Can We Talk Laundry?

Benjamin Franklin once said, “In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.” Apparently Mrs. Franklin did all their laundry, otherwise he surely would have said, “death, taxes, and dirty clothes.”

I did ten loads of laundry this weekend and I’m exhausted. Here’s the thing about laundry – it is never-ending and it is a thankless task. Really, is there anything more annoying than taking that last load out of the dryer only to find that more dirty clothes have been tossed in the laundry basket (or on the floor)? 

I barely keep pace with the laundry for our family of four. I cannot fathom what laundry must be like for larger families. 

I’ve tried different “systems” to conquer the piles of laundry. This week I did all the laundry on the weekend – clothes, sheets, and towels. Some weeks I spread out the pain by doing one load a night. That seems like a good idea, but here’s how that usually goes. I come home from work and put a load in the washer. I get distracted cooking dinner, doing dishes, and overseeing homework. About the time that I’m ready for bed I remember that there is a load of laundry in the washer. Exhausted, I shove it in the dryer. Then I stay up waiting for the laundry to dry only to cram it unfolded in a basket, or I leave it in the washer and go to bed. Either way, odds are that I’ll rewash the same load of clothes a few days later.

The sad truth is that washing and drying is easy compared to folding and putting away. That’s the real torture. 

My current system (if you can call it a system) is to unload the dryer and dump all the clean laundry on our bed to separate. My husband is the only one who always puts his clean clothes away. Some weeks I put my clothes away, but most weeks I pile clothes on a chair in our bedroom and get dressed for work by pulling clothes from the heap.

Having twin girls means that I have to concentrate when separating their clothes into their baskets. I know that I should let them put away their own laundry. But if I put their laundry away, there is a slim chance that they will be able to find outfits and get out of the door in the morning. When they put their own clothes away (read – shove clean clothes randomly into closets and drawers), I spend crazy amounts of time helping them search for outfits. Teach independence versus getting out of the house on time? Not even a close call – get out of the house on time wins every time.

And so my quest for the holy grail of laundry management continues.

What’s your laundry system – all on the weekend or spread out over the week? Do you fold and put it away for your kids, or do they do it themselves? 

If I could choose one superpower it would be the power to have laundry magically washed, folded and put away!

 

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