Friday, September 30, 2011

Laundry Answers:The Dot System

Writing little essays is fun but I figure I should put something helpful on this blog.

Several months back I was--once again--trying to switch out winter clothes for summer clothes in all my children's drawers.  I pulled out the buckets and buckets of hand-me-downs from the garage and started sorting through searching for what would fit which girl this season (we have 1 boy and 5 daughters).  I was drowning in an ocean of pink clothes!!!  In desperation I called my husband's aunt, Robyn.  Thank goodness for amazing in-laws.  Robyn has raised 7 daughters (and 2 sons) so I figured she would have some advice.  She taught me The Dot System and it has been a life saver!

Here's the deal:
Assign a number of dots to each child, in order.  The oldest gets 1 dot, next kid gets 2, etc, etc.  Then in every one of the oldest girls clothes I put one dot on the tag or inside of the collar, underwear, or whatever with a laundry marker.  I got a set of baskets, one for each child, and put the same number of dots on the basket with the child's name in permanent marker.  Now, when I do laundry I don't have to think, "Who does this belong to?"  I just check the tag, see 3 dots, and know it goes in the 3rd girl's basket (the one with 3 dots on it).  Anyone could come in my house and do my laundry and everything would go in the right baskets.  I didn't assign my boy any dots.  He is the oldest and the only one that wears all those basketball shorts and tshirts.

When girl #1 grows out of a shirt I just pop on one more dot in the collar and throw it in girl #2's basket.

Thank you, thank you, Aunt Robyn for this great tip!  It has made life a lot easier and left me with a little more time to enjoy the kids...

Now, do not go thinking, "Oh man, she sits and plays with her kids.  I don't do that enough."  These are the times we whip out the camera...not when we are barking at them to stop playing and clean up the dad-gum house."  We all have our good moments and our bad.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Are You Supermom?

So, for the last few pregnancies we have been a bit hesitant to make too many announcements.  Not because we aren't excited.  On the contrary, we have been thrilled to invite each new person into our family.  We are hesitant to say much early on because of people's reactions.  Of course, we have those who think we are nuts.  I can handle that, we probably are.  What I wasn't prepared for on our last pregnancy was how many people praised me and put themselves down.   "Oh, you must have so much patience, I just don't have enough to handle that many kids."  "You are amazing!  I could never do that."  "I would have had more if I was as good a mom as you are."  

It's just not true!!!  I happen to have a pretty high tolerance for chaos and noise.  Not everybody does.  My own sisters visit, cheer me on and happily go home to much more serene settings.  And honestly, for my own sanity, I sometimes slip away all by myself so I can enjoy their serenity with them :).  

A close friend of mine once commented that my house is controlled chaos.  Well, it's controlled as much as one can with all these amazing little people running about :).