How Do You....

...deal with laundry.

I know we all hate it (well most of us do)
And with kids we can't avoid it
But now I need some advice
I do not have a good laundry routine/method/plan of attack
And now that I am home I am trying to be more homemaker-esque and less lazy unemployed person ;)

So how do you deal with laundry (or do you not deal with it at all?)

Do you separate kids from adults?
Do you separate towels from clothes?
Do you do it daily or once a week or somewhere in between?
Do you have a certain soap you use?
Do you go green?  how?

I need a little help here.  I am definitely domestically deficient and I would like to improve that, especially now that I live in someone else's home.

So help a sister out, and share with me your best laundry tips, tricks, and tactics!!


  1. I try to do one load every other day. I have a hamper in the girls' room, and do their laundry separately. For us, I have one of those 3 bin sorter things in the laundry room. 1 for towels, for darks, 1 for lights. I have a small basket in the bottom of our closet and try to bring it down every day ans sort it in the bins. Then I do the load that's the biggest.

  2. Oh we all LOVE laundry, ha ha.

    I just keep them sorted by color... whichever reaches a full load first, I try to throw in a load when I get home from work.

    I don't sort towels separately, because in the dryer, they'll help everything else dry faster.

    I've been experimenting with the "speed wash" setting and believe it uses less water and does good for things that aren't royally stained.

    Just found this liquid detergent I am IN LOVE with. Remember my wrist got busted in the accident? Those huge jugs are a pain to lift (literally). Target has this new PUMP-style detergent in this skinny bottle by "METHOD". Smells great, works great, and is SO much less room to store!

    Sorry... they should pay me to advertise :)

    So glad you and Kam get to do the show again! Can't wait to see your stuff!

  3. Crap, I'm supposed to sort them??

    Oh wait, I do. Mine, Delia's, and Stu's. Stu does his own. I do mine and Delia's. :)

  4. LZ- One load every other day??? How the heck does that work? I have to do at least 2 loads per day. I do it green by hanging outside (and I think you have seen my antique drying rack for inside.) I am with Rachel on sorting by color and doing whatever pile gets biggest first. I separate darks/ lights/ pinks & reds (hey, we have 4 girls here) and towels, rags & sheets. I also enlist the help of the 9 year old to separate it after it's dried and deliver it to it's home (bedrooms, kitchen, baths) but I still put it all away myself since she doesn't fold so well, but at least I don't have to carry it around to all the rooms and up the stairs. Basically though... I hate laundry. It is the bane of my existence and there is no simple answer. Unless you take it all to the laundromat, pay them to do it all and then sit and play on your laptop using their free wifi while they do they work.

  5. When the boys were home, I did at least two loads of laundry every day. I had to! Here's how I separate our laundry:

    *Towels (I separate lights from darks) - I do not wash towels with my clothes, because the lint from the towels gets all over everything. I do, though, wash bathroom rugs with towels sometimes, depending upon the amount of room in the washing machine.
    *Sheets (You can wash some clothes with sheets, if there's room in the washer. Sort by color.)
    *Bill's dress shirts and pants are washed seperately.

    I always turn clothes inside-out before washing them. It helps to protect the outside of the clothes from looking too worn, and also keeps clothes from 'pilling' so bad.

    I also hang up a lot of clothes to air dry. (It keeps them from shrinking so bad.) I put clothes in the dryer for a few minutes, but then take them out while they're damp and place them on a big drying rack, or hang them up to dry. (I'm thinking of getting a clothesline this year.) This works very well for Bill's dress shirts...no ironing necessary!

    I use Tide...have for years. It has always done a great job with our clothes.

    Good luck!

  6. I have 2 hampers, one for colors and one for whites. Once the colors hamper has enough to make a load I wash them. I love to have an empty hamper and it's much easier than spending a day doing load after load or never having the shirt you want because it is still dirty. I do whites once a week because they don't accumulate as much. Laundry used to be a big deal but now it is easy with this method. I work, so I put a load in the wash when I wake up, and when I get home I through them in the dryer. In the evening, when the kids are unwinding before bed and watching TV with their snack, I fold the laundry and put it away - it really only takes about 10 minutes to fold and put away one load at a time.

  7. Lately, I have just simply been ignoring the laundry! But normally, I do a bunch of different loads. One for each of the boys, one of whites, one of colors, one with jeans, and one with kitchen stuff. I like to get all of my laundry done on one day, usually Monday. That has gotten a lot harder now that their are five people in our house and now that my oldest is wearing uniforms to school.

  8. I wash the kid's clothes seperately. I think washing them with our jeans and heavier fabrics causes more wear. So here is my break down:

    Arielle's clothes-wash in Dreft
    Nate's clothes

    I have 3 baskets in our room one for each lights, whites and darks. I, ahem, use it but am still trying to get hubby to realize the whole bedroom floor is NOT the hamper! It makes it easier. When I see a basket is getting full (any of the 6 in the house) I do a load. I am trying to get to the point where I wash and fold one load a day, but am not quite there yet. Another thing that makes washing the kid's clothes seperatly better for me is that I fold them all, put them in the basket and take them right to their room. All one room, easier for me to put away! I'm not very green besides having an HE washer and dryer. I use Tide and fragrance free Downey for my softner.

  9. You're going to think I'm a nutcase, but here goes.

    I have one day a week when I do most of my laundry. I make it a point to stay home that one day, and do one load after another. Then, I may pop in a load every day or two after that. It never ends. Ugh.

    As for sorting:
    *dark towels and jeans (similar weights)
    *hubby's uniforms (just b/c they are whole load by themselves)
    *the rest of the dark clothes
    *non-bleach whites/lights
    *bleach whites

    It doesn't matter to me which load I do first, but I always do bleach whites last. We have a front loader and they are known for trapping water around the seals, which can start to smell. So, I always do my bleach load last to discourage any funky things growing around the seal.

    Here's where you're gonna shake your head. I make my own laundry detergent. J doesn't like the smell of most of the commercial ones and I find mine cleans just as well (sometimes better). I only have to make a batch about every 3 months. I wish I had been doing it years ago. It doesn't seem to fade the clothing so much. I still use a stain stick or spray for spills, and I still use dryer sheets.

  10. I do
    dark delicate
    light delicate
    dark towels
    light towels

    I start laundry first thing after walking in the door from work and I do whatever is in the house that makes a full load. I try very hard to stay caught up and that means 3 loads a day!I am switching laundry out all evening!

  11. Laundry is one chore that I do not mind doing. well, except putting it away. I hate that! Anyway, with a household of seven people, I could be doing laundry 24/7 every day of the week in order to keep up. but I don't. I do it a couple of days a week and everything else will just have to wait. I can not think that I only live to do it or I would begin to hate it. LOL I have to make it as simple for myself as possible. I separate lights from darks from reds from towels and that is it. Four different kinds of loads. I do not dry nice things but everything else gets thrown into the dryer. I fold it immediately because I DO NOT IRON!!! My kids are all getting old enough that if something they want is not clean, they can get it and get it washed up themselves also. That has made things a little easier too. You will get it figured out, what works for you. Just don't let it overwhelm you because it is one of those jobs that is never ending so don't try to conquer it, just do it! :)

  12. Not well. That's how I deal with it, unfortunately. I'll keep checking back for tips. :)

  13. Wow. These answers make me feel like I'm really lazy.

    I keep one hamper in the bathroom for kid's clothes, towels, and the occasional cloth diaper (urine only). Hamper's just big enough for one load of laundry. All get mixed together.

    Into the washer it goes. My 3 year old presses buttons. I put in some detergent (no idea how much) and vinegar.

    Into the dryer it goes. 3 year old transfers wet clothes and cleans out lint thingy. I'm crossing my fingers he'll keep doing this as he gets older.

    *I wash my whites and my colors separately. *Hubby does his own laundry.
    *Cloth napkins and kitchen towels are one load.
    *Rags are another load.

    Funny you write about this today. I just posted an activity on how fun it is to do laundry with your preschooler on my site. readandraise.blogspot.com

    I love your pictures at the top!

  14. I would like to have the recipe for the homemade laundry detergent!

  15. My routine is rather crazy (and I think I blogged about it once before). I do laundry as needed, but try to stick to just weekends whenever possible. I do adult and kiddo clothes seperate. Kiddo clothes get washed on cold, delicate, with baby soap. And almost all kiddo clothes are line dried. (Helps keep the clothes to last a bit longer). Adult cloths are seperated into whites, darks, and delicates. (Sheets and towels get sorted accordinly into one of those piles). Then I simply use Tide and some OxyClean, and it's good to go!

  16. We have an awesome laundry plan. Hubby does laundry on Wednesdays and I do laundry on Sundays. We each do between 4-5 loads. We do not seperate anything except lights from darks, it's just too much work for us when we have this much laundry. We also use homemade laundry soap. It is SOOOOO flippin cheap and so easy to make and our clothes come out so clean. We have made a liquid and a powder, I tend to like the liquid better. If we have puke, pee or poop whoever finds it, washes it and that includes our babysitter. After everything is washed, dried and folded, at the end of the day when we are putting the kids in bed, we grab their piles and put them away as we are saying goodnight. Then as we head to our room, we grab our piles and put them away. It took us awhile to find a good routine that worked for us...give it time, you'll find something that works for you

  17. Wow, I'm tired just scanning through everyone's routines!!! And it's making me think I should be running the washer right now...

    I'm only super anal about MY clothes. Except for t-shirts/sweatshirts that I don't care about, I hang dry all of my clothes. Have had too many shrink! So on my laundry day (when my basket is full), I hang everything over the stairway banister. It looks hideous!! But it works. I seriously think if we ever move, I have to get a house with an open staircase!!

    Here's my breakdown...

    * 2 baskets on my side of the closet - delicates & non (including towels). When they get down to the laundry room, I sort the delicates into whites/blues/greens/browns & then reds/pinks/purples. I no longer separate my lights and darks... seems like they've all been washed enough.

    * 1 basket on Chad's side - everything gets washed together. I do hang-dry his dress shirts, but everything else goes in the dryer.

    * Aidan's clothes are either separate or with Chad's clothes/towels, etc.

    I wash everything with Tide Free and throw in a scoop of OxyClean (after reading Brooke's laundry post.) No fabric softener - I worked at Linens n' Things and you're really not supposed to use it... it wears down the thread count on towels, sheets, etc.

    I used to wash all of Aidan's clothes before he wore them (if they were new), but I don't even care about that anymore! Guess I got lazy.

    As for folding and putting it away, that's my biggest problem. Sometimes we just dress ourselves out of our clean clothes hampers!! But at least they make it upstairs to the right room!

  18. Laundry is a beast that takes over my home. I'm always behind on laundry. Right now we're moving and doing load after load to catch up so we don't take any dirty clothes to the new house. Ugh!
    I do separate towels and other whites. I do laundry almost every day. I use whatever soap I can buy in a huge container, because with 6 of us, I just have to!

  19. You're probably done with this subject but... I do laundry once a week but it takes about 2 days to get it all done and put away. I do darks, lights and a load that's mostly towels, socks and linens that gets washed in warm. Everything else is cold/cold. Then every other week (usually) I do a load of "delicates" which includes my undies and any of my tops that say "delicate cycle" on the tag. I still use the same detergent for that stuff, just less of it. And I use ALL Free and Clear. Happy Washing! :)


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