Friday, February 18, 2011

News plus Handkerchief Q and A!

Super responses to my handkerchiefs post, below - thanks so much! I've also sold a good number of sets from my shop, although there are still more, and a cute sent of kitchen cansiters, waiting for a buyer!
Now, the news is not so good - my dad is ill with pneumonia (and some complications). He's being very well cared for in hospital and my sister, aunts and uncles are around for him, but it's a worrying time. Your prayers would be very much appreciated.
But I can still talk about handkerchiefs!
  • So, lots of people use them, and others are freaked by the germ issue. Understandable. My mum would never let us use cloth hankies (memories of nasty ones from childhood I assume) but I had a friend whose mum always kept a bucket of disinfectant/water in the bathroom and the used hankies got thrown in there until wash day, which seemed one way to handle it.
  • I have learned, since going over to the cloth hankies, that there are certain habits you need to get into if the hygiene is going to work out. NEVER leave one in your pocket when you take off a piece of clothing! Rediscovering an elderly used handkerchief is a total no-no! (And, Sarah, for me pockets are best if but all else fails sleeves will do - the problem comes with summer dresses...)
  • On those terms, there is no way I am getting my boys to go over to cloth hankies. Their hygiene standards do not meet my own (see below) and they are going to have to stick to paper tissues thrown straight onto the fire after use. Anyway, they don't do the dainty, ladylike, keep a hanky in your bag just in case thing... The one time I had a really bad cold since I had handkerchiefs I used loads in one day and put them into a tub to soak before washing on that same day. I'm really only talking about general, light, everyday use, here.
  • I wash mine on the normal wash (eg quite ecological low temperatures) but line dry them (I agree with Sherri B that the sun is a disinfectant - so do the 'experts' I've read) and I also iron them very hot, which is going to have the same effect.
  • Having used cloth nappies and gone through similar concerns about the hygiene there, and with having a biologist husband, I am fairly familiar with what ACTUALLY makes us ill rather than what we might just feel is nasty. I have a fairly sturdy approach to hygiene, the way I like to imagine our ancestors did in the days before antibacterial kitchen sprays. However, each to his own - if it feels yucky for you, it is yucky, so fair enough!


Marigold Jam said...

I actually find tissues more yukky as they so often seem to drop out of pockets or sleeves and are then found lying about whereas hankies seem to stay put. I do use tissues when I have a cold and I boil my cloth hankies in an old Burco boiler which I had for nappies many years ago! I think we are often too obsessed with germs and bacteria and then have no immunity - eat a peck of dirt before you die is my motto though I shouldn't like you to think that I have disgusting hankies lying about waiting for boil up day nor that I never clean anything!! I just remember one of the other mums when my daughter was little who used to sterilise everything and her baby had more tummy upsets than anyone else I knew.

On a more serious note I do so hope your Dad makes a good recovery - it must be worrying for you being so far away. You, and of course he, will be in my thoughts and prayers.


Sarah Jane said...

Oh Floss I do hope your Dad recovers quickly and can understand how worrying it is for you.

As far as hankies are concerned I am 'guilty' of using both. The main thing is that there is something to hand when necessary and whether or not I have a cloth hankie, I always keep a small packet of paper ones in my handbag not only for spills but when a public wc has run out of supplies!!

LissyLou said...

so sorry to hear about your dad, you are in my thoughts

I always used hankies as a girl, i rememeber my mum folding one up and stuffing it up my sleeve before school - hygiene is an issue though and maybe thats why i always had colds as a child!!

Heidi said...

Great information I always pass on male hankies, why because I know men used them....My Grandpa always used one and I can still recall the sounds he my Grandma and great aunt always had a pretty one shoved up there sleave or down their shirt....thanks for the memories!
I have not thought of this for years

Betty said...

Firstly, sending healing thoughts and blessings to your dad.... on the subject of hankies - sorry, this so looks trivial side by side... I remember my first ironing job aged 9 was ironing my daddys hankies - such a nice thing to do and I felt so much love for those hankies as they were for my dad and he wore them in his top pocket with pride as he cycled off to work each day on his bike. I have brought my men up with real hankies too - but I do put them in of boiling water once a week as I am a germ freak! Bettyx

BadPenny said...

I always had pretty cloth hankies as a child & my dad used those huge white mens' ones - mum did have a bucket to sterilise them in til wash day. Interesting !
Sending love for your dad

Angela said...

Love and prayers for you and your Dad. I am sure the family around him are supporting him- but I know you'll be feelind far away.

Have I missed one vital bit of the hankie discussion- has anyone yet mentioned that dreadful habit of mothers to spit on their hankies and wipe the speck of dirt from the child's face? Is it instinctive- much as I loathed it as a child,I have had to stop myself doing it to my own offspring!!

Floss said...

Angela - you're the first! My mother used to make us do the spitting, so that it was our own... Mildly less revolting.

Fat Dormouse said...

Prayers for your Dad, Floss. And your "not door prize" is packed and ready for me to go to the Post Office.
That'll be next week then...!!!

Unknown said...

I love your blog. You have hooked me on hankies! Yours are really lovely! Will be visiting often!
Chris :o)