My last post a few mere hours ago was on the topic of planning for a big meal.
As a follow-up, let’s talk about clean up. Who’s washing the dishes tonight, or any night for that matter? In my household, it’s usually me, me, and me. However, The Klutter Koach is training her small army of little Furmans and they are all in various stages of learning these skills. Even my 3-year old can clear his place and bring his cup, plate, and silverware to the sink. Yes, he REALLY does this. Gotta start them young.
Here are my Pearls of Wisdom for avoiding Mt. Dishmore:
- Start when you are still in the process of cooking. Keep a hot, soapy dish bin, large large bowl, or pot near your work space. Deposit the dirty spatulas, spoons, etc. into the soapy water. Even if you wait a bit before actually washing them, it will be a lot easier if they have soaked because there isn’t dried crud on them.
- Put on music in the background. As much as I love to cook, I hate washing big pots and as well as plastic storage containers. I have a wide range of musical tastes so I make myself a playlist and use the music to motivate me and distract me from the task at hand. I once had a friend re-frame the chore as “bubble therapy”. Who doesn’t like to play with bubbles? Doesn’t that sound so much more fun than “washing dishes”?
So, now you’ve started your meal. Let’s say you are eating in courses. Keep that dish bin filled with clean soapy water.
For example, your first course is fish. Yum. Enjoy. Then immediately clear the plates and utensils off the table. Put them in the dish bin.
Second course: soup. Serve the soup. Ideally, you have a helper to serve and you can wash the fish plates and silverware.
Third course: main course and side dishes. Take the soup bowls and spoons and put them in the soapy water. If the fish plates haven’t already air-dried, towel dry them and put them back in the cabinet. Wash the soup bowls. Enjoy your main course. When you’ve finished. Now what?
You tell me: Take the ____and put them in the ________. Take the soup bowls and spoons and ______. (Remember, I’m a teacher. I write fill-in-the-blank exercises like this all the time for my students.)
If you answered: Take the dishes from the main course and put them in the soapy water, you get an A+.
Dessert time! DeSSert is spelled with the letter S twice. SS=super sweet. Treat yourself (no pun intended) and take a break from the dish washing. Since the dishes are soaking, you won’t be scrubbing.
When dessert is finished you can wash the dishes from the main course, and put the dessert dishes for soaking. Unless you are completely stuffed from your meal or involved in a watching football game go ahead and wash the dessert items, too. Get it over and done with. Yes, procrastinating generally is what comes naturally, but as Nike says ‘Just do it’. Also, think of all the calories you are burning off while you are doing this.
So, hopefully you can keep Mt. Dishmore at bay and not have piles of dishes staring you in the face. Now you have more time to enjoy other pursuits other than scrubbing away at dishes.
Thanks for reading.
The Klutter Koach