2012 Third Quick Tip Week: Removing Ink Stains

Quick Tip Week - Removing ink stains

Photograph Credit: Flickr (Darren Sacks)

Quick Tip Week continues! Hope this week of shorter posts highlighting one tip in each category helps you in using time wisely. For series already in progress, I will continue with the next segment following our Quick Tip Week. Embrace this week, add your tips in the comments, and continue using time wisely!

Quick Tip #2: Removing Ink Stains

As my 2-year-old waved around an uncapped ink pen, my shirt met the blue ink resulting in a stain. Thinking I would just soak the shirt, Paul suggested drawing out the ink using hairspray.

With the hairspray bottle in hand, I sprayed the soiled section, waited a few moments to activate, and then I pressed down paper towels on the spot. With each treatment, the stain became less visible until it disappeared after the fourth round.

Though I’m sure the OxiClean would have worked, I liked the immediate result of using hairspray when removing ink stains. Upon laundering, I found my shirt without ink or any residue from the hairspray. 🙂

In using time wisely, I spent less than 5 minutes removing ink stains from my shirt. If you find a stray ink mark on your clothing from a 2-year-old, test out the hairspray trick to save you money, energy, and time. Happy stain lifting!

Question: How do you remove ink stains? 

Scheduling: Laundry Routine – Part 4 of 4

Photograph Credit: Flickr (BamaCIT)

I love the smell of clean laundry. In fact, I get asked often how I get our clothes smelling so good. You want to know my secret? You think I will share it with you? Yeah, I will. 🙂

It is a combination of a fragrance-free laundry detergent with Snuggle liquid fabric softener. Because the laundry detergent has no fragrance, the Snuggle permeates our clothing for a fresh, clean smell.

Before we get to clean-smelling clothing in our organized laundry routine, let’s review our first three steps: Preparing throughout the week, Pre-treating soiled clothing, and Preparing on laundry day. Today, I will complete this series with STEP FOUR.

STEP FOUR: Performing laundry tasks

To get the fresh, clean smell throughout our loads of laundry, I follow this routine:

Washing the Clothes

1. Use All Free and Clear detergent since my children have skin sensitivities which perfumed laundry detergent irritates.

2. Wash all loads on warm/cold, and all load sizes are large or super.

3. Add Snuggle liquid fabric softener during the rinse cycle to make the clothes smell great without irritating my children’s skin.

Drying the Clothes

1. Place one Snuggle fabric softener sheet into the dryer with the clothes to keep them static cling-free.

2. Pile the clean, dried clothes into one of two blue laundry baskets.

3. Remove the lent from the dryer vent.

Folding and Putting Away the clothes

1. Fold the clothes and place them back into the clean blue laundry basket.

2. Take the laundry basket upstairs.

3. Put the clothing in the appropriate dressers or closets.

The two blue rectangular baskets are for clean clothes. The oval blue basket and white basket are used for dirty or used clothes. Having different shaped and different colored baskets helps my family differentiate between clean and dirty clothes. Since my family knows which baskets are dirty and which ones are clean, I avoid getting questioned on whether items are clean or dirty. This system of using different baskets makes laundry days simple and organized.

As you work through laundry days at your home, I hope you will find a system that works for you while using time wisely. Whether you choose a weekend or weekdays to tackle your laundry pile, you can stay organized by preparing prior to laundry day, pre-treating soiled clothing, preparing on laundry day, and performing laundry tasks. Happy laundry organizing!

Question: Do you use different baskets for clean and dirty clothes? Please add your answer to the comments.

Scheduling: Laundry Routine – Part 3 of 4

Photograph Credit: Flickr (remember everyday)

Though I prepare for laundry day throughout the week by checking to be sure that all clothing items are placed in a hamper or laundry basket, there are still items to prepare on laundry day before adding that first load to the washing machine.

Thus far in our series, we have looked at STEP ONE: Preparing throughout the week and STEP TWO: Pre-treating soiled clothing. Today, we will proceed to STEP THREE.

STEP THREE: Preparing on laundry day

While the soiled clothes continue to soak in the OxiClean solution, I prepare to begin the laundry by:

    • Gathering the laundry baskets and hampers and bringing them to my bedroom,
    • Sorting all the items into the dark or white baskets from my bedroom closet,
    • Choosing a load of laundry to wash, and
    • Carrying the basket with those clothes down to the washing machine.

Before starting the load of laundry, I will check the items soaking in the Oxiclean solution to see if any of those items can be added to this load of laundry. If I find some, then I will wring out those items and add them to the laundry basket before adding this load of laundry to the washing machine.

With all the items gathered, sorted, and assigned a load of laundry, I can quickly begin using time wisely to get my family’s clothing items washed, dried, and put away. Next week, I will complete this series with my system for performing the laundry task.

Question: Where do you sort your family’s clothing? Please add your answer to the comments.

Scheduling: Laundry Routine – Part 2 of 4

Removing stains from children’s clothing is always an interesting topic. You have probably heard so many solutions on how to get clothes clean. Some have worked, and others do not.

Until a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser for clothing is made, I will continue with my tried and true method for removing stains. 🙂

In this series on my organized laundry routine, I shared last week, in step one, how my family prepares throughout the week for laundry day. Towards the end of the week, I begin step two.

 STEP TWO: Pre-treating soiled clothing

The items in my toddler’s hamper that need pretreatment are taken down to the mud sink in our garage. To remove stains from our clothes, I follow this routine:

    • Turn on the hot water in our mud sink,
    • Place one or two scoops of powdered OxiClean in the water,
    • Wait for the OxiClean to dissolve,
    • Put each clothing item into the solution separately, and
    • Leave the clothes in the sink for a few hours to a few days.

By pre-treating the soiled clothing before beginning any loads of laundry, I can add these soaked items to their appropriate colored load on laundry day. The OxiClean solution usually releases all the stains from the clothing. In the event that a stain remains, I will treat the spot with Shout or Spray ‘n Wash before tossing in the washing machine.

These stain-releasing options have served my family well in our laundry routine. Next week, I will continue this series with the events on laundry day.

Question: What products do you use to release stains from your clothing? Please add your answer to the comments.

Scheduling: Laundry Routine – Part 1 of 4

Photograph Credit: Flickr (Sarah QFD)

With five family members in our house, our washer and dryer get used a number of times each week. Usually I perform laundry tasks on two consecutive days.

During this season of my life, laundry is done on Friday/Saturday, Saturday/Sunday, or Sunday/Monday. The days depend on when we are home or able to work around our other activities.

I know many find doing one load of laundry from start to finish a day helps keep the laundry pile at bay. This option would not work for me since everyday has a different schedule and working around laundry is not a priority for me.

Knowing that the laundry will be done on the weekend, frees me up during the week for other activities. What works for me may or may not work for you. This system is working for me now and may be a solution to doing laundry all week long.

By having a scheduled, organized laundry routine, I find my time is best spent in small sections. The more I follow the same routine, the more efficient I become. My routine consists of four steps:

Step one: Preparing throughout the week,

Step two: Pretreating soiled clothing,

Step three: Preparing on laundry day, and

Step four: Performing laundry tasks.

In the next four weeks, I will cover my organized laundry routine in the hopes you will be encouraged to take a break from doing laundry all week long.

STEP ONE: Preparing throughout the week

During the week, each family member deposits dirty or used clothes into their assigned hamper.

    • My two older children have a mesh hamper in their closet.
    • My husband and I have two laundry baskets in our closet. The dark blue basket holds dark items, and the white basket holds white and light colored items.
    • My toddler has a hamper in her nursery. Any soiled clothes that need pretreatment are added to this hamper. Since my children are messy eaters and enjoy the dirt and mud on the playground, I have a number of items that need to be pretreated each week.

As each family member deposits his or her own clothing into the appropriate laundry containers, I am able to concentrate on other items throughout the week. Besides the occasional stray sock or blanket, almost all the items are in the laundry baskets or hampers each day.

By using time wisely to train my family on my laundry routine, I can rest assured that all items are where they belong. As each member of our family does his or her job throughout the week, my tasks are lightened on laundry day. I will not need to search the house for loose items of clothing. By preparing throughout the week, I save myself time and energy on laundry day.

Question: Where do your family members place their clothing items that need to be washed? Please add your answer to the comments.