Lesson Learned: The Squishy Pillow

If carefully planned and executed, I can get both boys down for a nap at the same time. Today; execution complete. I had big plans for these 2 hours -- do laundry, check email, straighten the house, send a card, call C's school, finish some projects and maybe a quick minute an hour on Pinterest.

Went to the start the laundry and was greeted with this:
Do you see all those little white dots? Those are the beads from a pillow that Ex. plo. ded. Exploded! Millions of little white pieces ALL over the boys' clothes. And to boot, this was one of those loads where I shoved in way more than I should have, and probably put in things (like said pillow) that I shouldn't have.

I took a deep breath.

Walked upstairs.

Considered throwing all the clothes away and getting a new washer.

Knew that was irrational so considered taking a nap and forgetting this ever happened.

Felt guilty taking a nap, so got a diet coke, said farewell to my Big Plans, took another deep breath, grabbed a trash bag, and attempted to save clothes and washer.

Cleaning method of choice: VIGOROUS shaking. It took forever, but slowly I built my pile of clean, bead-free clothing. Clothes with pockets were the worst! I was never a fan of shorts with fake-looking pockets until today.
In the end there was only one casualty -- a pair of mesh shorts that sucked thousands of beads into it's interior lining and wouldn't release them no matter how vigorous my shaking.

As for the washer, I used my dust buster to suck up all beads in sight. I then ran it through an empty cycle and I'm pretty sure it's ok. We'll find out during the next load of laundry.

Lesson Learned: Don't wash squishy pillows that are filled with white beads. They may explode.


  1. I'm dying. Worst naptime ever! And I thought the girl who rang my doorbell trying to sell me $500 worth of educational materials sucking up my naptime was bad. It's a sacred, sacred time. Pillows and cold-calling college students should know that!

  2. I just received a call from my home because I did the exact same thing. Was the machine still working? I am at work and just anxious to get home to see if its salvageable. Another concern I have is the pipes in the long run.

    1. Hi Hamilton! It's been over a year and we haven't had any issues with the washer or pipes. Hopefully everything turned out ok for you!

  3. I just received a call from my home because I did the exact same thing. Was the machine still working? I am at work and just anxious to get home to see if its salvageable. Another concern I have is the pipes in the long run.

  4. AnonymousJune 28, 2014

    This happened to me as well last week. Did everything that Katie did to solve the immediately problem.
    Buuuuut (yes, there's a but), the worst part is that I can't say that it's better now, unfortunately.
    Beads are still hiding in the washing machine after multuple washes.
    Must Shake, Shake, Shake each load after they come out of the wash!
    Has anyone had experience in taking out the basin of the washer and seeing what's underneath. These beads are like roaches waiting for me ...

    1. Isn't this the worst EVER!?!! If I am remembering correctly, we had a few loads after the incident where beads were still surfacing. BUt eventually they were all gone. Thankfully we never experiences any problems with the washer or the pipes. I hope everything works out for you!

  5. Squish pillows can be washed in a machine if needed, it just needs to be done carefully. Each squish pillow to be washed needs to be first placed inside either a tied pillow case or such (I used some zippered pillow case covers), and then make sure to use cold water for both wash and rinse and, most importantly, make sure that it is set to the gentle/delicate cycle. Then you'll want to air dry the pillow, don't put them in the dryer. Mine took about 2 days to feel fully dry all the way through.

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