April 2, 2012
Another Step: Paper Towels
On Saturday evening, the paper towel roll in the kitchen was empty. We discussed as a family what to do about this. Yes, we have a whole new bag of paper towels (12 count!) in the garage, but were we maybe ready for another step? This one a bit bigger? We agreed to take the challenge.
We threw away the cardboard center and re-appropriated the paper towel holder as a new rag holder. It works great for throwing the wet dish rag on to let it dry out. The paper towel holder is marble, so the wetness shouldn’t hurt it.
We are still adjusting to this step, but here is how we have done so far:
That night, we had pizza for dinner. It was a pizza we made in our oven (not delivery). It had pepperoni on it. Anyone who knows anything about pepperoni knows that means it was a greasy pizza.
My wife did her thinking aloud:
So what do we use to blot the grease off if we don’t have paper towels?
My response: “Uhhhh…?”
So then she asked about napkins – what will we use when we don’t have napkins?
“Cloth napkins,” I answered.
Then she exclaimed, “Oh, I’ve got it!” and she dashed to the utility room. She came back out with a clean rag. This particular rag used to be a dark pair of blue jeans so it can’t be easily stained. I have to say though, it soaked up the grease REALLY nicely.
We had great pizza, and we did not break down and bring in the paper towels.
The next morning, I got up and pulled out my biscuit and sausage and hasbrown for breakfast. I typically grab a paper towel, assemble it as a nice sandwich, wrap it up, nuke it, and run with the paper towel. I stood in the kitchen dumbfounded for a moment wondering how to handle this situation. I had to back up and take baby steps.
Ok, I want to assemble food. I don’t have a paper towel, so I should use… ?…. a plate! Right, a plate.
I grabbed a plate, assembled my sandwich, then looked around confused.
I can’t wrap it up in the paper towel, how do I cook it?
I opened the microwave, put my plate in, and used a microwave cover. Then I nuked it, pulled the cover off, and pulled out my perfectly “nuked” sandwich.
It was odd making and eating it on a plate, but I survived morning 1 without a paper towel. I did not bring in a roll of paper towels.
Later that day, our daughter was cleaning a spot on the floor. We asked about her leaving the spot with stuff all around it and running off to do something else. She said she was waiting on it to dry. We said she can’t just leave a mess because she’s waiting on the floor to dry. Then she told us what the real problem was:
“But how do I dry it without a paper towel?”
I smiled as I realized her predicament. “Why don’t you use your own brain and try to figure something out.”
It only took her a moment, and she disappeared. A moment later, she came in with an old beat up (but clean) towel. It’s a towel we call a “dog towel” because it’s great for things like giving the dogs a bath. That worked perfectly for her, the floor got dry, and she did NOT bring in a roll of paper towels.
I later asked what she did with the towel: “I put it in my hamper.” Good girl!
Another morning without… I’m glad I had experience yesterday. I would have probably brought in a roll this morning had I not already thought it all through yesterday. I got up, grabbed a plate, and made my sandwich. Now the fact that I eat on the road makes it a little more challenging, but I just set the plate in my back seat when I was finished with it. I have to remember to bring it in when I get home.
My wife on the other hand did NOT pre-think this yesterday. She got up and made an English muffin. Then she looked around and asked how she was going to take it with her without a paper towel. I laughed and told her about the plate and explained I had the same conundrum the previous day. I think she just brought the muffin and didn’t even bother with a plate. Well, that’s her choice, but we didn’t dig in to the paper towels yet!
We are going camping next weekend with a lot of friends. We will take the whole bag of paper towels to use on our camping trip. We will not be bringing any home. =)