Having fun with washing machine appliances

This morning I opened the washer dryer expecting a plethora of warm dry clothes to wear for dress down Friday at work – or at least a single pair of clean socks. I know its lazy to have waited till Thursday evening but I was away last weekend and throughout the week other very important tasks have taken preference (like putting up the Christmas tree! :)).

However, as I reached into the machine it became clear that all was not well and my casual clothes of choice were still soaking wet. How bizarre, I mused, distinctly remembering the conversation I’d had with my other half. It went like this:

OH: “Kate, can I dry this top in the machine?”

Me: “Yes, dear.”

OH: “Ok then.”

And so I asked him what had happened.

OH: “Well the dryer was already on 40 so I thought that’d be ok.”

I asked him to point out the dial which was on 40 and laughed as, not unsurprisingly, he pointed to the wash temperature. It may sound daft but I can completely understand his confusion. There are three dials and even more buttons on our washer dryer which to a novice can look very complex. That’s why I’d read and re-read the manual when the appliance arrived.

I have an inane excitement about new household appliances which I don’t believe even the hardiest feminist could beat out of me. I think it’s my housewife gene bubbling to the surface and one that clearly Ben does not possess (it’s ok, he has other fantastic qualities).

What I want to know is when it appeared? At what point did I stop wanting to go to muddy festivals and chain myself to the railings, and instead sit in (avidly) reading a guide to kitchen appliances? It certainly wasn’t before I left home, as my mum would no doubt tell you. Now I love finding out what my machines can do.

On the other hand I recently had a conversation with a colleague who says that when he does his washing he simply puts everything in and turns it to programme “number three”. He does this because that’s what his mum told him to do. For all he knows “number 3” could mean wool wash, delicates or even trigger an ejector seat three doors down!

So, the question I pose is how many of us properly understand the capabilities of our kitchen appliances? Do you use your machine as the manufacturer intended with all its bells and whistles, or do you use the same programme every time?

Using kitchen appliances properly is difficult, I know. It’s how I came to be wearing ski socks to work today :).

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2 Responses to Having fun with washing machine appliances

  1. Emily O says:

    I’m hopeless with kitchen appliances, as soon as I find one way of using them that’s the only way I use them. When you have some spare time, the last thing you want to do is browse the manual. I’d rather be reading Heat magazine. I always use the same cycle on the dishwasher and washing machine. And then my toddler did something to the microwave the other day and I had to get the manual out to work it out, nightmare!

  2. kitchenkate says:

    I think most people do the same. I actually read the manual when the appliance first turned up and use about three of the 15+ programmes available on the machine – whites, coloureds and wool. And that’s only after I accidentally felted my new cardigan (fortunately it was only a Primarni).

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