If you've ever tried having reusable water bottles and feel like you've failed because you ended up buying disposables anyway, listen up. You may be doing it wrong.
Let me explain.
Keeping a billion reusable water bottles in your cabinets isn't doing you or the planet any good.
Just like with reusable grocery bags, water containers are best stored where they can easily be used. It also helps to store them already filled with water. Think about it: The convenience of the disposable plastic water bottle is that it's full and ready to go.
Your reusable bottles should be the same. Free up some cabinet space by keeping your water-filled bottles in your fridge or pantry. This allows you to grab and go when you're in a hurry.
As for quantity, I believe you only need one more than the total number of people living in your house. We're a family of two (and a half, but she can usually share ours) so we have three reusable water bottles. If one of us uses a bottle, it gets washed, filled, and put back in the fridge. This way there's always at least one ready to go.
Any more steps than that, and it starts to get complicated. Having more bottles than needed allows you to leave the empty or dirty ones in random places and creates more to clean. When it becomes cumbersome, you won't stick with it.
These are just my suggestions to help keep the process simple, doable, and efficient for you and your family.
Ahh, drink up and enjoy the simplicity of waste free living!