Need 3 Good Reasons to Spring Clean?

1. I’ll start at the beginning, with fear.

English: Adult male brown recluse spider anter...
Adult male brown recluse spider anterior dorsal view. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You do not want your children to be bitten by a black widow or a brown recluse. Period.

So you must take every everything out of bookcases and toy boxes, from behind freezers and washers and dryers, and turn everything upside down looking for the black widow’s distinctive web. It is strong, as if made of nylon, even making noise when you rip it, and crazy, as if the weaver were drunk.

I’ll emphasize the strength of the widow web by saying I recently tried to pick up one spray bottle sitting next to another and got both. Between them in all that web, was a widow. I’m glad she had died, first, but I wonder where her egg sac is. Brrr. Probably up inside my deep freeze, which I cannot turn upside down by myself. Yikes.

Female black widow spider guarding an egg case...
Female black widow spider guarding an egg case – Species Latrodectus mactans (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

However, if you do find a widow egg sac, it will be tan, about the hue of khaki fabric, but maybe lighter, and roughly teardrop-shaped. See this photo and notice the aimless design in the supporting webwork.

What you need to be most concerned about, though, is the bookcase where children’s books are kept, and the toy boxes. Black widows prefer wooden places. And undisturbed places. Well, just read that link, above, to get the whole scope.

Oh, and the brown recluse is not much of a web maker and loves to hide between papers, so it’s time to get those newspapers and magazine corralled before the kids decide to do it for you . . .

2. What about mold?

All winter you’ve been heating your house, and not dusting as much as is wise, right? Don’t worry, winter doldrums get us all. But now is the time to fix all that. When you open the windows to let in the lovely, balmy breezes of Spring, you’ll also let in something you haven’t experienced in a while: humidity!

Humidity works with dust to make a moldy life for us all. There will even be moldy dust on your window screens, themselves, and in the windowsills. You should at least clean the screens and sills when you get ready to open up to the warmth out there, but if it’s all taken apart, might as well get the glass, too, and have everything sparkly.

Sometimes I wait with it, though, until the worst of the pollen has subsided, since we won’t have windows open much during that time, anyway. I can clean pollen off the screens and sills when I get the rest, that way. Saves work.

Screens dryingI choose a hot, windy day for the job, and use a pan of hot water with about a teaspoon of dish soap in it, and a toilet scrub brush (that I keep just for windows) . Remove the screen and lay it on a deck or sidewalk for support. Hose it, then scrub and rinse. Stand it up to dry while you do the window the same. Then dry the window; I use an old bath towel. I know it leaves a tad of lint, but it’s faster that paper toweling and is free. Once all windows are done, begin replacing screens. It should only take about one morning to do this job.

3. Looks.

You and your family deserve to see the place shiny at least once a year. Go for it. You will be glad. It boosts everyone’s morale and causes all sorts of happy feelings in your heart.

For “spring-cleaning-without-spring-cleaning” how-to’s, start here. Have fun!

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Published by Katharine

Katharine is a writer, speaker, women's counselor, and professional mom. Happily married over 50 years to the same gorgeous guy. She loves cooking amazing homegrown food, celebrating grandbabies, her golden-egg-laying hennies, and watching old movies with popcorn. Her writing appears at Medium, Arkansas Women Bloggers, Contently, The Testimony Train, Taste Arkansas, Only in Arkansas, and in several professional magazines and one anthology.

14 thoughts on “Need 3 Good Reasons to Spring Clean?

  1. When we first moved here, our home was inundated with what here are called Hobo spiders. They are not deadly for most, but they will take a chunck of flesh with their infectious bite. Having lived with Brown Recluse and Black Widows growing up, I knew exactly where to look and what to look for, but these hobo’s were everywhere. So I bit the bullet and allowed toxic chemicals to be sprayed around my home. I regret it, but as with all things we are ignorant of, we fear them. I eventually discovered, lemon essential oil and am thrilled. I mix it with a little water and spray it everywhere. One caveat, don’t spray it where cats roam, it will make them sick. I do bookcases, closets, upper thresholds of doors/windows, inside cabinets, toys boxes, under the bed etc. I have seen a drastic change in the number of spider sightings. The one drawback is it keeps all spiders away, so the hunter spiders that are good for getting rid of the other pests don’t come in either. Long way around my point, a good lemon oil spritz keeps spiders at bay and makes a lemony fresh spring cleaned home.

    1. Wow, Deidre! Thanks for this very helpful comment, and WELCOME to Home’s Cool! I cannot wait to unplug my deep freeze and spray all around under it! And everywhere else. Sounds peace-giving and scrumptious. And I know exactly where to find the lemon oil, from an herbalist friend who makes her own sprays all the time.
      And too bad if the teensy cobweb spiders move out and stop eating millipedes! 🙂

  2. I love spring cleaning, but I haven’t done it for two years. AACK! I found a wonderful system that works the way my brain works at Simple Mom. I got my whole 1280 sq. ft. house finished in two weeks! It felt so good! So, I am setting aside the first two weeks of June (right after we finish school) to get it done with their help.

  3. I am so completely afraid of spiders. I don’t have feeling in the lower half of my legs so I’m always afraid that’s where I’ll be bit and not realize it. Yikes! Time for the husband to spring clean! LOL

    1. Now, THAT is funny!

      Hello, Jamie, and WELCOME to Home’s Cool! Thanks for this comment!

      I am so-o-o sorry about your lack of feeling in your legs–I know you’d rather have that feeling and do the housework yourself…right? That is right, isn’t it?!

      When your husband gets done over there, send him here, too! Ha!

  4. We’re studying spiders this week and the next. Never thought to put spring cleaning on the school schedule but perhaps I’ll give them some brooms and rags and we’ll call it a “specimen hunt.” Thanks!

    1. Just be careful if you suspect any dangerous ones. The above two beauties can cause serious health issues and even death. ❤
      I’d feel safer if I had a vacuum cleaner with a crevice tool on the ready…

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