Thursday, August 24, 2006

Suds City

So, while I'm reading up on other sewing blogs just before bed last night, 13 YO DS finishes his cup of hot lemonade w/honey (he had complained of a scratchy throat), set it on the kitchen counter and said "Good night."

Hold on a minute...that cup should go in the diswhasher.

"Can't," he says, "it's crammed full on the top."

DH, who is reading the paper in the living room, comments that he should start the dishwasher.

"Oh, I don't know how to do that," DS reports. "Well, good night."

Well, no time like the present to learn...

"Stop," I say over my shoulder, "You can start it." Over his 'I can't believe you're making me do this when I'm SO TIRED' snort, I continued, "Open the door, and put the dishwasher detergent in the two little cups at the bottom."

DS, grumbling under his breath, complies. "Do I fill them full?"

"Yes, full. Then close the lid on the upper one and shut the door...good, now turn the dial around to 'normal cycle'."

"But won't the stuff spill out into the bottom?"

"Yes, it's supposed to."

"Ok," he said, shut the door and turned the dial.

At that point I got up and walked into the kitchen, expecting to have to tell him he needed to cap the dishwasher detergent and put it back under the sink, but was surprised to see that he'd done it already. Wait...or had he?

"Um, what did you put in the detergent cups?"

"That stuff," he said in his 'Moms are so stupid' voice, pointing to the counter.

It was the bottle of Joy dishwashing liquid.

Yikes! I stopped the dishwasher, which had begun filling, and opened it. Sure enough, it was the Utra Concentrated dishwashing liquid that filled the cups. I grabbed some paper towels and began sopping up what I could of it, while I educated my younger son on the differences between 'dishwashing liquid' and 'dishwasher detergent', and showed him the bottle of dishwasher detergent, which he claims to have never seen before in his life.

I can't get mad at him...I happen to know a responsible adult male, who shall not be named, in our extended family who did the same thing while his wife was away...only he didn't learn of his error until he walked into the kitchen to find suds pouring out of the dishwasher. So if this reasonable adult had made this mistake, how could I get angry at a 13 year old? But he received an education last night before he went to bed...and DH and I babysat the diswasher, scooping the suds out when it started to leak out and running rinse cycles until it finally cleaned itself out.

Then I happened to think, as I was mopping up the suds that leaked out, I bet if I had put vinegar in the dishwasher it would've killed the suds...

I'll try it if anyone makes the same mistake again.

At least we didn't just turn on the dishwasher and go to bed!


  1. Oh, Lisa, thanks for the laugh! It is only by the grace of God I didn't experience the same thing with my son!


  2. My DH moved into the apartment we had rented before we married and used Joy in the dishwasher with the expected disastrous results, which he spent hours cleaning up! Needless to say, he learned quite a lesson and in our 40 years of marriage has yet to repeat that mistake! (Yes, he helps clean the kitchen every night!) Now if I could just teach him how the clothes hamper works....


  3. Okay, I'll fess up... I did the same thing myself! And I was over thirty at the time!
    I'd just never had a dishwasher in my own apartment before and I didn't know the difference. (It doesn't look like so much suds in the sink.)
    I'll tell you what though... you only make that mistake once!

  4. I will say this...a dishwasher full of suds runs really quiet...

  5. I've done this before, as a teen, too. It happened during basketball season, and as a cheerleader we were on the road or practicing 6 nights a week. On one of my rare nights at home, and being quite tired, I started the dishwasher and didn't think much about it until my brother went to the kitchen and noticed the suds pouring out of the bottom. Yes, it was dishwashing detergent, not dishwasher detergent. I was so tired, I didn't realize what I had put in the machine.

    At least you son has a mom who understands and didn't get upset with him!