I try to be green, but I’m a little lazy – I mean busy. In spite of my sloth, one of the ways I choose to conserve energy is restricting my use of the clothes dryer.

Hanging clothes out to dry is not a novel concept. This was a regular routine in my childhood home. When our family moved from Chicago to Arizona we left a few appliances behind. One of the items was the clothes dryer. My father promised to replace the appliance when he found employment. In the meantime mom could use the clothes line in the backyard. Dad found work, but the dryer never materialized. Mom said she preferred using the clothes line.

I, on the other hand, enjoy my creature comforts. But my environmentally-conscious spouse, CB, thinks clothes dryers are energy hogs. At first, the suggestion was to take the items that hold the most moisture (towels and jeans) and find a place in the garage for them to hang out. I had shirts hanging (and dropping) from hangers, jeans lopped over the wooden kayak in the garage, and socks dripping all over the place. Finally, I had it. I told CB that if I was going to hang laundry out to dry, I needed a clothes line.

Before I could say, Maytag, CB installed a retractable clothes line. Begrudgingly I hung out the laundry. Then a strange thing happened. I came to enjoy it. I heard the birds chirp and caught a glimpse of fluffy clouds. As I hooked the clothes on the line I remembered how my mom taught me to hang things up so it wouldn't put clothes pin creases in the clothes. I also had a flashback when I was a young mother hanging out baby shirts, dresses and socks.

I used cloth diapers for my first daughter, Alicia. When I hung out her diapers I found it refreshing to watch the white rectangles waft in the breeze. It was soothing to pin diaper after diaper on the line and not have to worry about anything - except maybe a dust storm. Who
wants dusty diapers? But that was rarely an issue. A couple of hours later it would be time to gather up the clothes. Sometimes I would put Alicia in the laundry basket and let the diapers fall around her. At times she would play peek a boo. Other times she would just toddle around in the grass while I hung out the next batch of clothes.

Now my laundry items have changed. I smile as I straighten out the sleeve of one of CB's favorite shirts. Next, I match the socks and I think about my deceased parents. It's been almost 60 years since they moved the family out west. In their minds, Arizona was the perfect place to live because their children could play outside and enjoy fresh air and sunshine all year round.

Ironically, this is true when I hang out the clothes. For a few minutes I can enjoy the sun, the breeze and I have the satisfaction of making a greener choice. I guess mom knew what she was doing after all."

Author's Bio: 

Sally Marks is a motivational speaker, author, screenwriter and public relations professional. Visit her website, https://markspublicrelations.wixsite.com/sallymarks