This morning I took a deep breath and asked: “So honey, how’s it working to only have one skillet?”
A few weeks ago I cleared out the cabinets in the kitchen. I got rid of quite a few pots and pans, mostly the ones whose non-stick coating was starting to look, well, dangerous.
We used to have at least 4 skillets.
This doesn’t count the two big ones I use for cooking supper. These were the small ones that are only good to make eggs, or one grilled cheese sandwich.
Hubby makes egg whites every night to heat up in the morning for his breakfast. EVERY night. So, with our past way of doing things (living like slobs) we needed at least 4 skillets. And many more times than I care to admit, he had to wash one to be able to make his eggs.
So when I got rid of all but one of the skillets he used, he was justifiably nervous. As was I.
So what was his answer? “It’s been fine!”
I can’t say enough how much of a difference it makes to run the dishwasher every single night and empty it every single morning. Sorry if I am starting to sound like a broken record about it.
Such a “duh” thing, but it almost feels like magic.
Running it every night means that there is rarely too much to fit into one load. Running it every night means that there is usually room for a few of the bigger, but still dishwasher-safe items. Running it every night means that there are always clean cups for the kids at breakfast. (My kids have sipped milk out of coffee cups more than a few times.)
Running it every night eliminates that once-constant question: “Is the dishwasher clean or dirty?”
Sorry to be so redundant, but I’m disproportionately excited over the success of only needing one skillet now.
(I’m also disproportionately excited that spellcheck told me “No misspellings found” on a post where I used the word “disproportionately.”)
Amen to that sister!
We have one good skillet for making supper..and I find myself washing last nights supper out of it, to make tonights. BTW I grew up using the word supper…but moved to the NW and don't ever hear it much anymore. 😉 "Doncha know, eh?"
The dishes thing is absolutely true! Don't discount the power of that. I wash mine almost every night by hand since we don't have a dishwasher and it makes such a difference in the morning or when cooking dinner the next night. I didn't do them last night since we had a very simple dinner and there weren't enough dishes to make it worth heating up the water for them – seriously! However, between breakfast and tonight's Chinese take-out, they were starting to stack up, so I made sure I did them BEFORE getting on the internet.
Here's a simple recipe for your party. Buy some submarine sandwich rolls (the 6 inch kind) or other appropriate bread that can be split in half. Top it with pesto, then chopped spinach, then diced fresh tomatoes, and finish it with muenster cheese (mozarella and monterey jack work, too – use what you have). Bake at 350 degrees for about 10-12 minutes and, if you want, broil it for 1-2 minutes to brown the cheese a bit but make sure you don't burn the bread. Cut crosswise in pieces about 1 inch wide and, if desired, squirt some lemon juice on it. Why Pizzeria Uno ever took this off their menu several years ago I have no idea. It's awesome – it's also the simple dinner we had last night.
thanks for the brutal honesty, you really inspire me to open my cabinets and thin out the abundant dishes.
Thanks for the recipe Mar, sounds like something I could eat ALL of!
I know this post is old, but SO true!!! I have just recently started doing that and it makes all the difference the next morning. It's kind of funny because I have a very large kitchen with lots of cabinet space. I have at least 7-8 skillets. LOL 2 of them are cast iron, so I don't really need to count those, but I have every size. I am still in the early stages of decluttering so I will not tackle that just yet. First I need to be able to put something down on the counter. HAHA I did make my bed this morning though and cleared my bathroom floor. I still need to empty the dishwasher, but I feel like I'm making progress. 🙂
Nony the Slob says
Jennifer, I love comments on old posts. Those posts feel like my children, and it's nice to know they haven't been forgotten!
I have been running my dishwasher before bed and emptying when I wake for over a month now and I still marvel at what a huge difference it makes! All dishes available every day! It also makes cleaning the kitchen seem so much less daunting when there aren’t dirty dishes all over the counter and in the sink.
I have also been sweeping the kitchen every day and my floors have never stayed looking this nice for so long before. At first I kept thinking ‘I just swept yesterday there won’t even be any dirt, it won’t need to be swept for a few days’ which in the past would have turned in to a few weeks – but every day there is something in my dustpan. The corners of the kitchen are no longer scary places:) It also forces me to actually put away my groceries which makes my hubby happy.
And don’t get me started on how doing laundry every day has changed our lives!
I get crazy excited when I think about it all. I know that all my ‘normal’ friends would just be confused at my excitement though so I keep it to myself:)
Since it’s just me, I run the dishwasher a lot less often than you do. I finally had to give myself permission to run it when it’s not completely full. Once, maybe twice a week if I’m running low on certain things. It was hard to get past not running a full dishwasher, but I’m sure getting over it.
I usually do our dishwasher once a day too, but sometimes there isn’t enough to justify running it, so I have a little sticker I put on the front saying “dirty”, everyone knows then not to use dishes out of it, but also, that it is fine to put more dishes in instead of piling into the sink.
We have one egg-skillet that we use, another one that lives in the bowels of the cupboard. It is nice that the one we use is some high-tech ceramic coating where you rub it with a sponge under cold water and it’s clean again… unless it was filled with cold hamburger grease. Its big brother hardly ever gets into the dishwasher because it takes up more room than a spaghetti pot.
Your blog and e-books have been so inspiring. I thought I was the only “slob” in this world. I’m not a hoarder, I just found so many excuses on why we needed stuff and why I didn’t clean! I’ve been doing the dishes thing for a little over a week and it has made a HUGE difference! We no longer have to figure out what we can cook based on what was clean. I’m still working on the laundry thing. That’s going to take a few days to sort out. I’m starting to declutter the kitchen and will eventually move to other areas of the house (when I get the courage). Keep up the good work! All of us “slobs” need your encouraging words of inspiration!
Dana White says
Thank you so much for this comment, Betsy!
I’ve just started doing dishes every day. It’s really nice that the first two steps in making dinner are NOT to first load dishes from sink into dishwasher so that I can then use the sink to wash out the frying pan or other pan I need. (sometimes removing it from the dishwasher to do so.)
Everyone would always be asking me, “When’s dinner?” and I would have to drag myself into the kitchen and do dishes before I could even think about it. I would also then be too tired after dinner to clean up the kitchen. I could barely get the left overs refrigerated.
Dana White says
It’s nice to reverse that cycle, isn’t it?
Oh, you scared me to bits with this title, but then I saw “nonstick.” Honey, that is not a skillet. Do you have even one iron skillet? Get thee to a Good Will. No, you need every size, not just one, but only one TYPE of skillet: iron. And for heaven’s sake, someone update your husband so he eats whole eggs. I’ll come back when you’ve caught up.
About the dishwasher: I like to run mine before bed or overnight, then my daughter unloads it when she gets home from school the next day. My son (9) loads the plated and bowls after cleaning up from dinner.
On the cast iron: I use mine for just about everything. Still not ready to commit to eggs. They probably wouldn’t stick but I’d be so very disheartened if they did. I have a “bread” skillet that I’ve hidden, a big skillet, and two of those flat ones.
Nonstick skillets: We have two. One is for a normal amount of eggs — eight or less. I also have a 10″ or 12″ for days when I’m making a dozen or more eggs.
Newly single, no kids at home and way too many dishes, pots and pans and a ton of other things. Thanks to your blog, I’ve begun the process of simplifying and decluttering. This post has convinced me that my pots and pans cabinet should be next on my list. This weekend, I will reduce the amount of my cook ware. I really don’t need 4 skillets and the plethora of other items in that dark hole.
R Cooling says
Had me wondering at first but you don’t actually mean only one? As you exclude large ones? Took me a while to realise that a skillet is what we call a frying pan and not what we call a skillet!
We always used the two terms interchangeably. Now I have to go look it up and find out the difference. lol