On the dashboard of my blog, I have a little app that shows me some of the recent search phrases that are leading people to my blog. Sometimes there are terrible misspellings, and those always make me laugh because I know I’ve searched/texted things like that, hoping that auto-correct will save me.
Here’s a recent example from a text conversation with Sonia, where I’m in blue:
I was looking at a grouping of these terms the other day and I thought it would be fun to answer them in a blog post.
Let’s just start from the top!
how to keep kitchen dish-free
The most foolproof way to do this: never cook or eat at home.
If no one ever eats food at your house, you will never have dirty dishes.
Boom! Problem solved.
If you want to eat at home, though, I have bad news: you will probably always have some dishes in your kitchen.
Dirty ones, even.
And this is even more true if you want to cook in your kitchen.
Now, if you google, “How to keep dishes from taking over your kitchen”, my advice is as follows.
1. Run your dishwasher every night, regardless of how full it is
Dishwashers are extremely energy-efficient, and running even a partially full dishwasher does not waste much energy. Just push the button and trust the experts.
Do not wait until it’s full; that’s gonna throw off your routine. Just run it at night. Every night.
2. Empty your dishwasher every morning
Dishwasher-emptying actually takes less than ten minutes; for us, it’s more like five minutes because it’s just two of us here.
If you empty it right away, then it’s available for dirty dishes all day long.
Which leads me to….
3. Put your dirty dishes in the dishwasher throughout the day
And have your household members do the same. If the dishwasher is empty, there’s no excuse for piling the dishes on the counter or leaving them in the sink.
Scrape ’em and throw them in the dishwasher.
4. Clean up after dinner
I almost never go to bed without at least throwing the dishwasher-safe dinner dishes in the dishwasher and pressing start. On a really busy night, my hand-washed dishes sometimes wait overnight.
But I run the dishwasher without fail!
5. Do your hand-washed dishes at the end of the day
I have some things I don’t put in the dishwasher (wooden-handled knives, sharp knives, cast-iron pans, etc.) and I generally let those pile up during the day until I hand-wash them at night after dinner.
And that’s how I keep dishes from taking over my kitchen.
Do they pile up sometimes, especially when I’m cooking dinner? Yes!
But the nightly dishwasher-running/hand-washing takes care of them, and then I have a fresh reset. And for me, that’s what is key: a routine habit.
If you only run the dishwasher when it’s full, then you end up emptying it at odd times, and then family members never know when the dishwasher will be empty, and they have an excuse not to load their dishes as they go.
So I’m hard-core on team RUN THE DISHWASHER EVERY NIGHT.
(If you have a different system that works great, ignore my advice. And if you don’t have a dishwasher, ignore my advice.)
Edit: a reader comment reminded me that another key is: own fewer dishes. If you only own 8 mugs, your pile of dirty cereal bowls can only consist of 8 mugs at the worst.
If you own 27 mugs, though, your dirty mug pile can be tremendous before you are forced to do dishes.
hot fudge pudding cake
This one is easy!
This is a weird cake; you make a batter, spread it in a pan, sprinkle sugar on top, and then pour hot water over the whole thing.
But as it bakes, the cake rises to the top, and a pudding layer forms on the bottom.
It’s best right out of the oven, with some vanilla ice cream.
And I also happen to think it’s best when you make it with dark chocolate cocoa powder.
how to bless (a) person
I’m guessing this set of words brought someone to my blog because I have a post titled, “It doesn’t have to be perfect to bless someone else”.
Beyond that, I’d say…
Blessing someone is very individual
Treatment that is a blessing to one person might feel like a curse to another!
For example, an extrovert might be very happy if you planned a surprise get-together, whereas an introvert might be horrified at that prospect.
Study the person to come up with ideas
If you pay attention to a person, you can usually figure out some things to try.
And as you try things, you can take mental notes about what makes them tick and what doesn’t.
Ask the person what they’d like
I know it feels a little more fun to come up with an idea by observation, but since none of us is a mind-reader, sometimes it IS best to ask someone how you could best bless them.
By the same token, you could ask them what they don’t like.
If your character is good, you will probably manage to bless your person
If you are googling “How to bless a person”, I’m guessing your heart is unselfish and kind, and so I have lots of faith that your efforts will be fruitful.
Selfish, unkind people do “nice” things in order to get praise or attention. They give what THEY think the other person should like. They aren’t respectful of other people’s wishes.
And they don’t google, “how to bless a person”. 😉
There are a lot of inexpensive ways to bless someone
For example, you could:
- offer practical help
- drop a meal off
- bake a treat
- run an errand for the person
- send an encouraging note/text
- buy a little gift that made you think of that person
- mail a note or card (bonus points if you use dip-dyed stationery!)
Related: 10 Ways to Bless Someone Without Spending a Lot (which I wrote during my first marital separation, in 2018)
whole wheat quick bread no yeast
This is a result of a recipe that I posted eons ago: No-Yeast, No-Knead Whole Wheat Bread.
It’s a quick bread (like banana bread or cranberry bread), but it’s got whole grains in it, and it’s not as sweet as most quick breads.
So in a pinch, it works for sandwiches and toast and such.
Is it as tasty as yeasted whole wheat bread? NO.
But if you need a quick loaf, then this recipe is handy to have around.
How would you answer these google searches?
(Especially the ones about dishes and about blessing people!)