I hope all my Jewish readers had a great time celebrating Purim. The beautiful little dress you see below served as Shira's Purim costume this year. It has been hanging in her closet for quite a while, and I have been admiring it, but couldn't imagine an occasion except for Purim when Shira might wear it, as it's so fancy, with many layers and lots of lace, satin and beads.
With Purim now behind us, the next thing on the agenda is Pesach cleaning (known by the name of Spring cleaning in non-Jewish households). There is a long, long list of things to do, apart from the daily routine which is enough to keep anyone busy - there are meals to cook, laundry to wash and hang and sort and fold and iron, floors to mop, beds to make, and on top of it all, there's one very active, curious, energetic, determined and resourceful little explorer around here.
Strictly speaking, Pesach cleaning is supposed to be about getting rid of the chametz, but there's a powerful instinct that prompts Jewish wives to do a deep clean of their bathrooms and other places where no one ever eats, as well as wash curtains and scrub windows squeaky clean and do a million of other things that have nothing to do with chametz but leave the house cleaner and tidier than it will be at any other point during the year. Of course, many families have guests for Pesach, which gives a motivation to do extra cleaning and re-arranging.
Go figure why, but right before Pesach there's an upsurge of people throwing out perfectly good bookcases, chairs and coffee tables, which can turn a casual drive through a neighborhood into a real treasure hunt for people who don't mind getting second-hand furniture for free.
I have a lot of "extras" on my list as well. Last year, we accomplished but half of it. It was alright, though. God willing, we will get through the necessities and do what we can about the rest.