Slap me. Clean me. Remind me.
In general, I am pretty good at filling up water bottles for the day, and I am pretty good at drinking all the water. I try to never buy water bottles unless I am super desperate because it feels wasteful and lazy. I use the word lazy because I have witnessed first hand the physical and emotional sacrifice women worldwide face to supply their families with drinking water.
The reality is sometimes I am annoyed it takes over 30 seconds to fill up my 25-ounce Swell Water Bottle. I sit at the refrigerator feeling impatient and frustrated it is taking so long. I have places to go and people to see. This week I noticed my ridiculous impatience. Someone needs to SLAP ME IN THE FACE if I ever do it again because I know firsthand how lucky we are to have fresh, cold, filtered water coming directly into our homes in abundance whenever we want it.
I have traveled to Kenya six times with the organization Kenya Keys. Each trip is centered around identifying and breaking barriers that keep education from the “girl children.” The reality facing many girls, starting at a young age, is the responsibility to fetch the family’s daily water. This trip to the water catchment involves carrying gallons of water, sometimes for miles. This chore consumes their day, taking away from precious hours they could be attending school and studying. The water crisis in Kenya right now is real and seriously affects educational opportunities, health, and sanitation. So yeah, please slap me when I forget my obnoxious first world problem.
One thing that stops me from drinking more water is a lingering concern my water bottle is not clean. Years ago, I left a water bottle in my car way too long, and it turned moldy inside. Yes, disgusting. Since then, I am consistently nervous that mold is growing in my lid or deep inside the water bottle. Many of the water bottles have a skinny spout, making it difficult to see inside. So this week I also researched how to clean metal water bottles. Turns out it is simple.
- Do not use a dishwater
- Normal cleaning is just soap and water.
- More advanced cleaning involves diluting 1-2 tablespoons of vinegar with a cup of water. Pour solution into water bottle, let sit for 15 minutes. Use a bottle cleaning brush if you have one.
Now that Cooper is 90% weaned, all the liquid keeping her hydrated comes from organic whole milk and water. It has been a transition for me as well because normally I stick her on my boob and all is good. Now I have to fill up, refrigerate and wash sippy cups. Yes, I am weird about the potential for mold in the sippy cups, too. It’s not just the preparation. I need to remember to offer her water as much as possible. Every meal this week, I set two sippy cups on the table in front of her, one with milk and the other water. Every five minutes I asked if she wanted more water. Normally, she would just take a couple sips at a time, but by the end of the week she was pointing to them mid-meal asking for more. Many pediatricians advise against fruit juice and definitely soda, so I want Cooper to love water. It is pretty much the only beverage she is going to get, minus whole milk.