On a beautiful summer day is there anything less appealing than having to do a load of laundry? Give your homeschooling family more time for extra summer fun by following these simple laundry organizing secrets:
  • Keep laundry supplies on hand " Having the right tools is a must! Nothing is more frustrating and time consuming than trying to remove stains and spills without the right detergents and stain removers to get the job done.
  • Regularly clean washer and dryer " Like every household appliance, washing machines and dryers require regular maintenance to clean clothes right the first time. Since summer play clothes are full of grime and dirt, be sure to wipe out the entire tub after every load and remove the lint from the dryer screen. Also, don't forget to check for foreign objects under the washing machine agitator or in the dryer drum. Even the best parent at washing clothes occasionally misses a few items hiding in pockets.
  • Designate specific wash days " Although the size of your family may require every day to be a wash day, try to minimize your time in the laundry room by delegating certain days of the week as wash day. Only washing clothes two or three times a week will free your family's schedule to enjoy other activities. If you do have a large family, reduce the number of daily loads by only washing certain types of fabrics or clothing (polyester, cotton, delicates, etc.) on a particular day.
  • Provide laundry baskets for each family member " Dirty laundry is more likely to reach its way to the washing machine if individual baskets are kept in each room. Purchase your child's favorite colored basket and teach him to be responsible by bringing his own dirty clothes to the laundry room on wash day. Each article of clothing should be turned right side out and sorted according to fabrics. We usually had four major sorting piles " white cotton towels and underwear, dark cotton towels and jeans, light-colored permanent press, and dark-colored permanent press " plus an extra pile for hand washing.
  • Fold clothes with fewer folds " Reorganize your drawers and linen closets to hold things in larger sizes. With hundreds of items each week, you'll be amazed at the amount of time saved when folding clothes big or not at all. Instead of using two or three folds, underwear, towels, and jeans can be folded once and t-shirts only twice. You can also save time by using laundry clips to hold socks together during washing and drying. Not only do they prevent the proverbial lost sock syndrome, but they eliminate folding socks and you can simply toss them into the drawer.
  • Hang dress clothes immediately " Save time ironing collared dress shirts and slacks by partially drying and hanging immediately. With today's dryer settings, ironing can almost be eliminated when following this simple practice.
  • Start a mending pile " Unless its dad's one and only shirt for church, your daughter's favorite top, or junior's little league baseball uniform, save mending for a rainy day or those hours spent sitting in front of the TV. Also, you'll save time mending by dabbing a little clear nail polish on the top threads of buttons to prevent them from falling off.
  • Enlist the entire family's help " Washing and drying clothes never seems to be as big a problem as folding that mountain once it's done. Since many hands make light work, simply dump the basket of clean clothes on the kitchen table and have each of your children pick out their own clothes to fold. Towels and other common items can be folded by whoever gets to them first. Although you may have to lower your standards a little, even young children can be of great help in tackling this chore.
Don't let laundry demands steal your family's time to play this summer. Use these helpful tips and get that washing done quickly and efficiently so you can be on your way outside to another fun-filled adventure.