Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Frugal February - A Drop In The Bucket - Entry #3

I don't know the people who designed and built our home (or the other homes in my neighborhood that are clones to my home....home clones, I guess.) But if I ever get a chance to meet them, I am going to have a few questions for them, the first one being, "what in the world were you thinking with the plumbing in this house?"

Like any good storyteller, I tend to embellish minor details to help make what I'm saying vivid and memorable. For example, "That book was so good, I read it in about 2.5 minutes flat." But let me just say that while I admit that fact, I am not exaggerating in the least bit when I tell you that it takes at least 3-4 minutes (depending on outside temperatures) to get the hot water to come out of the shower head in our master bathroom. I literally turn on the water as hot as it can go and wait. Sometimes I do push ups and sit ups. Today I got in 100 ab moves before I checked to see if there was hot water and it was just getting warm. And don't even get me started at how frustrated I get when I can't use warm water to wash my hands immediately after using the restroom...ugh!

That is what brings me to this post...I had to come up with a way to save all that precious water! It began when we first moved into the house and there was a massive drought going on in the area. Lakes were being sucked dry, the news was pleading with the community to conserve water, etc, etc, etc...I hated the fact that at least 5 gallons was probably going straight down my drain before I even stepped into the shower.

So I got a bucket.

And I put that bucket under the water flow. It catches almost all of the cold water that comes out (yes, it's a 5 gallon bucket and almost full), and then I heave (or if I'm preggo, I have Brandon heave) it away and take my shower.

What do I do with my bucket o' cold water? A number of things:
  • I usually put it in the washing machine. My machine stops putting water in the basin when it gets to a certain level, so this hastens the process and the amount of water needed to wash clothes. Obviously, this works best with a cold water setting.
  • Sometimes I use it in the girls' bathtub. It works out that the hot water comes in and adds to the cold bucket water at just the right level for safety and comfort.
  • During the summer, I like to use it outside in my garden, or for my plants.
So, it may seem like a little thing, but those 5 gallons at every shower add up!

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