Questions of Efficiency

A couple of home management questions have been haunting the (empty) corridors of my mind for quite some time now, and I have not been able to come up with satisfactory or definitive answers. Let me see if I have some luck posting them out here.

1. Is it more efficient to have, say, a week’s supply of clothes and wash them once a week, or is it better to have just two sets and wash them every day?
In the former case, the expense of the number of sets is more, but since you wash them just once a week, you save on water and soap in the long run, and your clothes last longer because you use them less often. In the latter case, the expense of the sets is less, but you use a lot more water and soap, and your clothes don’t last as long. So which is better? From the points I’ve given, I am tending towards the first option, but somehow, I feel I’m missing out something. Any thoughts?

2. Is it more efficient to buy groceries in bulk once a month, or buy just the amount you need just in time?
Anyone who’s studied manufacturing will bet on the latter just-in-time approach. Inventory is less, so you save on storage space and avoid wastage of stocks. However, in a household context, I can’t imagine anything more inefficient than running to the store to buy paneer every time you want to make a paneer dish. On the other hand, I have friends who do this, and nothing is ever wasted or made in excess. They would rather buy 1 egg and 2 tomatoes and use them up immediately, than buy a dozen eggs or 1 kg tomato and let the items sit in the fridge. I hate grocery shopping as it is, so the thought of going practically every day is a definite no-no. Yet, I’m torn between the two options.

So what do you think? I’m really itching to settle these two questions once and for all. So your help will be greatly appreciated. 🙂

4 thoughts on “Questions of Efficiency

  1. IMO, the question is not which is a better strategy, but which is better for the kind of person you are. For example, I would absolutely detest having to wash, dry and fold laundry every alternate day. I would prefer a huge mound of laundry once a week, which I can fold while watching a TED talk or chatting with someone on Facetime.

    Coming to the cooking thing, if I decide to cook something, I absolutely must have the ingredients around me – going to the shop to buy something is a total put-off. So, whether I like it or not, I have to make the stocking up option work for me.

    I know I didn’t answer your questions 😀

    On another note, you’ve used a good blog-management strategy here. If you want comments on your posts, appeal to the inherent advice-doling desires of your readers.

    • Shruthi, yes, you didn’t answer my question directly, but you did make me feel better that I’m not the only one! 🙂

      I’m not picky about the ingredients I add to my dish, but then, you know me! 😀

      Blog-management strategy? Wow! That sounds way too cool! Unfortunately, I have not had much success with this strategy 🙂 And I can probably count the number of readers I have on my fingers, (though I’m not complaining — I prefer it this way). So, for this post, I think the success rate is as high as 33.33% 😀 😀 😀

  2. Anitha
    On the groceries side I read somewhere that the french are so particular about fresh ingredients that they buy their dinner ingredients on the way home to prepare dinner for the day. While I love the idea of fresh local ingredients I dont think it works for me. So I like an in-between option of veggies and fruits twice a week or once a week depending on how much cooking has been done that week with dry groceries once a month. Of course staying in an old fashioned house and locality with the local shetty angadi at arm’s length helps.

    On the clothes part I love variety and also dont have time during the week to wash and care for them. However I admire the minimalists who can keep their life simple. As they used to say in the olden day “1 set on you and the other set out to dry and A couple of spares for occasions”. Our life would be so much simpler and we have much more space at home plus no cleaning of wardrobes once a week :-).
    I definitely need more simplification in my life!!!

    PS: keep the daily blog going! Look forward to it every day..

    • Hi-5 Bhagi! I feel identically on everything you’ve mentioned. And it’s absolutely the same with me regarding frequency of groceries/fruits n veggies/shetty angadi! 😀

      I was thinking of the exact 2 sets saying when I wrote that about clothes. 🙂

      Hear hear on the simplification — the only simplification that’s going on in my life is the one Lil D does on her fractions!

      And thanks for the encouragement on the daily blog. 🙂

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