Monday, January 08, 2007

Monday, Monday...

Well, Schecky returned to school today. I loved having him around, but I must confess that a tiny part of me was anticipating this day, so that I could get my groove back on - have time for me, pick up the knitting needles again, etc. Largely selfish stuff...

And of course, now that he's gone back to school, I could help but notice that it was awful quiet around here today...


Just so you know - the last week hasn't been all introspective self-reflection, and Jerry McGuire-style prose. Nor has it been the All-Schecky-All-The-Time show (although, there was a lot of that!)

Nope - There. Was. Laundry!


The new appliances have arrived!


I'll confess to coveting the gorgeous front loading washers and dryers - they come in such pretty colors, and they look like works of art perched on their pedestals...

But in the end, I just couldn't do it.

First of all, I am not sure that I am enough of a domestic goddess to justify them. But the larger reason is that I just didn't think I would enjoy them enough.

The laundry stuff lives down in the basement - so it's not like anyone sees them but me. (Of course, I did do some serious internal conversation about how I was worth it! But ultimately decided "No, I'm not!")
And the basement is dusty, and - like all Southern basements - a little bit dampish. And on very rare occasions, the basement has been known to take on a little flood water. I knew that I would worry more about the "laundry center" of my dreams more than I would enjoy it...

So, I perused Consumer Reports, went out, and got these. I ended up getting both a new dryer and a washer as well. Some years back the washer kind of quit agitating completely, but it wasn't totally broke, so I wasn't fixing it. But I decided that it was probably time - it had a good 16 year run.

Let me just say that a washer that actually agitates fully does a much better job of washing clothes. Who knew? I've been merrily washing everything in sight...

There are a few things that have me all in a puzzle though - what is up with these things?
  1. The Washer Has A "Second Rinse" Option - what in the world is this, and why do I want it? I actually read the stupid manual that came with the washer - which is huge, I never read manuals! - and it makes no mention of it whatsoever. So far, I'm largely ignoring it, although it makes me cranky every time I see the knob that controls this option.

  2. What Is the Deal With Fabric Softener - Seriously. I've never actually used the liquid kind. In the past, I've used dryer sheets, because without them the cat fur stays on our clothes. After having been through the washer/dryer it's clean cat fur, but without the use of Bounce Sheets, it is still stuck to everything.

    But the washer came with a free fabric softener sample, and it's got a built in dispenser- so I gave it a try.

    Yum - it smelled good. Felt good too. But do I really need fabric softener, or is it all just a marketing gimmick? Is it going to build up on fabrics and ultimately make them look gross?

    (Funnily enough, I Googled "fabric softener" and have really only learned two things:
    • The manufacturers of fabric softener think it's a good thing, and think I should use lots and lots of it
    • There are a lot of people who swear by using vinegar instead of fabric softener. Which I might actually try - love to use vinegar for cleaning...)

    So - what are your thoughts on fabric softener?*

  3. The Dryer Lights Up When You Open It.
    This isn't really a puzzle, I just think it's cool. Thanks to Beki for letting me know that dryers do this now, or else it would have freaked me out the first time I opened it up.

  4. The Dryer Makes Way More Lint Than The Old One Ever Did. Does this mean anything? We're talking big billowy piles of it on the lint screen after each load. I've never seen so much lint. (And is there anything you can do with lint? The new dryer is so productive at creating it, it seems a shame that there's nothing you can do with it...)

Ah yes, a contemplative laundry day, indeed....

*You know, up until this very moment, I would have bet good money that this was a phrase that would never spring from my lips...

18 comments:

3 to get ready said...

Yay! How exciting! I know, I know, it's a washer and a dryer, but now you don't have to go to the laundromat! And they're all clean and shiny! And I'm using many exclamation points! Congratulations.

The Caretaker said...

I always wanted to make lint art. I'm sure somebody is already doing it. Maybe you could twist it into yarn and make something new?

btw, my word verfication letters at the bottom of this comment box spell, I kid you not: "I po fuch". Well, I used to be. But, not since I got that job last December!

Editrix said...

I do not use any sort of fabric softener, because my skin is akin to delicate flower petals and can't abide the chemical irritants. (Also? I'm a cheap bastard.) I have used vinegar in the wash on occasion, and can vouch for its ability to make towels and sheets fluffysoft. Can't speak to its cat-fluff-vanquishing properties, per se, as I haven't actually run experiments on the more fluff-magnetic laundry items (black tights seem to be a major offender).

autum said...

I use fabric softener sometimes, but it does build up on towels and they don't dry as well.
I buy the gain with a touch of softener just because I like the way it smells.

Kim said...

I don't use fabric softener, as I try to avoid adding more chemicals to our water supply than we already have. I hear that vinegar is good for fluffing, though the cat hair situation might call for the bounce sheets.

Katkat said...

You are so lucky! I have to use the laundry mat everyweek, super fun. our house is 120 yrs old and the outlet is brand new and ready to use, howver I can't get anything large up our winding stairs.

bekka said...

all those colors and somehow you chose white? i know all about damp basements. sometimes our basement looks more like a pond than anything.

capello said...

you had the opportunity to get front loading, high effiecency, good for the environment washer and dryer and chose not to?

have i not taught you anything?!

----------------------------------

second rinse -- i use this for bleach loads. love it.

softener -- i use to use dryer sheets, but my kids are allergic to them. so softener it is. it makes a significant difference, especially if you don't use dryer sheets.

lent trap -- yeah, isn't it awesome?

jen said...

oh our washer has a thing for liquid fabric softner. It's so it will add it during the rinse cycle and you don't need a special downey ball or remember to run downt here during the rinse cycle to add it. I actually prefer liquid softner for thigns like towels and sheets and sometimes jeans. But that's cause i wear my jeans 2 weeks and they NEED to smell good and i like towels super soft. heh.
glad you got a working dryer

MéLisa said...

Uoohhh Pretty!

Ok how funny are you that you have never had a dryer with a light in it or never used liquid fabric softener? Really?

Personally I prefer the liquid. What it is supposed to do is get all the detergent residue out of the clothes, but Autum is correct that it messes with the absorbency of towels. I use it anyway on my towels because it makes them all soft & smell nice. Also I believe that fabric softener is supposed to help with static & therefore helps the dryer suck the cat off as well. The Downy ball is my friend because I don’t have the fancy smancy dispenser in my washer.

Have fun with your new toys washer woman!

beki said...

Now that I think about it, my new dryer makes a tom of lint too. Weird. I did learn that if the lint falls into the lint trap (like mine did the first time I tried to change it), it gets shot out the hole into your yard. Yep, my flower beds were covered in lint.
I'm a fabric softener user, but it's something that I recently discovered. I only use it because I like the way it makes my laundry smell.

Kelli said...

1. My mom used to tell us in July, "Only one more month until you go back to school!" She said this with such glee.
2. I use the Mexican fabric softener called "Suavitel." It is wonderful. Do you guys have that there? I consider more a fabric perfume than anything else. LOVE.
3. AWESOME on the new machines. WOO HOO!!

Rohanknitter said...

Grrr, I had a much longer comment, but blgger ate it.
2nd rinse? Who knows.
Fabric Softener? Nope. (we're dryer sheet peopel here)
Lint? Mucho, mucho lint. Sometimes I wonder there's any actual clothing left, that it hasn't just evaporated.
Uses for lint? Hmmm...throw outside for birds for nesting materials in the spring? That's my only idea!

Holly Burnham said...

I use the second rinse for towels sometines because they seem to hold the detergent. Try it and look at the water...even after the first rinse cycle there's a lot left.

Sarah and Jack said...

Ok, I have nothing further to add, but how funny that so many people have opinions on fabric softener and such!

kelp! said...

Vinegar instead of fabric softener? Please keep the masses updated on how that works out! I used to use dryer sheets religiously, but I haven't used one for the past few years.

Archimedes Trajano said...

So have you found anything you can do with lint?

LLA said...

Months later, I still have no good idea about what to do with the lint. And the dryer is still producing it like mad....