I love a clean house, but I hate housework. I’m not exactly sure why. I don’t think I am a lazy person. I certainly feel like I am busy doing stuff. I work all day, come home and cook supper, pick up stuff, do laundry and yet nothing ever seems to improve much. Constant effort is required just to maintain the current level of filth I am comfortable with.

To go beyond that, to obtain a magazine-worthy degree of cleanliness and order in my home, seems unreachable. I’d have to change my entire personality and become an obsessive-compulsive neat freak! I know people like that, but I’m not one of them. When I get a free moment, I don’t want to “waste” it cleaning house. I just want to read or watch Netflix …and eat.

Oh, dear! That’s a horrible admission, I know. But, it’s not like I’m just walking around with a glass of wine in one hand and a bottle of Febreeze in the other. (Though, I wonder if that would work?)

I do like crafting, but I don’t think that counts as a valid alibi. Especially, when I never seem to finish a project completely before losing interest. I am sure that on the day I die people will be rummaging through my stuff, rolling their eyes and crying out, “If I find one more box of fabric or yarn, I’m proclaiming her a hoarder!”

Let me just say now that if it is ORGANIZED, it’s not hoarding! But, it doesn’t matter because I’ll be dead and I won’t care. Honestly, I don’t even care much now.

The only part of housekeeping I like is laundry.

When I was a child, my Mother worked a full-time job – which was uncommon in those days. So, my sister and I had to help her with the household chores. No problem. We divided it this way: My sister did all the cooking and cleaned the toilets. I did everything else. I was thrilled with this arrangement. My sister was too! Well, maybe not “thrilled” with the toilets exactly. But, the important thing was that she got to cook. She liked to cook and was good at it. I did not. People who forced me to do it often regretted that decision.

I didn’t mind vacuuming, dusting, and mopping because when you finished you felt like you had accomplished something. I didn’t particularly mind picking up clutter and putting it where it belonged. I didn’t mind washing and drying dishes either. It was a small price to pay for being able to eat my sister’s cooking instead of my Moms. (Mom could only cook one thing well – peach cobbler.)

What I really LOVED doing, however, was the laundry! I know some people hate doing it, but not me! I liked sorting the clothes into piles destined for the washer. I liked pulling the clean, wet clothes out of the washer and putting them into a wicker basket and taking them outside and hanging them up on the clothesline. I liked taking them off the line and carrying them back into the house to dump on the bed.

I would sort the dry clothes into another basket of “stuff to be ironed” and then fold the rest. I would drag the ironing board out of the hall closet and *sprinkle the shirts and pants with water. Tupperware sold a plastic glass with a lid that had perforated holes on the tops especially for this purpose. *I use a spray bottle nowadays. I know, I know – there is a steam setting on the iron and I use it, but sometimes you just need an extra squirt of water on a collar or hem to get it to lay flat.

After sprinkling the clothes, I’d begin to iron them. Iron? Nobody does that anymore. Clothes are permanently pressed now and if you hang most things up right out of the dryer, you don’t have to iron. I like to iron, but I don’t do it much anymore. (**I’ll explain why later.) I never was one of those nuts who ironed their sheets and pillowcases though. Nope! I just iron shirts, pants, skirts and dresses. **I used to iron all my husband’s shirts and hang them up in the closet. However, when he dressed, he would try on several shirts before choosing the one he was going to wear and he would just leave the others flung across the bed with arms all wrong-side out and bunched up. I’d have to re-iron them. I don’t redo ANYTHING! So now I only iron by special request. “Honey, will you iron this shirt for me?” “Sure, thing Sweetheart!”

Ha, Ha, Ha, just kidding about the little endearments. We’ve been together 38 years.

So, let me put this to you straight: If you’ll come over and clean my house, I’ll do all your laundry. You won’t even have to cook for me. Seriously!

Rules for Using a Solar Clothes Dryer

  1. Run a soapy sponge down the length of your clothesline before you hang the clothes.
  2. Hang your sheets on the outside line facing your neighbor. Hang your underwear on the inside line. (Hang your socks by the toes, not the cuff.)
  3. Never hang a shirt by the shoulders. Hang it by the tail. Clothespins leave pinch marks.
  4. Don’t hang pants and skirts by the waistband.
  5. Gather up all your clothespins when you take down the wash. They are made of wood and will mildew and get all over your clean clothes. Plus, hornets are attracted to them for making their nests. You don’t want that!

Ironing Rules

  1. Fill the reservoir with clean water. Keep your spray bottle handy. (If you want to, you can add a drop of perfume to the water – just remember to change the water before ironing something for someone else. Not everyone wants to smell like a rose.)
  2. Iron shirt collars first, then the sides, the back, and last – the sleeves. Hang up immediately, making sure to button every other button.
  3. Turn skirts wrong-side out to iron. I don’t know why, just do it.
  4. Line up the inside seams of pants before laying the pants flat and ironing BOTH legs at once. Otherwise, you’ll have creases where you don’t want them. Hang them up on a clip hanger by the cuffs – both legs together – not by the waistband. Put them at the far end of the closet where they can hang without touching the floor or touching a lower rack of clothes.

Alice

Born to read, forced to work.

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One thought on “Washateria

  1. Ha – I, too enjoy doing laundry. One of my first professional jobs (deemed professional because people paid me to do it) was ironing for neighbors. We had basements then, and that’s where everyone ironed, because it was cooler down there (this was before we all knew that basements were where serial killers hid and grabbed their victims.) I was in high clover if the neighbors had a TV in the basement. Problem was, in those days the only thing on daytime TV was “Dialing for Dollars” where you watched a man in a suit ( he was usually smoking) dial a phone at random looking for people who knew the count (“8 from the bottom”) and the amount of money he was giving away. I wonder if it was really legalized numbers or gambling?? Anyway, you have it wrong on the shirts – collars first, back yoke, then the sleeves. Everything else you nailed.

    To this day I still hang sheets on the line, because there is NOTHING like that smell and the crispness of the sheets. Of course, there are rules for sheet hanging, but they are way too long to go into here. My husband thinks I am nuts for spending time every weekend hanging sheets on the line, but if that’s the worst thing I ever do, I guess I can live with it. I may have dust bunnies the size of cats, but my sheets smell fantastic!

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