Column 32 – Laundry Scavenger Hunt by the FlyLady, Marla Cilley

Do you feel like you never get finished with the laundry? Is there evidence of the laundry process all over your home? Are there soured towels in the washing machine because you forgot about them? Do you have a dryer full of wrinkled clothes because you were on the phone when the buzzer went off? If you actually folded them are they still on top of your dryer or piled in your laundry basket waiting to be put away?

Laundry is just like dishes. If you eat on plates and drink water out of glasses; you will have dirty dishes. If you get up and get dressed and get ready for bed you will have dirty clothes. Dishes or clothes dont magically get clean, someone has to lift a hand to start the process. Starting the process is just the beginning of five step journey of climbing Mount Washmore!

One day you wake up to no clean underwear. So you either have to go buy some new undies or do the laundry. By this time you have worn every clean item of clothing you have and Mount Washmore seems like Mount Everest. Where do you start?

If your laundry has gotten out of hand there is a good chance that you do not have a routine for staying on top of it! I am going to teach you how to get it done and then give you a routine for keeping up with it.

We are going on a laundry scavenger hunt. Put on some fun music! Go to your laundry room and check the washer and dryer for forgotten clothes. Start sorting those clothes into piles: Whites, delicates, colors, jeans, towels and sheets. Then check your laundry hot spots; the bathroom floor and hamper, treadmill handlebars and the bedroom chair. You know your favorite dumping ground for dirty clothes. Get the children involved too. Ask them to look under their beds and in their closets. Keep sorting the clothing into your piles.

Next gather up all your laundry baskets and put your laundry detergent, softener and stain pre-treater in one basket. Then go to all your closets and gather up all the empty hangers and put them in another basket. You have lots of piles of clothes. Put single loads in garbage bags and take them to your car. You probably have ten or more loads. The next thing you are hunting for in this scavenger hunt is money. Go cushion diving or your change jar to gather up coins for the Laundromat. Now donât fuss that you have a washing machine and a dryer. You have not been using them. It is time to get this done!

Before you leave the house, clean out one drawer for each family member. Most of the clothes in your drawers you do not wear because if you did they would be in the dirty clothes bags. So put them in a give-away bag. This way when you get home from Laundromat you will have a place to put your clean clothes. As you are folding the clothes at the Laundromat donât fold things that you donât love or that does not fit. If it is too stained to give away then put it in the trash. Have a give-away bag handy as you are doing your folding. Donât take anything home that is just going to become a stumbling block to your daily routine of doing the laundry.

A load a day keeps you from having to scale Mount Washmore! Donât wait till you are overwhelmed.

For more help getting rid of your CHAOS, check out her website and join her free mentoring group at www.FlyLady.net or her book, Sink Reflections published by Random House and her New York Times Best Selling book, Body Clutter published by Simon and Schuster. Copyright 2011 Marla Cilley Used by permission in this publication.

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