As we've been working on our laundry rooms this week, Cat has asked some questions to help us focus and see what is working and what is not working with our laundry. One thing she talked about was having our children learn to do their own laundry. I have to admit, I haven't done well in this area!
I'm the type person that would rather do things myself than have to take the time to teach someone else do it. It's pure agony for me to stand by and watch someone else work on something and not be able to just do it. That looks so awful in black and white, but it's the truth. So, although the kids have helped with the laundry over the years (my children are 17, 14, and 13), I've always done most of the work.
When Cat had us re-evaluate our laundry routines this week, I realized that our children really do need to become responsible for their own clothes. They are definitely old enough to do so, and it would solve several problems . . .
- The kids running out of clothes and needing something ASAP, and they don't tell me till 10:00 the night before.
- One person's socks or underwear or jeans put into another person's drawer.
- My having to iron every day if I wanted to keep up with the ironing.
- My having to do at least one load of laundry a day to keep up.
So I sat down and made a schedule. Each child gets 2 laundry days per week. On one of those days, they change their bed sheets and wash them. They do all their own sorting, washing, drying, folding, ironing, and putting away. They can choose to iron right away or wait till they wear the item, but it's their responsibility. I wash Wes's and my clothes on 2 days a week, and I wash a load of towels on each of those days too, one day the bath towels, and the other day the kitchen towels. So far it has worked pretty well. The reason we take 2 days each week is because we don't have enough clothes to last a whole week! I only have ironing to do on Tuesday and Friday - no more shirts piling up from several loads. I do need to buy a couple more laundry baskets to have enough for all of us to have a place to put dirty clothes.
Here is our laundry schedule:
Monday - Samuel (17) - clothes and sheets
Tuesday - Andrew (14) - clothes and sheets; Wes and me - clothes and sheets
Wednesday - Beth (13) - clothes and sheets; Me - bath towels
Thursday - Samuel
Friday - Andrew; Wes and me
Saturday - Beth; Me - kitchen towels