In our house, clothes are everywhere.
Lets walk in the door, there’s at least two jackets hanging on kitchen chairs. The bathroom has towels hanging. There will be a random pair of pants or two hanging around on the floor next to the basement door. I’d like to say that all the clothes are from irresponsible kids not putting them away. Unfortunately, my kids are to young to even pick out their own clothes, much less put them away. The laundry responsibility belongs to the only two adults in the house, myself and Alaina. We’re not dirty people. Disorganized….sure. But who isn’t in at least one respect. If I need to use and excuse, and I really feel like I do, my guess is that with everything else in life, we have decided that laundry is only important when there are not enough clean clothes. Our basement stairs currently remind me of the the basement stairs from my childhood. There were five of us total in the house and all of us tossing our dirty clothes down the stairs to await the launde—er ahh….mom to wash them. I remember the look in her eyes when I (the youngest and therefore last child to learn) finally was able to do my own laundry. She cried tears of sweet joy and laughed hysterically for days. The look was similar to when we installed a dishwasher. The largest difference is that our basement in that old farm house was for laundry and only laundry. One of the only exceptions being the locking of each other in the basement and turning the light out, an easy and favorite prank that was sure to create more dirty pants to add to the unending pile. The basement below where I currently sit is home to my office as well as our washer and dryer. That means, when I actually do work, and work down there, I must navigate down the steps like a Gooney carefully stepping among booby traps. I would much rather fall to my death looking for One Eyed Willie’s gold than slip on clothes and break my arm hitting the basement floor. Unfortunately there is no situation too embarrassing to actually kill you.
I don’t understand how we accumulated so many clothes. There are only four of us. The worst part about it is that I can never find a goddamn t-shirt. I must own a dozen short sleeve shirts but I can never find one. Rooting through the pile all I find are clothes much, much smaller than my own. Once I found a hat that I had never seen before. NEVER!
Honestly, if you come over to our house, you must give us at least a two day notice. In those two days we will plan on putting away all the laundry. All of it. The reality is though that we’ll talk about putting it away for two days and then on the final hour before guest arrive we’ll shove laundry wherever there isn’t already laundry and then hope to God the walls don’t burst at the seams. We have the best intentions to take care of it all. And eventually we do. There comes a point where you just can’t take the disorganization of it. As we fold and put away the clean clothes accumulated, it feels like we’re meeting up with old friends. A week after all the laundry is put away though, we fall into old habits. It seems like we’d be able to keep these habits at bay if we didn’t have to wash clothes all the time, but somehow shit gets dirty. And with a two year old, it gets dirty A LOT!
When Jude was a newborn I remember thinking: “How amazing, his clothes are so small that you can wash a months worth in one load and be done with it.”
Now I know that a months worth of laundry can be dirtied in less than a week and that was just with infant clothes. Toddler clothes are small too. Anyone that has a toddler knows you can fit many of them into your washing machine, clothes…not the toddler (although if I had to guess about the possibility of washing a toddler in a machine, I’m guessing two? Maybe if you have a big machine?). Toddler clothes are designed small for two reasons. 1) obviously, so they fit the person wearing them. 2)so you can fit as many dirty clothes into the washer and dryer as possible and because of this you have to make a decision. Should you buy lots and lots of toddler clothes so that while you wait for a large enough load to wash, thereby amassing so many toddler clothes that the weird guy at old navy knows your face, making you question buying from a big box store but GODAMN the prices are just so affordable (and honestly, who can afford a $30.00 pajama set, I’m looking at you HEARTLAND) OR have only enough outfits to last a week and continually wash them over and over and over therefore feeding into the global machine that is wasting water and detergent and power and money. WHAT’S A MAN TO DO!?
Not to worry though, I’m not. I have devised two different ways to keep my kids wearing only one outfit per week, until they reach the age of 18. If at 18, when they are employed and have enough money to buy their own clothes and they still decide to take my advice, I’ll know I’ve done my job as a parent.
1. Keep my kids confined to a corner of the room at all times. Serve them meals via IV fluid and only allow them to play with non mess making toys: Legos, blocks, etc… They will poop into a solid state plastic detachable bowl. This bowl will become part of them, and in a short time, will fuse to their skin making sure there is no chance of “poop leakage”. Sure, my kids may hate me, but at least I wont have to do laundry.
2. Devise some sort of bag for them to wear on their back, a back-pack of sorts. Inside will be an overwhelming amount of plastic wrap (thank you Costco). At the start of every day I will take a sheet of rolled plastic wrap and roll it over their clothed torso and extremities. To avoid leaks I will change the plastic at regular intervals or when it becomes the smallest bit tainted.
***note: while re-reading this I realized that this (#2) is not the first time I have though of it. I explained my plan briefly in an earlier blog post.
Microsoft will not return my calls, Apple sent me a cease and desist letter…
While I am confident that one day someone will come up with a plan better than mine or steal my patents, for now the laundry never ends….ever.
Does someone have a snorkel?