Tag Archives: laundry

Friday night crunch

My Friday nights these days aren’t usually very exciting.  Not like when I was a teenager and LIVED for Friday night!  No, at my slightly advanced age, I’m usually rather exhausted from a whole week of work.  And yes, I know I don’t do a physical job like some people (yes, PG, this means YOU), but hey, brain work can be tough too, not to mention constantly dodging small, rapidly-moving bodies as I try to get from Point A to Point B at my place of work.

So I usually come home from work and veg out on Friday afternoons. Sometimes I have the energy to go to the gym (not much lately, what with my shoulder and all), sometimes I go to the pub with a few of my good friends (again, not much lately. I think we’re all in detox since Christmas!). Lots of Fridays I don’t even cook, so we eat either take-out or cereal or toast. It’s only one day of the week, so who cares?

Many Friday nights, I go grocery shopping, too. This is often a desperation move, sometime between eight and nine o’clock, when it dawns on me that it is now officially the weekend and since I refuse to set foot in a crowded grocery store during the weekend and since my cupboards are pretty bare, I HAVE to get groceries tonight or eventually starve. Or give in and hit the local Safeway during the Sunday dinner hour lull.

Last Friday, I got home from work a little earlier than normal. I felt a little more energetic than usual. Not energetic enough to go to the gym (oh no, not that!), but enough that I actually made a proper dinner. On Thursday, I had already realized that my food supply was getting quite low, so I was all organized and had a rather long grocery list ready to go. I planned to do that right after dinner.

As dinner was simmering away, I decided to do some laundry. I was on a roll! I was being efficient! Yay me! We had enough for two loads, if I added the towels. By the time we’d cleared up after eating, the first load was in the dryer and the second load was in the washer. DD came with me and we went off to get the groceries.

About forty-five minutes later, we were back home and 235$ worth of groceries had been put away. DD checked the dryer and called down to me, “It’s not dry yet. I’ll start it again!”

Not dry yet? After forty-five minutes? This required investigation.

After a few minutes of poking around (because I am, of course, SO qualified to muck with my appliances), I determined that the drum in the dryer was not rotating. There was heat, but things were not drying properly because they were not being tumbled, so the sensor wasn’t able to sense the level of dampness correctly and turn the machine off when things were fully dry.

And this is the dryer I purchased last summer. In July. Delivered in August, to be precise. I’ve only had it for not quite five months. Surely it’s still under warranty???

This morning I called the appliance store’s service department. Yes, a very nice woman called Melissa informed me, the dryer is very much still under warranty. Unfortunately, she continued, because it’s a particular European brand, they don’t actually do the service on it, but they do have an authorized company who does. Even more unfortunately, that service company is closed this weekend. All she could do was email them immediately (I heard her typing away as we spoke), and they would call me Monday morning to schedule the service call. I thanked her and hung up.

imagesWhich leaves me with laundry festooned all over my house, as my drying rack isn’t big enough to hang everything I’d washed. That will be okay, but what will not be okay is the crunchy towels I will end up with. I HATE crunchy towels!

All this because I decided to liven up my Friday night by doing laundry.

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My new hobby

I don’t actually mind doing laundry. Of course, it’s never really done, it’s more that’s it’s temporarily kept at bay, but doing laundry is not one of those household chores that I try to put off as long as I can. I mean, I don’t have an unlimited supply of clothes, and I do like to be clean, so there you go. Laundry must be done.

I have a laundry closet, not a whole room like bigger houses have. My washer and dryer are stackables, one on top of the other, and they came with the house. The house was built in 1998, so they are 14 years old – or I should say, they were. I have now purchased a new stackable washer and dryer.

I did a fair bit of research prior to the actual purchase, and decided that I wanted a front-loading washer. Now I know that these have been around forever in most parts of the world except North America, but they are now quite popular here as well. According to what I read, front-loaders are much more gentle on clothes and also use much less water and detergent. Sounds good to me!

I wanted my new washer and dryer to be white (which is harder and harder to get, by the way. Everyone is on the stainless steel train, it seems. I just don’t like the industrial look of stainless steel, plus it shows fingerprints WAAAY too much for my liking. So white it is for me.). Because of this, they were on back-order and I had to wait almost four weeks for them to be delivered. But they are here now, and I’m quite pleased with them.

My laundry closet is at the top of the stairs to the second floor of my house. When I first moved here, I thought it was weird to have the laundry upstairs rather than downstairs near the kitchen or even in the basement, but now I find it quite convenient. After all, where are most of your clothes kept? Upstairs in the bedrooms, of course. I do very little hauling of things that require washing up and down stairs now, which is a very good thing in my book.

So for the first few washes I did in my new front-loading washer, I left the closet bifold door open. I sat at the top of the stairs and watched the laundry process through the window of the washing machine. Kind of like watching TV, it was. I was fascinated by how little water is actually used and how little sudsing action there is. I was interested in the fact that the laundry goes around one way for a bit, then the other, then it stops for a while, then starts up again. When it’s time to rinse and spin, it almost sounds like a jet engine taking off and the drum spins around at something like 1200 revolutions per minute. It shakes the house – and then it stops quite abruptly. The items in the machine are barely damp by the end of the cycle, having been spun that fast. This cuts down drying time, which is also a good thing, since the entire wash cycle can take just over an hour, depending upon the setting.

So even though I have always kind-of liked doing laundry, I cannot believe that I am now so incredibly intrigued by doing laundry! What has happened to me?! This is crazy!

I think I need to get out of the house more.

Sock hop

I’m sure this has happened to every single person in the whole wide world who has ever done laundry: lost socks. In fact, I’m sure that there have been studies done to determine where these lost socks actually go. I’ve not exactly read any such studies, but I think that lost socks end up somewhere in another dimension, somewhere that single socks roam wild and free throughout the countryside, without the discomfort of always having to be washed, dried, and then matched with an identical sock. Sock heaven, if you will. I’m quite sure this place exists, just not anywhere we humans can access. Only socks can get there through some magical portal in either the washer or the dryer that opens and closes at will.

So, I lost not one, but two socks in my laundry three or four weeks ago. One white, one black, both those little anklet-type socks that are worn with runners to do physical-type activities like power walks or gym circuits. At least, that’s when I wear mine. These are the only socks that I wear with my runners, as they are thick and absorbent. All my other pairs of socks are too thin or too patterned or too coloured or too whatever. Yes, I may be fussy about my sock habits, but my feet are comfortable and that’s important when exercising.

I wasn’t too concerned at the time, because as mysteriously as socks sometimes disappear, they also reappear just as mysteriously. The portal magically opens, and voilà! There’s your sock stuck to a bath towel that you’re about to wrap around your dripping wet body. Or there it is falling out of a pillow case that you are in the process of putting on a pillow for your overnight guest. Or you spot it under the bed as you bend down to pick up whatever you just dropped.

I also have several pairs of the white socks exactly the same as the missing sock, so I did have other socks to wear for my often-pathetic attempts at exercise. The black ones were a lone pair, though, so the remaining black sock in my drawer waited forlornly for the return of its mate.

Now, I don’t know about you, but despite the fact that I only wear these particular socks for as long as my walk or my gym circuit takes (which is no more than an hour, usually), I toss them in the laundry afterward. I don’t want to wear them again. I like fresh socks for each workout. So if I am exercising every day one week (shut up – it does happen occasionally), it is possible for me to run out of these particular socks. Unless I am religious about doing laundry. Usually I am, or Darling Daughter is, but sometimes the laundry just piles up till the weekend.

And that’s what happened this week. I was heading out for a walk and went to put on my socks. There were none left. Well, except for the lone black sock and the lone white sock who were both missing their partners.

So of course I put them on, one black and one white. I reasoned that they were the right kind of socks, if not exactly a matching pair. I also figured that my jeans would cover them so no one would see my fashion faux pas. Still, it felt weird. I’d never worn unmatched socks before. Psychologically, this could be either devastating or freeing.

It turned out to be quite freeing. Once I got into it, I had a lovely walk and didn’t even think about my socks. My feet were comfy, and that was good. Besides, the laundry would get done eventually so I might never have to wear one black and one white sock ever again. But if I ever had to, it would be just fine.

The missing socks stayed missing till yesterday morning, several weeks after I’d first noticed their absence. Laundry was on the go, and I was staring into my sock drawer, wondering if it was actually cool enough that I needed to don socks. I looked at the two single socks who were still patiently waiting. I think I must have heard the magical portal opening or something, because I suddenly grabbed a flashlight and went to my laundry closet.

I shone the light down the side of the dryer. Yep, something was down there. I got my trusty bent hanger with the hook at the end and poked it down into the darkness (I couldn’t hold the flashlight properly with one hand to light my way, but I figured that the hanger had no need of light anyway, being eyeless, after all). I carefully brought up the missing white sock.

And was that the portal opening up again that I heard? I shone the flashlight down into the narrow space again, and sure enough, there was something else in there. Could it be … ? Down went the bent hanger again, and yes, up came the missing black sock!

So all my socks are now happily mated again.

But I still just might wear one black and one white sock just for fun one of these days. I have two pairs like that, after all, so why not?