Home Management: What Dads Have to Say About Doing Laundry

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This post was originally published over at

Home Management—Fifty years ago this month, President John F. Kennedy presented a bold challenge before a joint session of Congress: Send a man to the moon by the end of the decade. While many derided this notion as either madness or merely a political ploy, some of the brightest minds of the nation focused their efforts, and in 1969 the dream was achieved. In the same spirit as JFK's appeal a half century ago, I am issuing a challenge to the geniuses of today to find a solution to one of the plagues in our world today, dirty laundry. More specifically, my dirty laundry. And come to think of it, it's not just the dirty part I need help with but also the folding and putting away. In this modern world of space shuttles and supercomputers small enough to fit in the palm of your hand why are we still dealing with this?!

The only good thing I've ever found in a laundry basket

Silly putty? The Frisbee? Labradoodles? All great ideas, to be sure. But c'mon inventors of today, show us your stuff! I don't know how it is in your house, but in mine the laundry responsibility lands on my shoulders. Perhaps if the laundry was not my responsibility I would have more time to dedicate to finding a solution to the laundry crisis. Until then I'm considering adopting the philosophy of Jack Reacher. He's the main character in a book series by author Lee Child. Jack Reacher travels light, and part of traveling light means not carrying extra clothing. His solution? He wears them for 3-5 days and then throws them out. No fuss, no muss. A quick stop at the local thrift store or farm supply and he's back on the road. Disposable clothing, it's something to consider.

To be fair, I've recently discovered a product that is a step in the right direction. Hanes incorporates color-coded toes in their socks. For example, size 8 is blue, size 9 is red, and size 10 is black (or something like that, but you get the picture). The result is socks that are easier to sort. Brilliant! This is the type of forward thinking we need! Admittedly, it's not as brilliant as Jack Reacher's solution, but it's a step in the right direction. One small step for mankind.

This post was part of a he said/she said series with my wife, Jyl. You can read her thoughts on laundry here.
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An active part of the Mom It Forward team, Jyl primarily writes about parenting, social good, and all things travel related. In a past life, Jyl was an award-winning copywriter and designer of corporate training programs for Fortune 100 companies. Offline, Jyl is married to @TroyPattee; a mom to two teen boys and a beagle named #Hashtag; loves large amounts of cheese, dancing, and traveling; and lives in the beautiful Rocky Mountains. Topping her bucket list is the goal to visit 50 countries by the time she's 50.


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