I enjoy collecting quotes, both philosophic and practical. Lately I've been drawn to quotes about housekeeping, and I thoroughly enjoyed this one taken from the book Cold Sassy Tree:
Miss Love was washing a kitchen window that looked clean to me already. It seemed like every time I went down there, she was washing floors or windows, one, despite she'd cleaned the whole house good last summer. "Miss Love, I reckon you ain't heard about fall and spring cleanin'," I said one day. She had come out on the back porch to empty her wash water just as I headed for the barn. I said, "In between spring and fall, and fall and spring, ma'am, you just s'posed to sweep and mop and use the feather duster and like that."
"I like the Yankee way better," she said, bristling. I reckon she thought Mama had criticized how she did. "Up North, ladies do extra cleaning every week in one room. Brush down the walls and wash the floor one week, maybe wash windows and curtains the next, and so on. When they get that room done, they start on another. The house stays nice year round, and it's not exhausting like doing all the heavy cleaning at once."
When I told Mama, she said, "I'd rather get worn out twice a year than stay worn out all the time."
I recently heard the famous Flylady on a DVD seminar. She said that the custom of spring cleaning came about during the era of coal furnaces. After having the house closed up all winter, there would be black soot on everything and a thorough spring cleaning was a necessity. Flylady would come down firmly in the Yankee camp when it comes to housekeeping.
Do you have a housekeeping calendar that you live by? Are you a Yankee or a Southern homemaker?