March 19, 2014

Spring arrives

The Daily Citizen

— Finally. Today at 12:57 p.m. spring officially arrives.

And from what we’ve witnessed this winter, its arrival couldn’t come soon enough.

This has been a harsh winter for most of the country, with voluminous amounts of snow and ice accompanied by days of freezing temperatures, causing damage and delays. And our heating bills have taken a lot more out of our wallets as well.

In our area, the early signs of spring are already here, from the yellow jonquils in our yards to the blooming “Q-tip” trees (also known as Bradford pears) lining the roadways.

Officially, today is called the spring, or vernal, equinox, a word derived from the Latin meaning “equal night.” Days and nights are approximately equal everywhere and the sun rises and sets due east and west.

Since spring is a time of rebirth and renewal, many people use it as a time to make a checklist of things to do inside and outside the home. A search on the Internet for spring checklists reveals seemingly endless results, with tips on how to thoroughly clean everything from the kitchen to the carport.

Many tips are obvious and are performed quite often without pre-planning. However, there are some cleaning tips that might not be so obvious, and some you might not have even thought of.

Here are some of those, gleaned from various Internet sites including the Huffington Post.

• Schedule a chimney sweep.

• Clean or replace door mats.

• Clean and disinfect toothbrush holders.

• Clean that unsightly clothes iron plate using toothpaste.

• Touch up or repaint your garden gnome.

• Run a dryer sheet over the baseboards.

• De-crumb your toaster.

• You can get your chandelier really clean by using a blow dryer rather than a duster.

• Dust the light bulbs in your lamps, it could brighten the room by 20 percent.

• And if you really want to be an overachiever in the cleaning department, use a Q-tip to clean a picture frame to get into the nooks and crannies.

Of course, spring cleaning is only one way we welcome the arrival of the new season. Some may ignore the cleanup checkup completely and instead spend more time enjoying the outdoors.

Which sounds a lot more fun than dusting a baseboard.