Follow by Email

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Laundry Day!!! (Oh, yeah that's every day, except maybe Sunday)!

I just thought I'd share what the laundry aspect of our lives looks like.  We have been a four or five or six or seven load a day family for a long time.  Little ones and accidents in their beds made for some long days of laundry, but we're beyond that now. 

Then we moved into teaching the children to put away their clothes and Mom didn't inspect their work super often, so the clothes were on the floor with the wet/dirty clothes and I could get two loads a day per room. 

Just recently, I bought my three oldest (6th, 8th, and 9th grades) boys a laundry basket each.  I am amazed at how little laundry I have now.  They each wash their laundry when they need to, which is about once a week.   So that's three loads of laundry per week for them as opposed to what seemed like 2 per day.   It was a lot more anyway.

I make my laundry soap and I suppose that I should sit down and really crunch the numbers again to see how it works.  I've done liquid and I've done dry.  I like both.  Liquid just takes me longer, but I love the smell of my house when I'm doing it.  I will only give my recipe for powder soap because it has become my own.  I have searched the internet and read up on it, so it's similar to others you've seen on-line.   I'm a little bit of this and a little bit of that type of girl, so I change it up if I have different things on hand

Laundry detergent
1 bar Fels Naptha          $.97
1 large box (laundry aisle) baking soda        $ 2.66
1 box washing soda           $3.24
1 box Borax          $3.38
Oxyclean (I use the generic) but I'm not sure of the cost so figure  $2 as I don't use the whole thing.
Total  $12.25
Grate the bar of Fels Naptha.  And pour a bit from each box into a large bucket.  As you pour mix them together.  I use the largest size grate on a cheese grater.

That sounds like a lot to me, except when I realize that I only use 2 Tablespoons of the stuff in a huge load.  If it's a bit more dirty or greasy, then I may add another scoop.  (I use the scoop that comes in the Oxyclean container).    It takes me more than a month (maybe even two) to use this much detergent.  Before I started this, I was using Arm&Hammer ($13.??) and it was gone in less than a month. 

In the morning, everyone who is in the main laundry group has to get their laundry to the main level and a laundry basket that sits by the dryer.  It's on their chore cards so eventually it happens. :)  Then after the babies have arrived (unless my darling husband takes it down when he showers in the morning) I take  the laundry down to the basement and sort it into my tall laundry baskets (from Walmart) that have the stickers for Dark, Colors, or white. 

I usually start with White as I need my dishtowels and such.  I put a load in with a scoop of detergent.  Usually it's cold water.  Only if it's hubby's dirty work jeans do I ever use hot and then only occasionally.  Yes, the Fels Naptha does dissolve and there is no residue left when the clothes are done.  I don't ever leave the regular Tide-sized scoop in my detergent or there is NO way it would last a month.  Even I need some help making sure I don't fill it too much when I use those monsters. :)

Then I add about 1/5 of a cap of fabric softener and fill it the rest of the way with water.  I think they overkill on the amounts they tell you to use.  I should know because I have been line drying my clothes since my dryer quit last month and they're pretty soft, even with only 1/5 of wha they tell you to use. 

When the washer quits I lug it upstairs (three flights) to the attic to hang it up.  I know it sounds like a pain, but I love not having clothes sitting around waiting for their owners to show up so that I can tell them to take care of their laundry.  I like doing all the folding for the day once and then at lunch having the kids take care of their clothes before eating. 

Because my clothes are hanging in the attic, I don't have to get them in until the next day.  They get dry, but not bleached and they don't fall off the line.  I'm not in any hurry for dh to get the dryer fixed.  :)

Laundry piles are usually low in my house now, because I'm home most days and I keep it going until there is no laundry left.  And yes, usually every day there is enough laundry to do at least one load of whites, one load of coloreds and one load of darks. 

Laundry is not super fun to do or easy to keep up with  but when I do keep up with it it's not a drudgery, but more of a joy.  And believe me, I don't enjoy laundry, for years dh would ask me just to keep it going and to fold them as they came out of the dryer.  Now that I am, I realize how wise he is.   I wish I would have started a long time ago.


  1. With the laundry, I had the kids take their laundry to the laundry room every night after they were ready for bed. I had them sort them right away. Therefore, no one had to lug a heavy basket to the laundry room and sorting was already done.

  2. That's a good idea. I might need to implement this. :) Thanks for sharing, Debbie.

  3. O.k. a bit more information. I just bought my stuff for making laundry soap. I put in about 12 and 1/2 pounds of stuff. That's all the things in my blog added together. If, as my husband says, a pint is a pound the world around, then I have about 25 cups of detergent. I just found out that it takes 7 of the scoops I use to make one cup of detergent. So that is 175 loads, making it 7 cents a load. I just read in Consumers Report that the cheapest good laundry soap they found was 17 cents a load which is half the cost of that really good stuff we all used as kids. So I'm sticking with this.

  4. Three months later, I just finished using these two batches of laundry soap and I used 1/4 cup per load - and I do 3 to 4 loads a day except for one or two days a week. Quite the savings if you ask me.