It’s day 6 without a dishwasher at our house. Last Monday, the dishwasher made funny sounds and stopped working--coincidentally, just after the husband had inquired about getting a new silverware basket for it on Sunday. I called the repairman on Tuesday; he came to check it out on Wednesday. Results: control panel broken and could be fixed for half the price of a new dishwasher. We decided on replacing our 14 year old dishwasher with a new one. Caveat: In order to get the color that would match our current appliances, the dishwasher would have to be ordered and then we wait for delivery and install. Estimated time of getting a new dishwasher is Friday—5 days away.
If I had been okay with a color that did not match the rest of the appliances in the kitchen, we would have had a new dishwasher last Thursday. When I told our repairman that I wanted the matching color, he originally told me that the color wasn’t made anymore and that it was out of style. I told him to wait two years and it would be back in style. Alas, after doing some searching, the color was found!
One might say that a dishwasher is a “nice to have” not a “need to have.” While I agree in premise, I disagree in reality. The childhood home I spent most of my time living in had a dishwasher. In college, I lived at home for two years—with dishwasher, in the dorms for 2 years—no need for a dishwasher, and rented a room in a house for 1 semester where there was a dishwasher. My first apartment after college had a dishwasher. I lived there for nine years. When I moved to another city I chose my next apartment by looking at a blue print as it wasn’t built yet. The floor plan was faxed to me and included a dishwasher. When I contacted the builders they said that hadn’t planned to include a dishwasher. By the time we got off the phone, a dishwasher was going to be installed in my unit and all units thereafter. I lived there for 3 years until we bought our current home in 2001. When we bought it, there was no dishwasher. Before we moved in, a dishwasher had been installed in the kitchen. I can live without many other appliances—blenders, toaster ovens, curling irons, but a dishwasher is on my “must have” list. And as for the husband, his childhood and adult homes did not include a dishwasher until we bought our home and had one installed. He has since come to agree with me. . . at least I hope!
So, here we are half-way through our “no dishwasher” situation.
At one point I was wishing there were dishwasher mats similar to laundry mats. Bring in your dirty dishes, run them through the dishwasher and leave with clean dishes. The people I shared this with did not see any usefulness or practicality in my idea.
We, and when I say we, I mean the husband, has done some dishwashing. Pots, pans, spatulas. All other dirty dishes are being put in boxes and stored in the garage for washing later. (We have done this before when our dishwasher went out over Christmas and we were hosting and cooking.)
The husband’s first worry was silverware, especially forks. I referred to the Ziploc baggies of extra silverware in the basement. Since we didn’t marry until we were in our mid-thirties, we had both collected a few silverware sets in our time. Now that we are using some of the previously banned to the basement pieces because there wasn’t room in the silverware drawer, I cautioned the husband that I am falling back in like with some of them. He groaned and asked, “The yellow ones?” Yep! We have yellow silverware, and yellow/white checked silverware—so pretty!
The paper plates and Styrofoam bowls that were stored in the cupboard for emergency use are also being used along with some Styrofoam and paper cups.
One might also think that we would go out to eat more often as that, too, would save on dish use. Yeah, but that would also cost more money. I reached into my purse and pulled out two $5 McDonald’s Arch gift cards that I had earned for free on MyCokeRewards and the husband did bring home McDonald’s for he and the boy one evening. He even had some gift card credits left over! And, I did bring home a bucket of chicken from the grocery store the other night as I was doing the grocery shopping anyway, there was great deal on the chicken and I had coupons to lower the price and give us free potato salad.
We’ll make it through the next few days just fine. I am excited for our new dishwasher to be installed and have plenty of dishwasher soap stockpiled for many loads. Oh, to be grateful for new appliances!