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A laundry system that works

If you do one thing before you get hit with the chaos of back to school, it's this - get a laundry system in place. Now.

All you need - a few white laundry baskets. The el cheapo kind. It always kills me when people spend ridiculous amounts of money on trendy organizational products. Let's be real - chevron print does not guarantee functional. I'll admit, I'm guilty. But I've learned my lesson - stick to the basics. The patterns are pretty but they usually lack the key components for ruthless efficiency. And seriously, does anyone really see them anyone?!?!

Phew obviously needed to get that off my chest.

Back to baskets. The key to organization is finding a place for everything and keeping everything in its place. It's always best to find a system that works best for you but here's what I propose - train all family members to put dirty clothing in baskets. Place a basket in each bedroom closet, and in each bath if space allows. Place four additional baskets in the laundry area -- one for dark clothes, light clothes, whites and towels. If you have massive amounts of team uniforms or athletic gear, you may consider a specific basket for those items as well.

If you do laundry on a particular day of the week, make it part of the bedtime routine the night before that you (or the kids preferably) take their basket from their bedroom to the laundry room to sort out their clothes into the appropriate color-coded baskets. Or even if do laundry throughout the week, pick a day (say Sunday) for the kids to sort all dirty clothes for you so they are ready when you are. And if they don't help or stick to the "throw your clothes in the basket, not on the floor" rule - you reprimand them. Take something away that they love. Limit play time on the Wii. No iPad for 3 days. They will learn very quickly that you mean business.

And as your children get older, make sure you assign laundry chores, such as folding socks and towels. And never put your children's clothes away for them. Chase, my now four year old, has helped me since he was two. It started with carrying (pushing) the basket back to it's spot, then throwing away dryer sheets. Now he's graduated to putting his shorts, undies and socks away. All things he can reach. We've been working on hanging his shirts but he hasn't quite mastered hanging them straight yet. Or color coded as I prefer. Kidding. Kind of.

The way I see it - the laundry might take a little longer to do now with the time spent training Chase but I'm convinced he'll be taking over my laundry duties before I know it.

Here are 15 more ways to make laundry day easier with the help of the experts at Better Homes & Garden.

And other laundry related blog posts written by muah:

How often should you wash your sheets:

How often do you wash your towels:

Stain Removal Guide:

How I do laundry:

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