The luxury of having an outdoor laundry line is something I never take for granted. Some farmgirls probably wake up in the morning, look outside, see that it's fair and breezy and think, "Today would be a great day to plant some daffodils or maybe go for a horseback ride." I start figuring out what I want to wash and hang up in the sun.
We use our laundry line all year round, and although we do own an old clothes dryer that runs on propane, it's still living over in The Shack (where we no longer have propane). The only thing I use it for is softening up clothes and sheets on air fluff, because it's down to just one heat setting: shrink.
Since there's a limit to how many pairs of socks and underwear even we can rationalize owning, the weather sometimes forces us to dry the laundry indoors, and then we use these awesome expandable folding racks.
After going through numerous wooden clothes drying racks over the years, which look quaint but aren't very sturdy, I finally tried this metal version, and it worked out so well we bought two more. Each one provides nearly 24 feet of drying space, and I can even drape big heavy quilts over them. They also make cozy little cat seats.
More below. . .
During the summer we keep one rack up all the time in the bathroom so we can hang our sweat soaked clothes up to dry, because scary things happen to piles of dirty wet laundry in hot and humid weather.
In an attempt to organize our new life in the new house, we also splurged on three of these heavy-duty laundry sorters, and now I don't know how we got along without them. My hunky farmguy Joe and I are about as far from fashionistas as you can get (is there a guy word for fashionista?), but farm laundry is serious stuff.
I know there was a time in my life when I dressed a lot better and yet had a lot less dirty laundry—maybe because I was in California and didn't need to pile on winter clothes—but these days we seem to be constantly surrounded by it. Now that the laundry is pretty well organized I really don't mind, though there are times when I'm sure some of the other 105 critters on the farm must be wearing socks and t-shirts.
The only problem is that once you've discovered how clean and fresh everything smells after blowing in the breeze (did you know that sunlight is a natural disinfectant and stain remover?), it's easy to put off doing a load of wash until the weather gets better, rather than drying it on racks in the house—which is probably part of the reason we need all those laundry sorters.
More laundry line photos? Here.
More beagle Bert? Here.
More of The Whole Picture series? Here.