Thursday, September 25, 2014

Confessions of a Water Waster

One of Elizabeth's chores was to wash the dishes after dinner.
Now that she's gone to college, the boys have taken over that job - alternating nights, so neither one of them has too much of a burden. *wink*
So far, it's been going pretty well. But I often feel like I'm watching money go down the drain. Because Matthew uses so.much.water when he does the dishes. (Picture ADHD/OCD boy getting carried away as he gets busy rinsing every single grain of rice off a dish. Now, multiply that picture by at least ten.)
So, I find myself thinking, How much money is it costing us - in water usage and sewage - for that boy to wash these dishes? And I wonder if I ought to attempt another dish-washing lesson/demonstration.
Or just be thankful he's doing the job.
After all, he's doing the best he can, right? Nothing I tell him will really make a difference, will it?

That's what I was thinking. Until I recalled something that happened when I was a young kid.
My dad used to get frustrated with me because he thought my showers were too long. And I didn't understand what the big deal was. I mean, I wasn't messing around. Showers just took me a while. I had long hair, ya know.
So one day, my dad asked me what I was doing in the shower and I made my case. I had to shampoo my hair, and use conditioner - which I had to leave in for an entire minute before rinsing it out, because that's what the instructions on the bottle said to do. And, of course, I had to soap up and rinse my body. I was NOT messing around in there. Just doing what I had to do.
Then my dad said this, "OK. So you shampoo and rinse your hair. Then you put in your conditioner and soap up your body while you wait that minute, and rinse your body and the conditioner - and you're done. That doesn't have to take so long."
And, honestly, it was like a light bulb went on in my head. Soap up my body while the conditioner was sitting in my hair for that minute. Why, I'd never thought of that! I always stood there under the warm shower and counted 1-Mississippi, 2-Mississippi, 3-Mississippi, 4-Mississippi...60-Mississippi while the conditioner did it's thing. Then I'd rinse it out and soap up my body and rinse off. It never occurred to me that I could combine those tasks.
I thought my dad was brilliant for coming up with that idea!
And I've been showering that way ever since.

And so...I ask myself again, Should I give Matthew another lesson in dish-washing?

Yeah, maybe. But I think I'll consult with my dad, first!


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