Thursday, February 23, 2017

Week 8: The Task that is never done....

Growing up, I was in 4-H.  Most of the time I took projects for cooking and sewing, and an occasional woodworking.  I desired to have an animal, but that one never materialized.

But one year I took Laundry.

Yep.

I don't really remember why I chose that direction. It could be just because I didn't want to take on another sewing project that year.

Unfortunately, the joke was on me, because now my mom fully expected me to help with laundry. I could no longer plead ignorance and put the red sock in with the whites. I was without excuse.

At the time, I most likely saw that as a big bummer and a cramp on my 'schedule.'

Today, I'm glad to have helped out with that area because it kind of came without even thinking, the necessity of my kids helping out with this chore.

 This picture has nothing to do with laundry, but as I have next to nothing for laundry pics (who does?!) so I posted a throw-back pic instead. circa 2011

As a wise friend once said, "if they can operate an Ipad, they can operate a washing machine."

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 As Houseparents, we shared a washer and dryer with 7 teenagers. We kinda had to be precise on our laundry schedule or we had a long wait in line.

To make it work, I was often the one throwing it all in the machines.....and my kids got the task of separating and putting away.  Thankfully at 2,3,4 years old, it was fun, so that was able to work for a few years.
They were watching their beloved blankies get washed. It entertained them for quite awhile

Now, everyone is a bit older, and things are not as fun, so a schedule was in order.

The reason I'm following last week's laundry room cleanup with a post about laundry room schedules is because having a system in place for collecting dirty clothes and returning clean ones is a key component to keeping your washing under control.

But, a confession first: I am good at sticking with out schedule we have laid out...all except for the last step.  Why does folding and putting away seem like such a difficult task?!? It really isn't, but at the rate that I procrastinate on it, it sure seems to be.

Sticking to a laundry schedule:
Laundry baskets are put in the right spots. Not where they conveniently fit, but where the clothes are most likely to be shed. One in each bedroom and one in each bathroom. And then when it comes time to collect....

Each kid has their own day.  Well, currently the girls are together because their clothes are small enough that a whole load can be comprised of both of their things. Eventually...soon most likely, they will need to take on their own days.  They sometimes still need a prompting to get started, but most of the time, they know it's their day and they jump on it because, they know if they miss it, they may not have clean undies tomorrow.

Side note: motivation for them to get their laundry done?  They have a small wardrobe. It sometimes gets out of hand with hand-me-downs (but I'm not complaining!!) but having just enough clothes to last you a week or so will motivate you to wash them because you will need something to wear. I'm an advocate for small wardrobes....more on that in a later post.

Paul and I have our day, too. This assures that I stay on top of things. A day for clothes. And a separate day for household laundry (i.e. towels, rags, sheets).

All laundry is put away before the fun begins. I'm such a downer, I'm sure my kids will tell you, but if the laundry is all clean and ready for putting away...then ya gotta put it away before free time.  This helps keep their rooms under control a bit better.  As I'm typing this I resolve to do better on my end of things. Often the folding and putting away for the adults gets pushed off a bit longer than it should....And now that I have that counter all cleared off I've got a place to sort and fold! Cheers!


But, every family is different. Different sizes, routines, and styles. So, what I do may not work for others. So,  you can check out routines and schedules from people in all kinds of stages of life, or circumstance, to give you ideas of what might work for you as well.

These schedules can all be found on Household Management 101:

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