One chore I absolutely hate is switching my clothes every season. You know what I mean—packing away the bathing suits, tee shirts, shorts, etc. in October and then packing away the sweaters, boots, coats, etc. in April.
Since our house is small, we don’t have an extra room to store our clothes in, so they get stowed away in the attic. I dread this every year. It’s drudgery at its worst. But when we get those balmy April days when it hits 90 degrees and all I have in my closet are sweaters and hoodies, it’s time to haul down the summer stuff.
George is neat about doing this. His clothes are all folded neatly, stacked nicely in one or two big trash bags and labeled with “Dad—Summer Clothes,” or something like that. (Note: it’s just the two of us living at home now, so I don’t quite understand why labeling his stuff ‘Dad’ is necessary. Chances are excellent that I won’t think his plaid bathing trunks are mine.)
Me, not so much. I wrench open my dresser drawers, grab fistfuls of summer clothes and throw them into an impressive pile on the floor. Same with the closet. Sweaters, long pants, sweats, hoodies, winter bathrobes—on the floor. This clothes mountain scares our dog Mojo, so he usually hangs out elsewhere until I’m done.
I grab a large construction bag, grab the clothes and stuff them in as tightly as I can. No order, no logic, no labels, just jam them in bags and close them up. They are certainly not folded neatly. I average three or more bags every season. Heavy bags.
Then poor George has to drag them up to the attic, all the while saying, “Would it kill you to sort this stuff out before you pack it away? You have bathing suits from our honeymoon in here, for crying out loud.” (Our honeymoon was 37 years ago, in case you’re wondering, and not that it’s any of your business, but no, they don’t fit me anymore.)
Then I begin the dreaded task of trying the summer stuff on to make sure it didn’t shrink in the attic over the past year. This is when Mojo really hides from me. Come to think of it, George is usually absent for this activity as well.
I tend to let out random screams or yells (or expletives) when the white capris that I loved and wore to death the year before are a little snug.
Or my favorite bathing suit experiences a bit of overflow at the top. Or the cute tee shirt that I loved so much a couple of summers ago lost weight and is now size-appropriate for a small child.
These items usually get pitched across the room to fall into a pile, where I end up bagging them and relegating them to the attic and hoping that next year they will miraculously fit again.
The articles of clothing that make the cut get washed and put away in my dresser and closet. And here’s the thing: I’m 60. My memory is not as sharp as it used to be. I don’t always remember every article of clothing I have from one season to the next.
So frequently I pull out a summer top and admire it, saying to George, “Wow, I really like this.”
George replies, “You should like it. You bought it last summer.”
Or I hold up a lovely floral dress and say, “Where did I get this and where did I wear it?” (George always remembers. He informs me that I wore it to a bridal shower four years ago. Hmmm. I don’t remember that shower. Wonder what I gave as a gift to the bride.)
So really, I guess I need to think positive about this seasonal clothes-switching. It’s like birthday, Christmas and Mother’s Day all rolled into one, if you think about it. All these wonderful “new” clothes!
Of course, the way things usually go for me, the second the last article of summer clothing is put away in the closet, the temperatures drop down to the 40s for two weeks and we have frost warnings every night.