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All wet

I really miss clothes dryers.  Of course, dryers are sold in France.  But, it is not something that has become a part of every household as it has in America. 

With three small children a dryer is almost a necessity.  In the summer clothes can dry quickly.  The problem is in our old apartment (like many in France) there is not a laundry room.  I dryed our clothes in our bedroom.  Because we have a big family the clothes were always drying in our bedroom.  In winter, it can take up to three days for the clothes to dry.  Let me tell you that is no fun with the amount of laundry I must do.  I do an average of one load per day. 

I like the fact that because dryers get so hot the clothes are in a sense cleaner.  Think about it…The clothes are actually sterilized.  :)  The clothes smell good and are soft and warm when you pull them out of the dryer.  If you don’t put too many clothes in the dryer and don’t wait too long to pull them out most of the clothes don’t need ironed.  Again, this is nice for me.  I don’t have alot of time to wait on clothes to dry and then on top of that iron them.

Another thing…

Why does it take FOREVER for the washing machines to wash clothes in France?  In America, it takes about 20 minutes.  The clothes come out just as clean as the clothes from washing machines in France. 

I miss doing laundry in the States.  It was much simpler and I was done with it all in one day.  Doing laundry in France is an ongoing chore.

I don’t care what Vilay says we are getting a dryer as soon as we can afford it!  I am not going to spend the next twenty years buried in my children’s laundry.  I’m not even going to think about how I will manage once I start working.

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  • Nicole February 14, 2007, 11:02 am

    You are so right – it’s such a pain to do laundry here. I finally got a dryer about 4 years ago and it’s better – but still. Anyway re your washing machine question – it’s because the washing machines here use much less water than at home, so the cycles have to be much longer to get the clothes clean.

  • barbara February 14, 2007, 11:05 am

    Bonjour , Pumpkin
    I can understand your need for a dryer. Whatever it takes to make life easier, when you have children. You deserve a dryer !
    I have been for years, drying the clothes the hard way. Houses are of course on the small size here. We have the room for a washer, but not for a dryer :( .
    When we really need a quick dry, there’s a laundromat nearby.
    Otherwise, the drying racks and radiators have to do.

    Bon courage with the laundry detail. Since I have no dryer, I end up having to iron men’s shirts.Grrr.

  • Doc February 14, 2007, 2:34 pm

    Back in the (relatively few) days before I caved in and bought a dryer I used a lot of little racks that hooked onto the radiators–clothes dried faster and the house didn’t dry out as bad in the winter. I’ve still got ’em floating around, so if you’re interested, I can pass them along to you.

    BTW welcome back

  • Jube February 14, 2007, 3:23 pm

    A dryer may make you life a little bit easier, but keep in mind that it will also make your ecological footprint bigger.

    http://www.earthday.net/footprint/index.asp

  • kim February 14, 2007, 3:36 pm

    I don’t wash my kids clothes everyday, If they have just worn them once, and there is no visible dirt, I make them recycle them for another day (not the next)…must be my german heritage, where that came from.:)

    I guess though with little kids, keeping them clean is a lot harder! I’ll send you a tide to go stick:)

    K

  • Cathy Y. February 14, 2007, 8:20 pm

    Pumpkin, I can really relate from when we were traveling in Europe. Not only that but at the hotels in Europe, none of them (even the big ones) have a coin-operated laundry room like a lot of the ones in the States have. If they do, I haven’t found them yet. I have literally washed clothes in the bathtub, wrung them out, and hung them to dry in European hotels, to avoid the expensive laundry sendout price (gee, I send something out more than twice and you could probably BUY the item yourself again!!)

    Then the ironing, oh my! Here in the States I have a rack in my laundry room. I pull stuff out of the dryer and hang it up immediately. Almost no ironing. I had a period of time when I had to hang clothes here in the States when my dryer was broken. Hate that ironing.

    I agree about the laundry machines being slower. I have one of the new front-loading machines here that is actually more similar to a European machine. They are becoming very popular in the States now. They use less water and are easier on your clothes. However, they do take longer. Most of my loads take more than 45 mins. However, my machine is very large and is more like a double or triple-loader at a laundromat, so I don’t notice the increase in time.

    Have you considered using a hair blow dryer and aiming it at your clothes for a while to help them dry faster in the winter? I used one of those we had brought with us when I was hand washing in the hotel. Might run your electricity bill up, though. Just a thought.

  • Alison February 14, 2007, 8:34 pm

    Washing machines in France also heat the water, they don’t take it directly from the hot water tank, so that adds to the time, too.

    Before I had a dryer over there, I would hang the clothes on one of those tower-like racks, set it near a radiator, then hang a sheet over top to trap the hot air near the clothes. It cut way down on the drying time!

    Anyway…I feel your pain.

  • Catherine February 14, 2007, 8:35 pm

    Hi pumpkin,

    I definitely don’t miss French washers and dryers! Here is a secret though: French chidren don’t change their clothes every day. They wear the same outfits two or three days in a row. It’s a big cultural difference…

  • christina February 14, 2007, 9:58 pm

    Definitely get a dryer ASAP. It’s so much nicer. German washing machines also takes ages – mine takes an hour on the fast cycle and 1 1/2 hours on the normal cycle.

  • Julie February 15, 2007, 6:17 am

    Good for you! I love that, “I will not be buried in my children’s laundry!”

  • Pumpkin February 15, 2007, 9:10 am

    Doc, When we find an apartment I will take you up on that if you really don’t need them.

    Thanks for all the good suggestions, I will be trying each and every one of them!

    Jube, I know it is not good. Now, you made me feel guilty. However, I still would like to have one for when I just don’t have the time or can’t stand the clothes hanging all over one day more. :p

  • Doc February 16, 2007, 1:56 pm

    Pumpkin, I’m trying to find an excuse not to chuck them out the door! We’ve got so little space and the monkeys seem to think they’re great toys. If you could use them, I’d be more than happy to send them off to a new home. Just e-mail me an address when you get settled.

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