Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Laundry and the Large Family

Laundry has always been an issue. We are a family of 8 with a baby due this summer. Gone are the days when I could fit clothing for all of my small children in a few loads. Those small children have grown up to be teens and adults!

I do laundry every day. (3-4) loads depending on what is going on. My laundry room is the smallest I have ever had. I can hardly fit myself in the room with the two appliances! Therefore, as soon a load is don't it gets taken out of the room and folded. The basket then taken up by one of the younger kids to be sorted and put away.

Here are some things have done to make this task easier:

1. Do not wash sheets weekly- I only wash them when necessary.

2. Keep clothes to a minimum. The more you have the more laundry you will create. My kids have 2-3 pair of pants, 4-5 shirts and a few outfits for church. That is it! My daughter has a little more but for the most part she too is kept to a minimum.

3. If you have the room create a family closet. I didn't have the room to do this but I was able to turn a hall closet upstairs into a useful family closet. I bought a metal rack from Home Depot and then some sturdy bins from Wal Mart. The bottom two bins hold towels for bathing, middle bins hold socks for all male teens and adults, and moms sleep ware and some under garments. Top shelf holds underwear for male adult teens and boys, underwear for mom, and socks and stockings for mom. The very top shelf is to low for bins so I keep all of my husbands summer shorts and t- shirts on it.

Next to my metal rack is an Ikea piece of furniture that has 8 small drawers. This is where I keep the undergarments for the little boys along with belts, plastic bags, and soap.

I have the same system in my young boys room. Each one of them have 2 bins each and there are a few extra bins for sweat shirts and church clothes. This keeps clothes to a minimum. Summer items are kept on the very top rack (not in bins). or up in the crawl space.

Why am I talking about the family closet? Because part of doing laundry is getting it put away. This system works better than dressers that take up valuable floor space and do not hold as much as the bins.

4. Plan to wash clothes everyday. If you just accept it then it becomes second nature. In between schooling the kids I change loads over and fold. At night, before bed everyone helps put it away.

5. The best idea I have heard for socks is to train kids to put them in a mesh bad so that they stay together. I am looking for small mesh bags but haven't come up with any as of yet but I hope to implement this idea some day.

Carrie @ Our Full House

Elizabeth @ Yes They’re All Ours

Kathy @ Kathy Mom of Many

Kristy @ Homemaker's Cottage

Lori @ Happy Busy Mama

Monica @ Natural Mama

Renee @ Bakers Dozen

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1 comment:

  1. I enjoyed reading your perspective oon the laundry challenge! I wish you had posted pictures of yoour family closet -- this sounds very efficient and organized.

    Thanks for linking up with us!!