Organized Home - How to do Laundry Only One Day a Week
Unless you're a nudist, you're never caught up!
My great-aunt told me that one time. She said she would just as soon go naked as opposed to doing laundry all the time! Which elicited a mental image that made me throw up a little.
Anyway, it's true. If you are still dressed while you are doing laundry, it seems never to get done! There is laundry everywhere and little time to do it.
I used to do laundry whenever I needed. Seemed like a kid would say, "I have no jeans for tomorrow!" so I would run around the rooms, gathering like-colors of stuff to put in the wash, just to find something in there that hadn't made it to the dryer yet. Then of course, there was a bunch of wrinkly stuff in the dryer. Which meant fluff again in the dryer, then switch the laundry, then start the new load. After that, just hope you remember to switch it out, get it dried, and fold it before the morning. And after that, there is either that running around to all the rooms to put away the laundry, or relying on your family to take their own laundry and put it away (good luck!).
It wasn't until a few years ago that I figured out how to get all the laundry done. In one day. Without going to the laundry mat!
It's a one-day affair!
Wednesday is laundry day in my house. As I'm waking the kids up, I add a "get your dirties downstairs!"
Everyone's clothes get downstairs. If they don't get downstairs, they do not get washed. This has happened once for each of my two oldest children. I bring the three-year-old's laundry down myself.
Then I become a machine. I get a kid's laundry into the wash, taking out all the whites. I wash that kid's clothes in cold water, with a nice laundry soap, a shot of stain lifter, and fabric softener. I have found that, unless it is a grease stain, stain lifters work just as well as pre-treating, and it saves me time. If there is a grease stain, I use a Spray n' Wash Stain Stick. It works wonderfully, is inexpensive, lasts forever, and you can treat any day and wait until Wednesday to wash!
I start the machine and get on with my day. When it's done, it goes right into the dryer. Next kid's clothes go in, minus the whites. Repeat with the next kid, and then with the grown-up's stuff.
As each load of colors comes out of the dryer, it is all one person's clothes. Which makes the folding/sorting very easy! They come out of the dryer, right into the basket they came to the laundry room in, they get dumped onto the sofa where I may or may not be watching Days of Our Lives, and get folded and right back into said basket.
After the color loads are done, there is at least one load left to do, or two if it is towel week. All the whites go in together to be washed. They get detergent, fabric softener, and a shot of bleach. If it is towel week (which is every-other week) that is the last load in. Did you know that towels are more absorbent if you don't use fabric softener on them? Detergent and a shot of vinegar in the towels.
The whites get sorted and folded and distributed to the different baskets.
The kids get their baskets and put their own clothes away. Except for the three-year-old, and I usually coerce his sister into doing that. I fold and put away the towels and my laundry. It is usually done before dinner.
My husband does his own laundry on Saturday. So yes, I'm spoiled a little bit and this probably helps me get mine done so quickly. But even if he didn't, I'm sure I could get it done on the same day - just maybe not by dinner!
Why? He does his laundry because he doesn't like the way I fold. So maybe the best laundry tip I can give is this: fold your loved-ones clothes weird, then they'll do it themselves! No, seriously, I don't fold weirdly. He's just persnickety.
I *heart* laundry day!
I actually enjoy laundry day. I feel like I get SO much done, with so little effort. And though sometimes I am tempted to not dress on Wednesdays, I feel so much satisfaction on being almost caught up!