Day 15 - Laundry Is Lame - 3 Ways to Simplify Laundry
"Sometimes you might feel like no one's there for you, but you know who's always there for you? Laundry - Laundry will ALWAYS be there for you."
I've see the above quote floating through social media platforms and it makes me laugh every time because it's so true! No matter how hard I try my laundry is always right there, waiting! You might say it's a "broken window" throughout the house. Laundry has continuously become harder through the years. When we were first married, we had to take our laundry to Brandon's parents, once a week, and do it there. After the baby came it added a whole new level of laundry, but when I think back, that was most likely my best laundry phase of life. When Lincoln came along it felt like I went from having three people in the home to somehow ten instead of just four. Tack on a third child and you can imagine how things back up.
As a mom, I talk to other moms about exciting topics such as napping, snack times, open gym play areas and, laundry! Some moms will wash whatever hits the floor, some will only wash when it's dirty, and I spoke with one friend who's husband goes through three outfits a day and puts them all in the hamper to be washed. Needless to say we all have a lot of laundry and it's important to keep clean. Though, if I'm honest, I no longer wash pajamas after each use. Let's repeat those a few nights for my sanity!
I don't know if there's a secret to really tackling laundry. Does anyone actually enjoy doing it? I don't mean finding a way to enjoy it by popping in your favorite music or podcast. I mean, does anyone actually find washing and folding clothes enjoyable? If so, please comment and tell me why! So let's get through this together and figure out a good system for something we have to get done one way or another. Here are a few tips on simplifying your laundry situation at home.
1. Keep the area uncluttered.
Ah, you knew I'd say that! We're all working on decluttering this month so, keeping this area uncluttered is just as important. Whether your laundry is in the basement, inside the mudroom, or on the second floor, keeping it decluttered and organized will help you keep up with the loads of laundry. Side note, I love how laundry is often referred to as a "load" because it totally is! Back to decluttering, here are five ways to clear out this space and make it just a little happier.
1. Get rid of all those mismatched socks! We all have a sock monster that eats our socks and somewhere there has to be a ginormous sock mountain because I truly don't know what happens to them! We got so fed up with mismatched socks that for our older two we threw all the "fun" socks away and invested in all white socks! All of them looked the same so they always matched each other! It was genius! Once the baby is out of her non skid socks she's getting plain socks to!
2. Cleaning products - If you have cleaning products that are almost gone, expired or you don't use, throw them out! If you are saving your old plastic bottles for a craft - throw them out! Keep smaller stain sticks in a special container so you know where they are and toss them if they're old. If you have a newer laundry area I'm jealous. Mine is in the unfinished area of my basement and there's not much to say other than it was a long walk from the basement to the bedroom while I was pregnant. All my laundry supplies have to sit on top of the washer and dryer in a wicker basket so it makes me have less and only keep what I need. But if you have shelves and storage use them wisely. Be able to open a bin or cabinet and see exactly what you have without having to search through it.
3. Clothing waiting for a mend - if you have overly stained clothing, ripped, buttons falling off, and it's been sitting for over six months just do yourself a favor and toss it. I had a shirt that was accidentally washed with a crayon in it's pocket and it sat for over a year on my washing machine! Guess what, I don't like the shirt that much and it's really hard to get all that out so I don't need it!
4. Close pins and miscellaneous laundry items. Throw away broken close pins. Laundry drying wracks that are broken, toss. Seriously why would you keep it? If you have more than you need sell some online. Since my son has eczema, I chose to switch over to balls of wool instead of dryer sheets. These balls are all over the home. If they are old and nasty throw them out, otherwise have a home for them somewhere in your laundry area.
5. Broken cleaning items such as mops, brooms and dusters - trash them, they will not get fixed so just put them to the curb.
2. Keep it Contained.
Laundry should have "a spot." That "spot" should never be all over your home. You should be able to sit on your couch without having to move laundry over. Remember, for me, my laundry is in the basement. I don't do my laundry in the basement, I bring it all the way up to my bedroom and do it on the bed. If I didn't do it upstairs I would then have to put the folded laundry back in the basket and take it upstairs risking it then becoming unfolded. Believe me I tried this and it didn't work. I fold it and it immediately goes from the bed into the drawers throughout the bedrooms. This also keeps you from "living out of the hamper." Yes, I will usually have a few loads I need to fold because I got behind but when you live out of your hamper your head is not as clear as it would be pulling from your orderly drawer. Knowing what you have always make it easier to get ready and give you more confidence.
3. Keep up with it
My friend Nicole gave me great advice when she told me she did one small load a day to keep up with it all. That sounds great! I can totally do that, I'll make it a new habit and it will make my life so much easier instead of always having a mountain to deal with. Well, I did great with this new method, for about three days and then I forgot. But really, those three days felt good in that, I didn't have to fold so many things, just a few things and I was on with my day. So maybe this is something I try to initiate back into my life. Keeping up with it is really the hardest part. Laundry, is clutter! It can clutter a room faster than anything else. So one way of decluttering your home is just having less laundry!
Here's another thought. Laundry, it's not the end of the world. If you are working long hours as a mom and wife and when you get home the last thing you want to do is laundry. What if, you hired a service to fold it? That way you got time back with your family, alleviated stress, and was relieved to have to done. Your kids don't care who's folding the laundry. We have the power to order groceries online and have someone else shop for them. We're able to hire house cleaners. We have someone else do oil changes on the car and cut the grass. So ask yourself what your time is worth. You are the most important person to the people around you. So do what you have to do to stress less and enjoy more.