Archives for January 24, 2011

Out with the old

I hate to overload you guys with my deep thoughts, but this is so good, I’ve just got to share.
Last week after reading this, and then this, I knew I had to make some changes.  The first thing I did was throw out my kitchen sponge, and pull a fresh one from under the sink.  But I didn’t stop there, because that truly just wasn’t enough.
See this basket of kitchen rags and towels?  They weren’t always gray.  I find it fascinating that I can own a wide variety of towels in many colors, but over time, they all end up looking the same, gray.  I do like for things to match, it’s true.  But gray isn’t my favorite color.  I also wonder if the gray might indicate that there is mold hiding out in there.  I think maybe so.
I’m one of those hippy types who rarely uses bleach, and buys all natural laundry detergent.  For awhile I made my own, but my low water washer didn’t seem to like it, so I found a new natural one that I really like (It seems to do really well with cloth diapers.)
My rags looked like this long before I started buying the latest natural detergent that I started using a couple of months ago, so I am not going to blame it.  (I know you are probably wondering what it is–it’s this.  I do really like this stuff.)  For the longest time I used Costco’s “environmentally friendly” he detergent, and before that I think I was using Method brand-just so you know my history.  Detergent aside, I really blame my low water washing machine.  Honestly, we are on our second set of them, and I am not convinced they really wash our clothes.  But maybe I’ve got it all wrong.  Maybe I need to start buying Tide like Leila does.  Anybody have any opinions on this stuff?  You know, low water washers, natural detergent vs. Tide, and other fascinating laundry related stuff.  What causes the gray?  Mixing my colors? (I sort colors for clothes, but not rags and towels-that would create too many loads.)  Maybe if I got Jonny to hang a new laundry line for me, the sun would take care of the gray?  Mine rotted, well, years ago, and we haven’t made it a priority to hang a new one.  It’s on the (very long) list for this spring.
Anyway, for now, I donated all of my kitchen towels to Jonny because he always needs shop rags, and I now am the proud owner of a drawer full of fresh clean kitchen towels and rags courtesy of Tuesday Morning and the Dollar Store.
Looking at these towels just makes me feel really good.  Even when the drawer is closed, I know they are in there, all white and stripey and clean.  There’s a chain reaction that happens when I do something like this, and I get all hyper and motivated to keep my kitchen cleaner.  It’s kind of great.  I owe Leila a big thank you.  She has revolutionized my kitchen this past month, not only because of my fresh clean towels, but also because I took her advice and started having my boys load the dishwasher every evening.  That’s pretty great too, in fact it’s even better than the clean towels.  I am not sure why I was so convinced that they couldn’t do it properly (okay tangent there-sorry.)
One piece of advice:  If you do run out and buy new dishrags at the dollar store, it’s maybe not a good idea to buy the ones with the red stripes (they are the prettiest!)  They bleed.
edited to add:
we are on city water, and it’s not particularly hard-I looked it up (34 mg/l CaCO3)