How Many Little Mummas Does It Take To Have A Lightbulb Moment?

by | Aug 11, 2013 | Little Domesticity, Little Life, MOTHERHOOD | 9 comments

Light Bulb Moment

I have had an epiphany.

When there are five bodies in the house, the washing machine
needs to be running every day. Five bodies just insist on wearing ALL THE
CLOTHES and it has finally dawned on me that one wash per person per week is
not even close to being enough. Yes, I wash separately – the boys’ clothes, my
clothes, Bren’s clothes and the baby clothes – mixing them up gives me the
heebie jeebies so don’t ask me to change. Up until now, I was doing one load a week for
everyone and then losing my mind when the hampers were overflowing just days later. 

There are a few issues here. One, clearly, clearly, I am not the
sharpest tool in the shed. Two, what an embarrassment of consumerist riches that my family each have so
many clothes that we can go a whole week (and frankly, much more) without ever running
out of stuff to wear.

Thirdly, is this the most boring piece I have ever written?

What has become of me? Who even am I?

The perfect segue here would be some kind of sponsored post for laundry detergent and though I have been asked to write that very thing more than once, sadly, this is just the most pressing issue on my mind right now.

I am treating you to some serious minutiae here. Minutiae, manure. Same, same.

At some point, you need to accept the fact that Mount Washmore has no summit. Unless you plan on adopting the culture of the naturalist. For sure, I have shown you all my nude bod before so it's not like I'm against it but being a pregnant butterfly in the nicky noo nar is quite a different thing to, say, grocery shopping with your pubic hair gently undulating in the breeze of the automatic doors. It's different.

So – washing. Expect it to never end and start doing at least one load a day. Embrace that shit. 

But here is the important thing. Don't be all about the washing. When you find yourself exclaiming, "Oh no! A stain!" as you hang your child's school uniform out to dry, it's a timely wake up call. You are now identifying with an Omo advertisement and this fact has the potential to undo anything you ever did that was even remotely cool. Crowd surfed at a Nirvana concert? Never happened. Your wild youth is completely negated in that moment when you become part of the day time tv advertising demographic. Seriously. Kids will get shit on their clothes (sometimes literally) that leaves a stain that is never coming out. Accept it and move on. Then grab a glass of wine because life is still a sweet place.

Because try as I might, I cannot avoid domestication. Having three children has left me without options. So though I may have
quietly sniggered at all the ‘housewife’ blogs, with their housework routines and bi-carb soda cleaning tips, I now fall at their feet and weep with gratitude for the
printable lists they offer to help me organise my life.

Because that is the other thing; I am a Hoarders episode
waiting to happen. In my defence, old house, minimal storage means my clutter
has nowhere to hide. But still, it’s time to admit I have trouble letting go. Kids’
art work, unread papers, bills that need filing, empty jam jars that will be
super-useful once I soak the labels off them. So much STUFF. And it just keeps
arriving, in the mail and in school bags and incessantly.

I resist becoming the perfect homemaker then berate myself
for not being her. And I drown under the weight of the clutter. I am drowning in day to day life and oh, how it bores me to tears. There are
infinitely more interesting and rewarding things to be doing but the running of
this house (and the small people in it) is my primary job and to be honest, I
would have fired my disorganised arse LONG AGO. So in order to make more time
for the things I would prefer to be doing, it makes sense to have some kind of
system that more efficiently gets the boring shit done. This
procrastinating on Facebook and then guilt-inhaling cooking chocolate because I wasted an hour doing nothing HAS TO STOP.

So, my epiphany. It might seem ridiculous in its obviousness. Hell, it IS obvious. I knew what I should have been doing, what was necessary, but like the fitness routine you know will change your life if you just commit to it, you find ways to resist the truth.  

Like brushing my teeth, I will run the washing machine twice a day. It is a small change in my house but one that will be significant in keeping the wheels turning in this big domestic machine I like to forget I am in charge of.  And though mine was a bit lame and possibly helped no-one but me, I encourage you to share one piece of
wisdom that makes running your home that little bit bearable.

Come on, now. You know I could use the help….

Hello friends


I’m Angie!  I mum. I write. I wife. My husband would say this is the correct order.  He’s so neeeedy. I live with my family in Melbourne, Australia, where I complain about the weather for 90% of the year – but I can’t imagine living anywhere else. Except maybe in Lake Como, waving to my neighbours George and Amal each morning.

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  1. Megan Blandford

    It’s like the moments you find yourself thinking, “Great, a sunny day, that means I can get the washing dry!” Followed closely by the groan of realising I have no life.

  2. Christie

    Angie, I also drown in domesticity. I am hopeless at doing washing and there is always crumbs and dust bunnies on the floor. Washing is never put away and we often use clothes straight from the clothes airer that never see a wardrobe or drawer. And sometimes I cry because it seems so ridiculous that I am a tertiary educated professional but I can’t sort out the laundry and cleaning. Will be following this post to see if I can be enlightened…!!

  3. Angie @ The Little Mumma

    Crumbs and dust bunnies, yes! Crying because beaten by laundry, yes!

    Enlightenment…maybe not. But one little thing under some semblance of control – there is hope in there somewhere. xxx

  4. Madeleine

    There is no way in hell I could wash everyone’s things in individual loads! Aside from that being too much work (I’m of the chuck-everything-in one-mixed-up-motherload school), my kids have a tendency to want to wear the same few things repeatedly… meaning even if I had an addiction to girly clothes shopping (which I don’t, thankfully), it would be pointless as they will still choose the same clothes and reject 90% of the clean stuff that’s ready to wear. Ingrates… xxx

  5. #WishIhadthe$tooutsourceeverything

    Newly single mum…full time job…two kids…cooking dinner each night…nightmare. So…cook a meal the night before when the kids are in bed, and just reheat/bake when I walk in the door. Putting something in the oven and turning it on is considerably less stressful than having a 16 month old attached to one leg and a hangry 7 year old whilst stirring a pot or peeling vegetables…and yep – I wash every day too.

  6. Bilby

    I do a load of washing a day – everyone’s all in together. I iron just once a week though…. and that wasn’t until my eldest came home from school and said this: “There’s this thing that you can get, that you plug into the wall and it heats up or something and you use it on your clothes to get rid of wrinkles”. Okay….

    A little time-saving tip of mine is to do the eldest two’s school lunchboxes the night before and pop them in the fridge ready to go. It’s a must, otherwise I’d never get out of the door in the morning to get them to school. I’ve also been known to even get out the plates/bowls etc ready for breakfast in the morning just to save myself a few extra minutes (yes, complete with cereal in said bowls….)

  7. Karen

    Great idea!!

  8. Acie D

    i dont have kids, but, still i pay a cleaner….. got over cleaning a long time ago, especially doing 12.5 hour days. I have taken up ironing though??? I KNOW WEIRD RIGHT?! I got better things to do, like exercise then drink wine… dont hate me. 🙂 Just remember I have a large child to look after, hes 40 and his name is AL, hes my partner, although I’m not sure which part…..


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