At first, I was like "really? you think I can do LESS laundry with 5 people in the house, 3 of which still have trouble keeping food on their utensils, and refuse to walk around anything that is wet and/or muddy?" Then, I read her simple tips. If you haven't already, head over and check it out. She's pretty darn extraordinary in my mind for many reasons, least of which are her laundry habits.
After I read it, I started thinking about just how much laundry I really end up doing.
Here's my usual breakdown of laundry loads each week:
- Whites & Towels (I only use white towels)
- Diapers (Littlest One wears cloth)
Right now, Captain is still struggling with staying dry overnight, and when he wakes up wet, I do his bedding and jammies.
On a GREAT week, I only do 5 loads. Sometimes, I can do 12 (if Captain is wet every day).
Here's how I lighten the load - literally!
- Reuse our towels. They get hung after every use to dry, and we live in a dry climate, so I'm not worried about mildew or even mustiness unless they get left in the washer accidentally.
- Re-wear clothing such as pants, dressy clothes, and sweatshirts or cardigans -anything that is the "top layer" will get worn again unless I've spilled. I'm working on this with the kids.
- Pre-treat stains ASAP. I've got kids. They get dirty. They spill. Somehow, they even manage to get markers and paint all. over. their. clothes. And washable Crayola? HA!! SO, I use my laundry tub and pretty much have it full of water and my stain remover of choice. I toss in the item, and swoosh it around til it's soaked and then, when laundry day rolls around, I toss it in the machine and wash it up. That way, I do no double-washing to get stains out of articles of clothing.
I totally understand where Mrs Ordinary is coming from on cutting back the size of your wardrobe. The fewer articles of clothing you have, the less laundry you'll do. It sounds counter-intuitive I know, but if you KNOW that you only have enough pieces of clothing to make it through 7 weeks, you know that you HAVE to keep up with your laundry!
I pick one day each week and do all the laundry. That does mean that I'm up early-ish, so I can build in that "extra" 15 minutes to put fresh bedding on all 4 beds, and put out 5 new sets of towels. It also means that only ONCE each week do I face the task of sorting, carting, washing, drying, folding, and putting away clothing. I do my ironing the following day. And yes, I iron. I press BB's work shirts, any pants that aren't made from denim, and about 65% of the girls' wardrobes. I just don't like rumpled.
Anyway, I hope that you can find ways to start simplifying your life with little things like laundry.