The Five Stages of Dishes: From Procrastination to Exasperation

I know they’re in there. I can hear them.  Maybe if I hide back here they’ll just go away.

We’ve all  heard about the stages of grief.  Thankfully, I’m not going through any grief, but what I AM going through is having to do the dishes by hand.  Anyone who has been reading my blog for more than a few days knows how much I looooooooooove to do the dishes.  Thanks to a comatose dishwasher, it’s a necessary evil.  Through careful research and lots of avoidance, I have managed to come up with what I think are the five stages of dishes.  It may be different in your house, but this is pretty much how it goes down in mine.

Stage 1:  The Denial or The Procrastination or I Don’t Feel Like Doing the Dishes Phase

We just have a few dishes to wash.  Supper is over and I just want to veg a little with the family and watch Phineas and Ferb.  That’s cool (the coolest show ever), I’ll do dishes in a little bit.-OR- I have nothing to do.  I could wash the dishes but boy is the back of this cereal box interesting. -OR- I really should be doing those dishes but what I really need is a good root canal.

Stage 2:  The Gathering Stage

Oh look!  The dishes look so happy in there.  They’re gathering.  It’s like a little party just for dishes.  Must be kind of a wild party, because they are really dirty.  That’s it, it’s a birthday party!  There is no way I could go in there and spoil their fun. If I washed some of them, then the rest would be lonely.  What kind of a person would I be if I stepped in there and took some now?

Stage 3:  The Squirt and Rinse Stage

I really need that big pan that’s in the middle of the mountain in the sink.  I’ll just move these dishes to the side so I can use the faucet, and squirt a teensy amount of dishsoap and put some hot water in it.  I’ll let it soak, and then rinse it out.  Need another pan?  Nope.  We’ll make something that only requires ONE pan.

Stage 4:  The Paper Plate and Jack’s Pizza Stage

Oh man the dishes are starting to take over.  If I start dishes now then I’ll be there for hours.  I have nothing to cook with, and very little to eat off of.  Ah-ha!  We’ll do Jack’s Pizzas for supper.  Nothing needed to cook them, just that big round piece of cardboard that it comes with.  We’ll use paper plates and cups.  BRILLIANT!

Stage 5: The Why The &$#^&*(@  Did I Put These Off For So Long Phase?

I am out of Jack’s Pizza and paper plates.  I have to wash dishes, and this makes me ANGRY!  Think of the Hulk, but with reverse colors (purple with green clothing), crazier hair, and more coordinated.  I furiously try to move the giant stacks of dishes like Moses parting the Red Sea.  I scrub out the sink and fill it with hot soapy water.  Then I spend the next hour arranging the dishes by size, because by doing this I can maximize my clean dish output and minimize the space needed for those clean dishes.  This results in a bunch of clean plates in the dish drainer and a bunch of stuff piled around it as high as it will go.  Then we have towels spread out on the table for the overflow.  3/4 of the dishes may or may not be done.  The rest stay and the whole process starts over…

Did I mention that I hate washing the dishes?

Attention dishes and spoons:  You know any time you want to run away together, that’s ok by me.  That’s just less for me to wash.

The Quest for the Natural Cleaners That Make Themselves

Let the natural goodness commence. Or let’s not and say we did.

In an effort that I hope will save us money and maybe be better for us, I bought all kinds of natural ingredients that I could make laundry soap, homemade fabric softener, cleansers, dish detergent, etc out of.  The nice thing is that I only had to purchase a few ingredients and it didn’t cost very much at all.  Now I actually have to MAKE the stuff.  Except for the fabric softener-I couldn’t find cheap hair conditioner that I wanted my clothes to smell like.

Every website I saw these recipes raved how it so cheap and everything was so clean and so great smelling.  And how nice it was to not have those chemicals in their houses.  I mean well but I certainly don’t know if I am up to par with these women.  I love the all natural stuff.  I subscribe to Natural Health.  I use all Method cleaning products.  I actually bought something at a Norwex party once.  I refill the Scentsy burners when I think about it.  So this all sounds nice and right up my alley and all, but it also means I need to get off my butt and do it.  Right after I take a nap-which sounds nice but mean my children actually need to maybe either do something quiet too or actually rest themselves.  Uh-huh-making this stuff might actually be more productive for me.

What did I buy?  The various recipes I found used some of these ingredients:  Borax, washing powder, Fels-Naptha, vinegar, essential oils.  The essential oils were a bit daunting-here I was standing at the organic grocery store smelling everything.  I chose lavender, though I was really partial to the rosemary.  I already use lavender cleaning spray around my house, and no one has complained thus far.  I brought home a brochure that supposedly helps you figure out all that aromatherapy stuff (it had a coupon for the oil, so you bet your bippy I was bringing it home.)  I think it would be VERY helpful if it was scratch and sniff though.

Like I said, IF I ever make this, I hope it works.  For my sake if nothing else.  Back when I could actually get my husband to help out with the dishes, I remember a snide comment about the all natural organic crap that I had bought for dishsoap.  I hate doing dishes-I caved and bought the Dawn power stuff.  Now that he’s done with school and a full time engineer-the dishes aren’t getting done-so I suppose it won’t harm anyone to go back to the other stuff.  By the way, I have a very expensive Bosch dishwasher that hasn’t worked for almost a year-I can’t afford to fix it so there it sits, probably laughing at the piles of dishes in the kitchen.

So maybe later today, between doing the dishes that are taking over my kitchen and the laundry I’ll get out my cauldron and whip up some cleaner.  Now, about that nap…

This is not me.  But I thought it would be funny…