Thursday, March 15, 2012

   We just pulled out our dishwasher.  Last year our 15 year old dishwasher died, and a part of me was really excited. Now I could get a new (actually used from Craigslist) stainless steel dishwasher to match my "fancy" new (well, another used Craigslist purchase) stainless steel refrigerator.  It turs out that the beautiful on the outside dishwasher was not the best working on the inside!  It constantly left this film on our glassware, which we ended up having to handwash anyway.
  That's not why we pulled it out though.  This last year we (our family) has changed a lot.  We've always been a bit weird, and we have been changing slowly and organically over the last 6 years.  But we started to realize how much easier it was to just wash our dishes and put them away.  Not only did we feel more "green,"  since we weren't  using the electricity and water to run our dishwasher for its hour or so cycle, but it was so nice not to wake up to a full load of dishes to put away while I was trying to make breakfast AND pack a lunch for my husband.  So we stopped using it.  We use a minimal amount of water, some elbow grease, and our dishes are cleaner than ever.  but the best part of washing all of our dishes by hand is the sense of community and relationship it is building.  Before, after we had loaded our dishwasher with all of our plates, silverware, and glassware, we just had a few pots and pans to wash which I just left out to dry in the sink.  Now, since we have a pile of dishes from of dishes from the eight of us, as well as our pots and pans, it is no longer a one person job.  One person needs to wash and another dries and puts the dishes away.  It has become a wonderful, and rare, time for my husband and I to talk without  my children listening in and piping up.  Or my two oldest children laugh and tell crazy jokes or make up silly songs as they wash and dry together.  It also can become a special time between a parent and one child, which doesn't happen often in our large family.  However it works out, washing and drying dishes becomes a special time for building relationships instead of just a dull chore.  Who would have thought?
     So we pulled out the dishwasher, gave it away to some friends who needed one, and replaced it with much needed drawers for storing my grains, rice, and dried beans!  Its a win, win situation!

1 comment:

  1. Awesome, I love love the no dishwasher idea and particularly the old-time tradition of washing and drying dishes together - it reminds me of my grandma!! I used to resent being the one left to do the MANY dishes after family dinners while all of the other lazy family members lounged around, but now I look back fondly on the many many times my grandma and I washed and dried dishes together. This crazy (lol) idea of not having a dishwasher has got me thinking of the flour sack drying towels my grandma had. They were super thin and cute, with little embroidered designs.