Friday, August 31, 2012

A laundry miracle

You might have picked up on the fact that I've been a little down-in-the-dumps regarding the spit-up factory in our house that is still producing quite well (though not creating new jobs/stimulating the economy). Finally putting on nice-ish clothes only to get covered in spit up again has made me close to tears on several occasions.

Then, to add insult to injury, I found that many of my shirts were mysteriously coming out of the wash with weird stains that I didn't remember. My frustration hit an apex when a shirt I had just purchased and wore one time came out with a giant stain smack in the middle of the front side.

What was causing the mystery stains? Was something wrong with our washing machine? Though I don't really want to spend the money on a new machine at this moment in our lives, I did get excited for a hot minute about getting a front-loading washing machine because I'm convinced the agitator in our top-loading machine isn't the best for our clothes' longevity.

Finally, after a recent load of laundry I realized that the culprit is, in fact, spit up. A shirt came out of the laundry with a giant stain right where Natalie had spit up all over me. Sigh. At least I solved the mystery. I can't believe it took me weeks to figure that one out.

Now, how to fix it? Pre-baby I've never been one to fret much over my laundry. I just separate my clothes into two piles, lights and darks, and just run each load on delicate because so many of my clothing labels recommend the delicate cycle. I'm not particularly clumsy or messy, so stain removal hadn't been much of a concern. A baby, though, complicates nearly everything in life, including laundry.

I brought up my dilemma with my mom group friends yesterday, and one of the girls recommended throwing some Oxi Clean in with my regular detergent. So simple! I already use a scoop of Baby Oxi Clean with each load of Natalie's laundry (though I do not use it on her cloth diapers), and her clothes almost always come out stain-free.

I ran a load of my most offensively stained clothing through the wash, on a cold cycle no less, and the stains nearly came all the way out. Another friend recommended hanging my stained clothes outside to dry rather than running them through the dryer to help further lift stains, and I think that did the trick!

Man, although a baby brings great joy into my life, stain-free clothing is a pretty close second on the joy-o-meter.

While I was shooting these pictures out on the deck, I also realized how well this year's round of deck planters have turned out. Geraniums have such incredible staying power, so much so that we also cashed in a Groupon for a local nursery and stocked up on some end-of-season geraniums on sale last month for the front yard. Next spring I'll just remember to plant geraniums even earlier in the front so we can enjoy them longer. Last year's mild fall meant our geraniums on the deck continued to bloom through much of November. Maybe we'll get to have a similar experience this year (cue statements about the problems associated with global warming).

I hope your flowers are still blooming and your clothes are stain-free. If they're not, maybe my little experience can save you some headaches.

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