March 28, 2012

The Rules of Laundry


As long as I've been doing laundry, there are still times when I feel overwhelmed and annoyed.  I have tried to wash one load daily (didn't last long) to once a week (no clean underwear). I still haven't found that balance.
I have washed clothes for as few as two all the way up to six persons.  I have had my years of going to the laundromat at 2 a.m., drying socks in the oven, washing P.E. uniforms by hand in the sink and washing clothes with dishwashing liquid.  I have found crayons, chapstick, cash (my favourite), bugs, pens, teacher's notes, rocks, gum, and other things I dare not mention, usually when it's too late.

But my biggest annoyance is that in my home, I can launder ALL of the clothes on Sunday and by Tuesday, there is a ridiculous pile again. WHY????? It's only three of us? Where have we been and what have we been doing to get all of these clothes dirty? There is just no explanation for this. I've decided to put my foot down and create a few rules around here.

You must wear jeans at least 5 times before declaring them dirty. The purpose for which jeans were made, was to get dirty.  Exceptions: mud.  I thought of including liquid spills, but that's a case by case basis.  If the liquid is darker than your jeans and has a bad smell, sure wash 'em.

To be worn at least 5 times before laundering. It's a scientific fact that you don't get dirty while sleeping.  At least not dirty enough to throw your pj's in the dirty clothes after one night. Exceptions: nighttime accidents or spillage (same rule for jeans).

We all have clothes that we wear only in the house.  They have stains, holes or are too small and we have declared that they are not to be worn in public.  Only if you have worked up a serious sweat in those clothes from exercising and house cleaning or the kids have decided to make mud pies or paint their shirts with lunch, these clothes can be worn at least twice before being washed.  Shorts can go a little longer.

If I could, I'd just ban socks.  I hate socks, especially the white ones.  You buy them brand new all beautiful and proudly give them to your 8 year old.  The next time you see them, they are the same colour as the red dirt in the back yard! That now means that you have to soak the dirt red white socks before washing them. But soaking is never enough, you have to hand wash those suckers before you throw them into the washing machine.
The rule: They are not shoes!!!! 

Now my only exception to extended wear clothing are underwear, and clothes that have been exposed to bodily fluids.  Please, oh, please put your dirty underwear in the dirty clothes hamper..not under the bed, in the closet or actually in your dresser drawer.  

Let's leave bodily fluids for another time.

What are your laundry rules?  What did you do to combat the evil that is laundry?


  1. Ha! I love this post. I remember when I was single and I could go a full two weeks without doing laundry. Even longer if I bought new underwear instead of washing which happed fairly often! Now I run a household of three and like you it would seem that there are only moments when the hampers (all four of them) are actually empty or at least not full. I used to wash twice a week but now am back to working full time so laundry gets done once a week on the weekend unless there has been a castrophe or my in-laws decide to visit mid-week. Rules? Absolutely none because my husband won't listen and my 3 year-old doesn't understand. Oh well. Some day...

  2. I think I need some laundry rules. I have a HUGE pile that has to get put away today.

    TG we don't have red dirt here! My kids would be wearing red dirt socks.

  3. OH MY GOD! Yes, yes, yes!

    Those rules are fab!

    It's just me here, but still...that makes no difference. Before I know it everything is all piled up and ready to go through the wash/dry cycle again.

    The more I wear my jeans the better they fit. Heck, I have a skirt I'll wear 5-6 times because it'll take me 3 wearings to get it just right again once it's back from the dry cleaners!

    I totally get this...YOU ARE FAB.

  4. Can so relate to this post.... By the time I am done washing and folding clothes it's time to wash all over again. Great rules may use a few!