Wednesday, February 11, 2015

HandWash or Dishwash? The Retro Vintage Housewife's Dilemma

Oh me oh my...what to do, what to do....

In today's time of the future, everything seems to be "Modern" but years after the first dishwasher was invented, is it REALLY so useful and helpful? The funny thing about this commercial was that  all the ladies desperately wanted a dishwasher in their home to be "Modern" and yet nowadays I find more and more people going back to the retro ways of doing things, including, but not limited to, dishwashing.

Yesterday, after going through my Retro Housewife Chore List, Kitchen was on the agenda for Monday. I enjoyed doing all the tasks and made a conscious decision to NOT use the dishwasher. My man thought I had a screw loose, but he obliged. Generally, he fails to rinse off, or scrape off the food anyway, which gets clogged in the dishwasher therefore, washing the food against the dishes unless the drain gets cleaned out  each and every night. (Which it doesnt btw)

So I found my little rack to hold dishes and loaded up a hot sink of sudsy water. I put on my rubber gloves and started the task. It was nice, peaceful and something simple. I had time to relax and think about the rest of my days tasks as well as other things. I read up on this blog about it and I wanted to write to you today to share my two cents worth...

She states that HandWash is here way to go and well, I have to agree. 
There used to be a method to dish washing and she quotes Lydia Maria Gurney in her 1914 book entitled Things Mother Used to Make:
First of all, remove all refuse from the dishes.  Place them near the sink, large plates at the bottom, then the smaller ones, then saucers.  Have a large pan full of very hot water.  Make a good soap suds by using a soap shaker.  Wash the tumblers and all glassware first, and wipe at once.   Use a handle dish cloth (which can be bought for five cents), for these, as the water will be too hot for the hands.Wash the silver next.  Have a large pan, in which to place the clean dishes, cups and bowls first.  When all are washed, pour over them boiling or very hot water, and wipe quickly.  Pans and kettles come last.  Always have a cake of sand soap or a can of cleaning powder, for scouring the pie plates and bottoms of kettles.  It is very little work to keep baking tins and kitchen utensils in good condition, if washed perfectly clean each time they are used.Wash the dish towels, at least once every day, and never use them for anything else.    With clean hot water, clean towels, and plenty of soap dishwashing is made easyIf you live in New England, your sink will be in front of a window.  Be sure to plant just outside of this window nasturtiums, a bed of pansies, morning glories, and for fall flowers, salvia.  These bright blossoms will add to your pleasure while washing dishes.
I prefer the handwashing method now and got to wondering when I stopped handwashing items? When I was growing up in Boone, Iowa on the farm, there was one sink, no washer and grandma washed everything. My sister, who also owned the house latter, did the same thing. When I was growing up and it was our turn, I remember the water always being very hot and I always felt like my hands were burning. I remember being told how bad a job I did and that the dishes always had to be washed after me all over again. Then when I was older, men in my life told me the same thing. 
So I realized just today that this is just like one of those "Lies we tell ourselves" . I told myself, "I am bad at handwashing" and thus because people told me that, I believed it too. How silly of me! If it was not for and the lessons I learned there, I would not have been able to recognize this untruth. Thank goodness I did and now I have "Changed the conversation" as they said in Mad Men and now I am back in the handwashing mode.
Also I want to say, if we DO use the dishwasher we do use natural ingredients. We mix Dishwashing soap and Borax and add a touch of Citric Acid (for bubbles) and it works well. Too well in fact as we had some special glasses we bought at the Spy Bar in Wisconsin and now all the pain is off the glasses. This is in part why I went back to hand washing. I want to preserve the glass I have that have etching or paint on them to keep them nice. 
So take a few things from this:
Decided if you are a hand washer or a machine washer type of person.
Think about if either of those ideas came from something someone else told you like it was for me.
Change the conversation (if you want to) and do what you like.
...Until Next Time,
XOXO Trisha Trixie

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