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Keeping on top of the washing up mountain

(20 Posts)
CharlieMouseWillDoIt Sat 10-Nov-12 09:01:17

We don't have a dishwasher as there is no space for one. Since DD was born (and especially since weaning her) the washing up has been almost-literally endless.

I know this is an obvious statement to make, but it is so disheartening to spend a good 40 minutes tackling a load of washing up only for there to be more to do as soon as we've eaten our next meal.

I'm a SAHM, so tend to eat most meals at home with DD and I like to cook from scratch which also adds to the washing up mountain.

Any tips on keeping the washing up down?!

ArthurShappey Sat 10-Nov-12 09:30:55

Do it as you go... Fill the sink with hot soapy bubbles so they at least soaking if you're not washing them.

overmydeadbody Sat 10-Nov-12 09:33:46

I second doing it as you go along.

If you're cooking, try to wash things up as you use them, rather than leaving everything till after the meal.

Soak things like pans etc while you are eating the meal.

Little and often is better than a 40 minute slog.

BoysBoysBoysAndMe Sat 10-Nov-12 09:35:52

I tend to have lunch in the kitchen so I can give it a once over while I'm eating.

But if you have the sink with water in already its much easier to wash as you go.

Weaning is a 'more dishes' phase anyway, soon as your dd is eating what you eat they'll be less dishes anyway.

CharlieMouseWillDoIt Sat 10-Nov-12 13:11:05

I suppose we tend to use a combination of "little-and-often" and leaving it until there is a big load, which usually only gets completely done if DH is home to help with the drying up. I love seeing a completely clean kitchen with clear, sparkly surfaces, but it doesn't happen very often blush.

MrsMiniversCharlady Sat 10-Nov-12 14:47:41

I would make space for a dishwasher blush I used to have the smallest kitchen in the world, you used to have to book an appointment to squeeze past the one other person who could fit in possible slight exaggeration but we still had a dishwasher. I would almost rather go without an oven than a dishwasher. Seriously, there must be somewhere you could put it???

Fluffycloudland77 Sat 10-Nov-12 16:28:06

We had a kitchen with a stupid range electric cooker (why would a couple with no kids need a range? what were they thinking) anyway that took up dishwasher space.

So, it was a kitchen/diner and at the end of the work top where the sink was (butler sink, again WHY?) there was a panel of matchboarding. We took the matchboarding off, moved the washer forwards a bit, plumbed the DW in and then pushed the washer back, put the matchboarding back on but with a gap at the back to let the waste/water pipe run through and the DW stuck out at the end of the units.

It wasnt pretty but my back was killing me washing up everynight, DH said washing up wasnt a problem so I made him do it. On the third night he saw sense and I ordered my DW.

You can also take kitchen cupboards out and plumb them next to the washing machine, you need a Y connecter to feed off the water supply, get a Brass one off ebay/amazon. The plastic ones we had leaked everywhere.

My water bill went down to £10 a month when we got it and the electric bill halved because heating water from 15c to 65c is very expensive.

Washing up is just soul destroying. Water companies should stop faffing around giving everyone free tap inserts and hippo water saving devices and subsidise dishwashers instead.

MousyMouse Sat 10-Nov-12 16:32:50

you can get small dishwashers, either slimline ones or tabletop ones.

VerySmallSqueak Sat 10-Nov-12 16:34:11

Get a rack for your draining board.
I resisted one for years as I hate the plastic ones that fester with black gunk.
But I have a stainless steel one from Ikea and it has revolutionised things!
There's no room on the draining board for all the washing up we have in one go otherwise, so it means I can fit more on and leave it to air dry (which must be more hygienic and doesn't take long).
A quick put away and ready for the next batch.

VerySmallSqueak Sat 10-Nov-12 16:36:04

If you have a partner, a good rule also is that at least for the evening meal,if you cook,your partner washes up.

1sassylassy Sat 10-Nov-12 16:37:39

Fluffycloudland77,I had the opposite experience,it didnt effect my water as not on a meter but my electric bill went down £5 a week when my dish washer broke down .

CharlieMouseWillDoIt Sat 10-Nov-12 16:48:31

I would LOVE a dishwasher, and I suppose there would be space for one if we lost one of our cupboards. The only thing for it would be to completely overhaul the kitchen to make best use of the space there is.

Soul destroying is the right word for it. DH usually does at least some of the washing up in the evenings, but sometimes he is exhausted after work and we'd rather slump in front of the TV, but that means I've got more to do the following day, and so the cycle continues...

CharlieMouseWillDoIt Sat 10-Nov-12 16:50:35

We do have a drying rack and I've rather become an expert at stacking things up so they don't topple over. It can be a bit jenga-like when we need something from underneath, but can't be bothered to move the stuff on top first...

VerySmallSqueak Sat 10-Nov-12 16:55:02

Charlie grin at 'a bit jenga- like'.

I make a bit of a sport of it. My washing machine is only just to the side of the drainer so I have to also make sure it doesn't all leap off when it goes on spin.
It's a dying art with all these new fangled dishwashers...

VerySmallSqueak Sat 10-Nov-12 16:56:36

Do you make sure you re-use stuff where possible?
For example a plate that has only had crumbs on it can be brushed off and re-used,and I make my mug last all day with just a bit of a swill around.

Wendywishes Sat 10-Nov-12 20:48:45

I truly never realised till I got a dishwasher a few yrs ago how invaluable it is for exactly this reason-it does away with the endless gathering of cups,plates etc. I am completely hooked -I would somehow lose a cupboard or something if I were

IWipeArses Sun 11-Nov-12 11:06:07

I have boxed up all but the essential stuff, so I have one plate each, four mugs, a glass each, I've put away the spare saucepans etc so I can never end up with a days worth of plates waiting to be washed. Training myself to wash up after every meal.

notcitrus Sun 11-Nov-12 12:23:36

When I'm without a dishwasher, I concentrate on one-pot meals - carnal and meat.and veg all in one large pan, or similar. And I always reuse mugs and plates that just have crumbs on.

colditz Sun 11-Nov-12 12:26:16

Lose a cupboard. Damn it, I'd sell a relative.

Pomtastic Sun 11-Nov-12 16:59:40

No advice but HUGE amounts of sympathy here!

We're cook-from-scratch people too - the amount of washing up it generates is unreal isn't it. Doesn't seem possible!

The days before we got a dishwasher were dark days indeed. Batch cooking helped me a bit; the night off from a big wash-up was more important than the night off from cooking!

We also have a small kitchen, which was renovated recently. There are no floor level cupboards, and the freezer lives under the stairs, but there is now a dishwasher. I was most firm about this during the planning stage grin

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