COLUMN: Scouring into spring

Bright colors, beautiful flowers and fresh green lawns. A deep breath of just-warm-enough air to cleanse the body. Springtime brings a time of renewal and rebirth.

By Erika Neldner

I love everything about spring. The flowers bloom, the weather warms up and there are great holidays to celebrate — Easter, spring break and my birthday, of course.

Spring also means the time to get the yard looking nice for the next couple of seasons. I love to plant flowers and enjoy their beauty and fragrance.

At the first touch of halfway warm air on my skin and a glimpse of a sunshiny day, I’m ready to go to the local nursery and choose flowers to spruce up our yard.

The possibilities are endless in my mind — do I want lilies or roses? Do we go for annuals or perennials? What vegetables do I want to plant and enjoy the whole summer long?

My husband’s enthusiasm is not as grand as mine. He must not wear the same rose-colored glasses as me. He knows my excitement means trudging through the nursery pulling a flatbed cart with both kids in tow while I point to all the different flowers I want, knowing I can choose just a few.

It means pulling weeds and trimming hedges, building flowerbeds and toting heavy bags of potting soil for me — all the while trying to keep two littles ones from getting into trouble.

Running a weed eater is not the easiest task while an almost 2-year-old and a 7-year-old are running wild in the backyard.

And unfortunately, for him, it usually means completing the glorious vision I have for the yard while I wrangle the kids.

The springtime renewal does not stop with the outside and my hand cannot ever keep up with the list my brain is creating for spring cleaning. Call me odd, but I love cleaning and organizing. It is quite therapeutic. While others may relax with a good book to ease their mind, give me some cleaner, a sponge and a toilet brush, and I am good to go.

When I was a child, we always had a spring cleaning day. My mom, sister and I would tackle the inside and my step-dad would do the outside. The list was never-ending and back then it was more domestic drudgery than it was enjoyable. We cleaned windows and window screens, baseboards and any cobwebs the winter may have brought.

I have not had much luck getting my family into the spirit of spring cleaning but luckily for my husband, his fate is much better when it comes to the indoor chores than the outdoor.

I pretty much leave him alone as long as he keeps the little ones occupied and out of my way. That is until he sees that sweet twinkle in my eye beckoning him to come move some furniture and pointing to where I want it as I redecorate for the spring. He also knows it usually means moving a heavy box to the attic or to the back of my car to haul off to Goodwill.

I swear his favorite line is “what now honey? I see it in your eyes.” I guess he can read me like a book.

As the days get longer and the air warms up, I invite you to embrace the fresh start and renewal that spring brings. Even if you are not as passionate as I am when it comes to newly planted flowers, squeaky clean floors and the smell of a freshly sterilized house, find something to renew this season.

In the meantime, you’ll find me with my mops and my brushes scouring the dirt away to make a fresh start.

Watch out dust bunnies, here I come! I have my rubber gloves, vacuum and cleaners and I am not afraid to use them.

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