Jun 27 2012

Adventures in laundry

Published by at 2:59 pm under Life and Living It,The Boy

Last year, we bought one of those umbrella clotheslines on sale. I really wanted a new clothesline, since my last one hadn’t survived the winter (the cement heaved right up out of the ground). However, the thing sat in the garage due to our IVF and also us being very lazy and forgetful people. This year, I remembered the clothesline, asked The Man to install it, and now it’s in our back yard.

I LOVE line drying clothes. I don’t know why. It’s more work, the clothes are generally stiffer and more wrinkled, but I still love it. But now that I have The Boy, I’ve been wondering how the old timey housewives did their laundry when it was just them and an infant around. If I want to dry a load of clothes, it’s a pretty back-and-forth ordeal.

I have to strap The Boy to me and get the laundry basket, and descend the stairs into the dungeon. (We have what’s called a Michigan Basement, which is code for “crappy”). Get the laundry out of the washer with one hand, because the other is making sure The Boy doesn’t bonk his head on the machine. Climb the stairs with a load of wet laundry and The Boy, which isn’t easy because the stairs are narrow, so I have to hold the basket out in front of The Boy, who is strapped to my chest.

Now we’re upstairs. Put the laundry down. Go get the Elephant Chair (kind of a bouncy chair, but instead, it’s a rocker). Carry it outside and place it in the shade. Go back inside. Grab the laundry and clothespins. Back outside. Put the laundry down. Unstrap The Boy and put him in his chair. Grab the laundry and hang it up. Grab the boy and go inside.

The housewives of Yore didn’t have elephant chairs, or infant carriers, or things like that to make this job easier. Was it all done at naptime? I could wait, but I’d want my monitor with me, and we haven’t figured out the range on it yet. If I didn’t have a baby monitor at all? Forget it. I’m too freaky-outy to leave the baby inside and go outdoors for more than a quick “get the mail” trip.

It’s just one more thing that makes me glad I live Now instead of Then. I mean, it’s a pain in the ass doing laundry Now. I can’t imagine having to do it Then, when you hand to crank your clothes through the wringer to squeeze out the water. Or, squeeze it out by hand! Or carry and heat the wash water by hand!

No, I’m grateful to be living now, with all my modern conveniences, even if I choose to dry in a more inconvenient way in the summer. The smell of line dried stuff is just too good.

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