52 Pick up: Ordinary Beauty – My Love Hate Relationship with Laundry


I have come to dread Sundays.

Not only because it is the last day of the weekend and the work week looms heavily in my future, but because Sunday is the day I am faced with mountains of laundry.  Sheets, towels and mounds and mounds of dirty clothes.

Over the years, I’ve tried a variety of strategies when it comes to tackling the laundry.

  1. Get it done on Saturday – I always end up forgetting because I’m having too much fun enjoying the weekend
  2. Spread it out over the week – Once again I forget about it and end up tripping over the piles all week.  Then to everyone’s disgust, there is inevitably  the one “stinky” load that gets forgotten in the washer for about three days.
  3. I’ve even become desperate and tried to get the kids to handle some of their own laundry – Insert maniacal laughter here…. Seriously, who are was I kidding, I just ended up doing it for them anyway.

So Sunday it is!

JOY!!!! (Trust me, my tone is dripping with sarcasm!)

So there I am, faced with the seemingly insurmountable task of dealing with the dirty clothes detritus of the week.  I don’t know if my laundry day spreads out in a manner that is unique from your own, but I do hope that perhaps I’m not the only one whose laundry day goes a little like this. . .

  • Get the kids to sort their own laundry (If you don’t do this I highly recommend it – it reinforces that they actually know their colours!  Who am I kidding, I just like the slave labour)
  • Check to make sure the kids actually got ALL their laundry and didn’t leave half of it lying on the floor or under their beds
  • Sort my husband’s and my clothes
  • Check to make sure the kids sorted theirs correctly (red socks in the white load never ends well)
  • Drag the first load down to the washer
  • Forget about the load for two hours or so because I turned the damn alarm off last week because it was so annoying
  • Turn washer alarm on
  • Switch out the loads
  • Sigh a huge long sigh because I now realize there is the left over load of towels in the dryer that I now have to fold (Good thing I always do towels last – no one cares about crumpled towels)
  • Get the dryer going
  • Switch out the loads again
  • Fold the clothes
  • Curse because something went in the washer with ketchup on it and I missed pre-treating it (I guess the youngest has another ‘play’ shirt)
  • Yell at that washer alarm because I’m busy with something more pressing than laundry.  This could be something incredibly exciting like vacuuming, washing the dog or marking essays.
  • Switch out the loads AGAIN!
  • Curse yet again because something went in the washer that should have been hand washed
  • Beg the kids to help with the folding.
  • Re-fold everything because their idea of folding is crumpling it into a ball
  • Switch out the loads again…. good heavens will this torture never end!
  • Sigh and curse because there was some delicate thing that went in the dryer that should have been hung up
  • Yell again at the washer alarm, because now I’m busy making supper and it will just have to wait
  • Turn off the washer alarm!  Seriously does it HAVE to keep buzzing!
  • Switch out the loads yet again. . . and again. . .and again!

Then after a day of sorting, carrying and folding, a magical thing occurs.  There in the fading hours of the day is a bed full of clean clothes.  If you are wondering, I fold and lay out all of the clothes on the master bed.  That way I am forced to make sure it is all put away, or at least put into the kid’s baskets before we can retire for the night.

This array of newly cleaned clothes is truly a thing of ordinary beauty. 

All those piles of clothes, neatly folded in a beautiful rainbow of textures and colours.  It often brings forth a sigh of satisfaction from my soul.  The job is done, and I have once again ensured my family has clean clothes to wear for the week.  For me, there is a sense of pride in knowing that I have provided, and completed a valuable service for the ones I love. 

Now if I could just get the kids to empty their baskets and put away their clothes before Wednesday. . .

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