Coming Clean

I have a confession to make. I like watching internet videos. The women who make them are finally bringing some respect to one of the oldest and dirtiest occupations.

Housekeeping.

What did you think I was talking about?!

I should be embarrassed that I recently spent twenty minutes watching someone clean her kitchen, but I’m not alone. That particular YouTube video has had more than a half a million views!

(Chances are good that one of the dozen or so people who read this watched it, too!)

What is it about the success of these homemaking vlogs (video blogs)? Although they do offer some handy tips, I think we watch them for motivation and, perhaps less obviously, validation.

Before launching into my weekly cleaning routine, I sometimes check-in with YouTube sensations Alejandra.tv, How Jen Does It, or The Daily Connoisseur. Within a few minutes, I’m inspired to put on some music, roll up my sleeves, and get to work.

These videos create instant motivation, but perhaps more importantly, they provide validation that housework is important and worthy.

For me, a clean and organized home is one of life’s simple pleasures. I truly enjoy housekeeping, but until recently there were more pressing matters than dust bunnies and cluttered closets. I’m grateful to have finally arrived at a season when I have the time to dote on my home.

I still hear some nagging voices telling me housework is for empty-headed Stepford wives. I sometimes fear Gloria Steinem is going to pop out of the laundry room and whack me over the head with my Swiffer.

I will be glad to see the day when housework isn’t equated with women’s work. When it is simply seen as a necessary pursuit some people enjoy and others would rather leave to someone else. When it isn’t loaded with gender-biased expectations and connotations about equality and self-worth.

Women today are fortunate to live during a time when we are able to make personal choices, but there are still plenty of lingering messages about our roles.  

If you really enjoy, and have time for, the art of homemaking, then get busy with that homemade lavender-scented cleaning spray. If you don’t, then let someone else do the dirty work to make time for things more important at this stage of your life.

Vlogs, blogs, Pinterest, and YouTube can be our friend or our enemy. (It recently occurred to me that “pinning” is just one dangerous letter away from “pining”.) Use them as a source of information and inspiration, not frustration and condemnation. View them with a healthy dose of self-confidence, remembering that comparison is the thief of joy.

You may still want to check out those addicting home videos of women cleaning their living rooms in adorable aprons, even if you have no intention of doing so yourself. In that case, I suggest watching them in a warm bubble bath with a lovely cup of tea and not an ounce of guilt or envy.

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Think On These Things~ Alicia

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