She Said–My Year in Laundry

“22 bottles of laundry soap on the shelf, 22 bottles of soap.  Take one down, pour some out, 21 bottle of soap on the wall. . . .”

Ever wonder how much laundry you do in a year?  Doesn’t it seem like it never ends?  Well, I wondered how much laundry a family of six with three kids in sports actually did.  I didn’t want to just take a month and multiply it by 12, because our months differ.  Soccer season is going to be different from say Christmas in the laundry department–or is it?  That’s what I wanted to figure out.  I also wanted to know about how much I spent on laundry detergent.  How much more would I spend if I bought a more expensive brand?

So folks, here you have it.

My year in laundry.

I started last June.  I decided that when I finished a bottle of detergent, I would write the end date on the bottle and throw it into a dark corner of my basement.  So on June 14, 2011 I finished my first bottle of laundry detergent.

July saw me using up two bottles of detergent.  I was surprised.  It sure seems like I do more laundry than only two bottles.

August was only a one bottle month.  How could that be when we had Backyard VBS and Summer Camp.  I know we had tons of laundry from those two big events. . .

. . .Mystery solved!  September was a four bottle month.  Just because we had dirty clothes, doesn’t mean I actually got around to washing all of them.  September is the month when peace and order reign in our house.  Summer is over, and all the neighbor kids go back to school.  This means that random kids aren’t wandering in and out of our house and yard and garage.  This means that I don’t have to answer as many questions.  This means that I don’t have as many band-aids to put on.  This means that I don’t have to listen to as many interesting happenings.  I love September.  It is also the month we start school–more order.  And the one month out of the year where we don’t really have any sports.  I.e.  I am not driving everywhere.  “Try to remember the peace of September . . .”

September is apparently Laundry Month, as even though soccer starts in October, it is a regular month with only two bottles.

November.  Sports are over.  School is in full swing, and the snow laundry hasn’t yet arrived.  November is a low laundry month.  I think I just found a new reason to be thankful during the Thanksgiving season.

And December???  There are no bottles of detergent from December.  We are gone about three weeks in December down to Florida.  I did laundry down in Florida.  I don’t have the bottles, but I will guess low and say that despite all the swimming, we only used one.

January 3, and an entire bottle is finished.  I guess we came home from Florida with more than tans and happy memories.  We came home with laundry as well.  Sigh.  Coming home from a vacation is always hard–especially when you have to come home to a mess.  (I refuse to talk about it, so you will have to read the post.)

February is snow and snow means laundry.  And laundry means work.  And work is just that–work.

I finished this bottle up on St. Patrick’s day–what a way to celebrate.  March means mud, yet there is only one bottle in March???

. . .and only one bottle in April.  This surprised me.  I guess we did have a rather dry spring.  Either that or my kids just stunk.

May is all about baseball.  May was a two bottle month.  And that takes us to . . .

. . .June.  I finished my first bottle of detergent on June 14, 2011.  Here we are at June 9, 2012.  A year of laundry.

So let’s do some math.  There were 22 bottles of detergent, plus the extra one from the time spent in Florida.  One price tag read $5.69.  Now sometimes I got the detergent on sale and sometimes I didn’t.  For the sake of comparison, let’s say I spent $5.69 on all 23 bottles.  $5.69 X 23 = $130.81.  That is a rough figure, because although many of the bottles were the same size, not all the bottles contained the same amount of detergent.

This bottle boasted 50 loads of laundry. . .

. . .While this bottle only contained 28 loads.  I tallied all the “load counts” (Boy this is starting to sound technical) and here are my results.  2 bottles of 28 loads.  15 bottles of 32 loads.  1 bottle of 35 loads.  2 bottles of 37 loads.  1 bottle of 50 loads.   Multiply them out and add them up and you get 56 + 480 + 35 + 74 + 50 = 695 total loads of laundry.

Money.  $130.81 divided by the total loads of laundry 695 = $0.19 a load.  Now if you want to compare that to a higher priced detergent, just figure out how many cents a load you are paying ($10.00 divided by 36 loads = $0.36 a load.  $0.36 a load times the total number of loads in a year is $0.36 X 695 = $250.20 in laundry detergent in one year).  Now you can decide how expensive you want to go with your laundry detergent purchases.

More math.

If you divide 695 by 365 days in the year, that means I do 1.9 loads of laundry a day.  That sounds about right.  That means . . .well. . .that I am always doing laundry.

So what did I do with all my laundry detergent bottles?

Why make a shrine of course.  A Shrine to Laundry Ladies.  The Ladies of the Laundry Pile.  A tribute to Laundresses who battled in the trenches, “taking out” 1.9 loads of laundry a day.  365 days each year.  A Pyramid to Posterity about our Unending Devotion to Laundry Duty.  A Commemoration of our Courage to once again wash, dry, fold, and put away without retreating.  “There’s not to make reply, There’s not to reason why, There’s but to Do or Die into the Valley of Laundry rode the 600.”  (“The Charge of the Laundry Brigade” by Lady Alfred Tennyson)

I lit some (electric) candles in memory of our most honorable and noble service.

And as the last light faded from the sky. . .

As I gazed at the Lit Laundry Shrine. . .

As I lingered over the meaning of that Pyramid. . .

I remembered.

I remembered.

I remembered that LBG’s baseball jersey was dirty and he has a tournament game at 9:00 tomorrow morning.

And then I turned and headed back to my post.  Back to my duty.  Commander-in-Chief of Clean Undies.

–C. in C. of C. U. Rebecca

P.S.  I am fully aware that tomorrow my Shrine to Laundry will probably be a BB gun target.  I know this.  I accept this.  It is all part of Love and War.

Yesterday’s BB gun target.  H.M.S. Indomitable.  She had a Heart of Oak and sank not.

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5 Responses to She Said–My Year in Laundry

  1. Bel McCoy says:

    You have a knack of making the ordinary fun!!!


  2. Joanna B says:

    If the Lord leaves us here long enough, (a different subject ENTIRELY) you will one day look back with fondness of the time your children are around you. You will do laundry every other week, but with less pleasure than you now do 1.9 loads per day 🙂 Thanks for the smiles!


  3. Lisa Buchanan says:

    Nice math!!! 🙂


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