From BlogPics 2

“A Woman Ironing” by Edgar Degas

This afternoon/evening/night I’ve ironed 32 items, including the heirloom gown and slip Hazel will wear to be blessed tomorrow, some other smocked and heirloom dresses with puffed sleeves, some jumpers, some little-boy shirts, and so on. I’ve listened to most of the music to Mary Poppins, (and discovered, to my surprise, that the “Tuppence” song now makes me cry. Everything in The Sound of Music makes me cry, so I guess Julie Andrews’ voice in general is risky to my dry cheeks,) also listened to two episodes of The Moth, and one episode of This American Life. I have the window open to let in the cool night air but I still have sweat dripping down my back. I’m trying to decide whether to finish the 13-or-so remaining wrinkly items or call it a night. I’d guessed I had about 50 things in my ironing backlog, so I was pretty close.

I wish I didn’t a) love clothing made from natural fibers and b) prefer it be pressed and c) not want to pay someone a lot to do the ironing for me. This particular backlog of ironing does date back to at least halfway through my pregnancy with Hazel (I’ve done lots of as-needed ironing since then, and made a couple of interrupted attempts to master the pile, but never did conquer it,) so if I finish it all maybe it will stay mostly-done for a while. Maybe I’ll make everyone in the family wear t-shirts for a while, even to church. (Catch 22: If we don’t wear the pretty ironed clothing, my work goes to waste, and my children will outgrow the clothing before it’s worn.) Or maybe I’ll put War and Peace or The Old Testament on my iPod and continue to pay homage to the labors of generations of women gone by.

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7 Responses to Throwback

  1. Kristina says:

    I am a big fan of Wrinkle Release, and the dryer. 🙂

  2. Melanie J says:

    I love This American Life. I’m always so entertained in a way that I don’t find anywhere else.

  3. Zina, I love to iron and wish I were there to offer you some help in that regard. I don’t always get to my ironing, but I find it soothing and fulfilling to see a closet full of freshly pressed clothes. Has anybody tried out those new steam dryers????? I wonder how they work on natural fabrics.

    I, too, like to iron upstairs where there is plenty of good natural light. However, I do retreat to the basement when it gets hot and humid.

    Aunt Ginger

  4. zstitches says:

    I think yesterday I would have gladly accepted help! I didn’t finish the last of the pile, but today when I went into my sewing room (where I iron) it looked MUCH less buried than it had, and I bet I’ll get the rest done pretty soon. I do sometimes enjoy ironing, but my family’s grown to where it sometimes gets overwhelming. I think I need to get some of that Wrinkle Release stuff and try it out for some of the more casual stuff.

  5. i like the iron upstairs. i love this write up. i think i have to get any of the wrinkle release stuff.

  6. Jessie W. says:

    What a beautiful painting! But a tough job. Hope you share pictures of Hazel in the gown after the blessing. She is so beautiful and I bet she’s getting bigger by the day.

  7. debbie says:

    Explain to me again, what is this thing called “iron”?

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