Gratitude, Household

A burning dinner question + 2 gratitude quotes

Part A:

Why does it always seem to take 3 hours to clean up from dinner?

Seriously, is this just me? It doesn’t matter what we have, it seems like it always takes forever to fully clean up the kitchen!!

And I do generally recruit help- it’s not like everyone just ditches me. (Though, I’ll admit I sometimes shoo them off to shower/ do homework/ etc. after they help clear plates.)

It seems like even if we have a “simple” meal (at the breakfast bar), there ends up being extra pots/pans to wash, leftovers to divide up into Tupperware, smears or drips on the counter to wipe up, crumbs on the floor…not to mention the regular dishes, of course.

Then I think we’re finally done, and I turn around and realize the stove top is all streaky and spotted and still needs a good wipe down. Or we missed a pot.

I think it could be compounded by 2 issues:

1) If I’m not able to clean up the “cooking dishes” as I go ( you know, the chopping knife, the cutting board, any prep dishes, etc.), that makes everything worse. Because now after dinner you have all the dishes you ate on PLUS all the prep dishes.

2) We have a tendency to sometimes let clean dishes….linger…(drying) on the left side of the sink for too long. (We have and use a dishwasher, but will hand wash certain things quick, or always our good knives, or any pots/pans…). This means that if we now have any new dishes to hand-wash, those old clean ones have to get put away first, to get out of the way for the new ones! Extra time.

Anyway, this was just on my mind last night as I cleaned up from our VERY labor intensive meal of hot dogs. 😂

Have you ever put pico de gallo on a hot dog?? If not, TRY IT. You’re welcome. (This is a turkey hot dog + cheese+ ketchup + pico de gallo. SO good!!)

We rarely eat hot dogs, but when I ordered groceries last week, the boys requested them. I made a big pot of chicken/veggie soup over the weekend, so I thought hot dogs + leftover soup would make for a nice, easy Monday evening dinner. Actually, it totally hit the spot! Hadn’t had a hot dog like this in ages.

Part B:

Here are 2 Gratitude Quotes for your Tuesday:

  1. Repetitive complaining will attract things to complain about. Repeated gratitude will attract things to be thankful about.

I love this. I sometimes feel a little self-conscious because I tend to post quite a lot of uplifting/bright type content. Sometimes I worry that people will think I’m being disingenuous, or “only posting my highlight reel” or something. But that’s really not the case…I’m actually just trying to attract more of the things I want more of! Which are uplifting/ bright things. 🙂 (And, I do think I post plenty of my struggles, too, but I try to really lean toward the good stuff, whenever I can.)

2. “Remember, most of your stress comes from the way you respond, not the way life is. Adjust your attitude. Change how you see things. Look for the good in all situations. Take the lesson and find new opportunities to grow. Let all the extra stress, worrying and overthinking go.”

Just a nice little reminder. Easier said than done, yes. But a message we can probably all stand to hear again and again. I especially love the first sentence, about most stress coming from how we respond to things.

Oh! And my “blog posts in a book” arrived while we were away!! It turned out great!! It’s big and thick and 163 pages of our epic family road trip. 🙂

I choose the yellow/gold color scheme…It ended up looking a little bit “Rick Steves-esque”…haha! If you’ve ever used his books, they are usually blue and gold. Maybe I did that subconsciously? I actually really like Rick Steves travel guides.

Daily Gratitude:

I am grateful for notebooks.

11 thoughts on “A burning dinner question + 2 gratitude quotes”

  1. Wow – that book looks…incredible!!

    Also about like attracting like: (“But that’s really not the case…I’m actually just trying to attract more of the things I want more of!”) – this is SO true. I find the same thing with friends…I know a few people that tend to *only* complain when we’re together and I’ve decided this sucks me in to a complaint vortex. I have to be so careful because it’s easy for me to spiral down into their negativity.

    I consider myself to be a recovering pessimist. I don’t always get it right, but I really do find a huge boost in my overall mood now that I’m listing things that bring me joy!


  2. I don’t think that you are a pollyanna/highlight reel poster at all. You try to look on the bright side of things but you also acknowledge when things are really hard/you are struggling with something! Like Elisabeth, I am also a recovering pessimist! I have been trying to reframe things more. And I am tempted to try the Happier challenge of not complaining for a month! I might try it in May. My biggest pet peeve with complaining is when people complain about something incessantly but then don’t do anything about it!

    So as far as the dinner thing, I am very anal about cleaning as I go. That is easier with some dishes than others but I can almost always accomplish that. It helps that Phil pretty much always takes the boys to play in the basement when I am making dinner so I am not juggling kids + cooking. We kind of split the clean-up duties and whoever isn’t rinsing dishes/loading the dishwater/washing dishes handles the boys so we are both busy with something which makes it feel more ‘fair’? And Phil is always the one who deals w/ the clean dishes that are drying in the sink. I used to do that in the morning but he swears that leaving the dishes to dry was contributing to an ant problem we had last summer. I disagree but since he’s willing to empty the sink and put most of the dishes away, it doesn’t impact me/require me to do more. I also will try to do some of the prep work ahead of time, like chopping the veggies or meat when I have downtime during the day, so that can help reduce the # of dishes at the end of a meal. I do most of the cooking but when Phil cooks for us, he does NOT do any cleaning while he is making the meal so there are more dishes to deal with at the end! But it’s so nice to have him make a couple of meals that I just keep my mouth shut about our cooking/cleaning styles. 😉 Oh and I will also say that our floors are not great/tidy… it feels like a losing battle at this point, especially with Will in a food throwing stage! If we swept the floor after every meal that would really add to the clean-up time. And I usually leave the stove until the weekend when I can do a deep clean.


    1. I love the idea of prepping during the day, but I’m not usually organized enough to do that! Whenever I do though, it’s awesome. Re: the clean dishes, I tend to hand wash almost any dish that I feel wasn’t “really dirty”…so sometimes they pile up. For example, if I just served myself 2 pieces of buttered toast on a plate, I feel like I can do such a quick wash of it that it’s not worth putting it in the dishwasher for an hour, you know? I could probably wipe the crumbs off and it’d be fine! lol! It really works best if I put the dishes away while the boys are having breakfast in the morning, b/c then it’s all set for the rest of the day. But I don’t always have time or make that happen! Definitely though splitting up duties with husband or kids is the way to go, but sometimes we eat and then Ivan runs out the door to drop a kid somewhere, etc.. so it doesn’t always work perfectly.


  3. Oh, I am the master of “cleaning up as I go”… I even get mad if my husband stirs the pot and then puts the dirty spoon on the countertop. He gets scolded for that (because that’s unnecessary and needs to be cleaned up later). Also, I love one-pot dishes (keeps the number of dishes that can’t go in the dishwasher low) and I also have this deal that my husband cleans up, because I cook LOL (but I do make it easy for him as I clean up as much as I can along the way!).

    I really love the first quote about how repeated gratitude attracts things to be thankful about. It’s really just about attitude and perspective!

    P.S. As you can see, I am really good at commenting right away…. ever since your posts show up in my Feedly (third day in a row – woohoo!).


    1. My husband does also do a lot of the clean up many days, because he gets home from work later (and I work from home!). So he’s often not even home until 6 pm…so he really doesn’t have time to cook much on weeknights. I tend to be slightly more anal about what it means to be “done” cleaning up the kitchen though, too. He does a good enough job, but I prefer it to be basically spotless before bed! So sometimes I can’t resist getting back in there.. ha.

      So excited the Feedly is consistently working!!!!


  4. We have strict rules about cleanup in our house. First is, as you noticed, the dish rack where the drying dishes live must be emptied before dinner prep starts. Second, clean up as you go if you can. (I can’t do a lot of handwashing because it irritates some skin issues I have, but if I can pop in in the dishwasher or set something to soak, it is my job.) Third, whoever is done eating first must tackle any post-dinner cleaning. Again, the dish rack must be emptied before you leave the kitchen.

    But there are only two of us and this really doesn’t take us three hours. 🙂


    1. Ooh, rule #3 is a toughie!! haha! So do you both sit there sloooooowly chewing that last bite, so as to not be the first one done?? 😉 I definitely need to really work on implementing that “empty clean dish rack before dinner prep starts” rule. That really is a game changer.


      1. My husband is a SLOOOOOW eater. I am frequently eager to get up out of my chair to start moving around and so I end up doing most of that cleanup, but that’s okay because I can’t do most of the handwashing, so he does end up doing that work. But the drying and putting away and even organizing the dishes for the appropriate order in which to wash them almost always ends up on me. It works for us!


  5. Your travel book looks so Amazing 👏
    And I face the same situation with the after dinner clean-up, it takes so sooo long. I should start trying out “empty clean dish rack” before dinner prep tip, suggested by NGS.


    1. Thanks! I’m really excited to have this book made. Now I’m trying to decide if I should make one for this most recent trip…I’m so behind on publishing recaps, but I know I’d love it if I did…hmmm…. 🙂


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