Laundry has always been a loathsome chore for me. Perhaps it’s because I have an unreasonable expectation to have it completed yet, there is always more dirty laundry to wash. I’m great at getting dirty clothes washed and dried, but after that part things tend to pile up (literally). Piles of clean laundry or baskets mounded with clean clothing are often scattered around our home, and honestly it makes me anxious. When I see these mountains, I often feel as if I don’t know where to start or that I’ll never see the end of things so I abandon the chore temporarily. Unfortunately, it was like this before we had children. I’ve often attempted to have a designated “laundry day” and would find the mounds of laundry daunting so I’d procrastinate, which was problematic.
Since the quads arrival, things have only gotten worse in the laundry department. Adding four messy little people to our family meant the stacks of dirty laundry only replicated themselves like a vicious virus. I’d toil over laundry only to find more of it waiting, which made me feel uneasy. Three years into this parenting gig, I’ve finally figured out a simple system that works beautifully for us.
I COMPLETE ONE LOAD OF LAUNDRY PER DAY.
That’s it. Simple, I know, but it’s working. Every day I commit to starting a single load of laundry, folding it, and putting it away. Is the laundry ever completely done? Heck no! But, I’m keeping up with it for the first time and it feels good. There aren’t piles of clothes collecting wrinkles and begging for hangers. Best of all, I don’t feel overwhelmed by laundry any more. One load of laundry per day doesn’t really consume much time for me and it’s not so terrible.
I don’t adhere to it exactly, but I’ve found keeping a schedule helps the process. On days I’ll be at the office or that we have a lot of planned activities, I do towels or other linens because folding and putting away are more manageable. On the other days, I rotate between the kid’s clothes and ours. We have a handy laundry sorter cart in our closet that saves me a step in prepping loads. Also, the kids enjoy rolling the cart to the laundry room and helping me load the washer. To adhere to my commitment, I refrain from mixing up loads or adding random articles of clothing to a given load. I’ve found that sticking with the designated load helps me at the end because it’s somewhat sorted. It’s a waste of time having to sort through clothes to figure out whose are whose or pull clothes from wadded linens, ect.
Sunday- adult’s darks
Monday- children’s clothes (I don’t bother sorting kid clothes by color)
Wednesday- adult’s lights
Thursday- children’s clothes
Friday- sheets (I rotate every other week, kids and adults)
Saturday- adult’s lights
What tricks help you manage mundane chores?
P. S. If you are currently buying laundry detergent, you may want to try our recipe for detergent. It’s surprisingly simple to make, and saves quite a bit of money!
13 thoughts on “The Secret for Keeping up with LAUNDRY”
So wish money was not an option I would love a service to come and get the dirty clothes and a house keeper to put them away. Haha. I tried the load a day and it works, but I found the my laundry room was always a mess so I switched to doing all (well most) on Fridays (helps that I works from home so I can load and unload during the day). That way when Kurt asks if X is clean my response is have you worn it since last Friday? And then I have a clean laundry room for the weekend. A friend told me about her sister with 8 kids and I thought of you. They turned an extra bedroom into the laundry/changing room. She not only had the washer/dryer in the room, but all the hampers and their dressers. All her kids dressed and undressed in the same room. No more lugging laundry baskets around the house to load or put clothes away. Thought it was such a good idea.
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Ideally I’d have my laundry done for me too, but that pesky money thing….if I had the space, I’d live a dedicated room for all things laundry too. The sorter we use helps because it’s on wheels, which eliminates the lugging.
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I do the same. I don’t categorize…I just always have plenty of baby laundry, toddler laundry, etc from the day. Every night I gather the kids laundry,and then anything that is in our hamper, anything else that needs to be washed (hoodies, etc) and throw it in. If it’s early enough I dry it and fold it. If not, I dry it in the morning when I get up, then fold it after work/put away and throw that day’s load in.
I also save money and avoid chemicals from fabric softener by using white vinegar in it’s place, and wool dryer balls in the dryer. The nice thing about the vinegar is it prevents build up on bath towels. Regular softener builds up on them over time, making them noticeably less absorbent. No build up with the vinegar and you cannot smell it on dry clothing/towels. Additionally, you can add essential oils to the dryer balls if you want a light scent on your clothing.
I’ll admit…I used to LOVE the smell of Downy. Loved, loved, loved it. After switching to vinegar….at first I missed it. I recently cleaned out the closet…AGAIN…and came across an article of clothing that I had not worn in 3 years. I used Downy 3 years ago. Guess what that shirt smelled like….Downy. The scent was very strong as if I had just taken it out of the dryer. It also made my hands smell very much like Downy. The fact that the fragrance lasted 3 years, was still annoyingly strong AND left a strong scent on my skin…reaffirmed the fact that I had made the right choice in switching to vinegar.
I still use Free and Clear detergent for the family, but perhaps one day I will try my hand at making some!
I used to do random laundry too, but sorting actually helps the folding and putting away part, at least for me. I use vinegar for softener too! I use vinegar for many cleaning jobs, actually.
I am a bit addicted to Thieves cleaner around the house…smells so good and works really well! I also use peroxide to get rid of that funky pink bacteria that appears in the shower. It is apparently a bacteria that feeds on soap etc…I thought it was mold, but googled it and found that it was bacteria. The only thing I have found to get rid of it is peroxide. Regular cleaners didn’t work. Crazy, but peroxide works like a charm.
OMG- thank you for the peroxide tip! That’s golden. Thrives is the secret ingredient in the Germ Guard I love.
I have no idea what Germ Guard is…is that a DoTerra oil? I am a Young Living gal myself, and love the cleaner and the Thieves oil too…and the thieves hand soap and hand sanitizer and…and…and… LOL 🙂
Yes, I was SO thrilled when I finally found something to work. It was driving me bonkers!
The pink stuff has been driving me bonkers too! So happy to have a solution.
Germ Guard is made by a friend’s sister for her small business (Cindy’s Suds). I don’t know which brand of EO’s she uses, but her products are really good.
Oh gotcha! Thieves is a wonderful thing! 🙂
Committing to a load per day has also worked for us. Except for when we do more dirty laundry than that…
I do this too! Well I wash and dry, my husband folds while I get ready for bed and I put it away in the morning. Thankfully he is motivated enough and will fold, and if it’s folded I don’t mind putting things away. Sometimes it gets backed up and makes me crazy anxious though!
I fired the husband from laundry because he kept washing clothes and doesn’t fold or put away. I ended up with mountains to fold. Now he only puts his away, I do the rest.
[…] changing, ya’ll! Laundry for a family of six can easily consume lots of time, but with my laundry secret and the kids’ help it’s pretty simple now. Rylin asked if she could vacuum the kitchen […]