A wise mom recently told me that once her children turned ten, she taught them how to do their own laundry, and then slowly as each child neared that sweet double digit decade mark, she had less and less laundry on her plate.

I thought it was genius, and she perhaps the smartest mom in all the world.

Today I implemented Phase I of my double-digits-earn-you-the-right-to-do-your-own-laundry-plan.  Phase I included my daughter doing an entire cycle of the family laundry on her own.  I showed her the finer points on sorting, starting the washer, transferring to the dryer, and then we tweeked the folding process.  Laundry folding was already part of her chore list, but she needed just a few pointers.  I casually noted how tshirts should be flat when folded, not crumpled; socks should be in a matching pair, not just thrown in a basket–that sort of thing.  At first it was a bit of a novelty, pouring the soap and starting the washer, but it did eventually drain on my happier-to-be-slacking-daughter.  But, after an entire day of the laundry process under her belt, I feel she can tackle her own laundry without too much trouble.

And, if Phase I is a complete success, she might be happy tending to her own clothes rather than being slave to all our folding needs.

I’m crossing my fingers, but not holding my breath just yet–but it would be so exciting if I actually got a few hours of my week back!  So exciting!!