Get Laundry under Control!
If you thought that laundry was a major chore before having kids, look out! It's about to get much more intense. Here are some helpful hints for dealing with stains and processing those ever growing loads of laundry.
The Laundry Space
You need somewhere to put your supplies. Install shelves or cabinets above the machines or try a laundry supply shelving unit on wheels that fits between the washer and dryer, keeping supplies out of sight.
Keep your most commonly used laundry supplies where they are easily accessed. If your stain remover is handy, you’re more likely to use it before stains set. If you buy detergent in bulk, you may want to transfer smaller amounts of it to canisters or jars for easier use and refill as they empty. Some moms may prefer to keep a huge bucket of detergent with a secure lid on the floor—just be sure little ones cannot get into the detergent or fall head-first into the bucket.
Keep a supply of paper towels or rags handy to wipe up spills. Over time, certain laundry products can damage the finish on your machines if they are left to sit. It’s also easy to keep your appliances clean by occasionally giving them a quick swipe with a rag while the washer is filling and then throwing it in the hot water.
Install a small bar or line in your laundry area if possible and keep it stocked with empty clothes hangers. Hanging shirts and pants directly from the dryer will greatly reduce your ironing load. Folding clothes as they come out of the dryer will also minimize wrinkling and help you get the job done right away. Don’t have space in your laundry room for folding? Try attaching a fold-down shelf to the wall. Fold-out ironing boards are also helpers for moms with small laundry rooms. And don’t forget this handy tip: When you’ve let a load sit in the dryer too long, toss in a damp towel and run the dryer briefly on warm to get rid of wrinkles.
If the sock-eating monster lives in your house, keep a small bag or basket for “loner” socks. Go through it occasionally and match up socks. If a sock stays in the basket after a couple of matching sessions, it’s probably lost its mate for good and can be recycled into a sock puppet!
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