Each season comes with its own set of laundry issues; however, winter tends to see our piles higher and wider than normal. All those layers and heavier materials can add loads to our chore list. If you feel like your laundry is a never-ending cycle, "literally", then here are a few tips and routines to get you started.
Invest in a laundry item to help do the work for you. A great example are laundry sorting systems where people can separate the clothes as they throw them in the hamper/basket. This makes it easy to see which load needs to be tackled first and lets other people do part of the work for you. Even small kids can learn which section clothes belong if a simple sign is made for the front of the hamper showing examples.
However, the best way to stay on top of laundry is to set a schedule and stick with it. Meaning, decide on a day or two each week when you will focus and get it done. If you don't set a schedule you will start but never actually finish any load effectively.
The most effective is to set one day a week for doing back to back loads. This might be a Saturday or Sunday for families where everyone works outside the home. Another idea for working families is to start loads on Friday Night and finish them early Saturday morning. The main idea is to start and keep them rotating through the washer and dryer without a lot of time in-between.
If your weekends are full of family activities, then a 2 night a week schedule may work. The key here is to take advantage of appliance features when possible. Load the washing machine and set the timer to start washing a couple hours before you arrive home from work, or before you get up for the day. That load will be ready to rotate to the dryer and you can start another load to run while you are at work or getting dinner ready. Here's an example: Set the washer to turn on at least an hour before you get up. As soon as you are up, move the laundry to the dryer and start the next load. Once arriving home in the afternoon, fold the first load and move the second load into the dryer. Before bed, fold the second load.
Again, the idea is to keep loads moving.
The final strategy for tackling those piles... don't create new piles of clean clothes! Once the dryer cycle is finished, fold and put away. Don't take a load out of the dryer, only to pile it in a basket or on the floor. Part of the "keep the loads rotating" includes the trip to the drawer or closet. This is another chore where family members of all ages can assist. Matching socks, folding towels and taking clothes to rooms can be a great job for young family members.