Warm hands

24 August 2007
I've just spent a delightful 15 minutes washing up. My dishwasher, that I usually use every second day, is out of service as the hose came off the other night and flooded the kitchen. By the time I knew what had happened, H had already cleaned it all up. We phoned our insurance company and they sent around two "Disaster Recovery" experts. LOL They've left two air blowers for us to run over the weekend to dry out own floating timber floor and cupboards. Although H reckons we'll end up having to replace part of the floor and the kickboards on the cupboards. It's a big job.

In the meantime, I'm doing all washing up by hand. Polly, and a few of the other girls, know I love washing up. It slows me right down and focuses me in time and place. It has been pouring rain for the past three days - we had 35mm, then 45mm, then 67mm, this morning the rain gauge overflowed at 100mm and is already up to 50mm again. And it's cold. So I had a very comfortable and tender feeling standing there at my sink, up to my wrists in warm soapy water, looking out the window to a flooded backyard. The greyness of the rainy day made the lemons on our backyard tree stand out like golden candles on a dark and stormy night. But it's warm in here and I'm bundled up with a thick woollen jumper, long skirt and my lambswool slippers. I might look a bit strange, but I feel cosy.

I've washed a quilt and it is drying slowly on the back verandah. Hettie, our cat, is curled up in a padded basket, sound asleep. The dogs are asleep on their inside beds. But outside, it's flooding. Here is the creek in our back yard. It's gone from a trickle to this.

H found this little bird dead on our verandah. : (

All our spare containers are full of rain water and our two tanks are overflowing. I think we could have filled them both four times over, but it's nice to hear and see the rain after such a long and difficult drought. We just heard on the local news that people are being evacuated over at Noosa and the local dam is overflowing.

This is what I can see when I look out my kitchen window. The pigeon peas are bent almost to the ground and I'd be surprised if they survive this drenching. But here inside it's comfy, H is making coffee and I'm looking forward to washing up again after tea with my hands in the warm soapy water again.


  1. Every time I turn on my dishwasher, which of course is much less frequently now that I like to hand wash the dishes :-), I cross my fingers and hope it doesn't flood. I had a friend years ago who had to have half her house re-carpeted after a similar incident to yours. They were out of the house at the time and it was hours later when they discovered the mess.

    Perhaps you'd better not read that electricity metre until after the blowers have finished. :-/

    Stay warm and dry and I hope the damage is less than H thinks.

  2. I have had a day of baking today and just finished washing a sink full of dishes.
    It is such a satisfying feeling to have the kitchen clean, the pantry and freezer stocked with yummy treats and that wonderful aroma of fresh baked goods.
    I have had the fire going all day so the house is so toasty that I am running around in just a singlet and shorts. LOL

  3. Wow all that rain! I saw it on the news and I was thinking of every one up tere! I hope you dry up ( I mean thet in a nice way ;)

  4. Isn't it wonderful to see, hear and feel the RAIN!!! It's so good to see the cycle of life so acutely after a year of nearly no rain and brown everywhere. Hoorah for MOTHER NATURE!!! she knows what she is doing and scientists, politicians, beaurecrats don't know everything....Us humans cannot have fully control over nature! This snap of rain and cold has encouraged me to finally purchase (!!) a slow cooker/crock pot...all part of my simple living, so can't wait to start cooking.
    Hope house is drying out, and yes I agree with polly, don't look at your electricity metre till blowers have finished.

  5. I'm glad you're getting a nice lot of rain Rhonda. We've had an unseasonally warm August with not much rain through July and August. Some of the crops around here are looking terrible (thankfully ours are coping okay).

    I have to admit I hate doing dishes and hardly ever do them (between the dishwasher and DH). The way you describe it actually sounds quite appealling though. LOL.

  6. I don't have a dishwasher, but one day I would like one. I get a sense of satisfaction seeing a clean kitchen, but don't always enjoy the process of getting there! I doo agree though that ona cold day/night it is one way to warm one up. I love cooking so i guess I will always be washing dishes!

  7. Rhonda Jean, just wanted to tell you how much I so enjoy your photos of home... No matter the weather.

    Sorry for the small disaster inside!

  8. (Wildside as anon, BTW)

  9. I love to hand wash my dishes whenever I can especially on cool mornings. It warms me through! I have a wonderful large kitchen window and a great view so it fills my heart with joy to slow down and catch the delights of the day.

  10. wow, that's a lot more rain than we're getting here!! and that creek is certainly overflowing :)

  11. At present, it has been worked out so that I don't do dishes in our home. Our dishwasher broke a long time ago and we haven't been able to replace it.

    I have three children, two boys & a girl, (17, 15, & 12)that each have two days of the week assigned to them to for dishes duty. My husband volunteered to take the remaining day of the week so I don't have to wash dishes at all! Yeah!!

    Sometimes my kids grumble that I 'never' have to do the dishes, but I gently remind them that before they came along, I did ALL the dishes myself & that when they move out, I'll be doing them again. I'm just getting an extended break, right now.

    Sorry about your dishwasher leak! One thing you'll begin to notice though, if you continue to wash your dishes by hand for a while, is that it will begin to show up on your electric bill. It costs more to run your dishwasher than it does to wash by hand. :)

  12. Wildside here again. Came back to check for new comments...

    Debbie says: "One thing you'll begin to notice though, if you continue to wash your dishes by hand for a while, is that it will begin to show up on your electric bill. It costs more to run your dishwasher than it does to wash by hand."

    Despite loving the thing, I found that true after ours broke too -- and that especially goes for the water bill as well -- and we were only using a dishwasher 1/2 to 1/4 the size of a regular! Now afterwards I just take our dishpans of greywater and slosh it out to water the hedge and keep things green -- less water used and goes 2x as far! But this may all change one day in the future if & when we go back to having an auto dishwasher!

  13. my son just installed a new dishwasher for me, after about 5 years of handwashing. maybe i should have my husband double check his connections! wow!
    i was just thinking, maybe i should wait to start reading my meter until the "newness" of the dishwasher wears off! the last few days, i think i've loaded everything in my kitchen into it and given it a run thru! *grins*

  14. I'm glad you are getting some much needed rain.

    I'm sorry to hear about the dishwasher flooding your kitchen. We experienced the same thing a couple of weeks ago. We may end up replacing part of our kitchen floor, too. Bummer that! I've enjoyed hand washing the dishes for this brief stretch, but I'm thankful that the new dishwasher is in as of late last night. It's quite highly rated energy-wise, so I'm hoping it runs more efficiently than the old one.

  15. Sorry about your dishwasher Rhonda..Wow you sure have had some rain over there, we have in Perth to lately...I love the rain , i love the smell of the rain, that earthy smell...

  16. Girl, that is Some Rain. It's making the headlines here in Melbourne.

    You really love washing up? I think I'd rather set fire to myself than do dishes.

  17. i use our dish washer only for the plates and cups, which we dont run until its full, about every 4 days. i handwash the spoons, knifes and cooking pots and plastic containers, which i love to do. the dishwasher is used most so i dont get overwhelmed when the sink looks full.



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