Just found out today that Conor has a Orchestra concert tomorrow night.
So he comes up from the basement and brings me a white cotton dress shirt.
Conor: "Mama I know you said don't wait til the last minute to ask you but I didn't know til today can
you iron my "Orkystra" ( he sounds like such a little Okie sometimes) shirt we are having the
Christmas Concert tomorrow night since we didn't get to have it because of the ice storm please could
Me: "Sure honey I'll do it right now."
Some people would have been annoyed or downright mad. Some people HATE to iron.
Not me. I have always liked to iron. Well as long as its not hot I don't mind.
I love the smell of the hot steam and starch and cotton. The way the wrinkles magically disappear. The
way the fabric looks so crisp and nice afterwards.
When I iron I'm hyper focused on what I'm doing.
Its calming to just concentrate on pulling the fabric, setting the pleat, pressing the collar and sleeves.
While I ironed I thought about when I was a bitty girl maybe 4 years old, watching my 13 year old
Aunt Sherrie when she would iron. She would get out the wooden ironing board and the pop bottle
with the metal sprinkler on top and fill it with starch water. Then plug in this massive steel iron with a
big thick fabric cord, sprinkle whatever she was ironing with the bottle and just zip along it would be
finished in minutes. Onto the hanger and onto the next piece. She would sing along with the radio and
sometimes stop to wipe her forehead off using those heavy irons created allot of heat. If it was Saturday
she would have rollers in her hair ( Saturday was hair wash day) and her little Bermuda shorts on with
her keds, and American Bandstand on the TV at noon, Saturday was usually when there would be a
big stack of laundry, my Grampa's work shirts and pants, my Grandma's cotton blouses, my little
clothes. So she'd get to one of my little dresses and when she was done she'd pop it out and say "Here's
the Suzies!" and smile at me, I always thought that was how she said "I love you."
I have it much easier with my modern little steam iron and lightwieght ironing board and canned spray
starch. But every time I iron, as I smooth those wrinkles I think of my Aunt Sherrie and remember
that's how you say "I love you."