft closet

closet makeover

This space has been a life saver!

craft closet makeover

 

It was even featured in an organizing book!  Yay!

craft closet

 

 

 

I also love my HUGE command center calendar!  It’s on the wall to the left of my craft closet.

giant command center

 

My most recent pictures of my office were taken when I did a makeover on a chair

 

office chair makeover

Believe me, my desk does not look this clean, nor do I always have fresh flowers on my desk.  :)  Although I wish I did!  

office makeover

This chair is not longer in my office.  :(  The boys broke one of the legs while twirling around in it.  Oh well!  Good thing I only paid $6.50 for it at Goodwill, right?!

As you can see in the picture below, I added some wood blinds and a sisal rug.  For now, this space is officially done! I do have a sewing station on the other desk corner, but I haven’t taken any pictures of it yet.  I will try to do that soon and show it to you. 

office makeover

If you missed the previous four posts about our home renovation,

click on the links below:

Exterior

Addition

Kitchen

Guest Bathroom

 

Thanks for stopping  by!

Come back tomorrow!  

We are headed over to the master bedroom in our addition! 

 

 

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My Giant Command Center!

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Hey, Hey!

Well, we had a snow day here, and my boys are home.  That’s a good thing and a bad thing.  :)  Ya know what I mean?

I love having them here, but it puts a serious dent in my plans.  I’m still trying to get my office organized, and I am making progress, but it is slow.  I feel like the tortoise.  The Hare is kicking my tale!

Today, I am sharing my “throwback” post, so that I have more time to work on my office this week. 

This post was originally posted on August 27, 2013.  

Enjoy!

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I am so excited to show you my project today!

I have been wanting to make a “command center” in my home for like fo-ev-a!

giant wall command center

The biggest goal in my life right now is to be more ORGANIZED!  In our last home, I finally felt like I had a handle on all our “stuff,” and then we moved. Sad smile

It has taken almost 2 1/2 years in our new home for me to finally feel like I am starting to get more organized.  It has been so hard to be organized when, for the past two years, our house has looked like this…

installing kitchen floor

And this….

removing the kitchen soffit

Oh, and this…

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Just looking at those pictures gives me the hives!

 

So I cannot tell you how grateful I am that I now have an office space in our home where I can get my life organized!

craft closet makeover

I’m loving my craft closet.

And I’m starting to enjoy my new desk space, even though it isn’t completely finished.

office

 

But more than anything else, I am loving my Giant Command Center.

giant wall command center

I am a visual person, and I need to SEE things all laid out to help me stay organized.

So I painted a huge square on my wall with Chalkboard Paint from Lowe’s.

Then I used some inexpensive 1×3’s to frame it.

Since I like to see more than one month at a time, I decided to create 3 calendar grids on my wall.giant wall command center

I used a large level and a permanent white paint marker to create my calendar grids.

I decided to color-code the events on my calendar with Chalk-Ink markers.  (They are like chalk, but like a marker too.  I got mine at Hobby Lobby and Michaels.)

giant wall command center

The boys LOVE that they have their own color.  I hot glued a little wicker votive holder to the wall and placed my chalk markers in them.  Now, each event on the calendar is color-coded for each member of the family!

I bought a $5.00 clear plastic folder holder from Walmart, and spray painted it blue.  Then I hot glued that to the wall as well!  Smile

giant wall command center

The metal memo board is also from Walmart.  I use it to jot down important things that I need to remember to do.  I also use magnets to attach any appointment cards to it.  The little memo pad is magnetic, so it attaches perfectly to my metal memo board.  I use the memo pad to make my grocery lists or jot down any errands I need to run that day.  I tear the paper off and take it with me!

Hands down, my FAVORITE part of the Command Center is the four clipboards at the bottom!

giant wall command center

I have had a HORRIBLE time keeping up with all of my boys’ papers from school.  So I created a clip board for each of them to keep all of their important papers.  It has already saved my life this school year!  (I put four nails in the wall and hung a clipboard on each.)

When they bring home important papers from school about field trips or important school dates to remember, I say, “Clip it to your board!”

Now we always know where to find their papers.  It’s so much better than being buried in a pile of papers on my desk, like they used to be!

So there you have it!

Do I look organized or what?!

giant wall command center

 

I wish the rest of my house looked this way.  Smile

Baby steps, people, baby steps.

 

Do you have a command center

in your home?

 See you tomorrow for my last post in my “Organize Your Heart” video series!


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Tips and Tricks to Organizing Your Home Management

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Welcome to the last week of Organize Your Heart and Home!

Organize heart and home

This week, we are focusing on Home Management Organization.

 

THIS is the area of my home that needs the most help!  I am soooooo not good at keeping up with paperwork and keeping things organized in my office.   It is definitely not my “gift.”

It bugs me to death that I struggle so much in this area.  Last year, I spent a week in January printing printables and putting together binders for all of my important “home stuff.”  Those binders have basically sat on my shelves, unused, the entire year.  Ugh.

So I am spending this week getting my office organized again.  Here is some evidence on Instagram…

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I’ve been scouring the web for Home Management inspiration, and here are some of my favorite to get you and I going! :)

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Jen from I Heart Organizing shares how she does her budget binder.  She also has links to a lot of other great info too!

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 Here is another great post on a Home Management Binders

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I liked some of the simple stuff I found in this post at Modern Ms. Darcy.   There is a link to a book that I downloaded, and I am going to read soon.  I think I need it. :)

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I really liked the idea of this simple chore chart, from Not Consumed, for my boys.  Right now, we do not have a chore system in place, and we are needing one badly.  I might give this a try by adding one more zone.  :) 

Free-Simple-Chore-Chart

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Here are some simple and doable tips to help you manage your time at home from Cloudy with a Chance of Wine.

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This is one of MY FAVORITE organizing blogs, A Bowl Full of Lemons! There is SO much great information there!  You can find how to organizing your bills, organize your meals, and how to organize your cleaning schedule.  

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Hope these ideas will help get your started on organizing your home!  I will be sharing my “mostly” organized office on Thursday instead of tomorrow. :)  I’ve still got a LOT to do in there!

Have a blessed day!

 


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Organize Your Heart – Part 3 (video)

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Happy Hump Day!

I pray you are having a wonderful week!

Today is Part 3 of my video series on Organizing Your Heart!

I am sharing how I use a prayer journal during my quiet time.  I learned this method when I was a teenager, and I have used it ever since.  Thank you for letting me share this with you!

If you missed the first two videos, you can click on the link below.

Organize Your Heart – Part 1

Organize Your Heart – Part 2


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Organizing the Hall Closet

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Hey, y’all!

Well, I started organizing my closet last night, but didn’t get it finished until today.  I took some pictures this evening before Adam and Luke’s basketball games, and now I am finally editing my photos and writing my post.  Whew!

Even though it has been a hectic 24 hours, I am SO glad to be getting ORGANIZED!!!

closet organization

This is the second little organization project on this closet in the past two years.  I have to show you the other one first. 

It cracks me up.

Closet Makeover

Dude.  Look at my closet before.  It was a sad situation.  You can read about how I organized it HERE.

I also shared THIS POST about how I changed the bifold doors on the closet to these beautiful bead board paneled doors.

diy closet door makeover

This used to be a small closet in one of the bedrooms before we tore the walls down and turned this area into a hallway.  You can see where this closet is in respect to my den in the photo below.

hall closet

I LOVE these doors!  :)

Unfortunately, over the past year, I haven’t been to nice to my closet, and yesterday, it looked like this…

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Ouch.

The drawers in the closet needed organizing too!

closet organization

I followed my organizing system, and Dumped, Ditched, and Divided.

3-d's of organizing

I dumped everything in the closet out in the hallway floor.

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This step is messy, but necessary.

Then I ditched the junk, and put the rest in a large bag to take to Goodwill this week. 

That part feels so good!

Lastly, I divided all of the remaining items back into the closet where I wanted them. 
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The top two hanging rods hold mine and Cy’s summer clothes.

The bottom hanging rod holds my tablecloths.

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I also found three cloth laundry baskets to fill up the floor space and create more storage.

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Notice how organizing this closet has created some empty storage spaces for me to use?

I’m still trying to decide what I want to put in those spaces.

I decided to use the middle laundry basket to store extra bed sheets…

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The basket on the left holds some extra pictures that I haven’t hung up in our house yet.   And the basket on the right is empty!  Yay!   More storage space!  :)

I added one belt hanger on the right side door last year, but I decided to add another one above it for ties.  This is the easiest area to keep track of all of my boys’ belts and ties.

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They have a lot more ties and belts that I will be adding to this space.

On the left door, I added a “wrapping station.”  I took all of the stuff I had in the drawers and created storage for it on the door.

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I used this letter tray from Walmart to create storage for my tissue paper and gift bags.  But I didn’t use it in the way it was made for!

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I attached it flat to the door to create a “pocket” to store things in.

To do this, I simply placed the letter tray where I wanted it on the door, traced the outline with a pencil, attached 3M mounting tape on top of the pencil line, and then attached the letter tray.

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I chose to do this because the letter trays were only $5.00 and the best deal I could find to save some money. 

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When I peeled the red layer off of the tape, I pushed the letter tray onto the door to stick.  Since these baskets will be holding very light items, I knew the tape would be able to hold everything just perfectly!

I loved that the letter tray had a little wire on the bottom of the tray that I could hang my tissue paper on!

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I also used an “S hook” that I already had and hung it on my letter tray to hold my tape.

I found these silver metal baskets at Walmart for $10 a piece.  I wish I could find them cheaper, but I couldn’t. 

Most “over the door” hanging baskets have metal hooks on top that cannot be removed.  I liked these baskets because you didn’t have to use the hooks if you didn’t want to.

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I attached the baskets to the wall with 3M mounting tape…

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I used the top wire basket to hold more gift bags, and the lower wire basket to hold wrapping paper.  

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I also attached the “over the door” hooks to the sides of my basket to hold my scissors.  Perfect!

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Do you see that small “open” gift bag at the bottom of the door?   I attached it to the door with some more 3M mounting tape and filled it with all of my self-sticking bows.  

I am SO pleased with how my closet looks now. 
Most of my drawers are empty now, so I am looking forward to filling them up too and adding some cute handles.  I will share that with you when I do.
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Do you see that small gap on the right side of the closet with nothing in it?

I am going to get a hanging rod to go in that space and hang my off season dresses in that space.  

There you have it!  I am so glad to get this project checked off my “to do” list!  :)

Come back tomorrow for my Organize Your Heart video post!

If you want to see more inspiration to help you organize your closets, click on the button below.

closet


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Tips and Tricks to Organizing your Closets!

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Welcome to week THREE of my Organize your Heart and Home series!

Organize heart and home

 This week we are focusing on our CLOSETS!

I am totally pumped about cleaning out some of my closets.  Our hall closet is the first one I am going to tackle today and show you tomorrow.  I’m also going to try and clean out the boys’ playroom closet.  (double ew.)

But for now, I am sharing with you some great organizing tips and tricks for your closets that I found on Pinterest.  You can click on the link below each picture to view the source.

Here is a great way to turn a small closet into your “cleaning closet.”  That’s a pretty smart way to store the paper towels.

cleaning closet

source

Boots falling over in my closet is always an issue, so I need to consider hanging my boots like the picture below.  It takes up room in the closet, but if you have the space, it is a great idea!

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You can also hang your shoes on the wall with crown molding or a simple piece of trim.

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Here is a great way to organize your craft supplies in a small closet.  I love using the back of a door to store supplies.  If you have closet doors with empty backs, you can take advantage of that space and install some organizers.   So smart and practical!

craft

source

 

Love using the back of a closet door to create a “wrapping station.” 

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I don’t have a lot of purses, but the few I do have dry me cRaZy!!  They are always falling over or falling down out of my closet.  I love this purse organizer that you can purchase on Amazon.   

purses

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If you are someone with a lot of clutches, here is another great way to store those! 

clutches

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Kids’ closets can be some of the messiest in the house, unless you organize it like Chelsea from TwoTwentyOne did.  I love how she used the space on the bottom of the closet to add cubbies to hold more stuff.  Great idea! 

kids closet

source

 

Are you feeling motivated yet?!!

I am!  

I cannot wait to get started on my closet!  

Will you join me?

It can be a coat closet, a bedroom closet, a hall closet, or a utility closet.  Whichever needs organized the most, get on it!  :)  (You will thank me later.)

Come back Friday to share your organized closet(s) and enter another fabulous giveaway!  :)

Have a blessed day!

 

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Bathroom Organization Linky Party (and Giveaway!)

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Happy Friday, Y’all! 

I am sorry I am posting late.  I have had a CRAZY busy day!  It’s 10:00 pm, and I am just now sitting down to work on my computer.  

But I wanted to make sure that I got our Bathroom Organization linky party up and running so you could link up if you wanted to.  

I would love for you to share your bathroom organization projects!

(Remember you can email me your before and after pictures at [email protected])

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now for the giveaway!

To help you get organized, I am giving away a

$50 Gift Card to The Container Store!

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 To enter, just leave a comment telling me your favorite organizing tip or trick!

(giveaway ends in one week)

GOOD LUCK!

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I also wanted to announce the winners of last week’s giveaway!

Congrats to

Lori (shortstufflek) and Mary Christianson!!

You both win your own copy of Organizing Your Life!

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I will be emailing you about your prize!

Have a wonderfully organized weekend!  

Next week, we will be tackling our CLOSETS!!!


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Bathroom Closet Makeover

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Welcome back to my Organize your Heart and Home series!

organize

We took a little break this morning for my Healthy Living, Healthy Home series, but I am back for my “throwback Thursday” post. 

This is a post I wrote when I was organizing (creating) a linen closet for our master bathroom.  

Here it is…

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(Originally posted on January 24, 2011)

This week I am going to show you how I organized my bathroom closet (which isn’t really in my bathroom).  :)

bathroom closet

This is the bathroom in the master bedroom…

bathroom closet makeover

It used to look completely different because my hubby and I did a complete makeover a few years ago (before my blogging days).

I love my bathroom, although there is nothing really “master” about it.  As far as storage goes, there is very little of it.

My husband and I have our toiletries under each of our sinks, and we keep our towels in the bottom of this black cabinet that we added to the space…

traditional bathroom

The only closet in our master bedroom was behind this little door…

bathroom closet makeover

Ain’t it purdy?

Yep, the bottom two panels on the door have had the mesh inserts missing since we moved into the house six years ago.  Yep…6.

(This door had to have those mesh panels because it has a vent inside the closet that has to be able to circulate air.)

Now, my hubby used to keep his clothes stuffed in this little closet (wish I had a picture of it, but we had already cleared it out before this makeover, and I forgot to take a picture).

But since we turned the laundry room into a master bedroom walk-in closet, we now had the space to do something different with this closet….it would be our bathroom/linen closet! (It’s just a few steps away from our bathroom.)

This is very humbling…but here is the before shot of this closet…

bathroom closet makeover

Yikes!  Aren’t you lovin’ the brown on the back of the door that we never painted?

bathroom closet makeover

This closet is located beneath our stairs, thus the slanted ceiling.

There used to be a bar than ran across the front of these shelves that my hubby’s clothes hung on, but we took it down.

bathroom closet makeover

See the beautiful vent on the floor?  Well, my hubby is getting ready to relocate it so we no longer have to have a vented door on this closet!  Woohoo!

I took everything out of the closet….

bathroom closet makeover

We did not paint this closet when we moved in six years ago.  I can guarantee that is has not been painted since this home was built in 1968!  It’s about time, doncha think?

Here is a look at the vent and yucky baseboard.  So glad my hubby is moving this vent!

bathroom closet makeover

I don’t know why the baseboard looks like that.  I cleaned it off and it still looks all speck-ly brown with dirt.

So the whole closet got a fresh coat of white paint.  I had to use KILZ primer on some parts because it had been painted with oil-based paint.  You cannot paint over oil-based paint with water-based paint without priming it first.  The paint will not adhere and will just scratch right off.

We also took the door off!!  Yeah!

We used the leftover brown paint from our laundry room makeover to paint the back wall.  I thought it would help the white shelves stand out, and it did.

bathroom closet makeover

This closet is a little dark, so I took the lamp off of my black dresser and sat it on the top shelf so I could see to paint.  The picture above only has one coat of brown paint on the walls.

Hey…I kind of like that little lamp in there…are you thinking what I’m thinking?

Now all we needed was a door.  Hmmmm…

I got to thinking.

Our next project in our home is going to be the boys’ upstairs bathroom.

It has a bathroom closet that has a door on it.

We are planning to take the door off for our makeover and leave the shelves open.

I wondered if that door would fit on our closet? I went upstairs and measured the width, and whatdayaknow?  It was the exact length!

I was so excited!!!

It was a little bit taller, but my hubby just sawed a little off the bottom and we were in business!

bathroom closet makeover

I love it!!!!

I love having the ironing board hanging on the door.

bathroom closet makeover

I found the adorable chicken wire baskets at T.J. Maxx yesterday, and I had to get them.  It was the only money I spent on this makeover, so it justified the $40.00 I spent on all four of the baskets.

The little wash cloth basket had a liner in it too, but I took it out because I like seeing the washcloths behind the wire.  I did the same thing to the basket that holds the toilet paper.

I had to had the greenery to hid the cord from the lamp.  :)

bathroom closet makeover

These are my “his” and “her” baskets.  I might add labels to them in the future.  They hold our personal items that do not need to be in the bathroom on a daily basis.

The lace had little brown buttons on it that I cut off because I thought it made it look a little too country.

bathroom closet makeover

Here are a few shots with the lamp on.  It makes the closet so bright and cheerful.  I cannot tell you how much I love this closet.  I don’t even close the door now.  :)

bathroom closet makeover

The lamp I already had (paid $10.00 for it at an antique mall last year), the bird was from the dollar store, and the white vase was a dollar at Goodwill.

 

bathroom closet makeover

Here are the before and after pictures….

bathroom closet makeover

bathroom closet makeover

Woohoo!

It was so worth the time and effort to complete this makeover.

*************

I really did love that little closet!  It served us well. :)

Come back tomorrow for our

Bathroom Organization linky party!  

If you have a blog, I would love for you to link up your projects!  

If you don’t, then you can email  before and after pictures to me at [email protected],

or message me on my facebook page.  (You might see them show up on my blog!)  :)


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