Secrets to Laundry Success:
The biggest time vacuum of my life is laundry. Back when I only had one child I could easily wash, dry, fold and iron all the clothes in one day. As my family has grown I realized there was no way I could wash everything and have it dry in time to fold and iron it all on Monday. I have heard of people who complete one or two loads of laundry per day. This sounds horrible to me! I hate the idea of dragging laundry out all week. Laundry is a never ending task as it is, I need a break! Knowing I had more important things to do with my life than laundry I began considering ways to accomplish this task FAST. I have noticed that I have to get out more toys and games for my kids on Mondays so they will be entertained while I'm doing laundry, this is OKAY, there will be plenty of time to clean it up on Tuesday! The first priority is LAUNDRY!
Here is Laundry Plan In Excellence.
Laundry Collection: Every person in the family should have their OWN laundry hamper in their room or in the laundry room (which ever you have space for). This basket should be large enough to hold 7 days worth of clothing. Each family member is responsible for putting their own clothes in their own basket every morning and every evening. When dirty clothes are found seeping into all reaches of the house laundry feels overwhelming ALL WEEK LONG. My kids aren’t allowed to go to school or play with friends until their dirty clothes are in a basket and out of site.
Choose a washing day: I like to wash all of the clothes on Sunday. We are almost always at home Sunday afternoons so it is easy to keep the washing machine going. Each of my kids is responsible for washing their own laundry. They empty their baskets, fill the washer, add the soap and push start. When the washer is complete they put their wet clothes in the dryer and then the dry clothes go into a clean laundry basket. I sort the adult clothes by color; darks, lights, whites, jeans. I wash the darks and the lights along with the kids clothes on Sunday because most of them need to air dry. By Sunday night 80% of the laundry is washed and dried. (Sometimes I can even talk my husband into folding clothes with me while watching TV after the kids go to bed!)
Choose a Completion Day: Monday is laundry day, always. From the moment I get the kids off to school I do nothing that doesn’t involve getting the laundry done. Since I had a head start with the washing on Sunday I start Monday by folding the kids clothes and putting them away (during the summer they help, during the school year I just do it for them). I wash, dry and fold whites, jeans, rags and towels while I am folding and ironing the wash that was done on Sunday. This typically takes me about 3 and a half hours (I iron A LOT!). By 12:30 my laundry is all done and I don’t have to even think about it again for 5 more days. I now have the rest of Monday to work on menu planning, grocery shopping and cooking dinner.
Knowing How to Do Laundry and doing it all at the same time will free up your week more than you can imagine. Don't get trapped into spreading it out a little each day or you will never experience a break. Get it ALL DONE BY MONDAY NIGHT!! and have the rest of the week to live your life.
Laundry tips to remember:
- Choose a laundry day and stick with it! Don’t make plans for anything else that day until the laundry is complete. Complete means everything is folded, ironed, and put away where it belongs (not stacked on the counter WAITING to be put away). If a visitor were to drop by on this day they would think you never owned an article of dirty clothing.
- Spot check your laundry BEFORE it goes into the dryer. This will give you the opportunity to remove spots before they are permanently ‘heated’ into the fabric fibers. (Rubbing alcohol removes ink, Hydrogen peroxide removes blood, Baking Soda eliminates odor.)
- Only wash towels with other towels to avoid getting excess lint on your clothes.
- Empty pockets before loading the washer; chap stick, gum, and even paper can ruin an entire load of laundry. Water isn’t very nice to wallets and pocket knives either.
- If an article of clothing bleeds onto the other clothes wash them again immediately! Do NOT dry first.
- To ease your ironing burden smooth out clothes before putting them in the WASHER and again before hanging them to dry (don’t overfill your washer or your dryer). Remove items from the dryer when they are still hot and press out as many wrinkles as you can with your hand.
- Clothes dry much faster if they aren’t touching anything so hang them as far apart as possible.
- Add a clean dry towel to the dryer when drying heavy items like jeans and rugs. This will reduce your drying time and save energy.
- Avoid over drying. By removing clothes from the dryer while still a bit moist you will reduce static and lint (remember, the less lint you have the longer your clothes will last).
- Spraying a mixture of 1 part fabric softener 5 parts water to your clothes while ironing will help remove wrinkles and make your clothes smell nice.
- Turn your jeans inside out to prevent fading.
- To remove the yucky mildew smell from your towels wash in HOT water with 2 cups of white vinegar (nothing else! No detergent, no fabric softener). After the cycle is complete keep the towels in the washer and wash again with detergent and HOT water. If your washer has a prewash and an extra rinse use them. Remove from washer immediately and place in the dryer with a dryer sheet.
- Avoid lost socks. Train your family members to fold their socks together every time they take them off. Unfold them when you place them in the washer to ensure they get clean. Socks that make it into the same wash load are much more likely to find their partner during the folding stage.