Monday, January 19, 2009

The Old Man and the Sink

I've shared before that my elderly father lives with us in our nut house.

He's a pretty easy person to live with.
He even tries to help out with dishes sometimes.

When he lived alone in his condo (up until a year and a half ago when he moved in with us) he never used his dishwasher. He just rinsed his dishes and put them back.

But when he came to live with us, we talked him into using the dishwasher.

Did I mention his vision is pretty bad?
Yep, it is.

So, often he thinks he's washed off a dish when in fact it still has a LOT of nasty food crud left behind...but the dishwasher takes care of that now.

Over Christmas, we went out of town for a few days to Austin.
And when we came back, we found evidence of dissent.
I think he tried.
He really did.
But he obviously didn't use the dishwasher.
He just rinsed dishes (minus soap) and put them back in the cabinets.
silverware back in the drawer.
I guess he couldn't see how dirty they still were...

We sure could.

But you have to appreciate his effort, you know.
He's 78.

And, he's gotten rather particular about what kinds of implements he will use to clean dishes.

This is our usual suspect.

But apparently he doesn't like it.

So, I went on a buying spree to try to find the right kind he would like.

Nope, he didn't like this one either.

or this one.

This yellow blob was better. He would use this one.

This ended up being his favorite.


What do you use to wash your dishes? Who washes dishes in your house? Do you wash dishes every night or do you sometimes skip a night like I do?


All Things BD said...

So you know on those crime investigation shows where they're searching for clues/suspects/evidence in some scumbag's house, and their kitchen is always filthy, dishes piled up in the sink, food left out on the counters? That's my house. All. the. damn. time.

Mama Dawg said...

My mom (God bless her) washes my dishes. She says this is her way of earning her keep while she's living with us. She also cooks dinner.

She washes by hand every night. We don't have a dishwasher.

WillowLakeScents said...

Unfortunately, in our house of 4 (which is usually a whole lot more than that since half my kids friends think they live here too), I am the only one that seems capable of dish duty. Well, I went on strike this weekend ~ dishes are piled on every available surface in my kitchen & I flat out refuse to do them. I'd show you a picture, but I'm pretty sure someone would send the board of health to my house.I wonder how long it will take someone else to do them???

RandomWonders said...

Awww you know that is just so endearing, really! I bet he is a very sweet man!

We use one of those sponge thingys with the soap stored in the handle, then a dishwasher as well, except for pots and pans...those are done by hand. I do them most often and usually every night. :-)

Valarie Lea said...

Dishwasher mostly but there are somethings I have to wash by hand, like my pampered chef stuff. I also use the teenagers in the house as much as possible. :)

Jennifer Warthan said...

I also use the sponge thing with the soap in the handle. BUT... those blue scrubby things that you pictured?? Yeah, I have like 5 of them. In the bathrooms, I'll fill them up with bleach - in the laundry room, with ammonia (for Cotton Hubby's grease stained clothes)... I love 'em!

Anonymous said...

Uggghhh... doing the dishes is a deplorable chore and I don't blame him one bit for not really putting his heart and soul into it... LOL

Just stopping by to wish you a happy monday! :)

cheatymoon said...

I can't handle dishes in the sink. No dishwasher... so i use the scrubby sponge in your last photo. Sometimes I'll let them go overnight, but not usually.
Have a great day, Rhea!

Rudee said...

The dishwasher does my dishes. I'm usually the one who loads it. I do them before I leave the house at night to work. Usually, when I come home, I'm greeted by a whole new pile of dishes to wash. It's never ending-like the laundry.

You're a good girl Rhea for taking care of your Dad. I know it isn't always easy, but it is a way to honor him. Maybe he could do a different chore-like folding towels.

•´.¸¸.•¨¯`♥.Erin.♥´¯¨•.¸¸.´• said...

We {what?? I mean I} use a soft copper wire long handled brush to prewash our dishes. Our dishwasher is so crappy that dishes must be practically clean beforehand. And I wash dishes almost daily...sometimes I skip a night ;) Hmm just like laundry =)

lynette355 said...

I am the dishwasher.
Sponge and use soap in a pump dispenser.
I do dishes normally 2-3 times a day.
I have a drainer in the other side of my sink and normally they dry there and then I put them up next time I am doing dishes.

My mom is 75 and never washes our dishes. Yeah! Same problems.

Jen said...

Jeff and I have this running argument, I like to do the dishes once at the end of the day. Jeff however hates it when the sink is full and likes to do them through out the day. We have yet to find a compromise.

Megan said...

Do I wash dishes every night? Hahahahahahahahahahaa. Um. No. My sink is filled with dishes right now. I hate doing the dishes but no one else in my house will do them, so they sit till it bugs me enough to get it taken care of. lol

You dad sounds sweet. He tries. But sounds like he's made a bit more work for you having to go back through everything. Oops. lol

And I just use a sponge to wash / rinse before they go in the dishwasher.

Kat said...

I am a sponge girl too. My husband teases me because I basically wash dishes by hand before I put them in a dishwasher. I see it more of a sterilizer than an actual cleaner.

scargosun said...

There is a scene in a fave movie about a man that used a twig to wash the dishes and he only used it b/c it was always good enough. When a character bought him a 'little mop with a handle' for this dishes he refused to use it b/c it was so pretty.

He looks kidna like your Dad. ;)

Teri said...

That reminds me of my ex-'s grandmother years ago. She lived alone. She was just fine except for the dishes part. Whenever we would visit, everyone would stealthily try to wash out their glasses before she put a beverage in it. There was usually big chunks of stuff floating, otherwise.

My husband usually does the dishes. He cooks and I put away all the food. He likes to do the dishes early the next morning. When he is out of town, I like to get the dishes down right away so I won't have to look at them the next morning.

Jenny and the Princess Peonies said...

I hate doing dishes!

the mama bird diaries said...

when my mom comes to visit, i graciously ask her to NOT do the dishes. Same problem that you have.

Anonymous said...

I guess my husband's vision is going bad too! :) Dishes end up caked with crud that he doesn't rinse off! I just use a simple dish brush then throw them in the dishwasher!

Justine said...

Ew, my goodness, he just rinses and puts them away? Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww! I'm glad he likes the sponge though. Nice and cheap, and can easily be sterilized in the microwave, which is what I do. So yes, I use a sponge, and I'm basically the dishwasher here. Jimmy will do some once in a while but not every day.

Justine :o )

Aunt Julie said...

I actually use the green brush gizmo you're featuring today...made by Libman, I think. It feels ergonomically right, somehow. Don't forget...I tagged you for a book meme today!

Gladys said...

I haven't used my dishwasher for years. In fact it needs to be removed and returned to undercounter space. You see we are on well water with a lot of minerals and all the dishwasher does is spew more white stuff on the dishes.

Swirl Girl said...

Rhea- this was adorable and a little sad at the same time ( a teensy bit). Your dad seems so sweet. I love how he prefers the happy polka dotted sponge!

I fully rinse of dishes with scalding hot water , Dawn and a sponge - then put them in the dishwasher. I usually wait two days to totally fill the dishwasher before running it.

Linda said...

Dishes are the kids' chore. My son rinses 'em and loads the dishwasher, my daughter unloads and puts away. The RULE is that they have them done every night after dinner, so when I wake up in the morning I have an empty, and shiny, sink to greet me. Doesn't always work that way. I think I have a photo to show that, I may have to blog about it tonight.

Anonymous said...

I like to use the toothbrush of the family member who pissed me off the most that day.

I'm the only washer with occasional special appearances by DH and I normally skip doing the dishes every night and get them the next day. I really should be better about that but the darn suckers keep piling up!

Lula! said...

I love that we have the same granite...Heather and Tiff have this, too.

Gee, we have such good taste.

p.s. I wash with a sponge. Always have. My mother-in-law hates this--she uses a washcloth. Which I hate. Oh well...bygones.

Mariah said...

Chris does the dishes over here. If it was up to me they would pile up for days and then I would just go buy paper plates

Keys to the Magic Travel said...

Katie is our dishwasher. Dishwasher loader. Dish put-er-awayer.

She uses a handiwipe to get the gunk off the dishes. A dobie sponge if it's being stubborn.

And I am all about the dishwasher not actually washing our dishes but sterilizing them...

Sprite's Keeper said...

John's eyesight is perfectly fine (with the aid of glasses, of course), but he can't seem to garner the strength to lift the bowl from the sink and place it into the dishwasher. Every night, I make sure the dishwasher is loaded and going so I can have coffee and a clean coffee cup in the morning.

Marrdy said...

I am married to the Cleaning Nazi. You will never find a dirty dish in my house. And they are washed before they are put in the dishwater. Gotta love the guy!

Burfica said...

We use one of those scrubby sponge wands you put soap in and one like the yellow blob thing.

We have a dishwasher, but I also have a husband that will never rinse, scrape or stack.'s gross.

I told him if he would at least scrape food off and stack the dishes, (you know not scattered over 4 counters) that I would do them everyday.

he has been doing dishes for over a year by himself, and he isn't trying to change. So...since he refuses to scrape food off and not scatter he has to do them.

AdriansCrazyLife said...

My boys do this all the time. They rush to empty the dishwasher and don't look at the dishes to make sure they came clean.

We had a guest over and we took down a stack of plates and naturally he picked up the dirty one. I tried to laugh it off by saying - "we save the CLEAN ones for company" and he looked so puzzled, I just had to laugh. I'm sure he was thinking, aren't I company?

Michelle said...

Hi Rhea:

Just following up with you about your dishes blog today.
I, unfortunately, am the one that does the dishes in the house. Not by choice, but by necessity. Boo to a Husband who works afternoon shift! If I didn't do the dishes at night they would not be done until the weekend! LOL!!
We (I) use washable dish cloths for mostly everything. I use to use sponges, but the tend to get germy. I also have a long handled scrub brush for glasses and coffee mugs. Then for the really stuck on stuff we have an SOS pad.
I am with you and sometimes I even skip 2 nights! LOL!!

Denyse said...

Shoulda known it would be plain, simple and probably the least expensive...that's a man for you =)

sue said...

Hubby is the dishwasher. He prefers the sponge. I hate sponges they always seem to be slimy to me. I prefer a dishcloth except that he always wads it up and throws it in a corner, till I smell it and go looking. Needless to say the dishes do not get done every night. More like every other night.

Krystyn @ Really, Are You Serious? said...

I like the ones where I don't have to stick my hand in/on it...the ones on the stick.

And, hubby has dish duty. Most of the time he washes them every night, but sometimes, he waits.

Daniela said...

Ohhh, I love my dishwasher. I always rinse the dishes before they go in the son doesn't. I always load and start the dishwasher and my son always unloads the dishwasher. We have an agreement. I hate putting dishes away, but I don't mind putting dishes in the dishwasher. If I had to hand wash..I'd never do them at all.

Screwed Up Texan said...

The sponge is my favorite too.

The brushes are excellent for scrubbing potatoes though.

Whit said...

Great title. I'm a sponge guy. We don't have a dishwasher. I'd say my wife and I split the dishes about 60/40 with me being the former.

We've skipped days.

Putting the FUN in DysFUNctional said...

My dishwasher is broken, which makes me very sad.
So I'm washing in the sink, with a scrubby sponge. My least favorite chore! We definitely skip nights sometimes. Nobody likes doing dishes at my house.

Sally-Ann said...

I hate dirty dishes being piled around, but I also hate actually doing the dishes. My family seems incapable of putting items into the dishwasher. With the coming of a new year, I have been trying to do better with the dishes and have been taking my family, kicking and screaming, with me on my journey to obtain a sink that shines daily.

Susie said...

Dishes is one of my neurosis. I can't stand even a fork left unattended. So, I hit the dish trifecta. Everyone washes their own dishes for breakfast, paper plates at lunch and dishwasher for dinner.