When YOU are the dishwasher

retrochick.JPGIvy says:

We got a good question from the comments:

The dishes, we do not have a dishwasher, so should you wait till you have a stack or do them right a way and feel like you are always doing dishes?

When I was in college, I lived in the sweetest little 2 bedroom cottage. It had hardwood floors and was clean and bright. It also had no dishwasher and only 2 tiny closets. The closets are a rant for another day entirely, but I wanted to speak about the no dishwasher situation.

It was a situation we struggled with mightily. Nobody WANTED to do the dishes, so they often stacked up and became a nightmare to wash with stuck on food bits and all. When I suggested we rinse off the dishes and set them aside to be washed in the evening, my roomie complained that we might as well wash the dishes the minute we brought them into the kitchen.

Finally, we decided to skip eating at home and go out to eat all the time. Just kidding. We started using a soap filled dish scrubber. By using that, we could wash dishes quickly and with a minimum of fuss. The best part was, nobody had an excuse as to why their dishes weren’t done, so it cut down on fights about doing the dishes exponentially.

So, if everyone in your house is old enough to do their own dishes, that’s the route I’d go. If not, I’d still wash dishes after every meal. I think when you have a whole bunch of dishes to do all at once, it becomes easier to procrastinate and you end up with a ton of dishes.


  1. Keter on September 17, 2007 at 9:48 pm

    Even though I have a dishwasher now, I still use a trick I learned back when I didn’t…any dish that can’t go in the dishwasher or needs more attention than the dishwasher can give it goes in a sink full of sudsy water. After dinner, anything in there gets washed. The sudsy water keeps the dishes from drying up, smelling, or attracting bugs/vermin while they wait to be washed. If you have only one sink bowl, use a bucket with a lid…I used to use a big plastic container like a sweater box. If you have a pot that takes up the entire sink, either use it for your suds bucket or wash it right away…it will get in the way for everything else you need to do in the sink.

  2. Margo on September 16, 2007 at 7:09 pm

    We don’t have a dishwasher. This can be a struggle in our house! We tend to let them pile up until the end of the day, but rarely go to bed with dishes in the sink. My husband and I usually kind of do them together – it’s a good feeling of partnership and sometimes we talk too. I’ve never been a fan of the little handheld soap sponges – I’ve bought two that were awkward to use. Do you have one or a style to recommend??

  3. Jasi on September 15, 2007 at 9:37 pm

    Bought a cute black dishpan from the dollar store. I kept it beneath the sink. Every dish from the day goes in. At the end of the day I fill with soapy warm water, let soak and wash right before bed. Wake up to a clean sink and keep it that way… all day long.

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