“NO, I can’t leave MOM! I can’t find my socks! And my pants don’t fit any more!” screamed my 6 year old daughter as we were late for school the 5th time this week. That was it. I’m going to have to get another late slip in the office.
My mind wandered back to the days of each of my five kids, being infants. The long nights of multiple messy diapers, the “poo-caso paintings” they sometimes created middle of the night and the ever stained clothing… these just seem to be a stage we have been stuck in for 17 years! You like me, wondered how these heaps of dirty laundry, unmatched socks, clothes under the bed, under the sink, under the sheets come to life. How do people get to nicely organized drawers and kids who were happily going to the car each morning for school?
As I sat folding socks about 4 weeks ago, an idea came to me. From this idea our house became a house of happy mornings with matched socks and “magical drawers.” Let me share with you a few simple tricks to conquer this laundry monster.
1) Set the week up: Pick out 7 outfits that will work for the week. Example: One shirt, one pair of pants, socks and undies = 1 outfit
2) Limit the options: We have nice clothes, play clothes, summer clothes, winter clothes, too small clothes, too big clothes -TOO MANY CLOTHES! Yet it is impossible to part with anything (am I the only hoarder here?)… Lock the other options up
3) Donate: Get those 0-3 month clothes out to someone who needs more laundry. Pay it Forward group on facebook or Goodwill, so many people are in need.
4) Wash on short cycle: You know that cycle that takes 1.5 hours to wash, then the clothes get left in there and need rewashed and the laundry just stacks up another week while the clothes get stinky? Then the things from the dryer end up on the floor unfolded for the week? End that. Now. Use the 30 or 45 minute cycle. Now you can remember to flip, fold and put away before midnight strikes.
Know that if you are in the middle of laundry he!! that you too can break free. This simple strategy has led to more peace, less laundry and less fighting in our family.
I’m sure everyone out there in the world has already conquered the looming laundry beast. Just in-case he is still lurking in your home, now you know our secret to keeping him a small pet.