Yesterday I hung my clothes outside on my inactive clothesline. The sun was shining brightly and the birds were singing. I wanted to stay outdoors but it was only 40 degrees and I didn’t have my jacket on. Oh how good my clothes smelled when I took them in. It was dusk and the birds were preparing to go to bed, and listening to them made me smile. I went inside with my clothes. I put on pajamas and my robe which had just been dried and I felt like a princess because of the smell of my clothes. I thought, “Wouldn’t we be better off if we always hung our clothes out?” I was forgetting that the pacific northwest usually has rain and we would have to dry our clothes all over the house most of the time.
And there were other things to consider. If we always hung our clothes outdoors we probably washed them in a washing machine like I used to have. It had a wringer on it and I had two washtubs which I would wring my clothes into. First I had to fill the tubs, one with hot water and the other with cold. and I had to fill the washer with hot water too. I or my husband had to get the water from the town pump and heat it on my stove which ran only with wood that we had to get from our woodpile! It could take all day to wash clothes! I suppose that is why we sang the song “This is the way we wash our clothes so early Monday morning.” We always washed them early on Monday morning.
There is really something about heating with a wood stove though. Not only does it dry clothes fast but I enjoy the heat that comes from the stove. It seems different from the electric heat. I have a wood stove in my family room and I enjoy every day it is cold enough outside so I can use it. So, I keep some of my old ways alive around me.