Friday, August 26, 2005


Roger mentioned our brown water in yesterday's post. I would like to elaborate (or vent) on that one.

I am using cloth diapers these days. Well, I'm putting them on my baby anyway. I don't particularly like cloth diapers, but they save us a lot of money so it's worth it. And it really motivated me to get the almost 3 yr old out of diapers! But I digress. I wash the diapers twice, then give them an extra rinse before drying them. I've always done this whenever I've used cloth diapers (which has been off and on through the last 15.5 years either to save money or help avoid rashes from disposable diaper allergies) and it's always worked. Any stains would disappear when the diapers were hung in the sun and I still have nice white diapers. Until now anyway. We have brown water. Even the diapers that weren't brown before going in the washer are coming out brown. It's rust. I'm doing everything I can to try to avoid it. I add Calgon water softener to each load. I'm using vinegar in the final rinse. I hang the diapers in the sun. But still the diapers are stiff and brown. It's awful. And then there's the dish towels that used to be white with floral designs. They're now tan with floral designs. I won't mention our underclothes. Let's just say skidmarks are the least of my laundry problems.

I'd been noticing that I'm getting a decent tan this year--not real dark, but not as pale as I usually am. Then I was sitting in the tub the other night and noticed that I'm about the same color as the water. Am I tanned, or rust-stained? I don't know.

I'm thankful right now that we don't have a dishwasher or it would be all stained brown inside just like my washing machine, our toilets, bathtubs and sinks.

I've never been anemic. I have the opposite problem and have to be careful not to get too much iron or I get sick. I have to filter the water before I drink it or cook with it. We have very little water pressure and the filter slows that down even more. It takes a long time to fill the pot to make oatmeal for us each morning or to soak the beans for dinner, or boil water for pasta or whatever. I'm going to have to get more patient I guess.

And then there's the smell. I kept thinking someone hadn't flushed or the trash hadn't gone out or something. But no. It's our water. Imagine sulfur and rust combined. It's just gross.

We've been pricing water softeners and filters. That will wait until we have new pipes. The water here is rusty, but we think our problem is worse because of the old pipes that service our house. We occasionally have chunks of metal come through the faucets. So we are going to wait until we switch our water supply giving us new pipes, new water heaters, and a new water softener all at once. I'm looking forward to not smelling like metal all the time. But I might lose my nice, new "tan."


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