Confessions of a Daddy Laundress

Posted November 14, 2012 by jimhigley

From the fun and foibles files of this Bobblehead Dad, I’m proud to be part of the new Clorox Bleach It Away program—celebrating those messy moments in life that come with kids, pets, houseguests and more. Clorox calls them “Bleachable Moments.” I call them a reality of life. I’ll be sharing of few of mine over the coming months and hope you’ll do the same by heading over to www.bleachitaway.com for a chance to win $15,000! You’ll find more details at the end of my bleachable, baseball moment with the boys!

I’m a baseball dad.

I’ve cheered my two sons through T-Ball, Little League, fall ball, travel ball, school teams and more. I’ve huddled with other parents in bleachers through snow and rain and roller-coaster temperatures as we cheered our kids—and each others—sliding into home plate, throwing a picture-perfect strike, or snagging a soaring hit to center field.

And, over the years, as my own boys skills have matured, I’ve managed to learn a thing or two myself.

I learned how to navigate the fine-line between cheering and embarrassing my kids. I’ve learned to always have a book to read when games are delayed or practices get extended. I’ve learned that sharing your blanket on the bleachers makes you very, very popular. I’ve learned that players, no matter what their age, like it when parents bring snacks for post-game celebrations or comforting. I’ve learned the value of a cooler full of ice, a first aid kit, sunscreen and an assortment of snacks for everyone.

And I’ve also learned that keeping a baseball uniform spic and span is next to impossible.

Clay, dirt, grass and—sometimes—blood, are not a baseball parent’s friend.

Which leads me to one other thing I learned: You never, never want to be the parent of the player who is sentenced to showing up game-after-game with permanent dirt stains on their knees. Or a grass tattoo on their hip.

This, as every baseball parent knows, brings “Airing Your Dirty Laundry in Public” to a new, unacceptable level.

Back in my rookie-dad years, when I was a young parent learning the ins-and-outs of domestic tasks, I certainly didn’t want to be known as the dad who couldn’t keep his kids’ jerseys clean.

So I had what I thought was a winning game plan: I’d start each season with about six pairs of pants.

It was a deep bench of reserves.

New, sparkly clean pants waiting to be called up from the minors when it came time to retire the current pair of clay-stained, polyester pinstripes.

Clever, huh?

Effective? Maybe.

Expensive? VERY!

Thank goodness for my bleacher buddy parents who helped set me straight. They gave me my first lesson on laundry basics after I confessed my strategy one day while huddled under shared umbrellas watching our kids, inning-by-inning, morph into muddy messes.

That was the day I learned about the wonderful world of presoaking, pretreating, and a variety of laundry world options from the friendly folks at Clorox.

Who would have known that Clorox was good for a whole lot more than the white sheets I remember my mother bleaching when I was a young little leaguer myself.

A Daddy Laundress lesson for the books.

And that, from my dad-view in the stands, is a homerun every day.

So what’s your Bleachable Moment? Share yours at www.bleachitaway.com for a chance to win $15,000 and more!  Each day, a featured spotlight will be awarded a $50 gift card.  Everyone who submits their moment will instantly receive a coupon for $.50 off any bottle of Clorox® Regular-Bleach via email for the first moment they submit.    

My Bleachable Moment is embarrassingly true—and I’ve been compensated by The Clorox Company to share my messy moment as part of their Bleach it Away Program.