there is much to look forward to — the winter is almost over [if you can believe it's now almost -40C with the wind factored into the temperature] and spring is just around the corner. they've even now moved the changing of the "spring forward" time to this weekend. that's a double-edged sword since it means that all my electronics are going the majorly [insert bad word here ending in -ed] up and i will have to RESET everything again come april when we normally do it since some of them are auto-configured to change in april. i guess the silver lining is that we have an extra hour of daylight, three weeks early. however......
that means one hour less in my already stressed out state concerning something i have to complete in less than 4 weeks time. for those of you who aren't jewish, or who are and don't observe our meshuggeneh rules, this translates into a thorough spring cleaning. this isn't your normal spring cleaning though. it means going through every single thing you own and checking for any remnants of forbidden foods or articles which are to be "disowned" for the holiday of passover.
despite what i am saying, i really like this holiday for a few reasons. it's the time of year to get together with family and friends, the time to honour our history and repeat ancient traditions celebrating freedom from oppression and slavery, and the time for purging.
it is at this time that i get to go through all my things and discard all the crap i don't really need or want and have been clinging on to for dear life for no good reason. [ok, i'm a bit of a (still reforming) packrat .... i gave up keeping elastic bands and twist ties a few years ago. enough said]. for the past few years, i've gotten a lot better at letting go and not been tempted to run out in the middle of the night and reclaim what i've trashed.
along with this purging comes my not so favourite part — washing and scrubbing every wall, window and area of floor, cleaning out every closet, every drawer, and every nook and cranny. this is later compounded by removing all the foods i cannot have during the holiday and storing them away so that they can be ritually sold [to disown them] and later rebought.
it is during these four weeks, from the holiday of purim that just passed, until a few days before the eve of passover, that many jews worldwide will try to use up tons of foods we can't consume during the 8 days of this ancient celebration. once the "forbidden" food is totally removed a day or two before the commencement (erev pessah), another crazy fit of cleaning happens with scouring the fridge, oven and stove, scrubbing the floors, usually a la cinderella on hands and knees, and covering the counters and finally cleaning the sink in a special way to make it "kosher" for the holiday. it's only once this final step of cleaning the sink and not being able to use it for 24 hours that i know that i've almost finished.
is it at this point that all the dishes and kitchen equipment for the holiday finally are taken out. this is the fun part, in a way. you get to see all the things used only at this time of the year and for 8 days only. it's these pots and pans and special china that hold tons of memories, sometimes memories that are only jarred by seeing these objects tucked away from year to year, taken out for those few days.
did i say i still have to cook because i can't make any food until i've completely changed the kitchen over??
in the end, it's a lot of work. it's actually tremendous work and i've not mentioned a lot of other things that go into it, like shopping for the food, making menus, cooking the foods, entertaining guests, etc. so, if you're following my blog, excuse the delays in postings. i have tons of things to talk about, recipes to post, and information to relay. unfortunately, time is short and i'm busy beyond belief. this doesn't mean i won't be posting things. i will be but just not as often as i have been doing for the past few months.
stay tuned for more.