Hang out with other mom and dad bloggers on Twitter for a day and you’ll pick up on an amusing theme. A noticeable percentage of tweets have to do with the subject of… wait for it… laundry. Piles of laundry, loads of laundry, drowning in laundry. Even Cheryl and I have penned a few 140 character quotes about the subject. Super funny ones, I might add. Twitter is overflowing with great parenting links and hilarious toddler quotes. But I’m not kidding when I say that a sizable portion of groans revolve around the subject of washing clothes.
I get it. As my family has expanded, the amount of laundry has exploded. Washing, drying, and folding clothes has become a regular part of my daily schedule. IF I get to it. On the days I don’t get to it, my kids nickname the growing pile waiting to be folded, Mt. Underwear, and find it amusing to jump in the middle, coaxing the cat and dog to do the same – creating more dirty clothes to be washed. Lovely. I remind myself regularly that laundry is a First World Problem, but dang, if it isn’t a time consuming problem that eats up a ton of my day.
Which leads me to two other frequent Twitter subjects for parent bloggers: stress and exhaustion. Most moms and dads feel tired and overstretched – there are simply not enough hours in the day to get it all done. In a society that encourages individuals to have it all, do it all and yearn for more, we often feel saturated in clutter and an overly full calendar. Guilt and “should’s” cause us to hold on to activities and friendships that are more draining than energizing. We fill our lives, stomachs and day-timers with gunk that is not meaningful or balanced. The result? Our bodies and schedules get bloated by the extra weight we are carrying.
The anecdote for all of this busyness and stress is a concept that Cheryl and I refer to as the Delicious Philosophy. It goes something like this:
If we inserted “laundry” into the above flowchart, there would be some obvious answers: No, laundry is probably not delicious. Yes, you have to do it. But yes, you might be able to make it more delicious. I like to turn on NPR in the evening and have a big laundry folding session while my mind is being enriched. Other times I’ll flip on some tunes and invite my husband in to do some folding with me. A little linen date, you could say. Many of my friends commit to doing a quick load every evening, so that the laundry stays manageable. Of course, cleaning out your closets and drawers regularly can help. Do whatever you can to make the task more appealing.
The delicious decision matrix has infinite applications:
- How many times do you eat something just because it is front of you, but not because it tastes great?
- Do you have any relationships in your life that drain your energy more than contribute to it? Perhaps it is time to examine why you are holding on to them.
- How about Facebook – are there connections that bring you down with toxic energy or negativity?
- If you look at your calendar, are you committing to more than you have time for?
The more we clear the draining and unwanted clutter from our lives, the more energy we have for the things we have to do and for deliciousness.
You might be thinking, Well, chocolate is delicious. But you’re crazy if you think I can eat it for every meal. Right. In fact, if you had chocolate for every meal, it would probably lose some of its delicious qualities. Same goes for alcohol – too many drinks equal a hangover, and that is not very appealing. Moderation and balance are a natural part of this system. The point is to make more conscious decisions about what we consume and how we fill our daily lives.
Play with this concept for a while. Think about ways you can make the mundane activities in your life more tasty. And then think of any unsavory things that you can cut out. Spring is long gone, but it isn’t too late to do some spring cleaning and clearing. While you ponder that, I’m off to tackle Mt. Underwear, with Pandora playing in the background. Don’t want to let any dirty feet beat me to it.
Here’s to sanity and folding,
I have really fond memories of folding laundry with my mother throughout childhood. We’d dump baskets of clean clothing on the sofa and fold together — it was a sweet chance to chat about life and get time with my mom (I’m one of 5 kiddos so that was hard to come by!). She did the same with her mother so it just sort of became a family ritual. We would fold laundry together well into my college years, when I came home to visit. Delish 🙂
Now, that really does sound like delicious laundry. Thanks so much for sharing that memory, Phyllis!