Heather Christie was sick of washing and folding her whole family’s seemingly never-ending pile of laundry day in and day out – because who actually likes laundry, let alone doing it for an entire family? – and recently hit a breaking point when she spotted an overflowing laundry bin the same night after she had completely washed everything dirty in the house. So she decided to do something about it – hold her teens and husband accountable for their own laundry piles.
To preface her decision, Heather hilariously outlined on her blog the “secret laundry vow” that teens seem to take once they hit puberty:
1. Should a garment be tried on for a possible outfit, but doesn’t work, it must be washed instead.
2. Do not hang up wet towels. Their proper place is curled in a damp ball in the bottom of the wash basket.
3. Under no circumstances wear pajamas two nights in a row.
4. Coats must be washed two times a week.
5. The most sensible place for anything that you don’t want to put in a drawer or in a closet is in the laundry basket.
So when it seemed as though her teens were following this vow to a T, she decided she was sick of it all, went to Target to buy four laundry baskets, and sat her family down for a meeting to inform everyone of the new laundry regime.
“My husband was all for the new plan. But my daughter whined that it was absolutely unfair as I’d been doing her brother’s laundry for seventeen years and, if this new law were to stand, she’d only gotten fourteen years out of me,” she wrote. “My son sort of moaned and then went to his room. I happily set my new hamper in the back of my closet. For a couple days I felt bad for it as it had to be lonely with so little clothing in it.”
Although her best friend thought she was being a bit unreasonable (because kids have so much to do already) and another thought it definitely wouldn’t stick, eight weeks into the new laundry plan, Heather was finding that each member of her family was embracing it in their own way.
“My son has gone from storing the clean wash in the dryer to throwing it on his floor to stuffing it in his closet. He hasn’t figured out that he’s creating a lot of ironing for himself (Nope, not doing that either),” she wrote. “My daughter’s laundry skills are evolving rapidly. At the beginning, she’d toss the clean wash on top of her bed. But this made it hard to sleep. The wash basket proved to be a convenient storage vehicle and now, drum roll please, she is folding her clothing and putting it in her closet. Score! My husband loves doing his own laundry every Sunday. Me? I’ve had to buy more underwear.”
Heather jokes she’s hit “mythic status” now; that people whisper as she passes. According to her, though, it’s a bit less grand than any of that sounds. She simply says, “This battle has been won!”