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Never Too Young to Start


When Alia was small, she always wanted to help me do the dishes. I used to tell her that I couldn’t wait until she was tall enough to reach the sink and she was anxious for that too. In those days, dishes were not as much of a dreaded task as we had a dishwasher and our family was smaller. These days I need to work myself up, psyche myself out, to get those dishes done. I burn incense, I put on some music and make it an event. And even with all of that fanfare, I don’t enjoy it one bit. If I could have three wishes, my first would be that I enjoy doing dishes, because as I always say, they aren’t going to clean themselves.

As I set out to do the dishes today, Petra was busy on the computer and Layali was bored with nothing to do. She said she wanted to do the dishes. I surprised her and myself by saying yes. Even Petra perked up and said “Really?” Why not, what are chairs for? Just so they can drag them over to the counter to reach things they want and make more messes for mama? Not today! We would put that chair to good use and let Layali do the dishes. Layali, by the way, is four years old.

I prepped the area for her by rinsing the dishes and stacking them close to her. I filled the dish water and propped it up on an overturned bowl to get it within her reach. I let her clean the plates and the cups as I rinsed and did quality control. I must say, that girl, if she does not fare well in her studies could have a future in dishwashing.

Petra could not sit still and watch all of this without joining in. Suddenly poptropica.com lost its flair and big sister decided that she would do the big dishes for me. Layali then switched over to official rinser and even caught a dish not quite clean to hand back for a redo.

Now I am not going to try to tell you how to do dishes in this little article, because even though my way IS the best way, I will never convince you of that. My mother would never let us do dishes if she were standing in the kitchen because it would drive her out of her mind watching us do it any other way than her way. So on visits I would try to get her out of the kitchen and sneak doing the dishes. Who knows? My mom and her love for reverse psychology, that could have been the master plan.

I have a friend though, who thinks his way is the best way and who am I too tell him otherwise. Here he is a bachelor and a professional doing his own dishes. More power to him. If you would like to see how the ultimate perfectionist likes to do dishes, read this: Zen and the Art of Dishwashing

After we finished our dishwashing, we decided to celebrate with a nice glass of Tang in my favorite reading corner. We drank from stemmed glasses as we talked about the day’s events. Petra really liked having a little adult conversation and did not want the party to finish! All good things must come to an end as does this blog! Just so you know, twelve dishes and an uncounted amount of utensils have been dirtied during the writing of today’s blog. But you may notice, from the pictures, that the Bundt pan came clean!

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2 comments on “Never Too Young to Start

  1. Good one! đŸ™‚ I also let them help now and then, and try to remain calm, LOL but yaaa better to leave the room, sometimes I have to cut them off half way, I can’t take it! LOL But when someone else actually does it, other than ME, oh… it’s a good day! Hate those dishes…. as my friend always quotes me when I complain about dishes, “Someday we’ll die, but dishes will go on forever!” LOL sigh….. . . . doesn’t leave much hope does it.. hee hee

  2. This made my day. I just love to imagine your being the mom who makes her kids top priority and helps them enjoy all of the little things in life. You are wonderful!

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