Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Well, I'll BE...

Last weekend, I was on my last load of laundry...and this is what greeted me in the dryer:

Purple streaks. Everywhere. And...

... purple splotches all. over. everything.

"DID YOU LEAVE A BALLPOINT PEN IN YOUR POCKET OR SOMETHING???!!!"

"No, what are you talking about?"

"Look."

To add insult to injury, about 3/4 of the clothes in that particular load was $120 WORTH OF BRAND NEW, NEVER BEEN WORN, I JUST PULLED THE TAGS OFF AND WAS WASHING IT FOR THE FIRST TIME clothes.

Once I had pulled everything out, I found a key piece of evidence:

A small remnant of purple CRAYON.

The only thing I can think of is that Henry threw this crayon into the laundry basket and as I scooped everything into the washer and then into the dryer, I never came across it. I check pockets religiously since Andy has a habit of leaving chapstick in his pockets...so I know it wasn't in any pockets (not that there was very much in the way of WORN clothing anyway).

Well, this little purple crayon made it unscathed through the cold wash, but melted into everything in the dryer.

I couldn't even get mad. I mean, it was frustrating, but it's a parental rite of passage. I think.

"Just throw it all away. I don't even want to look at it, or I'll just get mad."

But, I couldn't just do that. So I went to my trusty friend Mr. Google. "How to get rid of melted crayon on clothes".

Step 1: spray WD-40 on spots. Let sit for an hour or more.

Step 2: Soak the clothes in the bathtub in HOT water for at least an hour.

Step 3: Scrub spots.

Step 4: Wash in hot water with detergent and vinegar.

Step 5: Repeat Step 4 until WD-40 smell is gone.

Step 6: Clean out the dryer using a magic eraser.

This sounded completely absurd. Why on earth would this work??? I almost didn't do it thinking it was just too stupid.

Being pregnant and the fact that there were 100's of little spots, I skipped Step 3. I would have been there forever and you'd be surprised at the simple tasks that stress your abdominals. Besides, the one spot I tried didn't so much as smear. I almost gave up right then. This wasn't working...

After the first wash, MOST of the purple spots were gone (sans scrubbing).

My jaw dropped. I was SHOCKED.

So, I enlisted Andy's help to scrub the few remaining spots with more WD-40 and an old toothbrush.

I am happy to report that the only casualty in the ENTIRE LOAD OF LAUNDRY is a (brand new) pair of swim trunks...my guess is that it is because of the type of material?

But every. single. thing. came clean. Not a spot.

I am on the third wash cycle and the WD-40 smell is going away slowly. It may take 1 or 2 more before it is completely gone.

So, moral of the story: take out laundry piece by piece in case a rogue crayon is snuggled up in the layers. and ALWAYS google before you throw away!

5 comments:

Kristen said...

we've done that with blue permanent marker. there are still marks in the dryer.

Mama Mote said...

Good for you, Jeannett. Even though it took effort on your part, you were able to save your new clothes. I hate when things like this happen. Hope you are doing well with your pregnancy. I'm trying to keep up.

Jacquelyn said...

Good to know!!! BTW do you know what WD-40 stands for? Water Displacement test 40 ... can't imagine why it works to remove crayon. I'll be puzzling over that all day.

Jeannett Gibson said...

I didn't know what the WD stood for, but I agree...I couldn't figure out why on EARTH it would pull out crayon...the ONLY thing I can think of is that it loosens up the waxy stuff enough to break away from the cotton??? Even Andy is stumped. Which is the reason I almost didn't even bother...it just didn't make sense that it would work!

Jacquelyn said...

Nerd alert!! I think I figured it out. Even though WD-40 contains mineral oil, it also contains Dimethyle Naphthalene which is a solvent so that is probably why it could help break up the wax.