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Lessons in Laundry

Laundry! It never seems to go away. Just when you think it's done, someone has the nerve to change their clothes! To be quite honest, laundry is the worst chore there is, at least in my opinion. The washing and drying isn't so bad, but the folding, ironing and putting away?! Ugh! I'd rather clean a toilet! I'm not sure why that is. And with a family of nine, there is A LOT of folding, ironing and putting away!

When I first got married, I thought I would drown in dirty clothes. Seriously, it was out of control. If you find yourself feeling this way, here are a few tricks we implemented to keep things in check a little better and keep this mama from running away.

#1- you can use a towel more than once!

Kids were using a clean towel every time they showered. Nine towels a day is a load of laundry. If we happened to go to the pool that day, 2 loads at least. It's ok to use your towel more than once, as long as you hang it up after your shower so it can dry. (Big chore to teach teenage boys). I made sure everyone had a hook for their towel and that small mountain was outa my way! One side note, make sure after you have implemented this that the towels are in fact getting changed every few days. Yikes!

These are towels from the pool hanging up to dry.


#2- The System

Doing laundry for nine people is an ENORMOUS job! In fact, it's enough to make you go crazy! I realized fast that I was going to need some help, and quick! My first choice was a maid to complete my most dreaded job for me, but that was just a dream. After much trial and error, a new system was developed.

The basis for this system came from the idea of the maid. Who needs a maid when you have 7 children? Perfect thought, but maids are a bit more anxious to do the work than your kids. I needed to enlist the help of my children. Who would not only be helping me, but also learning some laundry skills in the process. Each bedroom has a hamper. All dirty clothes go in the hamper. (You would think that was a no brainier.) Each week, as part of those chores, each person brings their laundry to the laundry room. Then they sort their clothes into the hampers. I labeled them so there would be less confusion.


The clothes get washed and dried. I try to pick a day and do all the loads that day. Sometimes this happens and sometimes it doesn't. (I have one daughter who helps me get this done frequently. She is awesome).

As soon as each load comes out of the dryer, it gets sorted. This is important or the clothes begin to pile up and before you know it, there is a mountain of laundry. At our house, each person has a basket. On laundry day they are put outside the laundry room. Each load of clothes is sorted into the appropriate basket.


Then each person takes their basket to their room and they are responsible for folding, hanging up and putting away their own clothes. (Best idea ever!) Then they return their empty basket to the laundry room. That leaves a lot less clothes for Mom to take care of.

#3-Decorate!

I decided that because laundry was the chore I hated most, I needed to decorate my laundry room so that it was actually a place I wanted to be. I started with a cute washboard I found at an antique shop and I just added a few items from there.


I cut some vinyl to put on the wall. I thought this saying was so fun! If you like this vinyl, you can find it here.


I found a basket from Ikea and filled it with some of my laundry supplies to stay more organized.


My oldest daughter made me a printable. I put it in a frame I had around the house and made a quick little bunting. I love the saying because, let's face it, ironing is not my favorite either! By the way, have you ever tried Downey Wrinkle Releaser? It's a life saver!


You can get this printable here. There are two versions available to download for free!

I hope these hints help you as much as they have helped us at our house.