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June 16, 2010

Like Suds Through the Dishwasher, So are the Days of Our Lives

The first house Hubby and I owned didn’t have a dishwasher. It was an older home, and while I thought about it occasionally, I would not have wanted to sacrifice the limited cabinet space to install such a big appliance. Further, Hamburger Helper-type meals really only dirtied one pan, and I am ashamed to say we used a lot of paper plates. Not having a dishwasher really wasn’t a big deal.

Our next house had a dishwasher, and while my culinary skills began to grow, I loathe to say that we still used a lot of paper plates. We rarely ever used the dishwasher – maybe during the holidays or when we had guests – because it seemed like it would take a week for us to fill it up.

Finally by the time we moved into our third house, three years into our marriage, our dishwasher began to see some action. We became more cognizant of the environment, so we curbed our paper plate usage, and I began to experiment cooking more from scratch. We probably ran the dishwasher two or three times a week.

This trend continued into our current house…until the girls were born.

There was probably a period of a few weeks when we used the dishwasher very seldom. When the girls first came home from the hospital, our neighbors and friends kept us fed for a couple of weeks, and then we relied on take-out…and we even succumbed to using paper plates and cups for a while (although the images of dying polar bears did little for my post-partum hormones).

These days, we run the dishwasher once a day, and sometimes twice. And it’s somehow always chock-full o’ dirty dishes. (And if dishwasher-loading were an Olympic sport, I think I would be a serious contender. [Hey, if curling is a sport, this could be, too, right?!])

I cook…a lot. We don’t eat out nearly as often as we once did, so I try to keep our taste buds entertained with a variety of cuisine. My ultimate goal is for the girls to eat what we eat, which they do roughly one meal a day, but I’m still cooking a lot of additional dishes – mainly different kinds of vegetables – for them. Add eight sippy cups a day to the mix, instead of hand-washed bottles (cue the choir of angels…hallelujah!), and that’s a pretty full load (or two).

I am proud to report that our paper plate allowance has been nil over the past 15 or so months. I wish I could say the same for our paper towel allowance…but all this eating is messy!

8 comments:

Deanna said...

We use the dishwashwer a lot more since our girls came along too! Lately, they like to push the buttons on the front, so I have to leave the door slightly open or we will wash the same load 4 or 5 times!

Quadmama said...

Hubby and I were the same way... we ran our dishwasher two or three times a week. Now it's a nightly ritual. When we go to bed the dishwasher gets turned on... and it's always full.

The Mommy said...

I've always been a homemade-food-made-from-scratch kinda gal so we've always used the dishwasher and now more so because I love cooking and serving fresh stuff everyday for the kiddies:)

Mohini said...

I would be serious competition at the olympics dishwasher-loading competition. Also, I'll load any number of sippy cups a day than hand-wash and sterilize bottles. *shudder*

reanbean said...

We probably ran our dishwasher once or twice a week before kids, and now we run it every day or at least every other day. We rarely eat out, and don't use any disposable plates or flatware, so it all adds up pretty quickly. I think I'd be pretty unhappy if our dishwasher broke. Of course, I could always wash by hand (like I did back in our apartment days), but that just seems silly now. :o)

Rebecca said...

I could not live without paper towels...I read a blog one time and they challenged mothers to go for a week without using paper towels. There was no way...I stood in the middle of the kitchen, holding a dish towel, drooling...it was bad. It's amazing how many dishes I go through in a given day and we're still cleaning dishes by hand at the end of the night...I refuse to run it twice!

Missy (Two Little Monkeys) said...

One of my favorite appliances is my dishwasher. I went without mine for a few weeks (it broke and we had to replace it) and Oh how I missed it. : )

strongblonde said...

i can't wait until we have no more hand washed bottles :)

i also use a million (it seems) paper towels a day!!!! we only run the dishwasher every other day, but that still seems like a lot!!!