Monday, April 6, 2009

Monday: Wash Day

So, how does a mom with 6 children tackle all of my laundry. I make it very simple. I have a few things working for me. In 2006, my wonderful husband bought me the washer and dryer of a lifetime! It is the Whirlpool Duet HT. It has commercial capacity which took 3 loads of work into 1. That was great shortly after the twins were born. Other tools I use are a laundry sorter, drying rack, ironing board and baskets. Also, during our home remodel, we remodeled a room into a killer of a laundry room with a laundry chute. I have plenty of space.However, my tips for laundry have nothing to do with either or these. They work for any washer/dryer, any family size, and any size room.
  1. I picked 2 days that are specified laundry days where I work diligently at laundry. These need to be days I am at home most of the time. I picked Monday and Thursday.
  2. I plan to begin laundry early. If I can, I sort the laundry the night before. This way, I can throw in a load before getting the kids up in the morning.
  3. I listen for the washer/dryer signals and go immediately to switch the load above any other task (excluding feeding lunch, helping a child, etc). I make it a priority over my other jobs. This keeps it moving.
  4. I iron sometime during each "laundry day". This pile could get HUGE if I don't stay on top of it.
  5. I fold laundry as I take it out of the dryer. This helps with wrinkles and avoids loads of laundry sitting in baskets haunting me =).
  6. I have 4 baskets designated for each bedroom. As I fold, I sort the clothes into one of those baskets.
  7. I teach my children to put their own laundry away by age 4 or 5. They take their basket upstairs when the loads of laundry are done and work together to put away their clothes.
  8. Each of my children have a bath towel with their name embroidered on it. We reuse towels. I wash these towels after about 5-6 uses. Their bodies are clean when they use why wash after each use?
  9. I wash PJs after about 3 uses, unless they become soiled during the night. This eliminates more clothing.
  10. I teach the kids how to sort their clothes for clean vs dirty when they are about 5. The clean we put back in the right place. The dirty goes down the chute. Before age 4 or 5, it's ALWAYS dirty (or so it seems).
  11. I clean up the laundry room at the end of the work so it doesn't look like anything happened that day. It's nice and fresh for the next time around.
Laundry isn't consuming this way. I get it done and over with...and I kinda like it too. Sometimes I get more help than I need too!

Baby Isaac fit in the laundry chute. The kids got a real kick out of that one.Happy Monday!


Cathleen said...

Hey Jen,

I thought my idea was an original, but not so! This same idea works for me too! I only have 2 kids right now, but there are more coming! It's good to know that it still works with a bigger family! Happy laundry day, friend!


Eight Is Enough said...

Way to keep the laundry moving Melissa! Any other suggestions Melissa? Pass them along!


Emily said...

Very cool!!

I'm slightly jealous of your whole Laundry room, although that's quite overkill for our little family of three. It's still pretty awesome.

I'd LOVE to have a laundry chute, just to have one. I guess you could say that I'm fascinated by them. I think yours is the coolest I've seen because it's not just a pile, it's like a hidden laundry collection area.

....t said...

Jen we really enjoyed being with your family on Sunday. They are growing up so fast. i also wanted to tell you that you look amazing!!!! Take care, Love....t

Kelli said...

This is a great plan! I need to work on this because the laundry can get out of control at our house. I should start working on having my 5-year-old put her clothes away.