I know, I know…the title of this is a bit dramatic, but it’s the truth! In all of my domesticated years, I’ve never been good at laundry. I have no shame in admitting that. Five people live in our home, but with the amount of laundry we accumulate, you’d think we were running a hotel. Our laundry room is in the basement of our home, so I had a really bad case of “out of sight, out of mind.” To be honest, it overwhelmed me, so I would just ignore it until we all had practically nothing to wear. I’d have so much to wash at that point that it took forever to get caught up, and even longer for me to put it away.
It was an ugly, vicious cycle.
Finally, one day during summer break, I hit my breaking point. Laundry was never going to go away, so I need a plan to get me out of the rut and keep my family clothed. The “hack” I came up with wasn’t groundbreaking or extraordinary by any means, but it worked wonders for me…maybe it can help you, too!
Here’s what I did…
I made a daily laundry schedule on the Reminders app on my phone. It goes off at 3:30 every afternoon (9:30am in the summer when I’m home), and I refuse to let myself mark it as “complete” until I’ve gone down and started it. Let me tell you, that little red notification on my screen is enough to get me motivated…I hate having an unchecked reminder. Anyways, my setup is a weekly rotation that keeps the amount of laundry small and manageable. I broke it up by roommates and then by “leftovers.” Two of my sons share a room, so I do theirs together. It’s the same for my husband and me. Everyone has a hamper in their room, so when they take off their clothes every day, it’s his/her job to place their dirty clothes in the hamper. On their designated laundry day, they bring the hamper to me, and I start the washing/drying process. When it’s done, they put their own clothes away. We’re still working on that last part a bit, but all around, the system is working. Since I’m washing things on a set rotation, it really keeps everyone’s laundry amount pretty small and keeps me from washing multiple loads every day.
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday are set days, but Thursday and Friday are a bit more flexible. I always do towels on Thursday, but if someone’s basket is getting a bit full again by then, I’ll throw in a “catch-up” load. The same goes for Friday. We have a hot tub right outside of our basement, so it can become a catch-all area for clothing, towels, and bathing suits. If my husband has been mowing or working in the yard, he often changes in the basement to keep the mess contained. Fridays are a good day to gather up any piles down there and throw them in.
As you may have noticed, I don’t have a specific day on the rotation for bedding. I promise you, I do wash our sheets. I just throw it in on whoever’s day it is. If my son Cooper needs his sheets washed, they go in on Tuesday, the same day I do his clothes. I really wanted to keep myself from washing and drying on the weekends if at all possible, so I figured bedding would be assigned with clothing, just in separate loads. So far, this setup has worked fine. We have extra bedding for everyone, so if we have a snag in our washing, it’s okay.
As silly as it may sound, this little iPhone schedule has changed my life! I no longer dread doing laundry or spend hours at a time trying to dig my way out of it. My husband has always been really good at helping with laundry, but this has taken the burden off of his shoulders too. He’s been so appreciative of having clean clothes on a regular basis. Even though my kids aren’t physically washing their clothes themselves, they are helping in the process, and it’s teaching them a lot of responsibility.