Jul 11, 2009

Ann's Laundry Plan

Back when I was taking care of my shoes for Clothing Evaluation, I mentioned that a friend of mine shared her laundry routine with me.

This friend is a homemaker extraordinaire. She is amazing. Her house is beautiful, her meals are mostly homemade, she homeschools, she's a Mercedes when it comes to Chassis Maintenance, she has worked outside the home full and part-time as well as being home full-time, and she does it all without being "burned out" in any way.

In short, I wanted to know her secrets! I was able to pump her for information about how she handles the laundry. I will share exactly what she told me. (I took notes!) This was SO helpful to me--perhaps you will find something helpful as well.

Ann's Laundry Plan

  • Monday and Friday, start loads early in the morning
  • Have baskets for darks in our room and spare room
  • Laundry bag for whites on bathroom door
  • Wash darks first, lights, then whites last with bleach (and dishtowels)
  • Use lingerie bag for hose (faster and neater in the bathroom!)
  • I strip our bed, launder and remake bed for these reasons:
    - Forces early laundry day
    - Keeps laundry bulk down
    - Saves storage space and money
    - Saves on ironing
  • Inspect, fold, defuzz, sort and pile in basket in laundry room
  • Drop ironing and mending in back room near ironing board
  • Put the rest away immediately:
    - I tidy drawers and closets as I go.
    - Everything goes back in same spot. I leave hangers (color coded) for easy return
    - I note any purchases that must be made for wardrobes and also laundry needs because I do all major housework and shopping lists on Monday as well (to a lesser extent on Friday).
  • While baby is napping I set up ironing (with music, movie or prayer time)
  • I keep mending supplies in same place as ironing and bring them to den if necessary.
  • I always do ironing on Tuesday morning if I run out of time on Monday.
  • Choose clothes and accessories in advance to avoid chaos
  • I keep shoe polish near my shoes, nail polish handy for patch ups, safety pins close by.
  • Winter Tip: I sponge woolens for freshen ups between dry cleanings.
  • I keep all winter supplies together by back door.
  • Move all non-wearables out of way so they don’t frustrate and confuse (unless you’re really planning on fitting into them in less than a decade!)
  • If you can’t bear to part with something, move it to a holding zone place "until":
    - Emotions are over
    - The Lord deals with you about it
    - You give it away
  • Do "big wash projects" together at certain times of the year. For me, it’s
    spring and before major company! Or, if I’m doing laundry anyway, and
    don’t have much (ie, doilies in white load).


Packrat said...

Sounds good, but would never happen at my house. I admit it; I'm lazy. :)

Roxanne said...

It will definitely take some time for me to ever get to that point!!

I post it as a goal. Even if only one or two ideas are followed regularly, well, that's one or two more things maintained!

The one I love the best is tidying the drawers as you put things away.

It was like a lightbulb moment for me when she said that. (I've been doing it ever since and I always smile when I see the neat drawers.)

Anonymous said...

One thing I was wondering about--I've washed my clothes just the opposite of what was suggested in 'Ann's Laundry Plan' for years. I do whites first, then light coloreds, then darks, then blue jeans. The reason for that is in case something colored runs it won't get into your whites. I picked that tip up out of a household management book years ago and have used it all these years. I was just wondering why she recommended darks first?

After laundry, I wipe down the washer and do a rinse cycle so the last dark wash cycle doesn't affect my next load of whites.

And I only iron as something is needed because the freshly ironed clothes just get squashed in the closet and have to be redone anyway. (except for doilies and that type of thing)

AND I hang clothes up immediately from the dryer to minimize wrinkles.

I tidy drawers as I go along too.

Yes...I'm a laundry fanatic! :)

Packrat said...

I'm back for more comments,lol. I do whatever needs to be done first. If I do a load of whites with bleach, I then wash an old blanket or something that bleach won't hurt. Then, I proceed with what I have sorted and treated.

A bit of history: In the "old" days,women had to haul their laundry water. They put the water on the stove or fire to boil. The whites and sometimes all of the clothes were boiled. Whites were washed first so that they'd be really white and clean. Then they'd work toward the darks which faded in the hot water. Often the dark clothes were the men's farm clothes, so they would have been really dirty. The women didn't keep changing the water the way we do.

This is a good plan. It is just that my life doesn't allow for a set schedule.

Roxanne said...

Packrat and Jeannie--you BOTH do more than I do about protecting the whites and darks from one another LOL! I think I have the mindset that the clothes have to fend for themselves. That might not be good...

I don't use bleach in my whites very often. When things get too dingy for me, I soak them all together in oxyclean for a good long time, wash them with a couple of rinses and then do an empty cycle to clean the washer. (And hang them in the sun to dry.)

I think my friend had so many "bleach accidents" in her past that she had a phobia. She described a few of them to me as she was outlining her system. Perhaps that's the reason she did it in that order.

As far as the "old days," I am SO glad we've got the modern conveniences that we do when it comes to laundry!

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