I decided this morning that, clearly, the overflowing hamper by the twins' room indicated I needed to do some laundry.
Hubby was going to be gone all day for Ambush Paintball (lucky him) with the teens, so it was going to be just me and the Fries.
I figured that giving myself the easy goal of washing and drying two loads was doable. That way, I wasn't going to stress or panic over not getting enough laundry done over the course of the day.
Of course, the fact that I'm now writing a blog post about laundry has probably clued you in to the fact that things didn't go as planned.
Everything seemed to come out of the washer juuuuust fine.
I tossed the load from the washer and several shirts of mine into the dryer. (My shirts had sat in the dryer too long, and I am far too lazy to just iron the dumb things. I'll toss 'em in with a load of wet clothes and everything will come out mostly wrinkle-free as long as I get to it in time. Which is a whole other story.)
And then I started another load after lunch, reset the dryer to finish drying the load (that 30 feet of dryer pipe from the dryer to the vent on the outside wall of the house is a real bear sometimes)...and thought nothing of it. I took the kids over to the playground behind the school around mid-afternoon and stayed until dinnertime.
It wasn't until I got home and pulled out the load in the dryer that I spotted the problem: pink. In irregular splotches. Everywhere.
The load of clothes was a bunch of jeans and blue/purple shirts.
No pink anywhere.
Except, of course, whatever had hitched a ride through (presumably) a pair of the kids' jeans. But...what was it?
Other than pink, of course.
I went up and questioned my three most likely suspects (to be fair, that's only because I had deliberately checked the pants pockets of Hubby's jeans before I tossed them in the washer). The only one who remembered putting anything pink in her pocket was Medium Fry. She said she put in a piece of pink chalk in her pocket, and thought she took it out later, but wasn't sure.
Medium is my elephant, and remembers almost everything with startling clarity, so I had to kind of trust her "thinkerator" (a term she'd coined earlier this afternoon).
I had to wonder, though, why chalk would've stained. Or adhered. Or whatever it had done. Theoretically, shouldn't chalk just kind of go mushy and wash out completely?
"New rule!" I announced. "Chalk does not go in pockets! It goes back in the chalk bin when you're done with it. Never in pockets!"
I spent quite a bit of time pre-treating everything in that load. Then I spent another ten to fifteen minutes cleaning out little bits of pink from the inside of my dryer. Once I was satisfied I'd gotten it all, I threw in the clothes from the washer.
It was when I checked the lint trap that I got the biggest clues of all.
From upstairs, I heard Medium ask Hubby, "Where's Mommy?"
"I'm downstairs in the laundry room, playing CSI," I hollered.
Itty-bitty pieces of heavily-laundered crayon wrapper.
I did a quick search for how to get crayon out of clothes that have been both washed and dried. Hey, look, a solution!
Fingers crossed that this works, because I simply cannot afford to buy all new jeans for my kids when they are on the ankles'-edge of outgrowing these ones.
"New rule!" I announced yet again, this time to pajama-clad Fries. "No crayons in pockets! Ever!"