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First Mama.  Then Writer.  Though, of late, the latter has consumed a great deal of time as I work to get things in order to potentially be ...

Monday, June 14, 2010

Living Without AC

We have decided, in our effort to reduce electricity consumption, for reasons previously expounded upon including our effort to become better stewards, and do things more naturally (along the same lines as "living AC free") we are currently living without use of our electric dryer. We started this about three weeks ago and it's going really well. Only three weeks in, of course, but the GOOD of it is really surprising to me!

I feel I must reiterate here and now that CHOOSING to go without a luxury is MUCH easier than being in a position that we MUST go without it. When we first moved to Florida, we didn't have a washing machine or dryer. We did take our things to a laundy-mat for a while. But we just didn't have the money for the amount of laundry we produced. (Cloth diapering exclusively at the time... if you've done it, you'll TOTALLY understand!) I definitely had more time than we had money! So, I ended up washing loads upon loads of laundry by hand in our bath tub. Let me tell you, doing such a thing grows a new perspective in a person! I could see SO clearly how the women of the past might THINK about how their situation was not just and THINK about how they should have certain rights that only men of the time enjoyed... but they didn't have TIME to do anything about those thoughts!

Washing by hand is way too extreme for me at this time - given all that I have listed in my mind that must be done (including unpacking, tiling, kitchen cabinet cleaning and replacement to name some of the HUGE time consumers). Still, we want to do something more (than living AC free) to reduce our electric bill. To that end, we turn all things off when not in use and try to unplug most of them. So far I've only forgotten the computer turn-off one night and MAN I was P-Oed when I realized I did such a thing! We do not use lights unless it's dark night out and they are pretty necessary (at least, I'm trying to teach our girls to do this!). AND, of course, we are trying to avoid use of the dryer as much as possible.

So far (only three weeks, of course), I have been 100% successful at NOT using the dryer! :) I, as yet, have only my laundry room, dining room chairs, and my patio table on which I can lay or hang things out to dry. I'm hopeful that we might get one of the really NICE drying racks I've found online. I like these TWO because one I could see being for most of our wardrobe items and so forth, while the second would be better for towels and linens. We'll see....

So far my laundry time really has been only a little bit more time consuming than it was using an electric dryer. Hanging or laying our things out to dry is a bit more time consuming. Checking on them before removal to put away is a tiny bit of work. But putting things away is SUPER fast! Remoal from drying, folding and moving to put away is almost the same thing so it feels like so much LESS a burden than the loads and piles of dried laundry I'd have pile up before I could get to fold them previously.

Now, one might think and even suggest that such piles could be reduced simply by folding upon completion of the drying process. And to them I would say, "Yes, that worked some times. And when it worked I felt SO good about my endless laundry job. But other times... well, you must either be TOTALLY anal (which I'm trying to overcome in myself) or you just do not know what it's like to homeschool with three children!" Heck, take out the homeschooling part and most Moms... and then especially Moms of three or more would understand that sometimes you can get the stuff out of the dryer, moved from the washer to the dryer and then just NOT be able to fold 'em!

Really, at this point, I feel much MORE enjoyment of the whole laundry process than I felt when we were using the electric dryer. What a gift, right!?? I'm actually REALLY surprised by this new feeling in me and haven't been able to quite figure out the reason for the change. Any suggestions?

I'll try to remember to revisit this subject again and address any reasons I may be able to come up with to explain my newfound enjoyment of doing laundry. Feel free to remind me, if you think about it and want to hear what I've come up with!

1 comment:

Ben and Barb said...

I used to love hanging clothes out on the line to dry when the weather was warm. It was very relaxing for me and I especially enjoyed it when there was a nice breeze blowing on my face. The last few houses I lived in hasn't had those clothes lines set up in the back yard so I haven't done it in a long time nor have I made an effort to use drying racks instead. I do miss it though :-)

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