One of my most favorite summertime activities is hanging clothes out to dry in the summer sun. A bunch of years ago The Boy got me the best Mother's Day gift.. an umbrella style clothes dryer. I've blogged about it here, and you can read about my OCD clothes hanging rituals. Today was the second time this year I've been able to hang out the clothes which is sad testament to how busy and crazy it's been, as it's almost the end of June.
As I hung out her jeans (that can't possibly fit her, look how big they are! And why are there jeans in this basket? I don't hang jeans out on the line!), and his shirt from archery this winter (wonder where that hole came from in the bottom.. his tool knife that he's been whittling sticks with?)... her soccer shirt (when she was number 8 the second year.. she loves number 8) and his favorite Star Wars shirt that doesn't really fit him anymore but he doesn't want to give up yet (I still remember his first Star Wars Tee Shirt that fit him for 5 years because it was huge when he got it).. I was brought back to the summer Ms. Thang was born.
We had an apartment in Manchester and were living in the Mill Yard. Our apartment was on the third floor of a hot brick building that used to house mill workers. We had a small porch off of our bedroom, and I rigged up a clothes line that we used to dry clothes on. Our apartment complex had paid washers and dryers, and we were young and poor and anything that could save a buck was a plus in our book. My mother never hung clothes out to dry, and I loved the whole idea of it.
I remember how tiny her clothes were, and how MANY items I could cram onto the line. I remember how tickled I would get seeing her little pink clothes hanging next to her brothers blue and black and red clothes that seemed SO big in comparison, even though he was only 2 and a half. The next summer her clothes were bigger, and so was she and I couldn't believe that my babies were growing up so fast.
Our next apartment didn't allow clothes lines, and I didn't have another one until we bought our house. The first year or two we lived here, I had a line strung up between some trees. The following year The Boy bought my umbrella dryer. As I stood out there in the warm sun this morning, I realized that it has been 10 years since I first hung clothes out to dry on the line. 10 years since that hot apartment up on the third floor that was warm even in the dead of winter. 10 years and my babies aren't so small anymore. Instead of tiny socks and onesies we have jeweled tank tops and capris. Instead of tank tops and shorts that match we have jeans and tee-shirts with obnoxious sayings (why do boys love those?). Ten years-that's a lot of laundry.