I have a dishwasher that I use but I don't put my pots and pans in it. I do those by hand. I've not always had a dishwasher and at times it did feel like a tedious chore but for the most part I don't mind it. Washing dishes is a time of mindless thought for me. I can just ponder at will whatever comes to mind.
Sometimes I plan out in my head the next art project I want to work on. Other times I pray for my kids and grandkids. I've also been known to prop my Kindle up on the breakfast bar in front of the sink and read while I'm washing! (Hey a reader's gotta read.)
The main enjoyment of it is some much needed alone time. There's something soothing about plunging my hands in that hot soapy water and just letting all of the chaos around me go. If you've still got toddlers at home this probably isn't an escape . . . they have no concept of personal space and alone time. But if you've got kiddos old enough to do dishes this will work every time. Just start filling the sink with soapy water and they will avoid you like the plague!
There is another benefit of hand washing. It can also be a great time of conversation. Some of my husband and I's best conversations have occurred over the kitchen sink. We've shared hopes and dreams and burdens while scrubbing a stuck on spot. Who knew a man could be so handsome with soap up to his elbows?
I grew up in a large extended family environment. Almost every Sunday we had dinner at my grandma and grandpa's house. After the meal the men would sit around and discuss crops and livestock and the kids would head outside. That left the women to clean up. I was so thrilled when I was old enough to be included. It was such a nice time of visiting with a favorite aunt while washing, rinsing or drying.
Now that my kids are grown and in their own homes I enjoy the times when they come for a visit and my daughter or daughter-in-law and I clean up. Such an intimate time of sharing our hearts while everyone else is busy somewhere else.
So what about you? Do you find washing dishes to be a chore or a way to build relationships?