Posts Tagged ‘Laundry Day’

Laundry Day #11

February 26, 2011


Shirts: 4
Sweaters: 6

Temperature: Cold

Cost: $1.75

What have we learned?

It’s 7 a.m. on a cold, rainy day and I am the first person in the laundry room. This is notable not because I’m the first person in the laundry room (that happens often) nor because it’s a cold, rainy day (there are plenty of those); it is notable because it’s 7 a.m. I am rarely awake at 7 a.m., let alone vertical, bathed, dressed and doing laundry. Yet here I am, beginning my day by crossing one item off my to-do list. One item of many.

On a day such as this, when I’m expecting the rain to turn to snow as soon as the temperature drops a degree or two, I would love to be laundering sheets and towels. A nice, long, hot water wash would be just the thing. But it’s the hand wash that needs doing. The sweaters are bulky and they take up too much room in the hamper.

So on this cold, gray day, I’m washing in cold water.

Sometimes we do what we need to do instead of what we want to do.


Laundry Day #10

February 2, 2011


Shirts: 12
Pants: 7
Pajamas: 2
Shorts: 2
Socks: 18
Underwear: 6

Temperature: Warm

Cost: $3.25

What have we learned?

It’s February. The weather forecast calls for “icy conditions with periods of freezing rain.” So why am I washing shorts?

You might think it has something to do with going to a gym or exercising, but then you don’t know me very well. These were shorts for relaxing in the sun. I just returned from a long weekend away where the weather was balmy, my sandals came out to play and my coat stayed in the closet.

Then, you might well ask, why the pants and socks? And indeed, why the long-sleeved pajamas? I confess they were laundry leftovers from before I went away. My plans to empty the laundry hamper completely before my trip were waylaid. Still, I left myself enough room for the vacation duds, shorts and all. Now they’re back where they belong waiting for spring, and so am I.

Laundry Day #6

April 10, 2010


Sheets: 2
Pillowcases: 4
Towels: 5
Pants: 7
Shirts: 12
Undershirts: 3
Underwear: 23
Socks: 32

Temperature: Hot/Warm

Cost: $6.25

What have we learned?

It’s been a while since I did the wash.

I will confess that I don’t document every Laundry Day here. (How much laundry could one reader stand? I think I’m already testing that limit.) I also don’t write about every Laundry Day on the day it occurs, although I do present them chronologically. Nevertheless, it has been more than two weeks since my last Laundry Day post, and the lag has been about the same in real time.

Laundry reminds you when you’re slacking. The hamper overflows; your favorite items of clothing are unavailable (unless you’re willing to wear them wrinkled or less-than-fresh); you’re down to the few pairs of underwear and socks that you’d prefer not to share with others.

At first, you might approach these conditions with a sense of abandon. “Who cares about the laundry?” you think. “I’ll get to it when I get to it. I’m too busy/tired/stressed out/inert to give this my attention.”

That attitude might serve you for a while, but eventually it will be superseded by a sense that you’re not meeting your obligations.

The dirty laundry seems to tsk-tsk at you each time you walk past. “What? More?” it sniffs as you toss another soiled shirt on the pile. “There’s thermal underwear at the bottom here, you know, and we’re well into spring. Are you ever going to take care of this?”

The answer, you realize, must be “Yes, I am.” For the sooner you attend to the laundry, the sooner you regain authority over your life.

When it’s washed and dried you can toss it on the sofa beside you and attend to it while you watch television or listen to music or talk on the phone. Laundry doesn’t mind. All it wants is a little notice and care, and it will repay you with a sense of well-being; it will wrap you in warmth and softness and you’ll feel better for having given it your attention.

Laundry appreciates your attention.

Laundry Day #5

March 23, 2010


Sheets: 2
Pillowcases: 4
Towels: 5
Dishtowels: 4
Bathroom rug: 1
Shirts: 5
Sweaters: 9
Underwear: 15

Temperature: Hot/Cold

Cost: $8.00

What have we learned?

It’s the first day of spring—or at least it was when this laundry day occurred. (There’s a bit of a time lag on this blog sometimes.) While I don’t always suck it up for bona fide spring cleaning in March, I do take the opportunity to do a little extra laundry. So, on this day, it was three loads and it included the dishtowels and the bathroom rug.

I don’t wash the bathroom rug nearly as often as I should, and I save the dishtowels until I collect a few of them to make up a load. On this day, to celebrate the new season, I popped them all into a cold wash together.

The sweaters, which went into a cold delicate cycle, might be making their last appearance on the laundry list for a while. I’m hopeful that the winter weather is behind us and that the days will become progressively brighter and warmer.

The first laundry day of spring is symbolic that way. It signals an impending change for the better. Washing away the dust of the past lets us approach the future feeling clean and organized, eager and uplifted.

Laundry gives us the chance for a fresh start.