The dishes experiment

What is the function of a dishwasher? To clean the dishes. However, when your counters seem to be a permanent home for soiled dishes, something needs to change.

As you may have noticed from a previous post, our sink area tends to get a little cluttered:

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This is a continual problem. Even though we have a dishwasher, dirty dishes seem to inhabit our counter on a regular basis. And I do try to keep up with the mess, but it always seems to get the better of me.

A few months ago our dishwasher bit the dust. That’s actually the second dishwasher we have gone through since we moved in. It would be great just to get a whole new set of appliances, but that isn’t a financially responsible option right now.

As I was floundering amidst the dirty dishes last week I remembered that the kitchen seemed to stay much cleaner when the dishwasher was gone. I don’t think this is as counterintuitive as it sounds. When there was no dishwasher, I was forced to clean as I went otherwise there would be a huge pile of dishes at the end of the day. There is still a huge pile of dishes at the end of the day, despite the dishwasher.

Dishwashers present unique problems. I found myself planning meals around what dishes would fit into the dishwasher. Darren and I would differ in our dishwasher strategy. I would hold off loading until we had a full load worth of dishes, while Darren would put the dishes in and then repack at the end of the day. I would then feel hesitant about loading things in the wrong place because Darren usually does the dishes at night while I take care of my work. So, you see, it isn’t as simple as just loading the dishwasher, never mind making sure that we have the time to unload it every morning.

So here is the experiment. I am going to try hand washing dishes during the day for one week. The goal is to get all the dirty dishes off of the counter, especially so that I am not making dinner in the middle of a disaster area. I took this for a test run on the weekend as we were packing to head out to Chilliwack to see my parents and it worked pretty well. So, next Wednesday I will tell you how it went. I hope it works because, frankly, I am really sick of a messy kitchen and trying to accommodate the dishwasher during the day is not working.

 

UPDATE:

Wednesday went pretty well.  I washed dishes during the day and then we loaded the supper dishes into the dishwasher this evening.  Clean up went really quickly tonight, which frees up time for Darren and I to finish watching a movie together this evening after the kids are in bed.  Now just to get them into bed…

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