After folding a load of laundry, I match up the socks in the load and make a pile of the strays. At the end of laundry day (all days are laundry days here!), I toss the mate-less socks into a red basket. When the basket begins to overflow, the socks are sorted out and matched.
Last week, Mike kept asking for clean socks. Our laundry hamper was empty and there were no pairs in the red basket, so we asked various children about borrowing dad's socks. No one confessed. The children cleaned under their beds and I did laundry, but still no dad socks. My red stray-sock basket was piled high and everyone was complaining about a lack of socks.
The red basket was sorted out into piles for each person. Mike had 4 unmatched socks. Kate had 14, Steve and Joe each had 6, Amy had 2, and I had 1. Paige and Allie had 25 unmatched socks! That seems like a lot until Madelyn's stray socks were counted.....29!!!
I'm refusing to purchase anyone new socks until some of these missing socks are located. We usually get all the children new socks for Christmas, but I still want these loose socks made into pairs.
Today, I looked at Paige, Allie and Madelyn's feet. There were all wearing mismatched socks. On purpose. It's fashionable. I'm going to mix up their socks on purpose now and make pairs out of whatever I grab first. No more carefully matching the elastic on two slightly different pairs of white socks. If they belong to someone they will now be considered a pair. I can't wait to see how Madelyn will look wearing argyle knee socks with polka-dot anklets!