The New Domesticity: A Merry Spring Cleaning

The New Domesticity: A Merry Spring Cleaning

On bright spring mornings, my mom was prone to hum as she went about her housework. Occasionally the hum swelled, giving birth to words:

Open all the windows,
Open all the doors!
Let the merry sunshine
In upon the floors!

Such a merry approach to housekeeping made an impression on me. Her ponytail swinging to the rhythm of the scrubbing was indicative of my mom’s feelings: cleaning was hard work, but the effort and final product were well worth it, even worth humming about. And I know she was following her own mother’s example every time she added that elbow grease to her endeavors.

As the year blossoms into spring, I can’t help but think of how other women of the past faced their housework during the season of rebirth. Certainly the “merry sunshine” which streams “in upon the floors,” serves as a great stimulant, awakening in us a desire to freshen up and simplify. (Or, as a friend aptly stated, “It reveals how dusty my wood floors are!”)

To read more, pick up a copy of the April 2017 issue at any of these locations, or view the digital archive copy here.

Julianna Lawson and her husband, Jamie, make their home in Vancouver with their four children, ages 14 to 22.

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