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11 November 2009

Big changes at the kitchen sink

I've come full circle. I started off my dish cleaning duties as a young girl when my sister and I had to dry when mum washed up. I grew up doing that and now I recall it fondly as a time of family conversations, pushing my sister (she reads my blog and she'll probably add more to that) and sometimes, only sometimes, pretending to be sick to get out of wiping up. It's a nice memory to have. So now I'm back at the sink, this time as the washer, with no dryers and no electric dishwasher. That is sitting outside the back door waiting to be sold. It feels good to have made the decision to get rid of it - yet another thing we've simplified.

Position vacant: where the dishwasher once stood. This space is waiting patiently for Hanno to be well enough to make some shelves. I will make a little curtain to cover it and it will hold some of my recycled jars and bottles.

When my mother did the washing up, although I remember a bar of yellow laundry soap being there over the years, she used detergent probably from the mid-1950s. So from then until now, I've usually used detergent. In the past couple of years, I've had periods when I used my homemade soap, but there was always a bottle of detergent around. We still have a couple of bottles of detergent in the cupboard and I will use them, but when they're gone, that's it - we are a detergent-free zone.

You need to use more liquid soap than you would with a concentrated detergent. I'm using about two tablespoons of soap in my washing up sink. I'm also equipped with two washing racks, a draining board on which one of them sits (generally we only have enough for one drainer), a handmade dishcloth, a cotton washing up mop and some steel wool. I usually use one of those steel wire scrubbers that lasts me at least three months, with disinfecting every so often. But Hanno bought steel wool recently, so I'm using that. I don't like it, although it does a good job.

Liquid soap just added.

The warm water starts off with a lather when the soap is added but the bubbles don't last as long as detergent bubbles do. We've been scammed into thinking - both with washing dishes and clothes - that we need bubbles. It's not so, bubbles do nothing. I'm very happy with the dishes washed with this liquid soap. They are as clean as when washed with detergent, the time I spend washing up is the same but I'm much happier because I'm not using petro-chemicals. I always had a niggling doubt that there was a residue on the plates and cups, even though I rinse them well.

At the end of the washing - dirty water and few bubbles.

This soap may also be used as a handwash - you can dilute it 20 percent soap to 80 percent water and store it in a dispenser. I've washed pure wool with it and was very happy with the result. I've washed my hair with it and it was shiny and soft and, just like with homemade hard soap, didn't need hair conditioner. You can use it as a shaving soap - it's mild and contains glycerin so it leaves the skin smooth. Rubbing a few drops of this soap into a stain and putting it in with the normal wash usually removes the stain. It makes an excellent natural horticultural soap that will help control aphids, mealybugs, whitefly, scale and red spider mites. It doesn't kill them as a poison would, it suffocates them.

I foresee a time when I will be washing up with my daughters-in-law drying for me, all of us talking about our lives while the menfolk are outside picking vegetables to be taken home. Maybe over the years, smaller drying hands will be added to this productive group. :- ) It's a fond and comfortable vision I have made just out of this one adjustment to our lives, but standing at the sink with my hands in warm water makes for those tender scenes in my head. It seems like such a good idea to me.

I have no problem using borax but I know there are some who doubt whether it is a good idea. When I was growing up it was quite common to use borax eye wash, and it is still a recommended homoeopathic treatment. Here is some extra information about it.
Borax information
Green Living
How borax works


  1. What a wonderful idea to your rid your home of your dishwasher. I loathe dishwashers, much preferring the relaxing ritual of washing and drying dishes by hand. It's so much more satisfying. You will have to show us your completed shelves when they have been constructed.
    Tracy (Brisbane)

  2. Congratulations on your loss, Rhonda! I also grew up with the nightly ritual of "doing the dishes". Dad always washed, the children dried, my mother being the chief cook and therefore desrving a rest. At 79, he is still in charge of this and the habit of grabbing a tea towel and joining in when visiting, is overwhelming.There have been so many conversations over the years in this humble family ritual. I have never had a dishwasher, and have never wanted one, despite having a housefull of children. Even if no-one helps, it is a lovely time for meditating, looking out the window, enjoying the feeling of creating order-one of my favourite chores!And environmentally, I have never understood how a dishwasher made sense.Well done!

  3. Hi Rhonda. Some months ago I made a deliberate decision not to use the dishwasher to see how the water and power bills would be affected. It takes so much less time than the palaver of the dishwasher! And I like the feeling that dirty dishes aren't sitting around behind a door.

  4. Hi Rhonda,
    I wanted to pass this bit of info on - I grew some luffa gourds this summer (because I read about them on a cool blog - hint-hint). I have been using a piece of luffa to wash my pots that would normally scratch with steel wool. It works really well, and the luffa seems to be holding up too. I've been using it for 2 months now.
    Thank you for all the work you put into your blog!

    Jenny - Virginia USA

  5. HI, i always said i wouldnt use a dish washer but for the last 3 years ive had one, the reason is i have a disability and i cant use my hands very good at scrubbing the dishes etd. i wonder how people like me coped in the past?

  6. Our dishwasher had a meltdown from our hard, hard water, about 4 years ago. That would be less than 4 years use. It's OK, tho. I use the dishwasher to store those really heavy enamel coated cast iron pots, and also for the potatoes! I have thought about taking the whole thing out, but it is SO convenient right now!

  7. 8 years ago we had a dishwasher. It came with the house. We had to scrape the dishes first, sometimes rinse them, run them through the dishwasher and then pick off the dried bits after. It was harder than doing them by hand. We chose to get rid of it and put in some much-needed storage instead. We left the plumbing in place in case we want to return to that method, but I have never regretted giving it up.

  8. I grew up in a large family. I was the oldest of 8 eight children. So you can imagine washing up dishes was a big chore and there certainly was no such thing as a dishwashing appliance in those days. Usually 3 of us were allocated to do the job, one washing up , 2 drying up. To make the job more enjoyable we used to have singing sessions where the rest of the family joined in in the background. My mother and father had wonderful voices singing in alto and soprano. I remember trying to learn to sing just like them and often failed miserably going rather flat and off key. We sang songs from the then popular "Singing Nun" and "The sound of Music" as well as old Dutch folk songs. I have many happy memories.

    Another memory I have is we used to use a wire container with a handle that had a cake of velvet soap (or something simular) in it. It was swished around in the sink of hot water to make it soapy. I used to make a fair mess of it trying to get the suds up. I done't own a dishwasher, never had and have no desire to ever have one, but I have been on the look out for such an item where i could use just an ordinanry cake of velvet soap. Also I will try and get to making this multipurpose liquid soap you have bloggong about Rhonda. I just need to find this potassium hydroxide. I don't hold my hopes up in this this town I live near.

  9. Hi all
    I hate to buck the trend but we are just in the process of moving into our new house and I have a dishwasher for the first time in 12 months and I can only say how much I'm looking forward to it!
    I understand what you say regarding simplifying but to me this simplifies my life in that I don't have that extra chore. While I am working full time I find it a real help not to have to add dishes to my list of jobs. I guess it just reiterates that we all view simplifying our lives in different ways
    Judy in Adelaide (sweltering in heatwave conditions yet again!)

  10. Our dishwasher broke about 9 months ago and we just have not gotten around to replacing it. If we didn't have plans to sell and move next spring I would just go without. The next house will not have a dishwasher!

  11. What a lovely post. I'm sure Hanno will build you some beautiful shelves- you can never have enough of those! My DH is building something just like it in the basement- same size, so maybe you could post your curtain when it's done! I would love to have the design. I have a small, portable dishwasher, and I can't let it go yet. Hopefully someday. However, I try to use something every day that can't go in the dishwasher, so I say to myself "Well, I have to wash this in the sink, so I might as well wash everything else so as not to waste water." Slowly getting there!
    Thank you for your touching post.
    The Girl in the Pink Dress

  12. We don't have a dishwasher, either!

    Our children do the dishes in the mornings and twice on weekends - it's great training for life, for there are many things that people don't want to do, but are necessary.

    I love doing the dishes, as we have a delightful view from our kitchen window - 55 kilometres across the paddocks to Black Rock Mountain.

    Thank you for sharing,

  13. A month or so back we decided to try no dishwasher. I just couldn't keep up. lol There were just too many dishes and most of my little hands are too small to help right now. lol When they are older though I will have four sets of little hands to help out and maybe we will try again then. :)

    One of my childhood memories is drying dishes with my mom. We would make a race of it. If I got the dish drainer put away before she was done I didn't have to finish. It was great fun and I don't remember ever being able to beat her. :)

  14. Oh how I wish I loved washing dishes as some of you do. I currently don't have a dishwasher in our rental but have had them in the past. I thought at the time they were better but now I recall all the times the dishes were not very clean afterwards. So now I know handwashing is better. BUT...I have this aversion to it that makes me leave dirty dishes on the bench for up to two full days! Cringe. How embarassing. My new hubby does it for me most of the time as I do the cooking so that is fair isn't it? :-)
    Rhonda, I wanted to tell you that I made your spaghetti meatballs recipe on Sunday and loved it! I made two changes however, I added tomato paste to the meat mix (old habits die hard!) and I added a splash of red wine to the sauce! Yum. So thank you for giving me something new to add to our rotating recipes!
    Thanks heaps Rhonda.

  15. We do have a dishwasher - a big family that creates tonnes of dishes, a too small sink ( Oh how I would love to have one of those deep old fashioned 'Belfast' sinks) and an older son who was willing to pay half, thinking it would make his dish washing chores easier, influenced our decision to buy one. We were careful to choose one that used a lot less water than the others on the market but therein lies the problem! I read about this issue with the 'more water efficient' dishwashers after we had purchased one - it does not clean the dishes very well at all, they have to be scraped and rinsed and dried on food will not come off - useless for pots and pans. Hope this is of help to someone considering purchasing one of the more 'water efficient' dishwashers.

  16. We have 6 children and do all our dishes by hand. I usually wash and the children help by 'drying their age'. Our 15yoson dries 15 dishes and passes the towel to our 11yodaughter who dries 11 passes the towel on to her littler brother who dries 9 and so on.

    I like the time I have to talk to each child while we are doing the dishes and if I don't call for them to help it is a great time to be alone in a busy household! [For some strange reason you never get bothered when you are washing dishes, the children all seem to just fade away from sight...]

  17. there was always something therapeutic about hand washing to me , my thoughts go all deep as i wash the dishes.

    congrats !!

  18. I too recently ditched the 20+yr old dishwasher and am now in the 'swing of washing up'. The pump actually broke but I was secretly glad as it was driving me nuts pcking and unpacking it, or trying to get the teenagers to do it in a timely manner!I never felt like the dishes were 'done' as there was always the dishwasher to put on after the other washing up of things that can't go in the dishwasher. NOW, when it's done, it's done and there is no more. Nothing to unpack. Peace in the home. Not to mention cleaner dishes. Saving electricity too and avoiding the caustic chemicals. I saved hundreds by not replacing it.I will think of you when I'm washing up. Dish sisters..Jen

  19. Rhonda,
    Perhaps you are thinking of boric acid as an eye wash used in times past. It is an antiseptic and was used for conjunctivitis.
    I have never heard of borax being used medicinally.

  20. I'm so glad you mentioned about the borax, I think that nags at a lot of us. I don't know why, lol!

  21. whicocan, no, I don't mean boric acid, I mean borax. It is still now used medically - in the common eye and ear drops and ointment Chloromycetin.

  22. Hello
    Hope hanno is well soon.
    Say you can make pot scrubbers out of netting. I think there may be a post on it check me old posts under crafts I think. I have used them almost 30 years now.

  23. We can't buy borax in the UK now as a cleaner due to some reclassification of it. There is a borax substitute offered called Sodium Sesquicarbonate but I don't know whether it is a good substitute as I am still using up my store of borax.


  24. Three years ago we moved to a new home with no dishwasher. Having a family of 5 and previously always having had a dishwasher I thought I must get one asap but.. with various other expenses it never seemed to happen and gradually I became used to washing the dishes with the family to the exent that now I would not get a dishwasher.I far prefer the conversations we have as we wash and dry. I dont miss the noise and the chemicals the dishwasher requires and i like the feel of a job complete rather than having to wait to unload washer and put away later!

  25. One of the pleasures of life, standing at the kitchen sink, looking out the kithen window in front of you, watching the world go by and washing dishes.
    A simple pleasure to me and one I wouldn't trade.
    And the daydreaming and planning that I do while there as my mind takes off and my hands flit in and out of the lovely water.

  26. I hand wash all our dishes, but only drip dry and prefer it to when I once had a dishwasher in a rental. They take as long to load as getting the dishes done by hand and then the pots often needed attention. With a big family the dishes took more than one load. And the noise was a real annoyance. No, I definately like hand washing and haven't used a dishwasher for over 19 years.
    Rhonda, a very good use for dishwasher space is a little freezer. I wouldn't be without mine.
    My Mum also taught me to fill the sink and washup items as you are making the evening meal and this really makes this large washup lighter. The wisdom of age!

  27. Enjoyed the post Rhonda. If I had a dishwasher I think I'd swap it out for shelves too.

    I've been using my homemade soap for months now to wash dishes. However, I do not use the sink to wash in, I use enameled dishpans and heat the water on my propane stove. I can keep the water hot that way and when the wash water is too dirty, I use the rinse and get fresh rinse water. If someone needs to use the stove, I simply move the pans to a counter. I like keeping some grated soap handy and just toss some of into the warm/hot wash water to dissolve.

    Word of Warning: grated soap looks just like grated cheese. Just ask my hubby.

  28. We don't use our dishwasher anymore, either. Mom was increasingly unhappy with the results--glasses that seemed to get etched and cloudy, dishes that simply didn't get clean. Our landlords had someone in to 'fix' it and the repairman had several suggestions on how to use the machine more effectively. None of them really worked. One of our major limitations is that there are only two of us in this household. We would run out of dishes before the blasted machine was full enough to run efficiently. So now we spend 15 minutes after dinner cleaning up. Less time and, contrary to some of the advice we have read, less water.

  29. You are saying that the soft soap you will now use exclusively is your homemade soft soap, recipe elsewhere on blog?

  30. Hello from North Carolina, USA ~ I found you on my sisters blog and had to comment on the dish washing memories. That was one of our chores when we lived on the farm in Kentucky, USA...only we did not have in-door running water for some of that time. Water was hauled from the spring and heated on the stove. Which was a chore unto itself and mom would get "very" upset if I took too long getting the dishes done (which I always did).
    The main reason I wanted to comment was about the things you talk about while doing dishes. Children do share some of their best thoughts while 'helping' with the dishes. In this world of little communication between parents and children ~ I think alot has been lost because we don't do those kinds of things together anymore. Back then we probably didn't even think of it as communicating but that's what we did. And we were blessed because of it!! Thanks for stirring up good memories...V

  31. Your memories of drying the dishes made me smile and remember MY time of drying the dishes as a child... making small jellyfish out of saucers wrapped in the towels. I suppose mum wasn't happy when we did that, because we did that instead of really drying the dishes - but it was fun!

  32. I wash many dishes by hand, but I have to brand new dishwasher is amazing! Because it is important to think "re-sale" value, we upgraded our kitchen appliances and we should actually see some energy savings because the appliances are made so much more efficient that 20 years ago. We are the "gathering" place for all family holidays and many functions. Even this evening I have a pot of chicken soup simmering and fresh bread raising (and cookies or pies yet to be made) I have invited 5 extra people to join us for our meal. If I ended up washing all my dishes the "old-fashioned way", I wouldn't be so quick to hostess I'm sure. :) Even with my view of the lake from my sink window, washing dishes is not one of my favorite tasks....but the view does help distract. :)

  33. Our dishwasher died back in February. At the time we decided not to replace it because we were working on building up an emergency fund. My mother and husband now help with washing dishes. That way I don't have to come in from work, cook dinner and deal with a mountain of dishes!

    Truth be told, I'm looking forward to purchasing another dishwasher. We already have the money saved up. We just haven't taken the time to go out shopping around for one. For our family, having a dishwasher made life simpler. Another example of how each person/families path to and definition of simplicity is unique!


    The Working Home Keeper

  34. I grew up in a household of 11 children, oh my, the dirty dishes! Looking back it's not the stacks of dishes, it's the time with my Mom that I miss the most.
    I don't have a dishwasher. I've found that washing dishes like pulling weeds is guaranteed "alone time". I've worked out many a problem with a few meals worth of dishes. Now that my own hands are arthritic, I NEED to wash dishes first thing in the morning to loosen up my ache-y fingers. I have a beautiful view out my kitchen window and I closely monitor the changing of the seasons, the visitors at the birdfeeders and the neighbors' rascally cat.

  35. That is so nice! My dishwasher doesn't work very well and we should just give it up! Probably won't though, cause Jim likes the convenience. Unlike you and Hanno, Jim doesn't work in the garden...

  36. i thought i was the only one who enjoys hand washing dishes. beside i dislike emptying a dishwasher. though i use it most of the time out of habit, i find myself "allowing" the time to stand at the window and wash.... great blog!

  37. I am wondering how you keep your stainless steel sink looking good? For decades I had a porcelain sink, which was great. Now that I've moved, I have not figured out a way to clean the stainless sink that seems effective. Thx...

  38. Hi Karen Anne, I too have a stainless steel sink and we have hard water. What we do is we wipe down the sink every time we do dishes, remove the dishes from the sink or any of the other myriad of things we use the sink for. Vinegar helps get rid of any soap scum as well as the film left from the hard water also. The other thing is that stainless steel is so much easier to keep clean than a porcelain sink! I am looking forward to hearing how Rhonda does it.

  39. Could you remind us of why you got rid of the dishwasher? I understand the simple ritual and loving that, but is it also for water savings? Would love to hear more!

    I'm under the impression from something I read a long time ago, that dishwashers are actually better for the environment (less water, less soap) than handwashing.

    I think I have something to learn here! Would you be willing to write more?

    I use vinegar as a rinse aid and am still trying to come up with a good substitute for dishwasher detergent. I think I'm almost there. My dad helped invent Electrosol (Finish) DW detergent. I wish he was still alive to help me with a more natural option!!! (Or maybe he's rolling in his grave knowing that I'm looking at something other than HIS product!!)

    Wonderful post, Rhonda!

  40. To Karen Anne:

    I like using the yellow sponges with the green scrubby side. A net scrubby should work fine too. Scrub your scrubby on a bar of soap and wash the sink just like you would do a dish. I think the glycerin in the homemade soap provides a nice coating to the stainless steel. At least mine looks different since using the homemade soap.

    Also, just a little baking soda on a dish cloth will do the trick. When done, rinse it, then wipe it dry.

  41. HI Rhonda Jean - Thanks for the great post on the liquid soap. I am going to add that to my list of things to try. Thank you for all that you share. Emily in So. Texas

  42. Hi Rhonda,

    I am an avid reader of your blog and have decided to ask for a little help. You seem to really know about money management and I want to simplify and purify my existance but at the moment it is seeming very hard.

    I will give you a little bit of a rundown. I finished University and have been working full time for approximately 8 months. I am in quite a lot of debt - $3000. I had a hold on my money until this year, I suffered a few setbacks with my health and had to pay for hospitalisation etc. As I had been at uni and living very frugally, I didn't have any back up savings and so credit was my only option. I'm worried that I am only 22 and already drowning in a sea ob debt.

    I live in Brisbane City and my rent is pretty expansive but it will be also very expensive to move out. I have a small herb and vegie garden - we don't have much room for anything else.

    I guess I'm basically looking for any tips that you can give to save money whilst living in the city. At this stage it is impossible for me to move so that is not really an option but by this time next year I want to be debt free and would maybe even like to travel for a while in 2011 if possible.

    Hope you can help.

  43. Elizabeth, I have written more but I can't find it now. Basically, I just wanted the dishwasher gone. I don't believe the famous and often quoted study done by the University of Bonn where they found the dishwasher used less water and had better results. From many accounts the water saving dishwashers don't do a good job and you have to prewash and sometimes wash again when you use one. I don't like using Finish (no disrespect intended), I think dishwashers take too much time and use too much electricity. My hot water is solar powered, so no cost to us there. My biggest surprise and disappointment about the study though was that it was sponsored by Siemens and Reckitt - makers of dishwashers and dish washing detergents.

    We are selling our dishwasher, it's not sitting on the back veranda.

    I clean the sink just by wiping it over with a soapy dishcloth after I finish washing. Every so often, I scrub it with bicarb then rise with cold water.

  44. Lovely post. I find that washing dishes by hand can be therapy. I often stand washing, watching outside my windows and mentally write my blog as I wash.

  45. My kitchen sink overlooks our white mulberry tree, in lush growth and fruit at the moment.I find myself often washing up and looking at it, the birds pecking the fruit, the Koell(large bird) and his mate making a retchid noise, warm winds bending it's laden branches around and around.
    To cheer me up once, a friend gave me a card. It has a picture of a woman washing a plate whilst she looks out her open window onto a lovely green tree, and it says...."Gazing out the window while rinsing the morning dishes, she chased her thoughts in circles, until they escaped through the screen and onto the mulberry tree. From a distance they actually made sense."
    That card sits in the windowsill and I look at it every time I wash up. Amazing coincidence. Jen.

  46. my dishwasher uses 12 l of water to clean the dishes plus Pots and cutlery for 2 people used in 2 or 3 days.
    I would need a lot more water soap and energy if i would clean all those things in the sink.
    Modern dishwashers are far more eco-friendly than the good old sink.

  47. Great post! I hand wash pots and pans, sharp knives, cutting boards and a few delicate items and do definitely enjoy the moments gazing outside. But, I think I would curl up and sob without my dishwasher for glasses, plastics, plates, and silverware.

    Karen Anne: My 2 cents on sink cleaning is that before any company comes, or if I just want a super shiny sink, I use a heavy abrasive (heavy duty green scrubber or steel wool etc) to scour the heck out of it with Baking Soda, then rinse, then buff with a dry dishcloth. I've polished up some pretty gnarly looking sinks that way.

  48. Thank you for a wonderful idea. My dishwasher broke a couple of months ago and after pricing a new one and trying to make the decision on what to buy, I had gone into decision avoidance mode. I now know what I can do with the soon to be "empty" space and continue to enjoy washing the dishes in quiet thoughtfulness and thankfulness.
    Many thanks . . . Paula (Austin, Tx, USA)

  49. I have a dishwasher, but there is really something nice about the the slow and steady pace of washing the dishes after a meal that I miss. I actually was not going to get a dishwasher, but it came with the house and, as I suspected, I fell into using it. lol


  50. Dear Rhonda,

    how lovely to read about your future vision. I'm wishing you it will come true.

    Really adore the idea of losing the dishwasher. I couls really use the space it would left me. Only my husband still is connected to it :o(

    I really hope I can say the same thing you have said here: washing the dishes by hand, with my daughter in law or even some little hands. But okay... that will be in a far, far future... My adorable one is just three years old... ;o)

    Want to wish you all a great week to come.

    Greets from Holland, love Monique

  51. When we bought our home, it came with a fairly new dishwasher. We use it as a drying rack. I run it every few months just to keep it from clogging up, and I have used it when we've had company and lots of dishes + pots and pans. Otherwise, I hand wash and use it for a dish drainer. That way dishes aren't drying on the counter, taking up valuable space.

    I have usually hand washed dishes. I grew up that way. At Nanny's, after dinner, someone washed and the rest of us dried. It was a fun time for the womenfolk, while the men watched whatever sport was on tv.

  52. oh yes... We have a GORGEOUS stainless steel BOSCH dishwasher at the palace. NOW we do TONS of dishes daily with 8 of us, baby bottles and more. we have to heat allthe water over the fire as well each time. I will say the dishes seem cleaner washing them by hand. or I should say my wonderful children wash most of them for me! just another thing you wont have to worry about buying when it breaks, the extra electric and more soap etc.

  53. When we bought our house in the country, the real estate agent was concerned there was no dishwasher.

    I saw nice double sinks and a window with a view of the backyard... nearly four years later and I still don't miss the dishwasher. :)

    I use 7th Generation dishwashing liquid, a non-petroleum brand that I really like. It is expensive at the health food stores but reasonable at the regular grocery.

  54. Congratulations on dumping the dishwasher! I'm so glad I'm not the only one standing at the sink with my mind in neutral whilst my hands get on with the dishes. All my friends (all with small kids like me) have dishwashers, yet always seem to have counter tops full of washing up. I like doing the dishes, (and I really think it's not an unpleasant job unlike some of the many household chores one could name!) and I will teach my little ones how to do it just as soon as they're tall enough to reach over the side of the sink.
    Best wishes,

  55. So much variety of response! When we were in France for five months this summer our house-sitter asked if we minded if she didn't use the dishwasher as she enjoys washing up.

    We, though, spent much of the five months looking round our simple country home in France (in vain) for a space where a dishwasher could live.

    After my friends, the dishwasher was the single thing I was most pleased to see when we came back to the UK!

  56. This is so ironic. I have always wanted a dishwasher and never had one; I have always washed dishes by hand. I think part of the reason I wanted one is because they clean at such high temperatures and really get dishes clean; also they use less water than does hand washing; at least this is what I have been told over the years.

    Thanks for a lovely blog. I often drop by and enjoy reading your suggestions.

  57. hi
    I am your very regular reader and as i said i am reading your back posts so i have lots of questions on these too..
    What is a dish cloth is it used for drying the wet dishes?
    the yellow laundry soap you said your mom used was it the one that one used to use for cloths ?
    You inspire me a lot and i would love to live like you and going to make a beginning by reducing the help we get at home here in India of the maids , i am going to reduce the dependency on the maid and try to do more and more work on my own.


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