What’s the best way to get you in the mood to clean your house when you’re the type of person that abhors cleaning but fancies a clean house? Watch at least 10 minutes of A&E’s Hoarders. It gets me in the mood every time.
Monday is Tết, or Chinese/Vietnamese Lunar New Year. One of the many traditions associated with celebrating the New Year is getting your house in order before New Year’s Eve. Ideally, you get all your cleaning, decorating, and cooking done in advance so that you can celebrate Tết for three days. New Year’s Eve is the first day of celebration where you gather at your family’s home, pray to your ancestors, eat a crap load of special holiday food, and pass out lì xi or red envelopes filled with money to kids. The next two days you eat all the leftover food, wear new clothes, and visit your local temples to burn more incense and pray to your ancestors.
Anyway, for the past few weeks I’ve been slowly organizing and cleaning up the house. And let me tell you, it is not a fun thing for me to do. I completely detest dusting, cleaning appliances, and scrubbing showers and toilets. I would rather eat rotten pig flesh covered in maggots (which I have, mind you) than do those things. However, if I don’t clean the house who will? My husband is not only a borderline hoarder, but he also whines whenever I “nag” him to do some sort of house cleaning. He used to be in charge of cleaning bathrooms while I took care of everything else, but then he hurt his back at work a few years ago and that changed. His back is okay now, but he rarely ever cleans the bathrooms now.
Leaving aside Victor’s lack of house cleaning compassion and back to me getting things ready for the Lunar New Year, I’ve been slowly collecting items in the house that we don’t use anymore and donating them to The Arc of Ventura County. It’s one of my favorite local nonprofits, aside from Gullwings Children’s Museum and FOOD Share, and they have the best thrift stores in the county. So far, no one has mentioned anything to be missing which is great and really gets me in the mood to get rid of other items. My goal is to streamline the house so that I can just dust flat surfaces. The only problem is that I need to do the purging when either my family is not home or they’re too busy doing something else. Now that we have the little monkey, it’s even harder for me to do since I need to constantly engage in his world, but lucky for me my mom is here visiting for the New Year. Woohoo! Which means we can tag team cleaning, purging, and playing with the baby. Plus my mom is a much better cleaner than I am, while I’m the better purger thanks to A&E’s Hoarders.