Saturday, December 29, 2007

dirty little secret

Well, maybe it’s a dysfunctional clean secret.

The thing is my family is forced to live out of laundry baskets. Not for sleeping or eating, of course, but for the purpose of temporarily housing clean clothes. The practice of sifting through perfectly folded items of apparel in cleverly arranged chest of drawers is an alien concept to my family -- to find something to wear, they must all “fish for fleece” as the saying goes in our household. Folding laundry and putting it away (on a semi regular basis) is really unheard of around here. I mean, for criminy sake, they’re only going to get it all dirty and then I have to wash/dry everything all over again. What’s the point of that! Folding and putting away laundry is the most pointless waste of energy I can think of (well besides mopping floors and weeding garden beds – but that’s a disclosure I’ll save for another post).

So if I had a million dollars …

… I’d hire a friendly Ecuadorian laundress who’s happily supporting a humongous family back in Central America.

… I’d locate a professional organizer who could put my mess of a house into some semblance of order (especially my overstuffed and neglected dresser drawers, closets, attic and basement spaces).

… I’d donate heavily to my local thrift store, because if it weren’t for them, I would have despaired of disposer’s [AKA polluter’s] guilt a long time ago.

Even though this particular housekeeping practice may be rather dubious to most folks, I had to pick a system that made the most sense to my family -- even though it occasionally drives me crazy.


Dave said...

I think you are actually over complicating laundry.

My system:

Throw worn clothes on the floor in utility room.

When the height looks about right for a washer load, load into washer, add the liquid stuff and turn washer on.

When bell dings, transfer to dryer.

Optional step: when dryer buzzes, remove clothes, shake and stack on washer for later wearing.

If optional step isn't taken, each morning turn on dryer for a few minutes to remove wrinkles prior to selection of clothes for the day.

See, that putting the clothes into a basket is totally unecessary.

Posolxstvo said...


(Shakes head) Dave dave dave dave dave dave...

I wish. But when you have FIVE people in the house, the top of the dryer gets mighty mighty crowded.

Socks alone would cover the dryer, the washer and spill over into the next room.

Hedy said...

There are only two of us (well, there's Gromit, too, but he's a nudist) and I STILL have the laundry basket problem. Right now there are three piles of clothes plus a full basket on the bedroom floor and here I sit watching the Bears and fiddling on the computer. Plus there's a load in the washer and dryer. I'm with you, Mrs. Pos. If I had a million dollars I'd hire someone for laundry - no more piles and fresh sheets on the bed every day!

molly gras said...

Dave -
I like your style. Alot. May your washer and dryer continue to operate in this most optimal fashion for many years to come!

Pos -
What you failed to divulge is that we actually have a separate basket for socks alone -- that's where the "fish for fleece" saying originated.

Hedy -
Football ... more important. Laundry ... can wait. Ummm ... fresh sheets! I only change the numerous sets we posses when I can't remember WHEN they've last been changed (another pointless expenditure of mundane, maid-like effort)

Jeni said...

I operated on the same laundry principle with three kids and myself; now, my daughter runs things the same way pretty much for six of us -except my clothes get separated out of the baskets and placed on top of my dresser for me to put in drawers or hang up or, well, just pull clean clothes then from the pile on the dresser at times too. And socks - geez you really have to have two baskets there -one for the ones that show up with a mate after being washed and another for those whose mate gets swallowed up in the mix along the way!

Lil Sis said...

Well, since I'm going to the BIG GAME in New Orleans this weekend, I am actually staying on top of the washing, folding putting away thing. I'm doing this only to help my mother-in-law locate fresh clothing for my two grubby children. I am extremely fortunate to have a six foot counter in my utility room which is normally loaded down with unfolded clothing and my work clothes. I do fold and put away clothes about once every week or two - - only b/c I get real tired of trying to find small children socks in the bottom of the pile. In general, I hate doing laundry. And, Mike hates the way I do his laundry. So, about two years ago, I told him to stop complaining and do it himself - - which he does!

As for sheets, I have the lady that cleans my house (also known as "Mom") change the sheets on the "big" bed every other week. AJ and Amanda's beds are changed about every other day b/c, well, they are gross. But, the beds are NEVER made up beyond the initial sheet changing. I think that is a HUGE waste of time.

Oh, and I forgot, Mom will actually fold and put away the laundry if she has time when she comes to clean every other week! Pay for someone to clean your house if you can afford it!! It is soooo worth it.

molly gras said...

Jeni -
I'm really digging your "two basket" approach -- I'd totally adopt it except floor space (as well as shelf and closet space) is at a premium here in my house.

Lil Sis -
Would ABSOLUTELY love to hire someone to clean my house, but I don't have the earning power that you deservedly possess.