I have always hated laundry, especially the folding part, and would find any reason to procrastinate. It’s embarrassing, but my laundry cycle looked like this: put off doing any until my husband and I are on the brink of having no clean laundry or towels left, then spend one day going through the motions of loading the washer and then the dryer with back to back loads – usually about 3 or 4. Then allow said laundry to sit in hampers in the living room, moving them out of my way throughout the day and digging through them to find a matching pair of socks. The laundry would finally get folded when I got tired of moving them around (or I was having company!) and then would sit in the basket in my room for another few days until we had either worn everything out of it, or one of us finally put it away. Pathetic, I know, but hey – we all have our flaws, right?!
Moving to our new home changed everything for me. For starters, I’ve always harbored a secret romance with laundry lines. Because our old property didn’t afford me that opportunity, from time to time on hot summer days, I would hang towels over the railings of our deck to dry. Our new house not only has a large line already set up, but it has no machine dryer. Seeing as they were beat up and not worth lugging out of the basement, we had left out old washer and dryer when we sold the house. The sellers we purchased from left their old washing machine, but they didn’t have a dryer – just a line in the yard.
Not having the temptation of a dryer to aid in my procrastination, and switching from city water to a well, meant I could no longer let my laundry pile up and then wash it all in one day. I now had to stick to one load per day, only on days where the weather would allow me to use the line, and the loads couldn’t be too large or they wouldn’t fit on the line all at once.
While this requires some planning and a reliable weather predicting source, I discovered something enlightening about this new life:
- The loads are manageable ... No more hampers full of laundry!
- I love the act of hanging the laundry. I get to be outside in the early morning, enjoying the sun and the fresh air, watching my chickens peck around, and admiring all the trees and wildlife. It’s so peaceful.
- My new fold-as-you-go method. It doesn’t make sense to me to take all the laundry down and toss it into a basket where it will then wait to be folded. Instead, I fold each piece as I take it down, and hang socks over the edge of my basket so I can pair them as I go. This means the laundry is done and ready to be put away before I get back inside.
- It’s sustainable. Nothing saves energy like using the sun and the wind to dry your clothes!
- I love the scent. There is something that is just so comforting about the gentle, clean smell of line-dry laundry.
- It’s efficient. Each load of laundry gets washed, hung, folded and put away that same day. There’s no more mountains to fold, or running out of socks.
If someone had ever told me I would not only do laundry every day, but that I would enjoy doing it, I would have laughed it off. But now it is one of my favorite household chores; I love taking a break from our busy day to enjoy the view, get some fresh air and bring in the line.