Sunday, December 21, 2014

The Mismanaged Mom's guide to catching up on laundry! When you're way behind!

Ahh, laundry.. my old nemesis. My mother loves to tell me how "it only takes five minutes to go downstairs and throw in a load of laundry!" Yeah, yeah, but it takes so much longer  to fold said laundry, and then to put it all away. Especially with a mischievous little year-and-a-half old who loves to "help."

And so I bring to you...

Now the first thing to understand about my process (besides that it is completely mismanaged) is that it might take a day or two. But I promise it is so much easier than folding load after load of laundry and running all over the house putting it away, only to go back for more loads (because you're way behind).

The first thing I do is to gather every laundry basket, hamper, wicker basket (whatever!) that I own. Get those next to your washer.dryer to get them all ready. This is a good time to make a huge mountain of clothes next to the washing machine. Just make sure you have all of your washables and baskets near your machine.

Now start washing!!!

The secret to my stress-free process is to keep washing/drying my loads of laundry, filling up my baskets and hampers with the clean clothes, and then NOT FOLDING THEM until I am completely done. Like I said, it may take all day to get all of the washing and drying done, but really this is the easy part because the machine does all the work!! Now let's get on with it.

When your folding area looks like this...

And this... (I have a total of six baskets/hampers full)

Then we can start folding it all all at once.

When my Mom taught me to do laundry, she always stacked the folded clothes by person. This works, but because my least favorite part is the putting away, it always bugged me to have to disassemble the pile once I got to my room to sort out the pajamas, pants, shirts, etc.

So while it might take up way more room on the dining table (or wherever you fold), I try to sort not just by person, but by the drawers they go in:

Here you see my piles starting to add up. Yes, there is underwear in this photo. Get over it.

By the time you're really getting under way you're space will look like this:

Phew! We're getting there!!

Now you can start sorting them out into those baskets!

I grab one basket for each person and start stacking my piles in there, making sure I keep those items orderly to make the putting-away process smooth.

My husband's basket:

His piles are separated by the way his dresser is organized. A drawer for workout clothing, underwear, muscle shirts, etc...

If your kids are old enough, you can get them to put their own baskets away! For me, with two toddlers, I am responsible for three out of the four baskets. But now all I have to do is take each basket to the child's room and I am already organized by drawer. Pop, pop, pop! Into the drawers my pre-arranged piles go!

I also set aside baskets for things like bathroom items (towels, washcloths, etc..) that I can carry around to each bathroom, and another basket for things that need to be hung.

Ahh, empty baskets!!

This process has worked really well for me when I get behind because once the washing/drying is done, I can wait until my youngest is sleeping, or until Daddy is home to tend to her, to power-fold.

What has worked well for you??

Linked up at: CornerstoneConfessions
A Bowl Full of Lemons

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