Tuesday, October 17, 2006


Just the word strikes fear and dread in the hearts of many a mother. Ask any mother about laundry, and she'll often roll her eyes and sigh. Comments like, "It seems to just keep piling up!" or, "It must multiply during the night, because it is never done!" come to my mind. I don't know anyone who has anything good to say about doing the laundry.

When it comes to laundry, you have various types of people. Some like to try to keep up with it, doing a load or too everyday so as not to have the infamous mountains appear on the laundry room floor. Others make sure that everyone in the family has at least 2 weeks worth of socks and undies because that's how often laundry gets done in their house.

I have a friend who is a laundry fanatic. She has the big frontloading machines in her house. You know, the kind that can wash 18 pairs of jeans or 22 towels at once (or something like that. No, I'm not exaggerating!). They come complete with drying drawers underneath so you can dry items flat. They come with detergent and softener dispensers, just like in the laundromat. And my friend does laundry EVERY DAY. She carefully sorts each and every load. Jeans only get washed with jeans. Pure whites, with pure whites. Whites that have a little color on them have their own load too. When the towels and sheets come out of the dryer, she irons each and every one of them. And she NEVER lets a load of clothes sit in the washer or dryer for more than a few minutes.

As for me, I am much like the second person. In my heart, I desire to be as organized as my friend. But it just isn't realistic for me. First of all, I have those fancy machines too. They just happen to be at my neighborhood laundromat. Loading up everything we own is quite a job, so it only tends to happen once every two weeks. And at that rate, I am literally loading up nearly every sock, underwear, pant, shirt, towel and sheet we have into our car and dragging it around town. The beauty of this system is that I only spend around 2 hours every two weeks doing laundry, unlike my friend who probably spends that much time each day. The downside of this is that I actually like doing laundry! I enjoy the process-seeing the clothes get washed and dried, folding them up, and putting them in their proper place. I feel a sense of accomplishment when everything is hanging back up where it should be. Never mind that it usually takes me 2-3 days after washing the items to get them back in their proper place! And I love having a whole new selection of clothes to wear. You see, when you haven't worn something for 2 weeks, it feels brand new again!

Yesterday was laundry day. I washed 11 loads and today I am putting it all away. I aspire to be more on top of things, but you know what? I'm not. And that's ok. Maybe I have a little more time to enjoy my kids and husband. Maybe there are things in life that are more important than making sure the dirty clothes hampers are emptied each day. There's a verse that I remember being taught as a child, and I think it's appropriate here.

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
Colossians 3:23-24

This is a great reminder to me that as I strive to get the daily stuff done, I need to keep the right perspective. Ultimately I'm not doing it for my family. I'm doing it for the Lord. For that reason, I need to do the best I can do, and do it with a cheerful heart. Keeping this in mind keeps the more mundane chores of life, like laundry, a little more bearable.


Sammy said...

Great thoughts! I'm definitely with you on the laundry situation-it doesn't get done until it absolutely has to ( usually when David runs out of socks and undies) which reminds me, we're at that point-I guess I should go and get some started!
love you!

pandacanup said...

Great encouragement!! Sometimes it takes a verse or two to help keep everything in perspective.
Hope you guys are doing well; we have to add some more minutes to our phone card so we can call and catch up!
Give the girls a hug from us!