Thursday, January 23, 2014

lessons in laundry

(Today's photos have nothing to do with the topic of the post. They are just a reflection of the bleak winter cold with little precipitation that we seem to attract down here in NC while the rest of the country has a bounty of snow.)

Yesterday while we were at breakfast and the kids had a "snow day", which just means that there was ice on the roads somewhere in the county, I informed them that following breakfast we'd be doing a few chores, including folding some laundry. No one batted so much as an eyelash as this is rather typical of any weekend, holiday, or summer break day when no one has school. After a pause for few bites of eggs, Paulie remarked, "I wonder how different my life would be if I viewed folding laundry as a privilege."

After his siblings looked at him like he'd grown a third head, I marveled at the wisdom that sometimes emerges at the most unlikely time. "That's a good thought." I commended him. "We should see if we could come up with 10 things that would be different or ways to be somehow grateful for the privilege of doing laundry." Queue siblings groaning and muttering, "thanks, Paulie!"

Once they got into the spirit of the task, they did come up with 10 things.

10 Reasons We're Privileged to Do Laundry

1. If we didn’t fold laundry, mom would have to do it all and wouldn’t be able to make us such good food. (I love that this was their number 1 reason!)
2. If we didn’t fold laundry, we wouldn’t know how to do it when we’re grown.
3. If we didn’t fold laundry, we would just have wads of clothes everywhere.
4. If we didn’t have any clothes to fold, we would be cold.
5. We might be embarrassed if we had wrinkly clothes.
6. We wouldn’t be able to find a specific piece of clothing when we needed it.
7. We could have something wrong with our arms, and we wouldn’t be able to fold clothes.
8. If we didn’t fold laundry, we might not learn to be responsible.
9. If we didn’t know how to fold laundry, our one-day roommates or spouses might not appreciate the mess.
10. We fold laundry together and get to spend time together. (my favorite reason!)

I was quite proud of a few of their reasons, although it was quite funny when, in the silence following the list, Philip blurted out, "but I still don't like to fold laundry." Maybe the task wasn't a 100% success, but if a little seed of finding gratitude and enjoyment during chores was planted, then 100% isn't necessary.


  1. Fantastic idea for any chore that we find objectionable and yet are privileged to be able to have to do. Many people have nothing and we have so much-to be grateful is our commission in life.

  2. Great list! Number 2 is very true. My mother never made us do it when we were kids so when I got married I had no clue how to do it! That and washing the floor and oven. LOL. Enjoy your day.

  3. Oh my gosh...I forgot to teach my children to fold laundry!
    Lovely post, Joy.


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