Her working book title, Pieces of My Life

I was a fastidious kid.  My room always tidy, underwear filed neatly in the drawer where it belonged.  How it is that I have given birth to 2 slobs, I’ll never know.  I blame it on Fiddledaddy’s gene pool.

Every Monday and Thursday, without fail, is laundry day in our home.  I’m the chief laundry maven for several reasons.

  1. I have control issues.
  2. I consider my laundry skills a gift.
  3. And most importantly, the only way to turn the dryer on is with a wrench and a well placed kick.

Once I deposit a load into the washer basin, I often dare to enter the black hole also known as my daughters’ room in search of stray clothes desperately in need of wash.

In reality, at this point the clothes ought to be able to get up and walk to the laundry room on their own, but it is my pleasure to offer assistance.

The oldest daughter evidently has some sort of disorder which causes her to spontaneously throw her clothes to the floor when she finishes with them at the end of the day.  Or if not the end of the day, when either her father or I get a load of her outfit and deem it inappropriate for a public appearance.

It is at this point wherein I must pause and profusely apologize to my parents for the tube tops, micro mini skirts, hip huggers that required staples to stay up, and of course the teenage attitude which accompanied my fashion choices in the 70’s.

Where was I?  Oh yes.  Foraging through my daughter’s room in search of digusting laundry.  And I know what you’re thinking.  LEAVE IT THERE.  LET HER LIVE IN HER OWN FILTH.

Sadly she shares a 10×10 postage stamp sized room with a certain 10 year old who is not as much of a slob, and if the laundry is allowed to fester, the aura wafts into my area of the house.

Plus there are my control issues.

So today, not unlike nearly every Monday and Thursday, I pick up a pair of well worn sweat pants that I’m pretty sure she’s been wearing for the last two weeks and I’m even more certain that they have not made it into the laundry room.

And let it be known that my head has actually exploded when I notice that NONE of her underwear have graced the clothes hamper for the week.

A bit later I open the washing machine to transfer the load of darks into the dryer, only to discover a substance that looks like large flakes of snow ALL OVER THE CLEAN WET CLOTHES.  And it shows up really well, because after all, this is the DARK load.  I holler to everyone within earshot, “WHO LEFT STUFF IN THEIR POCKET?”

I realize that it could be worse, as at least it wasn’t dead frog pieces, or bug carnage.  But still.

I hear Emme come clanking down the hall on her crutches, “OH NO, MOM!”  She peers into the washer and spies her sweat pants, “MY BOOK!


Okay.  This is the child who is a prolific writer.  She has notebooks upon notebooks filled with hand written chapter books.

“You wrote a book, tore out the pages, folded it up, AND PUT IT IN THE POCKET OF YOUR PANTS?”

At this point she begins crying.  And I notice mascara running down her face.


She momentarily forgets that I’ve just ruined her writing career with the washing machine and begins back peddling regarding the whole makeup issue.

After some discussion, we have come to the understanding that she is to no longer leave clothing unattended on the floor of her room.  Or wear my mascara.  And if by chance I feel something needs to be laundered, I will first check the pockets.

Okay, who am I kidding.  That last part sounded good.  But really.  As if.

But being the good and caring mother that I am, I did try to salvage the book in question.

It will take an awful lot of scotch tape, and will keep her awfully busy for the next year or so picking out the hair and lint, but I think it’s totally doable.

Have a great weekend!

The Laundry Maven

7 Responses to Her working book title, Pieces of My Life

  • I tell my boys that their clothes go either back in the drawer or in the dirty clothes basket. Apparently they hear this as “under their beds.”

    Just last night we did an unplanned science experiment to see what happens when an orange crayon left in a pocket goes through the dryer. Our next experiment is to see if we can start a new trend in wearing orange-spotted clothes.

  • Once upon a time I was an intelligent washer/dryer operator. Literally for decades. Then I got married and instantaneously became a laundry idiot…

  • I have a great laundry system. If you care you can read it on my blog here: http://minnesotamamma.blogspot.com/2011/01/wfmw-laundry-update.html A point I added later was to gift my children with a new laundry basket and a bottle of laundry soap on their twelfth birthday signifying that THEY are now in charge of their own laundry at that point. 🙂 No socks for school? Not my problem. No more clean tan uniform pants? Sorry, you’ll have to wear the dreaded navy until you get your laundry done! Mean mean mommy.

  • My kids and husband know that if the laundry doesn’t make it to the hamper, it doesn’t get washed. And if they don’t have clean clothes, it is their own fault.

  • Just found you!
    Wonderful blog and I’ll be back to share… a kindred spirit here!

  • Once our son left his dirty clothes all over the floor and under the bed. I took them and carefully hung the dirty on the door nobs, on the bed post, over the desk and chair. Then took the rest of the items out of the bathroom hamper (yes we had a general hamper back then) and added that to his room. When he came home from school he looked at his room and in a loud voice for drama, asked “So where am I suppose to sleep now?” I pointed to the now empty bathroom hamper and walked away.
    He never again put clothes on the floor. He is almost 40 years old and he still reminds me of this. He does now laugh however when he tells the story. Hang in there, these stories will one day be really funny to them.

  • Oh, Laundry Maven, I feel your pain. The 4 times I have left Sweetman in charge of laundry (a.k.a. I had stitches, mono, or had just given birth), what emerged was a load of disaster.

    To your budding author I would suggest you encourage her to view this as your attempt to help her “edit” her work process. This will allow her to recreate the story parts that she remembers and embellish as necessary. Voila`. A young author well on her way! (Good luck with that, by that way.)