laundry matters

11 Apr

We’ve had enough of this! The day started gloomy with strong winds. It poured all day, turning into snow in the afternoon, with ice showers at night to complement. This morning we woke up with more snow. Oh, so Minnesota. But that’s not going to hamper my clothesline. Indoor, that is. Wanna see how our living room looks like on a sunny, er… any given day?

The weatherman promised us good forecast for next week. You think we could start hanging our clothes outdoor then?

Ever since dear hubby installed a retractable clothesline inside the house, I’ve been doing laundry almost everyday, or every other day, which was so unlike me. Laundry was NEVER one of my favorite things to do. And folding? Ugh! Now, it’s like therapy to me (not that I really need it, ha.) It is such a wonderful feeling to walk into a tamed laundry room… and it took me this long to figure it out.

Coincidently, I was trying to find good use for my old container of sea salt, other than for homemade playdough. (We use celtic sea salt for food, if at all.) I have read from a couple of bloggers who use salt in their laundry, and with good results, so with the help of mr. google and some vinegar, I got down to business. An extra-large load with 1/2 cup salt and 1/4 cup vinegar later, the clothes came out smelling and feeling fresh. I was not about to share my secret with any member of the family yet, to see if they even notice anything different with their clean clothes, but I wasn’t sneaky enough for mr. right. He was too curious to know what I’d be doing with that container of salt he saw me bring downstairs. At least he is open with the idea.

By far, using salt and vinegar is the most economical solution I’ve found for our laundry. When I need some reinforcement, I just put a few drops of Dr. Bronner’s soap in the wash, and the goods would come out smelling fresh and clean.

Edited: I noticed not long after that the salt wasn’t doing a good cleaning job anymore so I have since stopped using it for our laundry. A couple of people also pointed out environmental concerns- quite timely.

Going back to the clothesline: dear hubby set them up lower so that the children could help, and help they do. My oldest seems to agree that putting folded clothes away feels more pleasant these days. Who knew this could be fun? The five year old also helps with smaller pieces and cloth wipes. Cloth wipes, you say? That’s totally for another post! Till then.

And don’t forget, April 19 is National Hanging Out Day!

5 Responses to “laundry matters”

  1. tonia April 12, 2008 at 9:03 am #

    i love this post! i am intrigued by using salt in the laundry. i use borax and baking soda and vinegar right now. i have a septic system…i wonder what dumping all the salt into the ground water will do? i will have to do some research because i’m quite interested.

    thanks for all the wonderful tips. keep them coming!

  2. The Green Panther April 14, 2008 at 9:14 pm #

    I have this tiny European washer and have been working on a box of Seventh Generation detergent for over a year now (still less than halfway through)

    … however, when I hit AARP-age and finally finish this box, I’m all about making my own detergent. Hell, reading this makes me want to whip up a batch of soap right now!

  3. willowluna April 23, 2008 at 7:37 pm #

    We track our energy usage daily and have seem such a dramatic decrease in our electricity usage since the weather warmed/sunned up enough to use our outdoor clothesline. It was so surprising (not sure why!) that I am determined to install something inside before the later fall/winter (plenty of time!). Your indoor line is inspiring! Now I just have to figure out where to put it when we get one.

  4. rhonda jean May 1, 2008 at 1:37 pm #

    I love your indoor line too. Very nifty!

    Like Tonia, I’m concerned about the disposal of salt into the wider environment. One of the reasons I stopped using regular laundry detergent was the amount of salt they used to bulk it out. I use laundry soap, washing soda and borax and have done for many years. It’s been an excellent cleaner.

  5. yielded May 9, 2008 at 10:50 pm #

    Rhonda Jean,

    A few days after posting this, I decided to stop using the salt, because I started noticing stains being left in my washed clothes. Right now, I am using borax, baking soda and castile soap in the wash, and vinegar with the rinse. It is working well, so far.

    Thank you for pointing out the salt concern though.

    I also plan to update this post next time I have the chance.

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