Laundry Blues

LaundryThere is no one right way to do the laundry, but there are a lot of ways to make it less work for you and your family.   What follows are some strategies that can help you to minimize this necessary evil in your life.

Keep a laundry schedule Pick your laundry days and stick to them.   Anything else will have to wait till the next laundry day.

Ask yourself why you do so much laundry.   Do you wash clothing after every wearing and towels after every use?   Many items of clothing can be used several times before they really need to be washed

Clean out your closets! Some people believe that it is best to keep enough clothing to avoid doing laundry for several weeks in a row.  But hardly anyone has this much wardrobe space.

Make sure you have adequate room in your closets and chests of drawers to put the clean clothes.   Without adequate closet and dresser space, it’s a certainty that the clean laundry will just get piled on the bed, shoved onto the floor, walked on and stuck back into the hamper.

If you’re really behind with the laundry, load it up in the car and go to the Laundrette.

Throw in a load of laundry first thing each morning, and toss it in the dryer when you get home from work at night.   Don’t put things in the dryer while you’re out, because they will just sit there all day and get wrinkled.

It seems obvious, but you need a hamper to put the dirty laundry into.  It’s important for your family to have easy access to the hampers, so they can put the dirty laundry in, and make a good habit of it.

Keep two hampers near the bathroom or bedrooms – one for lights and one for darks.   This way the laundry is presorted.

Buy two zippered mesh bags for your light and dark delicates, and toss them in with the rest of the wash.

Socks can also go into zippered mesh bags hung on the front of the hampers.   This saves a lot of sock-sorting time, and is especially good if you have kids with similar socks that all look the same.

Laundry should be a fairly standard event in the home, and kids are going to need this skill when they grow up and leave home, so teach each family member how to do a load of darks and a load of whites, and assign a different laundry day to each of them.   If necessary, complicated or stained items can be saved for a day that an adult does the wash.

Folding:  Don’t get more than one load behind on the folding and putting away – this is less likely if you have a schedule.   Do it in front of the TV, or find some other way to make this happen.   Provide a small basket or container to cart clean laundry back to the bedrooms and linen closet.