Sunday, 17 April 2011

Cleaning out and visiting the "Curbside Boutique".

I've been bitten, bitten by the cleaning out bug.  Last week I cleaned out my laundry cupboards and chucked out a whole lot of unnecessary stuff.  Things like two bottles of wool wash, both half full.  I tipped one into the other and recycled the empty bottle.  It's amazing how much stuff gets accumulated in a few years.
I have two big tubs in my laundry and they take up a lot of room in the cupboards underneath.  Storage is tricky, I have to get down on my hands and knees to see what's in there.  I found way too many cleaning cloths, three fly swats and cleaning gloves, some without a pair.  The cat/dog food cupboard, shoe polishing and dog bathing stuff also got an overhaul.  I found dog treats including rawhide chews, biscuits and oinkers.  Sophie is going to be a very happy dog with the discovery of all those treats.

O.K., on to the kitchen sink cupboard.  Urgh, another horrible place to store things because, you guessed it, I have two big sinks taking up a lot of room.  When we were building our house, it was suggested that I should have a 1 1/2 sink combination installed.  No way, I need big sinks to wash and rinse in.  How can you rinse a dirty great big baking dish or dutch oven in a half sink?  Of course it was a man who suggested the 1 1/2 sink option.  It wasn't my hubby who suggested it either.  He knows what a kitchen sink full of dishes looks like.  :)  So I have two gorgeous big sinks but not much storage room. 

Cleaning out I found a number of spray cleaning products purchased in the past in the vain hope they would spur me into a cleaning frenzy.  Not successful I tell you.  Cleaning cloths were also in an abundance.  I found a nice tub of Gumption, my best friend for getting rid of the kitchen sink grime and other non identifiable stains that materialise on the bench overnight.  So I pulled everything out, discarded stuff, cleaned the shelves and reorganised things into what will hopefully be a workable system.  The rubbish bin stays put, the compost bin get moved to a lower shelf etc.

The next project is to clean out the linen cupboard and I've been dreading this forever.  How in the 12 years since we built our house did it get to look like this?

(Mum, see your crochet blanket there?   Now that I know how to crochet, I'm going to mend the holes so I can snuggle up in it come winter.)

Oh the shame of these photos.  Just look at this mess below.  At this point I had started putting some things back, in hopefully what will be some sort of order. 

See the vacuum cleaner on the floor level.  It's a VAX brand and is in two parts.

Some shelves are getting a little better now.

I've been labelling some of my blankets, 'cos I can never remember what size they are.  I'm doing the same thing with my sheets as I have an abundance and I can't tell what size they are.    I'm debating whether I will leave them rolled up or put a pair of sheets inside a pillowslip for storage.  Whatever takes up less room I suppose.  Out of this mess I have three huge bags to donate to charity.

I'm hoping to rehouse the vacuum cleaner in the space in the photo below which will be much easier on my back and I won't have to put it together every time I want to vacuum.  Maybe we can add a couple of shelves above the vacuum cleaner.

See that box there, that was full of baby and toddler clothes.  When Miss C. saw me sorting them out, she was very happy when I offered to sort through another box of baby things stored in the top of her wardrobe.  It was very nostalgic going through baby clothes.  I've kept really adored items and the others are going to charity after a good wash and freshen up.  I just had to keep the bunny rugs I made for the girls though.  Maybe I'll pass them on some day, but not just yet.  I found things I had made for my  babies like fleecy cot sheets which are currently soaking in one of my big laundry tubs,  :),  a baby bouncer cover I had forgotten I had made and a number of little dresses for little girls.  I've also cleaned out the rag box which was full of old face washers and bibs.  They are being donated to hubby's garage along with a dozen towelling nappies I still have.  Yep, I washed nappies and that was before I had the laundry with the two big tubs too!

It's a good feeling to be doing this clean out.  I've got heaps more to do, especially in my bedroom, in  my wardrobe.  Cringe.

On to other things.  Last week I visited the Curbside Boutique a.k.a. local council hard rubbish removal.  I found these cane chairs which I gave a good scrub to remove the dust, cobwebs and mold and will be painting them and making lovely cushions.

This piece I am going to use in the garden for decoration.  It's the screen from a flywire door.  I found this in my street so went down with my screwdriver, unscrewed it and walked home.  Must have looked funny.  The screen is propped up in our garage which is currently undergoing a renovation, so is rather messy.  Actually, it's always been messy but it is going through a renovation.

Do you think I should leave it black or paint it another colour?

Finally, (sorry it's been a long post), I also found this in my street. 

 In a former life it was used as a home for pot plants.  Now it's going to be used as a bench in my back garden.  Next summer, if we have a summer that is, I will be painting it a much nicer colour rather than leave it this horrible brown.  Just in case you were wondering, Miss G. was kind enough to help me carry this home.  It was awkward, heavy and as where we live is hilly, the process was filled with funny moments.  Isn't Miss G. wonderful?  There aren't too many 17 year olds who would be happy to assist their mother raid the Curbside Boutique.

Thank you for reading this rather long and messy post.  Wish me luck in maintaining the energy and zeal to keep cleaning out.

Have a wonderful week everyone,
Anne  xx


  1. It's very satisfying to have a good clear out from time to time isn't it. I've got a good few areas in our house that I need to tackle soon. Under the kitchen sink being one of them!

  2. I bet you feel good after all the clearing. There is something about refining and organising my belongings that make me feel so happy afterwards.

    I'm just getting rid of our cloth nappies at the moment. Very thankful that we had a washing machine. Few times I had to do them by hand were awful. Might have helped if I was set up properly!

    Hope you are enjoying the extra space. Nice finds!

  3. You have much more gumption than I do...I try not to even look in our linen cupboard :o)

    Your finds are great! It's all gonna look fab..I can't help you with the re-painting though, as i'm not sure myself.

    Have a great week Anne x

  4. All that effort certainly gets a *high achievement* award in anyone's book! Well done, I'm sure you felt good when you stood back and looked at it all. Plus good finds as a bonus.

  5. Very jealous. We never have curbside boutiques round these parts. Love the screen door - would be perfect to grow my sweet peas on.
    More cane chairs - which I love - I have a pair like that (in our messy garage).

  6. Your cupboard is looking much better already! I love a good clear out! That bench looks just great for the garden and a bonus that you are able to recycle it.

    I've added a couple of pheasanty links to my latest post, just for you! :) Do they not live in your part of the world?

  7. Oh Anne, I am bowing down to you (can you feel me bowing?!) I've only lived in this house a year and already it's full of stuff that needs sorting. I just can't face it! I do love that feeling of opening a cuboard and knowing it's sorted though.

    What great finds as well! x

  8. Yes Anne, when I saw that crotchet blanket I thought that looks familiar.
    How did I ever make one that large?
    May inspire me to start another smaller rug.
    Love those chairs, and the door frame, looks good in black or maybe white for the garden.

  9. WOW ! you've done a fantastic job here ! You can be very pleased with yourself. I cleared & cleaned my fridge & kitchen cuboards last week chucking away out of date stuff. I keep opening them & declaring, " They can't be mine ! "

  10. You've been busy! We're clearing out a little here too. Love the chairs and the bench you found.

  11. Curbside envy, especially that screen door. i always like metal in black paint, as it seems to add to it's manliness. My youngest daughter is completely in love with gumption. It's a good thing it doesn't invoke highs as she always takes a sniff when it is out. Wonderful to see all the goodies you threw out because it feels so good to have a linen cupbaord you can show off with it's tidiness. Cherrie


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