HOW does summer fly by so quickly? It’s been another fun year and my kids are crazy-tan, in great shape from swimming like maniacs almost every day, and sad-as-can-be that school starts next week.
While we’re having Summer’s Last Blast this week, I thought I’d report on how our Summer of Clean went.
First, let’s talk laundry.
Mondays were Laundry Days. Not that we EVER finished all of the week’s laundry on a Monday, but I can say with confidence (based on pre-blog experience) that if we didn’t have a designated Laundry Day, I’m not sure we’d have been fully clothed most days. As it was we USUALLY had the basics we needed.
Did they learn how to do laundry? Honestly, they already knew how (from previous Summers of Clean). With a few reminders, the ones who are tall enough to reach the controls were immediately able to pick back up. It was nice (especially when I was sick) to be able to say “_____, go change over the laundry please” and he knew how to do it.
Did we achieve Laundry Perfection? Far from it. Most weeks, at least one pile of the least necessary clothes stayed in its sorting pile until we had to move it out of sight because someone was coming over.
Am I satisfied? Yes. It was summer, and summer is crazy. Having a designated day for laundry kept us out of total chaos and I consider that an accomplishment! And the main goal, which was . . . teaching kids to clean . . . was accomplished.
Not that I want to send them off any time soon, but I do feel confident that the boys will be fully capable of handling their laundry once they’re on their own.
Did your kids learn any laundry skills over the summer?
And don’t forget that you can still get my e-book, Teaching Kids to Clean, for FREE. It will likely only be free through Labor Day, so be sure to click here to find out how to get your copy!)
This summer we tried something different. Our girls are moving into their teen years so we added some extra responsibilities. We made Monday Laundry Day and put them in charge of getting it done themselves. Sunday night after everyone was in bed I would sort the laundry into piles. We usually had 6 loads a week and I have enough laundry baskets for each load. I would line the hallway with baskets full of clothes in the order I wanted them washed. On Monday morning my girls would get up and start the laundry process. They would take turns taking the loads downstairs, switching from washer to dryer, & bringing the clean loads back upstairs. They had to set the timer so they wouldn’t forget to switch everything, and they had to keep things moving until all the laundry was clean. In exchange for taking on this task, they were allowed to watch movies all day long…didn’t even have to get out of their pj’s! Since they had laundry day covered, I was able to go run errands and pick up groceries on my own…such freedom! 🙂 When I would return from town they would have the clean clothes in baskets stacked in the living room. After supper we would sit down together and fold our own clothes. A marvelous system! Now I’ve just gotta figure out how to keep the system going now that they’re back in school and laundry day is once again my responsibility… :p
I think it is excellent that you are teaching your sons how to keep themselves clean and presentable and what it takes to keep a house in good order. Far too many mothers have waited on their sons hand and foot, with the result that their future wives have to work themselves to a frazzle in the home, with little or no input from their partners.
I have been LOVING one laundry day! I still toss in one load a day through the week, but i have ONE designated day that i get the bulk of clothing done and that frees up the rest of the week for towels, sheets, kitchen rags, critical loads of pants/undies for the 4yo who still has accidents etc. My 9yo also picked a laundry day for herself (because she got tired of waiting on mom to wash her clothes) and whips through it in no time. Its also been nice to say “Hey, while you’re down there, could you switch loads?” and she will toss the dryer load onto my bed for me, and go from there. The 4yo helps to fold and puts her clothes away–not neatly, but she’s FOUR!, and the 6yo folds and puts his clothes away as well.
My girls are going into 1st and K so a bit young, but they can bring down the hampers and load them into the washer with the help of a stepladder. They can also switch from the washer to the dryer the same way. Working together they can carry a basket of clean laundry upstairs. It’s been especially helpful the last couple of weeks as things have been crazy and their 2 year old brother was pottytraining at the same time. Can’t wait to get back into a routine next week!
I love coming here and reading about the ways you’ve revamped your household and are teaching your children to clean. I have been on a mission of my own, having gained a teenaged step-child whose mother is a hoarder, and clueless about cleaning to boot. Lucky for me, my new child is willing to learn. I’d never given any thought to the difficulties someone who’d never seen cleaning or organization modeled would have when it came to taking care of their own space and things. It’s been an adventure. My goal is to send this child off into the world with the skills needed to keep her own home clean and organized. I love your tips, lists, and commentors’ contributions.
Thank you, Jaycie!