Monday, September 15, 2008

How to do laundry:

So as I did laundry the other day I realized the double challenge of doing laundry in the city and with a baby might make for an interesting read since I was laughing at myself throughout the process because of how silly it is. While I find myself lucky that we have laundry in our building and I no longer have to go to the laundromat, it is still a challenge to get laundry done with the baby because it isn't in my apartment. So I thought I might write a "how to" article (tongue in cheek) in case you ever find yourself in a similar situation... Or you just want a window into my day. =) So here goes.

  • Decide that laundry has piled to high and it must be cleaned pronto. If your smart you sort the night before... I'm not smart.
  • Feed the baby his first feeding of the morning... this will give you 2 hours of 'awake' time with which to do laundry. Since it theoretically should only take 30 mins to wash and 30 to dry this should be plenty of time.
  • Change the diaper (swish and flush).
  • Place baby in his crib to check out his 'friends' for a minute.
  • Wind the mobile.
  • Sort the laundry.
  • Wind the mobile.
  • Finish sorting the laundry and get it packed into the cart with detergents (one for baby one for family.) Gather quarters and keys.
  • Dress in whatever is handy.
  • Pack the baby into an infant carrier (the kind you wear, not the car seat).
  • Unpack the baby and change your shirt because you forgot to layer a diaper cloth in front of him and you just got spit up all over the front of you.
  • Repack the baby into the infant carrier and proceed downstairs.
  • Out one door in another requiring a 180 degree turn and keys.
  • Into the laundry room where you quickly load clothes into washers a curse yourself for forgetting a pacifier.
  • Realize you have four loads when your only 'allowed' three... load four anyway and throw an apologetic glance at the camera that is 'only there for your protection'.
  • Set timer for 30 minuets.
  • Out one door in another.
  • Up the elevator, into the apartment.
  • Unpack the baby from the carrier.
  • Vow to go down before the timer goes off to save time.
  • Figure now is a good time to take a shower.
  • Put the baby in his bouncy seat and put seat outside the bathroom door, get into the shower leaving bathroom door and shower curtain open so you can see the baby.
  • Freeze during the entire shower because the curtain and door are open.
  • Finish shower dress quickly, the baby is getting antsy.
  • Put the baby back in the crib to talk to his friends, wind the mobile.
  • Feel guilty for constantly using this trick.
  • Pour a bowl of cereal, eat it in the nursery supervising play time.
  • Wind the mobile.
  • Realize you haven't brushed your hair yet, go back to bedroom to do that while finishing cereal.
  • Hear the timer go off.. curses!
  • Pack the baby into infant carrier, remember to protect your shirt
  • Down the elevator, out one door in another.
  • Move laundry from washer into dryer.. careful not to crush baby feet. Realize how difficult it is to unload a washer with a baby strapped to your chest. It takes you twice as long because you can only use one hand in a semi back-bend style move. This move is very ineffective with baby laundry.
  • Dryer sheets for adult clothes dryer balls for baby clothes.
  • Set the timer.
  • Out one door in another up the elevator.
  • Realize it has been close to two hours since the baby last ate, sometimes he falls asleep now, sometimes he wants to eat now.
  • Twenty minutes until the laundry needs to be picked up. If he falls asleep you'll have to wake up you to get the laundry, and he will be pissed.
  • Re-consider leaving him sleeping in the apartment while you go get laundry.
  • Decide its still a bad idea.
  • The baby is starting to get cranky, attempt to stall him with pacifiers and shhhing.
  • 10 minuets until laundry needs to be picked up.
  • Decide you better feed the baby, the neighbors might call CPS if you let him cry for the next ten minutes, you'll just have to pick up the laundry late.
  • Feed the baby
  • Timer goes off
  • Finish one side while imagining people riffling through your laundry steeling clothes. (which they would only do if the dryer stopped obviously!)
  • Attempt to burp the baby, get nothing.
  • Pack the baby into infant carrier.. foiled again!...change your shirt!
  • Down elevator, out one door and in another.
  • Load laundry back into two baskets and a bag. The heat of the dryers makes baby fall asleep.
  • Move even slower while bending into dryers so as not to jar the sleeping baby and wake him up.
  • Out one door in another. Up the elevator
  • Leave laundry in baskets but dump out baby clothes onto the love seat so they don't get too wrinkled all packed in the bag.
  • Carefully remove baby from carrier.
  • Lay down on the couch with baby, you both deserve a nap.

Elapsed time 3 hours.


Brandon said...

Hey, maybe you should open a laundry service to do the neighbors laundry because it seems like you have it down to a science!!! Good lord, I would just buy vinyl clothes and hose down in the shower if it was that much work. I would also institute the inside out rule where you could get 2 days and possibly four, if you did inside out and backwards too!!!!

But I guess when Colin gets bigger, this will seem like a piece of cake because he will want to not be carried down to the laundry room and want to run around down there.

Kristeen said...

This sounds like one of those board games that you just can't win. Roll the dice-- Spit up! Change your shirt. Like Chutes and Ladders. And I laughed out loud at all the "wind the mobile" only because I got to experience first hand it's short performance. It was a good 15 second show though, I must say :)

Nancy said...

I used to take turns putting Kristeen in the playpen, (Yes, I did wind a mobile, too!) and put Danny in the clothes basket with the clothes. I held Dan while I switched loads and then carried him up in the basket of clean clothes. Next trip I would reverse kids. Fun days and great memories!!

Andrea (Mom to the B's) said...

Would love to think 3 or 4 loads is a pile-up and not a daily amount! Some forget the small luxuries in life, like your own washer and dryer, nobody but the sock monster steals my clothes!

Anonymous said...

Honey this made me laugh soo soo hard! And of course you remember "my" famous laundry story..or is it really "yours"? Only your Mother can make "you" do laundry to take your mind off of your Father going to war! I Love you..xo Mom

AbbeM said...

Wow, I have never felt so lucky to have a townhouse with my washer and dryer in the basement. And I get irritated sometimes when I have to flip the laundry or bring it upstairs, and have to figure out where to put Natalie for 3 minutes! At least it's all in the house, so I can leave her in the pack n play for a couple of minutes without too much worry. She doesn't like it much, but it's better than her crawling in our laundry room and hurting herself. After reading your story, I won't get irritated anymore, that's for sure. :)

I really feel for you Becky! Having a baby in NYC is definitely more than I was ready to handle. I give you lots of credit!

Amy said...

I swear to God I have read this laundry story about 20 times and every time I laugh out loud. Thanks for the giggles. This is so you. Too cute. I love your candor.