Monday, August 29, 2011

More Learnings from the Laundromat

Yep, we are still without a washer and it looks like it may be a while before we get one. Not a bad thing, really. Just inconvenient at times. But, oh, so nice to get all my laundry done in a 2 hour period and not have to worry about it the rest of the week (unless you send your daughter to soccer practice in the wrong uniform because you didn’t read the email…grrr).

The girls now think the Laundromat is a fun place to go. They seriously beg me to be able to go with me. And I make them help fold, so they are working (even when one is folding and the other is sliding it down the table so that it is all messed up by the time it gets put on the pile). So, Saturday night, I let them go with me—even though they would be up a little later than I would have liked them to be.

Here are some of the things I learned this time around:

• There are big lessons you can teach about sharing and treating others the way we want to be treated. Especially when they try to “hog” all the baskets and feel the need to guard a whole side of a table so nobody else can use it.

• It’s much easier to teach my girls kindness toward other people than toward each other. They love to help people by opening the doors when they have a full load--even when they are fighting over who's gonna do it.

• No matter where you, there will always be rude people. You can choose whether you want to let them affect your experience.

• When the triple load machine that has all your soccer clothes, pants you wanna wear the next day and most of your hubby’s good clothes doesn’t work, but the door locks and you have to wait 32 minutes for it to finish before you can move them to another machine, it’s a great lesson in patience.

• Your kids will notice the way you talk to the employee—whether he’s being effective at his job or not.

• Using the change machine is almost as good as a video game

• When strangers comment on how well your girls get along (even when they are running, being way too loud and not focusing on the task at hand) it makes you re-evaluate the ultimate goal of doing laundry together

As crazy as it sounds, I think I’m gonna miss taking them to the Laundromat with me in the coming weeks (I’m gonna have to do it while they are in school). They make me crazy and every time I leave there, it usually ends with me talking in the “mean voice.”

But then I reflect on the entire experience and I realize that crazy as it sounds, these will be some of their favorite memories of time together when they grow up. My challenge is to get out of the momentary task at hand and be willing to see the big picture.

Neatly folded clothes are not as important as giggling girls.

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