I've had suggestions from others as to how to solve this problem. "Let the older kids do their own laundry. They are old enough to help!" "Put a load in before you go to work and fold it when you get home. After dinner, put everyone's dirty clothes in the washer and then fold it while you watch TV." OK...I can do both of these. And I did. And I failed miserably. I have even given a different child laundry duty for the week to try to stay a bit on top of things--all they have to do is one load a day. I have brought the laundry into the living room and had everyone help me fold. And again...these all failed miserably in achieving my goal--getting rid, once and for all, of "the piles."
A better mother would have taught her children to have the discipline and foresight to plan to do their own laundry in a timely manner, regardless of Spivey, homework, dates, matches ,practices, a really good Office episode, or the two hour Survivor finale. A less lazy housewife would get up ten minutes earlier to do said load of laundry. But alas, I am neither. The last thing I want to do at 5:30 in the morning is laundry. And while watching TV? It may all get folded, but then a cat will sit on a pile, a dog will grab a sock, a child will go to bed without taking their pile up (and it will sit there for DAYS until finally they put entire said pile back in the laundry because it is easier to do so than put it away...and the cat has probably peed on it."
So...in one of my early morning computer times (Yes, I can surf the net at 3:30 when I can't sleep but I don't do laundry--see reason above) I was perusing large family websites and found that many of the mega families (which I realize we are not!) have family laundry closets. Their washer and dryers are in this large closet along with storage places for all of the clothes. Mom washes and dries and puts everything into the storage place for the correct child and then it is their responsibility to come and get it and put it away. And if they don't put it away? Then they can just come and get what they need, but their section has to stay neat.
Our problem? We don't have an extra inch to breathe in this house and asking Daryl to build me a laundry closet is not an option--not only did we need a solution now (and not in a year) but he has too many other things on his proverbial plate and by golly, I CAN CONQUER THIS! So here you have our version of the family laundry closet--the Stone Family laundry wall. I fold laundry on my bed anyways, so this way it's all right there and I don't have the piles to move around the room.
Each big kid has a shelf and a color-coded basket for socks and underwear. Hannah has the tall storage unit (since thank you, Ms. Kay, she goes through three outfits per day!) and I guess we will get another once little bit arrives.
Speaking of which, Nanny came across a great sale a Kohl's and picked up a few things for the baby-to-be:
Notice a theme here????? As in blue?????? Aside from being healthy, we would also love another boy, but I'm not holding my breath! Regardless of if it is a boy or not...one of the little ones has got to play t-ball..and the puppy outfit with the baseball on the butt? Little princess #4 will wear it...somewhere!