|Noah taking off with some Avoca yarn.|
It was all sorted in these toddler height bins
waiting for him.
It is a fact of life with children that your laundry will be plentiful. We rented a furnished house. They tend to be quite common for rentals in Ireland and we also thought it would just be much simpler than trying to ship things here (as well as coming out quite a bit cheaper- shipping is crazy expensive). We were very lucky to have some friendly work contacts before we moved here. I was able to shop on-line (although not actually place an order) at the Dublin IKEA. I made 3 lists- 1 list of things which I just couldn't fathom trying to manage to bring home across 2 bus switches, in the rain, with 3 children (i.e. 7 bed pillows); 1 list of things that IKEA indicated could be delivered but you had to actually buy them in the store (i.e. children's bed and crib- which they call a cot and gave me fits for a bit and circus tent-just essentials); 1 list of things that would make life a little easier if they were already here (linens, towels, a few toys). Linda, being the very wonderful person she is, managed to go to IKEA the weekend before we arrived and managed to not only buy everything but get it ALL delivered to the house where our landlords were kind enough to accept delivery.
As an aside, assembling flat pack furniture on 4 hours of sleep after 16 hours or so of travel is just as fun as it sounds.
|Just after mill tour and just prior to meltdown #2 :-)|
The spin cycle is unreal in it's intensity even when I turn the rpms down. To give an idea, the children regularly stand in the door of the wash shed and pretend to parachute out of a helicopter while the washer spins.
I finally did some research to try to figure out where I was making my mistake certain this couldn't possibly be right. Imagine my surprise when I learned that a- this is totally normal for European washers and b- a source of considerable defensiveness on the part of European housewives.
The washers use about 30% of the water that a typical top load US washer uses. They also heat the water within the washer so it actually gets to whatever temperature you set it to- a HOT cycle is 90 degrees celcius or almost boiling. You can also pick the speed for the rinse cycle and your clothes can come out remarkably dry. I will also say that these washers can really clean if given the opportunity. Noah wears hand-me-downs from Charlie. One of his shirts had some light staining from Charlie and those stains came out the other day. I was shocked!
The other big thing I've noticed about cleaners in general here is that hard water:Irish cleaners::antibacterial:US cleaners I actually had a really hard time finding a cleaner that indicated it would kill mildew which, in a damp climate, you would think would be easy to find. But, it was really easy to find all manner of cleaners promising to defeat limescale. You can buy straight bleach but it's in this thick cream formula which seems to work but I haven't been able to figure out if you can use it in washing machines. Oxygen bleaches are easy to find but don't seem to have much power against mildew and the like.
|Mountains around Glendalough|
Making all this more difficult is the combination of the European dryers and the frequent rain. European dryers are designed to get clothing dry enough to finish either in the airing cupboard (indoor clothesline) or via iron. To get them to completely dry a load, you are looking at a good 45 minute cycle on high- at least 1.5 hours on low- of course, you'll still be waiting on the next load to finish in the washer so...
|Allen pulled out his camera to take a picture of the arch.|
When Noah saw him, he gave a big smile saying
"cheese." Who could resist that?
I've adapted reasonably well. I try to do oodles of loads on reasonably dry days- 4-6 loads which catches us up for about 2 days. On wet days, I run 1-2 loads- it depends on how full the drying rack is. I run the children's lights load at bedtime so it can get a full 2 hour cycle leaving their clothes quite clean but then I have to cross my fingers that the weather report was reasonably accurate and I'll be able to hang them out. Nothing fills a drying rack quite as quickly as tiny underwear and socks! We run into trouble when the stomach flu goes through the family and I have yet to figure out how I'll ever manage when Noah starts potty training but, there are worse things!