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Laundry Intervention: A Day of Reckoning
There it was. The mile high pile of clothes that had taken on a life of it's own. I swore mildy under under my breath at the thought of tackling this beast. What was I going to do? How was I going to tame the wild monster that had so easily taken over the master closet?
I sat there, scratching my head with the tip of my index finger...wondering how it was going to happen. There were a few road blocks to success in my path:
Our bedroom is upstairs. Anyone who lives in a 2 story home knows what the pain of lugging large quantities of clothes up and down the stairs does to a person's soul. It makes you. Never. Ever. Want to do a load of laundry again.
We had one of those canvas and aluminum "laundry sorters": a.k.a. "The Pit of Despair". Sure it might work downstairs, in an actual laundry room- but I thought somehow it would work upstairs in the closet, since we didn't have room near the washer and dryer. Big Mistake. Big.
4 people in our family + a week's worth of clothes = 9 loads of laundry. Do I need to say more?
The Sock Monster: He lives in our dryer. And eats socks for lunch. I can never get the same amount of socks that go in, to come out.
Getting them in the wash is enough of a chore. But, get them out, fold them and then put them away? You have got to be kidding me.
I stood there for a moment and wished that Beverly D'Angelo from Maid To Order would swoop down, snap her fingers and it would just magically appear clean, folded and in the drawers....
That moment came and went.
I needed a laundry intervention. I needed to intervene on my own behalf. I was just going to have to figure this out on my own. And needed a lot of strength from God. Because I sure didn't have it in me.
Here's how the intervention went down. There was lots of self talk, some internal grumbling and eventually, by the end of the day, I heard the voice of Giselle from Enchanted singing "Happy Little Working Song".
I decided the cornerstone of my my epic laundry failure was that hideous excuse for a solution called the laundry sorter. It had to go. Now. I picked up a simple vertical hamper from Target. The less laundry it held the better. I would be less inclined to let the clothes pile on top, creating a veritable Mount Olympus.
And instead of lugging heaping piles of clothes down the stairs, I just threw it all over the side of the stairs. Problem Solved.
Along with the new, smaller (albeit taller) laundry basket, I purchased a 12x12 inch mesh laundry bag. Every sock we own goes in there. When I want to do a load, I throw the bag in with the other clothes. Magically, the same socks that go in, come out.
I then purged excess clothing that I no longer need, want or wear. Repeat with husband's clothes. Donate.
Next up, I try and do a load every few days or every day. Usually, we don't have enough of the same kind of load (i.e. darks, etc.) to do an entire load. And I hate doing little kid clothes with grown up clothes. And really, who wants to do laundry every day? Call me weird. So, it's about a two day turnover for us.
When I must do multiple loads of laundry, I try and alternate the types of loads. I do a load of darks, then a load of towls, then a load of lights, then a load of jeans. Thereby, alternating the amount of items needing to be folded and allowing me to catch up.
My husband's stinky running/coaching clothes get their own separate, small basket, away from everyday clothes. Underneath that I stack extra sorting baskets, for days when there are multiple loads.
I also keep a small basket on top of the washer for dish rags, hand towels, and the odd piece of child clothing that mysteriously makes it's way downstairs.
So far, I am on week 2 and it's working out. Less clothes + smaller hamper size = less overall laundry. And the laundry I am doing, has a working system.