A Sentiment

God knew what He was doing when He sent a gentle breeze and brought a lovely butterfly to set my heart at ease. The happiness of your friendship and the gentleness of your words have touched my life in special ways and now I feel assured. Thank you for your loyalty and for reading everyday. I only hope you find things to make a happy day.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

There's Never Enough Time

I just put a load of clothes in the washer and thought to myself...Great, now I need to do two loads! It seemed a hassle for me. Back in the old days...wash day was a lot different.

Monday - Wash Day - It took all day for a family:

Build a fire with newspaper, corn cobs and wood.
Pump buckets of water and carry to fill the copper boiler on the kitchen stove.
Gather up the laundry - Strip the beds. Saturday night only baths do not leave
clean sheets.
Rinse diapers.
Heat the water. Dip out enough to fill a tub three fourths full.
Lift the wash board off its nail and place it in the tub.
Get a bar of lye soap from the storehouse or unwrap a bar of P&G (Proctor and
Gamble) soap from the store and put it on the board’s soap rack.
Go to the pump again and carry water to refill the copper boiler.
If the water is from a well it will be hard water, so add lye to soften it. Stir
vigorously with a strong stick, like a portion of a hoe handle. (Use this stick for a
probe to stir and lift hot clothes later). Wait a few minutes. Skim off minerals. (If
water was from the cistern, the water will be soft. Lye will not be needed.)
Shave a bar of lye soap, or a bar of P&G (Proctor and Gamble) soap, into the
Scrub every item of clothes separately on the board and wring them as dry as
Carry tubs of cotton and linen items and put into boiler of boiling water, being
careful to sort out woolen, for boiling water would cause them to shrink and mat. (No danger to nylon, polyester, etc. There was none.)
Dump the tub of dirty water far enough from the house that mud won’t be
tracked in. If there is no one to help carry the tub, you will have to use a bucket.
Go to the pump again and carry buckets of water to fill the tub with cold clean
rinse water.
Add bluing to the rinse water so the whites will look whiter.
Carefully lift the hot clothes from the boiler into another tub. This is a step
fraught with danger! Drain as much as possible, then place the clothes into the
rinse water. Douse up and down until satisfied the soap is out. Wring as dry as
possible and place in a basket. If the rinse water becomes too soapy, you may
have to dump it and go to the pump and bring enough buckets of water to start a
new rinse.
Prepare starch: measure out starch needed according to the number of shirts,
dresses, aprons and linens to be starched. Mix into a paste with cold water. Add
boiling water while you stir vigorously until the starch is clear and the thickness
you desire. Douse each item to be starched and wring as dry as possible.
Pick up the apron or bag of clothespins and head for the clothes line with the
basket of clothes, if it is not raining or snowing. If it is raining or snowing, find
chairs, nails, clothes hangers, racks if you are fortunate enough to have racks,
and any furniture over which you can drape as many as possible at a time and let
them dry in the house.
If the sun is shining, get a wet cloth and wipe the line. It will be especially dirty if there has been a dust storm, a brush fire or if there is a road or railroad near by.
Shake out each garment and hang as straight as possible, linking one to the
other with one pin covering the hanging edge of them both.
If it is just clear freezing weather outside, go ahead and hang them on the line.
They will freeze dry more rapidly than they would in just the wind.
When clothes are dry, carefully remove the clothes pins one at a time, dropping
them into the bag or apron with one hand while capturing the garment that pin
held in place in the other and carefully folding it into the basket - or drop it into
the basket if it is below zero out there and fold it in the house later. Or just drop it in the basket. You will probably have to iron it anyway - maybe even sprinkle and
roll it up before ironing it, so a few wrinkles now won’t matter.

We should have much more time today. It seems that we fill the days, somehow, and feel like we "Never have enough time" Time isn't the problem. The number of tasks and activities we do is the problem. I once read...Our time is like jam, the more you try to spread it, the thinner it gets. We need to maintain a proper balance in our life by dividing the time we have with care. There are occasions where saying no is the way to do it. We need to determine what activities best utilize our time in order to achieve the results we desire in all areas of our life! Now, with that in mind, what jobs will fill my day? Here I sit at the computer...I could save a couple of hours, by not being online...but then, I couldn't email friends and family, couldn't play Scrabble with my daughter, couldn't blog, wouldn't laugh near as much, couldn't google everything :) On second thought I think that I will stop right there. I think that I'll leave my life just as it is. My only change will be to stop complaining that there's "Never Enough Time!"


cwa said...

What a cute post! Recently I got a taste of some of what you described. My washer quit working. It wouldn't spin, so I had to do it for it. I put the clothes in the washer with detergent for the first wash. Then after it had gone through the wash cycle, I had to take them out and wring the soapy water out of them. This was followed by running them through a cycle of clean water, then wringing them out again. Boy was I glad there were only 2 of us, and we tried not to dirty too many clothes. Oh well, it could have been worse. At least I didn't have to rub them on a rock or a washboard to get them clean!

bennie and patsy said...

I remember when we lived on the farm Mother had a wash pot she boiled the clothes in, one time the bees swarmed in a tree close and things got bad fast.

Anonymous said...

I can remember when my mother used to heat the water and wash with a wringer washer. I often wonder how I ever worked. It seems I am much busier now than I was back then. I guess I just did not do much but work and sleep. Now, I blog, read, e-mail, garden, babysit, visit family and much more. I think I like doing these things best and like you will not complain.

Margie's Musings said...

I do remember the days when the laundry took all day and you moved them from tub to tub after running them through the wringer! I am glad those days are gone!i

Balisha said...

I had the same thing happen a few years ago. I was never so glad to have my washer back and working. It took forever for the clothes to dry. Balisha

Balisha said...

Patsy..I remember my Mom, crying...the day the washer was delivered.It must have been wonderful for women to have a brand new washer.. after years of doing laundry the old fashioned way.