Unfuck Your Habitat

You're better than your mess.

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Posts tagged "dishes"

This week, we’re refocusing on the third step of laundry and dishes: put it away, goddammit! Washing and drying are great, but until it’s put away, it’s not done. So this week, as soon as the dryer or dishwasher’s done, or once your air-dried clothes or the dishes in the drying rack are dry, put them away! Our goal is to have nothing lingering in laundry baskets, dryers, dishwashers, or drying racks. Everything gets put away as soon as possible.

Can you help me with a dilemma? I'm a music grad student, and I'm so busy that I barely have time to come home, do homework, and sleep for a few hours. Because of this, I just don't know how to maintain the level of cleanliness in my apartment... I'll spend an entire Sunday unfucking only to find that I don't have the energy to clean up after myself during the week, so it's disgusting by Friday. Do you have any tips for basic maintenance that will work with the very little time I have? Thanks!!!
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Put it away, not down.

Wash your dishes as soon as you use them.

Put your laundry away as soon as it’s dry.

Take five minutes a day to pick up in one room.

Most of the things that we do for maintenance are less about recovery and more about prevention. If you deal with your dishes, laundry, trash, and the things you use on a daily basis as you use them, there will be very little to have to recover from when you have more time.

Asker dermickster Asks:
I'm not sure if this has been covered before so I'm sorry if this is an annoying repeat, but I live with 3 other people in a small townhouse. I try to do dishes when I can (full-time post secondary student), but it doesn't seem to make a difference in the shared space. For example, I'll do dishes before I head to class, but by the time I'm home there are more in the sink. Other than just asking the roommates to help out, what can I do? (Our schedules don't necessarily sync either.)
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

#1 rule of living with other people: use your words. Sit down with your roommates. Try to avoid a note; no matter what your intentions are, it’ll always come across as passive-aggressive. Talk about the dish situation. Come up with ideas as a group. Try to reach some consensus.

As time goes on, ask for help. Use your words. Aside from padlocking everything, it’s the only tactic that both A) has a chance of working, and B) recognizes that everyone in the household is an adult with a life and the ability to communicate with one another.

  • Doing the dishes is generally not difficult. It’s often tedious, and sometimes overwhelming, but it’s not hard. Suck it up and do them.
  • If you’re facing a mountain of dishes, deal with it the UfYH way: 20 minutes at a time. Wash for 20 minutes, then take a 10-minute break to let things dry a little, come back, start your 20 minutes again by drying and putting away the clean dishes, and keep going.
  • If you have a sink full of dishes, try (if you can reach the drain) stoppering up the sink and filling it with hot soapy water and letting it sit for an hour or so before you get going to loosen up some of the crud.
  • If you’re lucky enough to have a dishwasher, do not let your clean dishes languish in it while your dirty dishes pile up in the sink. Run it overnight? Put it away while your morning coffee is being brewed or your toast is toasting. Just like with laundry, “put it away” is a crucial, yet often overlooked, step for dishes.
  • Before you start cooking, fill your sink with hot soapy water. As you go along, toss your prep dishes in there. When there’s some time (boiling time, or after stuff is in the oven), wash what you’ve used so far. Your goal is to have your prep dishes done by the time your food is finished cooking.
  • Once your dish situation is under control, try to make it a goal to never let dirty dishes touch the bottom of the sink (and I don’t mean because there’s so much else in there!). Breakfast dishes, coffee cups, snack dishes, whatever: take the five seconds to wash them or put them in the dishwasher RIGHT THEN rather than using your sink as a waystation.

(via unfuckyourhabitat)

This is probably really stupid, but we have no counter space in our tiny apartment kitchen. We've been drying all of our dishes on this big wire dish rack in the one place it fits - next to the sink, where our only counter space is. I try to put it away when the dishes are dry and done but then it takes up more valuable space in the cabinets! Do you have any recommendations on where to dry dishes in a tiny apartment?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Dry them by hand and put them immediately away? Or, if your sink is big enough, put the drying rack in the sink (put the clean dishes on a dishtowel on the counter until the sink is empty).

I’d personally go with buying a few more dishtowels and just putting them away as I go.

hellofieldsbean:

Ok so my kitchen is probably the worst area of my apartment.  After work I have a bad habit of just tossing the dishes in the sink or leaving them on the stove.  So I have set a goal for myself to have my entire apartment cleaned up by Thanksgiving.  This way I can have my first Thanksgiving at my place.

This is the before.  This also didn’t include the dishes that were in our spare bedroom (where we are eating right now since our kitchen table is covered).  

And the wonderful after.  It’s really dark since I only have one light above the sink right now.  It’s not 100% done, but my scrubby pad finally died on me.  The only things left are cookie sheets and some glassware. 

 

Also to keep this from happening again my husband and I came up with a new idea, ok well new for me.  Before every meal we will fill up one side of our sink with hot water and as we cook we toss the used dishes in the sink.  Then after dinner we wash, dry, and put away them before bed.  :)  Now to just finish the rest of the apartment!!!!!

Asker slumberfish Asks:
i was wondering if you could give me some advice on cleaning a long and narrow thermos? i loaned it to a friend who left some sort of milky beverage in there for FAR TOO LONG but my hand is too big too fit in there. it's been sitting in my sink for FAR TOO LONG and it's about time i unfuck it. how though??
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Denture tablets, or soak with soapy water and then use a (long and narrow) dish brush. Or soak with soapy water, put the lid on, shake vigorously, rinse, repeat.

adjustedlatitude:

Sunday Night Maintenance UnFucking

Husband and I spent Saturday and half of today at Timberline Lodge, a National Historic Landmark WPA building (and the establishing exterior image for the Overlook Hotel in The Shining), at approx 6000’ elevation on Mt. Hood. It was pretty amazing! It’s an incredible structure with a really neat history, and the views are outstanding. We even did some (very) light hiking on the trails in close to the lodge. Very awesome spontaneous weekend getaway. 

But that left little time for my now-habitual (and dare I say anticipated?) weekend unfucking. Luckily, all it takes is 20 minutes to effect positive change, right? So I used the vinegar-bowl method and unfucked my microwave. As you can see, clean as a whistle! Clean microwave + counters wiped down + dishwasher loaded & run = 20 minutes worth of work to keep my home environment as calming and inspiring as the outdoor environment we visited. Success! 

So I managed to move my bedroom dishes to the sink, but they have now been living there for too long and I think might be host to various microscopic colonies at this point. I am not entirely confident in my ability to get them hygenic with just soap and a sponge (no dishwasher). Is there something disenfecting-y that is also safe for dishes/food surfaces? Is it vinegar? I really dont want to eat off of them until they are surgical levels of disinfected. Thanks!
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

This post might be helpful for you.

  • Doing the dishes is generally not difficult. It’s often tedious, and sometimes overwhelming, but it’s not hard. Suck it up and do them.
  • If you’re facing a mountain of dishes, deal with it the UfYH way: 20 minutes at a time. Wash for 20 minutes, then take a 10-minute break to let things dry a little, come back, start your 20 minutes again by drying and putting away the clean dishes, and keep going.
  • If you have a sink full of dishes, try (if you can reach the drain) stoppering up the sink and filling it with hot soapy water and letting it sit for an hour or so before you get going to loosen up some of the crud.
  • If you’re lucky enough to have a dishwasher, do not let your clean dishes languish in it while your dirty dishes pile up in the sink. Run it overnight? Put it away while your morning coffee is being brewed or your toast is toasting. Just like with laundry, “put it away” is a crucial, yet often overlooked, step for dishes.
  • Before you start cooking, fill your sink with hot soapy water. As you go along, toss your prep dishes in there. When there’s some time (boiling time, or after stuff is in the oven), wash what you’ve used so far. Your goal is to have your prep dishes done by the time your food is finished cooking.
  • Once your dish situation is under control, try to make it a goal to never let dirty dishes touch the bottom of the sink (and I don’t mean because there’s so much else in there!). Breakfast dishes, coffee cups, snack dishes, whatever: take the five seconds to wash them or put them in the dishwasher RIGHT THEN rather than using your sink as a waystation.

(via unfuckyourhabitat)

So my roommate and I havent done our dishes since November. How do we unfuck that mess? Toss them all out?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

This can be unfucked, but it’s going to be a little bit of a project.

What you’re dealing with: caked-on and dried food, mold.

What you need: your kitchen sink, dish soap, scrub brushes, gloves, household bleach, sponges, a dish rack or drainer, dish towels.

Take everything out of your kitchen sink. Fill it about 2/3rds of the way with very hot water, and several generous squirts of dish soap.

Add dishes until the sink is nearly full. Let them soak for at least an hour. Then, wearing gloves and using your scrub brush and sponges, work on removing all food particles from the dishes. Drain the sink.

Refill with cold water and 12 oz of bleach for every gallon of water, same dishes. The CDC has approved and consistently recommends a “weak bleach solution” (1:10 household bleach:water) followed by thorough rinsing for disinfection of dishes, cooking implements, and food preparation surfaces. Let soak for an hour, then drain sink and rinse dishes.

Refill sink about halfway with just hot water and dish soap, same dishes. Wash dishes as usual (soap, sponge, and water), rinsing thoroughly and then putting in the dish drainer. If your dish drainer fills up, dry the dishes with a towel. THEN PUT THE FIRST LOAD OF DISHES AWAY.

Repeat these steps until all your dishes are clean.

I have about half a dozen asks about dishwashers right now, so I’ll try to get to everything in a master post.

  • To clean the inside surface of a dishwasher, use a mild dish soap solution with hot water (not too much soap; you don’t want bubbles later on), and use a sponge and an old toothbrush to get in all the corners, and the sides and bottom of the interior. Use your toothbrush or a toothpick to clear out the drain holes and water sprayers. Wipe down your surfaces with plain water when you’re done.
  • Clear out the drain. Ew.
  • Using your soapy water, wipe down any rubber gaskets and seals.
  • If you’re having residue issues, switch your detergent type. Most people find that switching to powder works best, but I’ve also had reports that liquid and pellets/packs solved this problem for them. Whatever you’re using, try something else.
  • If you have a garbage disposal, run it before you run your dishwasher.
  • Put a bowl (face up) containing about a cup of vinegar on the top rack with nothing else in the dishwasher. Run the dishwasher on the hottest cycle.

keepingitunfucked:

I always try to avoid the really nasty dishes, the ones that have stuff caked all over them. I think I’m convinced that if I do the rest of the dishes and leave them with soapy water in the sink then somehow they’ll be easier to clean later on. Usually it just creates a backlog in the sink where dishes get piled on top of the really gross one no one wants to clean, and it tends to be a game of chicken in the household to see who will cave and clean it first.

Today I decided to try something different:

I started with this (you can see the beginnings of the original method of “water in pan”):

Bacon grease, that ancient foe. But vinegar and baking soda combine to form a mighty weapon.

And lo, with minimal scrubbing to get the pre-loosened bits off, I was left with this:

Instead of a pile of dishes in my sink.

But I couldn’t put it back on a dirty, grease-covered stove…

So I cleaned that too. Took five minutes, instead of the ages it would take later when the grease had hardened onto the stovetop.

\o/

There is one problem. I need more vinegar, because clearly I must keep some below the sink in the kitchen in addition to a bottles in the laundry room and in each bathroom.

Asker cc99ff Asks:
I have a problem with my dishwasher, mainly that I haven't got one. Because of that, my dishes are constantly piling up. Even when I follow all three of the steps, even if I do two or three loads consecutively, the next day the dirty dishes are back. My counter hasn't been completely free of dirty dishes in about a month. Any advice on how to somehow beat the cycle of dirty dishes?
unfuckyourhabitat unfuckyourhabitat Said:

Start by washing every dirty dish. Once your drainer is full, grab a dish towel, hand dry, and put away. Take a break, then do another load. Repeat until there are no more dirty dishes. (I promise, this isn’t likely to be as bad as it sounds.) Towel dry as you go, and put everything away. Once that’s done, your goal should be to do dishes as soon as you make them dirty. Dinner dishes? Done before bedtime. Coffee mug? Washed before you leave for work. At the absolute barest minimum, you should wash dishes every damn night, then dry them and put them away. Once there’s no more pile of dirty dishes, it’s easier to keep it from forming again.

Rut

hellofieldsbean:

I am in a serious rut, I can’t find the motivation to do anything.  I have 2 days worth of dishes to do, my bed is still a mess, I am running out of clean socks, and I haven’t showered in 4 days!  Even UFYH isn’t working! NO!!!!!!!!!!!!! *head desk*  How can I get rid of my rut??????? 

Start a load of laundry (make sure there are socks in there). Do one dish drainer full of dishes. Go make your bed. Put the laundry in the dryer. Go take a shower.

Now, please.