World religions, common sense, and competitive babes are the perfect storm for cleaning the home in the spring. Embrace the reality and thank the Holy One you aren't an obsessive-compulsive cleaner the rest of the year. Then reward yourself BIG TIME!
Female Homemaker Burden for Passover – Easter - Spring Cleaning
Passover, Easter, and Spring bring cleaning. Why? Author presents a humorous history of females caught in SPRING cleaning rituals.
Babes and Their Roles
North American History MarenEliz-Style
Before the European invaders came (they called themselves “explorers” or “colonists,” but they came uninvited and created one helluva mess for the natives), the women of the Original Peoples performed childcare and food preparation. Parties and holidays gave them opportunity to strut their skills. Who doesn’t like to show off with a little grain grinding, animal roasting, and other tasty talents?
Then, the European immigrant women took over the scene on the East Coast. They also engaged in childcare and food preparation and maybe a little herbal pharmacopoeia. When it got to the point where shelters became good enough to be called “houses,” these misguided females invented house cleaning. Foolishly, these femme fatales ADDED cleaning the dump to the duties required for earning a winning blue ribbon at holidays!
The History of the Competitive Spring House Cleaning
Passover and Easter
Although now in the United States women have choices about whether to engage in traditional roles, the niggling traditions erupt at holiday times. Passover and Easter prompt a major sanitation overhaul known as “Spring Cleaning.” Look at poor Winnie of the Kinsey Sicks! Although she is a brilliant woman of the new millennium, she is still wedded to her Lemon Pledge ™.
Are females the only ones to blame for this huge cleanup tradition? Truly, is each of our domiciles a toxic waste Superfund site? (Speak for yourself, please.) No! Let’s give credit to a few of the religions which prescribe a ritual of spring cleaning. The Jews win big with the Torah command to get rid of all illegal grains in the house before the spring Holy Days of Pesach (Passover.) Then for good measure, their sages added a few EXTRA rules. Muslims are grand cleaners all the time! They have rules for washing hands, ears, elbows, ankles, feet, nostrils and mouth. If I understand correctly, this is daily. Asian Buddhists get the house cleaned up to greet the New Year and their New Year starts in early spring. Then, there is the conservative Christian magazine Guideposts which actually has an article entitled “Bible Verses for Spring Cleaning.” Sheesh!
BE ONE with the Cleaning
There is a very practical reason, in my opinion, to do a little spring cleaning. Cleanliness encourages healthiness. I was in nursing arena for a little while (also child care and food prep.) These all operate under research-proven practices that germs are bad and germs thrive in dirt.
Therefore, if Spring Holiday cleaning feels like a burden to you, try changing your thoughts about it. Try thinking “I am very blessed and grateful that I am not an obsessive-compulsive clean freak such as Jack Nicholson’s character in AS GOOD AS IT GETS, or Leonardo DiCaprio as Howard Hughes in THE AVIATOR. Therefore, I embrace this occasion to create a health burst for myself and my family, guests, pets. I will scrub away the MSRP colonies, the dingy dust, and hidden hairballs.”
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Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt, Greg Kinnear and Cuba Gooding, Jr., star in James L. Brooks' hit comedy, As Good as it Gets. Nicholson gives a show-stopping performance as Melvin ...
You could also think of the exercise as treasure hunting: “How many lost cat toys, loose change, and stray socks will I score with this big cleaning?”
Schedule, De-stress, Rewards
Strategy: make a schedule for yourself. (Ok, this might be a little anal and “too controlled” for some of us, but give it a try. You don’t need to change your entire personality. Just behave in another style for a few days.) Schedule all the cleaning, tossing, shopping, arranging, and what-have-you to be completed 2 days before the event or holiday. This gives you cushion room in case of emergency or obstacle. It also gives you reward time to de-stress before the event.
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