Laundry Day

Laundry.  The word itself sent shivers down my spine.  I hated it.  From as far back as I can remember I loathed laundry day.  The sorting, the washing, the drying, the folding, the putting away.  Everything.  I had been known to wait until laundry was pouring out of the hamper, and even sometimes pouring out of the laundry room, before I would tackle the task.  I think the reason I always hated it so much was because I always felt so rushed.

In high school I was studying, working, playing sports or busy with band and pushed the job of laundry off on others, mainly my mom.  In college I would be so bogged down with reading and writing papers that I never felt I had time for it.  As a married woman and then a mother, my time was spent with my young family and the mountains of student papers that needed to be graded and lessons that needed to be planned, so the laundry just got pushed to the back burner.

Two years ago I decided that enough was enough and something had to give. I felt like my entire life I had spread myself too thin and because of that I was giving a partial attempt at everything.  It was at this time when I started to slow down, become mindful of my life, and take a step back.

Many things in my life changed after this realization.  But one aspect that I never, ever thought could change was my feeling toward that dreaded word…laundry.  But my how I have come around.  I think I may, in this post, even admit that I like laundry.

I like looking back upon the clothes that my family has worn, so thankful that we are able to have these garments to cloth us.  I enjoy the sound of the laundry tumbling in the background as my girls’ voices rise and fall in their imaginary play.  And I love hanging the clothes on the line to dry in the crisp, clean air.  Right now that line is in my basement, but oh how I look forward to a bit of warmer weather so I can get those items out in the fresh air again.  Yes, I think I have definitely come around when it comes to this very basic household task.  And boy am I thankful for that.

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Two years ago my brother-in-law gave me a container filled with homemade laundry detergent for Mother’s Day.  I have used the recipe ever since, and have been able to save quite a bit of money in the process.  Enjoy!

3 cups white vinegar

2 cups Borax

2 cups baking soda

2 cups washing soda

½ cup castile soap (any scent you would like)

Mix all ingredients with an electric mixer (be sure to mix after each ingredient is added) and store in a sealed tub.  Add the vinegar first, then Borax, the baking soda, the washing soda, and finally the castile soap.  The mixture will be a little mushy at first, but will solidify more once it sits for a bit.

I have a high efficiency washer and this soap works just great.  I use about ¼ cup of the detergent per load.

An important note: Although all of these ingredients are naturally derived, they can still be very harmful if consumed.  I am always sure to just have my little ones observe the making of the detergent and I leave the actual preparing to the adults.