The Laundry Olympics

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If laundry were an Olympic sport today I would medal in it. In speed laundry I might get a bronze, in endurance laundry a silver, but in freestyle folding I would definitely take the gold even if the Russian judge’s scores were included.


Russ and I picked Carter up at Cheerio this morning after five weeks of camp. I was practically knocked over as Carter ran to hug me. The first words out of her mouth were, “I don’t want to leave camp, but I do want to go to Maine.” The crying and hugging and long goodbyes from a very successful 3 sessions reminded me of how much I loved camp.   Meeting Carter’s friends and hearing the long wails of ”CARRRTER, don’t go…see you next summer” as we pulled out of camp made me sad and happy all at the same time. This was her last summer as a camper.


In two days comes our trip to family camp. Although it is not the same as the camaraderie of sleep away camp with just kids it is a really fun way for a family to get to act like kids. The only problem is the turn around time of camp clothes for me and thus the laundry sprint began as soon as we opened the garage door.


The good news is for my laundry is a walking activity. The washer and dryer are in the garage just steps from my office. It might be better if they were more steps, but it keeps my ear close to the alert that the cycle is over so I can move one load from wash to dry in record time and start up another wash in the blink of an eye.


I am not doing the fastest washes since the dirt level of five weeks at camp clothes is very high. I am pre-soaking, pre-washing, double rinsing and in the case of the shirt Carter obviously wore “Mudding” double and triple washing. I am not sure the white sock will ever be white again, but that is little price to pay for her camp happiness.


The best thing is since I spent the first six hours of my day mainly sitting in the car needle pointing while Russ drove both ways the use of the walking desk as my folding station has helped get my dearly needed steps. I have become a pro at grabbing from one basket folding and placing in the appropriate pile all while going three miles an hour. NASCAR laundry has got nothing on me.


Since I still have the sheets, blankets and towels to go after these first five clothing loads I am certain to get all my steps and have camp cleaned up well before dark –At least my part of it. Carter is old enough that she has to take the basket and repack herself for Maine, pack up her camp trunk and take it to the attic. Her time line and mine will vary greatly so I think if it gets done before school starts we are doing well. I don’t even care, I’m just glad to have my girl home.

Twenty-One Years of Love, Laughs and Laundry

21 years ago


It was a sunny Saturday in Washington, DC twenty-one years ago today when Russ took the crazy step to marry me.  I knew I was more than lucky to have recognized what a kind, smart, generous and funny guy he was, but mostly that he was willing to go out on a big limb and commit himself to life with me.  We had no idea then where we would go, but we knew we would be going together.


We devoted to each other, just as ourselves.  When the minster asked Russ if he would take me as his wife he answered in his quiet, steadfast way, “I will” and maybe our families in the front row could hear him.  When it was my turn to answer the same question, the Georgetown tourists walking outside the church probably could hear my “I WILL”.  Despite the obvious differences in our demeanors and volume, underneath something about our makeup works well together.


Certainly there were kinks to be worked out.  When I first met Russ he only owned three shirts he wore to work.  That meant that he was wearing one shirt, washing one shirt and drying one shirt at all times.  To top it off Russ only ironed the collar, cuffs and just enough of the center button plackets that showed with a suit coat on.  I only realized this when, one day, he took his jacket off and inadvertently revealed the wrinkles on the majority of his shirt.


The shirt rotation seriously ate into available time to be together. So for Russ’ first birthday after we got engaged I bought him ten new shirts and introduced him to the Chinese Laundry down the street from his house.  That one act profoundly changed his life.  Last month Russ was cleaning out his closet and held up one of the original shirts from that birthday and asked me what he should do with the now sleeve-ripped-collar-worn green striped shirt.  Sadly, I told him he needed to throw it away.  “I love this shirt, “ he said with a sigh.


It took me a little longer to recognize that Russ is almost always right when it comes to remembering things.  This is hard for person like me with the “Not always correct, but never in doubt” personality.  Once I finally came to accept his wisdom trumps mine things have been much easier.  It was never really very hard because Russ has the “I know I’m right, but I don’t have to tell you” personality.  I can only imagine that Job also had that same trait.


Not all things in life are as easy to solve as the shirt problem, but we rarely do much without laughter and I think that is the key to twenty-one pretty wonderful years.  Today, on this anniversary I want to publicly tell the world that I have the best husband, for me.  Russ, thank you for all that you are, all that you do and all that you are going to do.  I think there is a load of laundry in the dryer that needs to come upstairs, please.

The Yearly Weight-Loss Allotment

So far I really like 2013.  Not that I have done anything really exciting for the whole three days.  I did have lunch with my friend Barbara today, that was fun, but here are the other things I have done in 2013:


Still cleaning out closets and four rooms so we can rearrange where Carter lives and Russ works in our house.  That has been the majority of time.  I was very thankful that the trash and recycling got picked up yesterday and I have already refilled them.


I have done six loads of laundry.


I helped Russ get his office ready for a big meeting he has today and tomorrow.  I baked carrot muffins and make fruit platters.  I shopped for drinks, new dishes and coffee makers.  I organized the lunch they served today, met the caterers and enlisted the wonderful help of Cliff to run get the ice I forgot.


I cleaned the rugs where Shay-shay got sick.


I drove Carter to Dover Saddlery to spend her Christmas gift cards.


I cooked, cleaned, emptied the dishwasher, needle pointed, paid bills, and went to Costco.


Why the hell do I like 2013 so much?  I got on the scale this morning and I was one pound below by low weight of 2012.  Not only was I one pound below my low I was four pounds below my Christmas day weight.  After losing 53 pounds in a little less than six months I had only lost 3 in the months of November and December combined.  I really did not change my eating in those months, save three days that I gave myself to celebrate.  But I just was not losing.  Sad, sad.


But come a new year and I am dropping weight again.  I think that maybe there is some cosmic thing that says you are only allowed to lose so much weight in any given calendar year, and it gets to be a smaller number every year.  I think that my number was 56 pounds and once I lost that much I was capped.


As soon as the year turned it has started coming off again.  Hooray for a new year.  Even if my new number is five pounds less than last year I am fine because I don’t want to lose that much weight this year because I would still actually like to be alive.


I am setting a new public goal of losing eleven pounds by Spring Break, the second week of March.  I do much better if I do something publically and declarative.  So there it is.  My trainer Tom told me I better do a ton of cardio to reach that goal.  Good thing I have at least 68 trips to the attic planned for the next three days.  I am thinking of taking up wood chopping just for the exercise.  I hope that 2013 continues on this positive, or in my case, negative path.