I've heard it called Mt. Washmore. And while mountain is an accurate description, my mountain is always Foldmore. I can process my laundry through the washer and dryer like nobody's business. It's the next step which revels the lesser part of my character and forces my husband to play a game he calls laundry gopher when he looks for his outfit for the day. It's a game, he assures me, that he is not fond of.
Before you suggest her, yes, I'm friends with Ms. Flylady. Okay, well, acquaintances with her. I know I'm not supposed to have a mountain to fold because I'm supposed to fold it right after it comes out of the dryer. Tell that to the baby who is trying to climb the piano. It just ceases to be an emergency for me once those clothes are clean and dry.
I see the pile (and that's just half of it) and quickly remember that I have many, many other pressing duties. Yep, just about anything other than face those menacing, wrinkled piles of cotton.
I had an epiphany today, though. It came from my mother-in-law, who we store in our basement. (Don't judge. She has a rockin' three bedroom apartment down there. Your mother-in-law should be so lucky.)
A week ago, she threw some of my niece's clothes in with a load of our laundry. I went outside to supervise the girls in the yard. When I came back, I found her folding the load.
She's always so nice and always wanting to help but I find it really embarrassing. One, when anyone comes in and helps me with housework I feel it is a commentary on my competency. Second, those are my underwear, eeek!!! Third, she never let's her place look like mine or her laundry pile up.
But, whatever she thinks, she's never mean. She's always encouraging. She's really a great mother-in-law. I've enjoyed having her living with us for years, yes, voluntarily. I don't know why I'm embarrassed. She's watched me give birth. Twice.
So today, I made a comment about working my way into the pile of clean clothes and telling her the washer was available. She said she was thinking when she folded that load last week that it took FOREVER. She had said to herself, "Wow, I know why she gets behind on this!"
That made me pause. She thought it was daunting. Why? She doesn't have trouble with her own piles of laundry. What was the difference?
I realized, occasionally, I'll do a load with just tops and bottoms for Theo and I. Those are so easy to deal with. Each item makes a dent in the load and they are all essentially the same to handle. That is more like her laundry.
I know I love diaper laundry. (Sounds weird to my disposable loving friends, I'm sure.) It's streamlined: a pile for covers, a pile for prefolds, a pile for wipes. There are no decisions involved, just a repeated motion that completes the task quickly. Even loads of towels and loads of napkins and dishtowels are easy.
So, I've decided, I'm doing each child's laundry separately. John does his already but I help him fold. It's not bad because it's all sized the same. He does pants. I do shirts.
Starting tomorrow, even the baby is getting her own laundry hamper. We'll see if this will make things better. Regardless, I paid with a little embarrassment and got some empathy and a ray of hope in the never-ending laundry cycle.
What do you do to make folding laundry easier?