Posts Tagged ‘spring gardening’

Two people cleaning living room


Ahhh, spring has sprung, well at least it HAD sprung for a few weeks here in Ohio and hopefully it will return soon! With spring’s arrival, many people take advantage of the warmer temperatures and longer days to begin sprucing up their houses and yards. While I love getting out in my yard and garden as soon as possible to start preparing for the blossoms and blooms of spring and summer, I am not nearly as excited about tending to my house. Luckily, my husband is more likely to help me with the inside than the outside and, working together makes spring cleaning easier than tackling it alone.

Spring cleaning has taken on an entirely new meaning for us this year. My husband and I just moved out of our 4 bedroom, 3 bath 2,700 sq. ft. home of 8 years and into my son’s 1 bedroom, 1 bath 625 sq. ft. apartment this past weekend. Our house was in contract 2 days after we listed, needless to say, we were in a bit of a scramble to find a place to live for a couple months. Thankfully, my son graciously offered to let us stay in his apartment until our house is completed in July and he is staying with his grandparents. While I am incredibly grateful to have a place to stay, my husband and I are quickly learning what a luxury it was to have the extra space.

We have been preparing for this move, or so we thought, for several months. We had already moved some of our belongings into a storage unit to prepare for selling our house. And while my children are all grown and mostly out of the house, we still housed a ton of their “stuff.” As we were sorting through stuff, it became clear that we have TOO MUCH! But as the deadline to be out of our house approached, we realized we did not have time to sort all of the stuff right now, so we just focused on getting everything packed up and moved. Now our 32 x 40 pole barn and the large storage unit are pretty much filled, and we are left with the task of sorting and reducing over the next couple months.

As stressful as it has been, it is good to see what we have so we can more effectively determine what we REALLY want and/or need to move into our forever home. Mental Health America’s national campaign for May, which is Mental Health Awareness Month, is “Look Around, Look Within” emphasizing how our surroundings impact our mental health. Though at times it can be stressful, spring cleaning can have mental health benefits. Some of these include improved mood, increased productivity, decreased stress, and increased creativity. In this article Erin Michel, Graduate Assistant, reminds us “Spring cleaning your mind is similar in practice to spring cleaning your house: de-cluttering the things that are holding you back, reinventing or refining your values, and then maintaining that sense of mental cleanliness and self-awareness moving forward.”

Other areas you may want to consider spring cleaning include: finances, digital accounts, medicine, make up, and food storage areas. As my husband and I adjust to our new accommodations, I will try to focus on the positives and remember this is short-term. And when one or both of us is frustrated with the situation or each other, you may just find me in the yard communing with nature for my health AND his!

Written by: Misty Harmon, Extension Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Perry County, harmon.416@osu.edu

Reviewed by: Ryan Kline, Extension Educator, Ohio State University Extension, Ross County, kline.375@osu.edu


Can spring cleaning make you happier? Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist. (n.d.). Retrieved May 4, 2023, from https://www.wakehealth.edu/stories/can-spring-cleaning-make-you-happier

Mental health Month 2023 “Look around, look within.” (n.d.). Retrieved May 4, 2023, from https://mhanational.org/sites/default/files/MHM/Toolkit-2023/MHM-2023-Sample-Proclamation.pdf

Robbins, J., Williams, T., & George, Z. S. (n.d.). Ecopsychology: How immersion in nature benefits your health. Yale E360. Retrieved May 4, 2023, from https://e360.yale.edu/features/ecopsychology-how-immersion-in-nature-benefits-your-health?nav=F4tE-518336

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