Thursday, September 2, 2010

I'm Drowning in Laundry!

Since we started school, I have stayed behind in laundry. Really behind. I am still washing and drying 2-4 loads a day, 6 days a week, but it's the folding that I can't stay on top of. Last week I had 20 clean loads in baskets and all over our guest bed, ready to be folded. Julie helped me one night for about 30 minutes, and the next night I stayed up after the children went to bed and folded all of the rest for about an hour and a half.

I am behind again! Our school days are taking me much longer this year than in years past. Plus we have cross country practice three afternoons a week and piano lessons once a week. Thankfully, Jimmy has been off once a week since we began school, and he will continue this schedule for the next few weeks. I am going to have to use that day to play laundry catch up each week.

To make it easier, I am sorting the clean clothes as I take them out of the dryer into 8 separate baskets: one basket for each member of our family, and one basket for those miscellaneous kitchen and cleaning towels. I know it seems like I should just fold each load as it dries, but I really cannot make the time for that during a school day right now. I run to the laundry room for a couple of minutes 2 or 3 times a day to switch out the loads and sort the dry clothes. Then I run back to do school with the children. Having the clothes sorted by family member makes it so much easier when I have the time to fold them. Plus, when I ask the older children to help me fold, each person can fold their own clothes.

Someone asked me why I don't just let the girls do the laundry for me. Well, for one, they already have about 1 hour of chores each day (more on the weekends when we clean house). Also, they are doing school, practicing piano, and running. They are always willing to help me when I get way behind, but I am reluctant to add folding clothes to their daily chore list. Actually, I like folding clothes. I really don't mind doing this chore. When I do get the clothes folded, I put them into each person's laundry bucket, and then they all put away their own clothes.

The system works, I just have to do my part!

I'm off to fold clothes right now.....
how about you? Do you have any laundry tips that you want to share?


  1. That's one thing that I do enjoy about having a smaller house. My laundry closet is right next to the kitchen and the dining room. I can look from my school room through the pass through===through the kitchen and see if my laundry needs to be moved from one machine to another or to the dining room table to be folded. I can fold while the children do school work or read to me and the children can move the laundry from one machine to the other. I do all the folding with the exception of wash clothes and kitchen towels. At least you get another workout going up and down the stairs all day!

  2. do one (or two) person's laundry at a time. I learned this from my sister who has seven children. do the older girls together on one day, then do the boys another day. then do mom and dad's together, etc. til you get everyone's done. save's the sorting step and might free up a couple of minutes for folding.
    also, when I get behind, I fold while I watch a movie or something in the evening. it goes by faster.


    my word verification is "undies" too funny.

  3. I do room by room laundry. And sheets and blankets on different days. I hate making up beds so I do one load of sheets per day (there are only 3 kids in my family) and my 10 year old son does his laundry. 2 loads a day usually keeps me from washing on weekends.

  4. I have the same system Roan, but I do have help with the laundry. When I'm doing it, I fold and sort right out of the dryer. I have a laundry basket for each of the 4 older kids (4 & up) and they put their own clothes away. When I'm doing laundry, I put all other clothes or towels away immediately upon removing them from the dryer. Otherwise, my whole living room will get taken over by clean clothes in various stages of being folded. Right now with school going on, I can't afford to lose my living room!

    Call me crazy, but I think I'm going to cloth diaper baby number 6. I guess that will take our laundry to a whole new level!


  5. After finding folded clothes in my laundry pile on more than one occasion, I gave both my older daughters the responsibility of doing their own laundry. They keep their dirty piles in their own baskets in their own rooms. They can decide when they want to do it, etc. I collect towels still on a daily basis and do have to remind them on the weekends to change their sheets. It actually gives me one less thing to fuss at them about and neither has complained about it actually. They wash when they get ready...they usually do it all at one time. Reagan also has a little basket in her room...her stuff does get mixed in with mine and Ed's but she helps fold and put away her own stuff :)
    I wash towels and kitchen rags separate from everything else...Ed will even sometimes help with these...especially if there's a pile on the bed and he can't get in ;)
    I don't have a laundrey day; I'm like you...I have to do several loads a day or it would easily become overwhelming.

  6. Have your littlest ones fold washcloths and socks. You'll be amazed at how much it helps.

  7. I don't know what your "mama's down time" schedule looks like. It took a good breakdown for me to make one for myself, and I know too many amazing Moms who don't have their own moments saved for just them each day...
    but one of my treats to myself is unwinding with a show. I love to watch a couple of shows in particular that I either rent on video through netflix, or record on our DVR. That is when I do/iron all my laundry.
    (I know it doesn't sound like a down time, but I love ironing like you like to fold)
    Maybe you could drop your basked system off in a different room and consider killing two birds with one stone. Listening to a book on CD if you don't like TV. Or enjoying some of you favorite music and a stemmed glass of your favorite drink (mine would be cherry coke) each night after the kids are settled in. ???

    Hope you get it figured out. and if not, what's laundry compared to ALL that you do? You are amazing! :)

  8. I have no laundry tips to share. I'm always horribly behind in folding laundry. Wth swim team every night and school taking most of the day, it is so easy to get behind. But, even though I get discouraged sometimes, I really don't mind. I have massive laundry folding sessions while watching a movie. I always feel guilty if I watch a movie and do nothing so folding laundry meshes perfectly!