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‘I just can’t stay on top of our laundry, no matter what I do.’ I hear it all the time. But it just isn’t true. The problem is not that you cannot stay on top of your laundry. The problem is you not having a good system in place to make it easier for yourself!
Which is what we are going to change today, because I am going to share a super simple, yet effective way to simplify your laundry routine and never be behind in laundry again.
Before we dive into the how, let’s talk about some simple basics. Because having a good laundry routine is much easier when you have this in place:
- Have enough clothes for the week. I recommend having one laundry day a week, so that means you need enough clothes to last you a week.
- Don’t wash more than necessary. If your shirt is not dirty, don’t wash it. It’s that simple. Maybe it need some refreshing, which can easily be done by hanging it on a clothes line for a day and air it out. But don’t wash clothes more than needed. Because it will not only mean less laundry, it also means your clothes won’t wear out as easily.
- Get the kids involved! Kids usually love to help, so make things easy for them to help with. Let them put away their own clothes, pick up their dirty laundry from the floors etc. It’s extremely beneficial for them to help with chores. Even your 1 year old can help!
Step 1: Hamper in each room
The first step to creating a good laundry routine, is simplifying the way you collect the laundry. Some people grab a hamper every day and walk through the rooms to collect the dirty laundry from the day before. Other like to have one hamper in the bathroom and empty it daily. While even others do laundry whenever they feel like doing it.
While these systems might seem to work just fine, I also hear all these moms complain about never being able to stay on top of laundry. And the problem starts at the beginning. Make it easy to collect your dirty clothes!
Put a hamper in every room to make it easy for your children and yourself to throw it in the hamper instead of throwing it on the floor. Yes, your children might still throw it next to the hamper (why?!) but keep teaching them to actually put it in. They will learn at some point.
Having all the laundry in easy to grab hampers makes it so much easier for you as a busy mom. So invest in some cute hampers!
Step 2: Laundry day
The next step is having one day a week set aside for laundry. No, I do not mean a day in which you do as many loads as possible to get ahead.
What I mean, is a day set aside in which you collect all the hampers from the different rooms, bring them to your laundry room/area and throw it all into one big pile. Sort the laundry into smaller piles. I create a pile for high temperature, whites, blacks, color, etc. Whatever way you like to sort your items.
Having these piles will make it much easier to wash a load a day. You put the empty hampers back into the various rooms and they will get filled up over the course of a week. And then you will collect and sort again.
I like having Monday as my laundry day, to make sure I can do most of my washing throughout the week. But if you work during the week it might be easier to have laundry day on a Friday and start washing in the weekend to get a head start. Whatever works best for you and your schedule!
Step 3: Do one load a day
And now to the advice you keep hearing over and over again. Do one load a day. And I can not agree more.
The problem with this is usually the organisation behind it. If you need to do a load a day, but need to figure out which load to do based on what is in the hampers, it is a pretty big job.
That is why I ALWAYS sort on my laundry day and have little work the rest of the days. I literally just throw in the pile I have next to the washing machine and go back to what I was doing. It takes me 10 seconds!
Step 4: Start to finish!
Now the hardest part for most people is remembering to put the load in the dryer. And what happens even more is a load that sits folded in a laundry basket for a week, next to the bed in the master bedroom. (we’ve all been there)
So how do we make sure we actually finish the load completely? Here’s a few tips!
- Set a timer. Make sure you put the load into the dryer on time, before you need to wash it again. I have been known to think I will remember, but I forget way more than I’d like to admit. So I just set a timer around noon and transfer the load into the dryer. And then you can also add a timer for when it’s finished. I never have to do that because it is done around the time my toddler wakes up. So I grab it while I’m there.
- Take the basket to a high traffic area (e.g. dining table). Once you have all your laundry ready to be folded, make sure you bring it with you to a high traffic area. You will see the laundry multiple times a day, which makes it really hard to not just go and fold it.
- Fold the laundry and make piles per person/room. This is something I have done for a while and it makes it so much easier to put your clothes away. You just grab a pile of clothes and bring it to the closet or room it belongs in.
- Let each person put away his/her own clothing. Our children our now getting to the age where they can put their own clothes away. And this is super helpful! It gives them a small responsibility, but it is extremely helpful for me. And to make things a lot easier for them; I do not fold their clothes! We just bought big bins.
- Don’t put it off. Just take 30 seconds extra and put the clothes away. Don’t try to do it later. Like I said, take 30 extra seconds and finish the job. It will give you a lot more peace of mind too, because you can cross off another item of your to-do list.
- Do NOT put the folded laundry into a basket and next to your bed. It will stay there for daaays. Seriously. Do not think you will remember. Once you get into your bedroom you are probably just ready to go to bed. And nobody wants to put away laundry at midnight. So do it right away!
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