One thing about being disabled and being a caregiver for someone even more disabled is that cleaning can be quite urgent, and very difficult to do. An easy way to work around this annoying set of needs is to use disposables. Ya know, like plastic tableware and paper plates.
I also wanna be as environmentally responsible as possible.
Finally, there’s compostables. Yep. Single-use dishes and cutlery that can be tossed into yard waste bags. The cost is a bit higher than conventional disposables, but still a lot less than hiring someone to be here everyday, which is nigh impossible to find these days anyway.
An added bonus is that the tableware stands up to the dishwasher and can be re-used, thank goodness. It’s also nice to know they’ll breakdown in the trash dump, as well.
A bit of a bummer, though, is that the plates and bowls can get a bit soggy when used in the microwave. For these moments, the palm-leaf variety seems to stand up a bit better. A quick word of caution … do not use the tableware in the microwave. We’ve ended up with several melted spoons and forks this way. The good news on this is that they’re made out of sugar cane fibers, so the food might have some added flavoring, but nothing dangerous.
Yes, we’ve tried the bamboo utensils, but it always seems to taste and feel like I’m eating with toothpicks.
Oh, and we can’t forget about cups. We tried compostable cups, but found them to be rather flimsy, especially when using warm liquids. And they warp with hot liquids. Next we’ll try these reusable, compostable drink pouches.
What have you tried? How did it work out?
We’ve kind of gone in the opposite direction. I’m an auction addict and have been collecting silverware. Some of it is silverplate, but lots of it is full silver. There are a few different patterns in the drawer, and more forks and knives seem to survive better than spoons, especially soup and tablespoons, but I keep buying to hopefully put together a full set.
Yes, it usually comes tarnished, but polish and clean it once and keeping it in a closed drawer away from light, and using pieces in rotation so it gets washed periodically keeps it from tarnishing.
For some reason, the heavier weight and patterns are easier to use with my very limited use hands.
We also have a mixed set of corelle dishes which are lightweight and very difficult to break. And trust me, I drop them enough they should pay me to do commercials! I have a large selection of easily washable scrubbies and brushes I use in conjunction with the sponges with the scrubby side. Those get soaked with peroxide nightly, go into the washer a few times before going into the rag bin after they are too worn.
We have a large collection of the large thin cotton flour sack type kitchen towels we use for tons of uses besides drying dishes. I get them online by the dozen and once they are stained or torn they go into the rag bin as well. Once they get too disgusting to use even for cleaning, I’ve used them (or portions thereof) in the bottom of planters and flowerpots to allow drainage without losing soil. Or strips for tying up plants in the garden. Or tying fruit trees to stakes.
We do buy the cheapest paper plates to use for some things, but not frequently, and they are used to start fires when we’re done with them. (We have a wood-burning furnace for heat in this house.) Ashes from the firebox are used all over the farm in different ways. We do have one of those quite large spinnable compost bins for kitchen waste. I miss having chickens because they took care of so much of that. The horses get some, but not as much.
This house came with a dishwasher, but in 8 years we’ve never once used it.
Ha! It’s about ease of cleaning, not ease of use. Dad isn’t going to clean this stuff, and I certainly don’t have the ability to keep up with all of his messes. So, disposables.
Sounds like a lovely eclectic set you got going on! If you’d like some more Corelle, I’m sure we have at least two more sets. Mom worked for Corning for a decade or so. We have a LOT of Corning stuff.
Miss you and huggles! Thank you for your ideas.