One Small Step for Me, One Giant Leap for My Family

So the laundry. I’ve mentioned numerous times here how laundry-challenged I am. I know it’s probably premature to say I’ve figured it all out as I’ve only had my new system in place for two weeks, but I’ve just got to tell somebody: my kids have not had empty jammy or sock drawers for those entire two weeks. And, they’ve had pants hanging in their closet every single day. Clean pants. This is a big deal.

Here’s what’s changed: I’ve never had a good laundry system. I’ve tried various things, different places to fold, different times of the day to haul everything up, down, or in-between. Over Christmas, Craig encouraged me to put this free iGTD application on my computer (actually, he didn’t encourage me to put it on my computer as I’m notorious for screwing up my computer when I install things; he encouraged me to let him put it on my computer).

Basically, I pull everything I have to do out of my head (this is key – it must come out of my head) and into the program. From there, I can organize it by project and/or place in the house. I can prioritize things by importance on a scale of 1-5 (I just use 1, 3, and 5), and I can check them off when they are done. The checked off things leave the main list and appear on a list of completed items. I love that.

I think the program was invented for people who do other kinds of work, but it’s really working for this stay-at-home mama. I put “Laundry” in the program as something with a priority of 1 that recurs every single day.

So that’s the backstory; now for the implementation. In the past, I would just wash and wash and wash all week, and then eventually get around to folding things. But I wouldn’t always put things away right away because I would want to wait for another load to be done to put it all away at the same time. This usually meant that by the end of the day I had a half-finished job spread out all over my bed that would then get restacked in a basket. I was making more work for myself.

Now I’ve made a deal with myself: two loads have to get put away every day. Only two. I have to do two. But I also have permission to only do two (this is key for me). To ensure this happens, I make sure I’ve washed and dried two loads the day before and that two dry loads are ready for me to to fold and put away in the morning. Once those two loads are put away, I’m off the hook for folding for that day. I check it off my list. I then make sure to wash two more loads sometime that day so that I have two more dry loads for the next day.

It’s a small thing, I know, but it has been a major improvement for my family. They get clean clothes every day, and I get to check it off my list every day.

Now then, to tackle the bathroom and playroom in a similar fashion…