Mark and I have never been good at keeping up with dishes. The sad part is we have a dishwasher. And yet in the past we weren't always good at getting it unloaded and loaded back up in a timely manner. And thus dishes would be stacked on top so high that we did finailly start loading there wasn't room for them all. :( It's sad but true. And hand wash dishes are worse. However, my new kitchen is very small in comparison to the one in KS. My dishwasher has to either sit in my laundry room or my dining room b/c there is no place for it in the kitchen when it's not running (it's a portable dishwasher). Currently I've got it in the dining room, which I think is where it will stay. But I don't want to have to look at dirty dishes on top all day long. So in attempting to organize my house and my life and establish new routines in our new place, I have started making dish duty a regular part of life. Every morning I unload the dishwasher.Cai has been really excited about helping with this job. He pulls out silverware and plates and brings them to me to put away. Things like plastic containers I let him put up in the cupboards b/c they are stored in the lower ones. Ian helps too on occasion. But I haven't started making this a requirement. YET I'm thinking in the new future it might be. I'm wanting to start some basic chores for the kids. Things that I know they are capable of and such. Simply having them help starts the idea.
Anyway, so after we get the dishwasher unloaded, I roll it into the dining room so we can load dishes through-out the day. Here I also get the boys help. After snack, lunch and dinner I have them load up their plates and silverware. Things such as bowls and cups that go in the top rack I load b/c it's harder for them to reach and I don't want things to drop and break. But after about four days of this I think it's working. It's becoming ingrained in my memory and routine. And I feel much better about the dishes. I've also started cleaning as I go while cooking. And making sure to run the dishwasher every evening after supper. What are your kitchen cleaning routines? My next goal is establishing toy clean up. Wish me luck. :)