So the boys have just been tucked up in bed and I’m sat on the sofa with a glass of wine, toys strewn over the floor and a house full of dripping wet laundry. Anyone who knows me well will know my obsessive love of drying my washing outdoors. It has featured in both my 100 Happy Days (ok it didn’t make it to my 2015 top 10, but I would be a pretty sad lady if it did). I just don’t think you can’t beat the smell of freshly dried laundry. It honestly lifts my soul. I do have a dryer but use it as little as possible (I’m a tight Northerner). I also have a heated airer (from Lakeland) which was an amazing buy. It uses a lot less electricity than the dryer and last winter got a lot of use. But when it is summer, I can’t bear to use either. It’s outside or nothing for me.
Last week I got very little washing done. I worked every day, leaving at 7-7.30 most days and either got home late or extremely knackered. I am usually extremely organised with laundry checking my weather app every night to see whether I put a load in. Last week I just couldn’t be bothered. So by Saturday the baskets were overflowing and the boys were running out of clothes. After last night’s thunderstorm, the forecast for today was sunshine, sunshine, sunshine. Whoop, whoop! Jude and I were out at 7am putting the first load out, followed by a second and a third. This was turning out to be a perfect laundry day.
Adam has recently starting working shifts and is often away for 27 hours at a time, including working weekends. It has its benefits though and he will definitely get more quality time with the boys than in his previous job. Plus he loves it which is a bonus. Anyway he is away all weekend, so my parents have helped out and mum offered to meet me this afternoon to take the boys swimming. It was a bit of a rush leaving the house. Jude had woken up in a grumpy mood so needed lots of attention. The garden was a mess covered in various piles of clothes along with plenty of toys. The sun was still out and I quickly reasoned that it was highly unlikely to break, so I did rush (and very poor) clean up and bundled both boys into the car.
In the pool half an hour later, I looked out the window to see a tropical downpour. Not a shower, or that fine rain, but a full on monsoon. I frantically searched my mind. I brought all the piles of dry clothes in ….. right?
Wrong! I got home two hours later (we stopped for food after swimming). Not only were the clothes on the line absolutely dripping (including two large towels and bath mat), but all the beautifully ‘dry’ clothes were now sodden. Oh and the sand pit cover was off so mini pools were forming, Jude’s bouncer was in puddle with its saturated cloth cover, the ‘sun’ tent had blown over and my copy of ‘The Book Thief’ which Dylan has taken a shine to taking out of the ‘Elf Library’ (my bookcase) and had earlier left on the garden table, had doubled in size.
For 10 seconds, I surveyed the wreckage in horror. My heart racing, my eyes watering, a scream forming in my throat. And then I remembered what I wrote in my last post, about trying not to ‘sweat the small stuff’. Should I have cleaned up before I left? Yes. Should I have brought all the washing in? Oh absolutely. Is this the end of the world? No. Has my house collapsed around me? No. And whilst I calmly ran in and out of the house, stripping the washing line, covering the sand pit and the rest, Dylan and Jude entertained each other by laughing at each other in mutual admiration.
It might seem bizarre and quite sad to write a post about laundry. And trust me I’m not always this relaxed when ‘disaster’ strikes. I think the boys being in a good mood after their swim and a hearty meal helped. But sometimes it is worth putting things into perspective and looking at the bigger picture. It made me think about when we moved house three weeks after Ewan died. We hired a van and on the last run of the day, we scraped the side of it against a post, making a bit of a mess. I can’t remember how much we were charged by the hire firm for the pleasure of a repaint. It wasn’t excessive, but also wasn’t cheap. We were both really annoyed with ourselves. But then I remember thinking what we had been through. And seriously, were we going to let this get us down? I just think back to that moment and that feeling sometimes. It doesn’t always work. But today I just smiled and tucked the incident away as a lesson learnt. Don’t blindly trust the BBC weather app and always bring clean and dry washing in, straight away.
Now my wine glass is empty. I guess I’d better fire up the dryer and airer. They’ve got a lot of work to do tonight!