Wash Day was a big work day at the CPR section House . It started at 8:00am every Saturday morning . Our incentive , besides clean clothes , was going to the movies on Saturday afternoon after the last load was hung up on the clothesline. Movie time was 1:00pm. It was a tight window , but under Mum's tutelage , we made it most times.
Everyone woke up Saturday morning , stripped beds and gathered their dirty clothes. From the top of the stairs , we tossed the armfuls down the stairs into a huge pile at the bottom. When all was collected , Sis and I would descend to the fourth step , then leap into the huge mound .A pile of anything 'cushy' was always worth jumping into.
Washing was done in the back porch. But the all important key to successful laundry was the sorting . That was done on the kitchen floor.
Since everything was made of cotton or wool , the process was relatively uncomplicated .
The first sort was by colour: whites , reds , colours , darks .
Woolens were put into a separate pile no matter the colour .
Dad's work clothes also had separate treatment.
The second sort was to separate each of those piles into weight: heavy , medium and light.
The third sort was by amount.
If there was not enough laundry to make a load , the medium and light weight piles were combined .
If a pile contained too much , the pile was made into two smaller piles.
The fourth sort was by order of washing. Since the washer water always started with the hottest water possible , the laundry had to be separated into what piles were to be washed hot .
The other piles then were sectioned into medium heat ( second wash in the same water ) and cool ( third wash in the same water ).
Each pile ended in its temperature row , fully sorted , ready to wash .
Sis and I got so good at sorting , that the stage of gathering and sorting took no more than a half hour. We learned early that washing took a lot less time that way .