I have live in western North Dakota since 1987, and I still can’t get over how dusty it is here.

I like to dust using an attachment on the vacuum hose, but sometimes just use a Swiffer duster thingy. It is so dusty here that a week after dusting, I can write my name in the thick dust on the furniture surfaces. We have new windows and siding on the house. I change the furnace filters frequently, but there is no stopping the dust. It seems to be worse in our bedroom, for some reason. I am beginning to wonder if I need to vacuum all the walls and ceilings, too.

My mother had high standards for cleaning and really hated dust. One of her rules for cleaning was to always make the beds before you dusted, because shaking out the bed clothes would “raise the dust”. Next you vacuumed and then you dust. She would be very frustrated with the dust situation in our home. It just seems like a losing battle. Not dusting really isn’t an option, though.

What are some family maxims that you remember? How do you keep down the dust? What are your least favorite cleaning tasks.?

36 thoughts on “Dust”

  1. “You sound like fishwives”. This was said whenever my sister and I would argue/yell at each other. Unfortunately we heard my mom say this a fair amount.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. We lived for 25 years in a very industrial and gritty city in southern Taiwan. Because of the way things shook out in our work lives, laundry fell to my spouse, and cooking & cleaning eventually fell to me. I would dedicate a couple hours on Saturday morning to doing the apartment. Pickup, dust, vacuum and mop. I had it down! It was never done “well”, but it was good enough. Our next abode in Taiwan was on a college campus where things were less dusty, but I kept the same schedule. The house was smaller than the apartment had been, but one child had left for the US, and the other left soon enough after that. My Saturday morning cleaning reduced to 90 minutes.
    Now retired in west Michigan, we have a bigger house, more cat hair, and there’s no complication to make all of the cleaning fall to me. I must say, though, that it was easier when I did it all by myself.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Rise and Shine, Baboons,

    That floor is so clean you could eat off of it, That was the goal.

    I have said it before: I really hate cleaning.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. There is a little joke where a mother-in-law says that (you could eat off her floor) about another S-i-L of the narrator. The narrator replies “Oh, you can eat off my floor too – see, there’s a cheerio there, and a couple of pieces of carrot over there…”

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Maxim: Always have someone else to blame.
    Least favorite is now cleaning the 32×20×53 inches aviary. The first of every month involves wheeling it into the bathroom, taking out all the toys, perches, swings, ropes, lifting it into the tub for a thorough disinfecting wash down of the cage and fake tree branches. Towel dry and replace everything. The operation takes about an hour.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. In the morning when the sun is shining in the front windows and skimming the floor all the dust and hair and (probably)shed dead skin cells are highlighted in sharp relief. It is then I am inspired to thoroughly sweep the main floor. I expected that when we no longer had dogs or cats that the hair accumulation on the floors would not be such a problem but that doesn’t seem to be entirely the case.
    I also am the one who cleans the bathroom regularly because extra points.

    Liked by 5 people

  6. “Children should be seen and not heard.” We were to be introduced to guests, then we were to disappear and do it silently.

    Pippin is a non-shedding breed of dog, so that helps with cleaning. I’m the one who sheds – surprisingly large amounts of long, gray hair. It used to be dark brown so I could see it against the white porcelain sink or the bathtub. It’s getting harder to see it now. I use a screen over the drain in the shower and clean the tub/shower after each use. I absolutely detest cleaning out a clogged drain. I’d rather dust. And I hate dusting. It makes me sneeze.

    My mom would agree on the order your mom insisted on for cleaning: make the beds first, vacuum second, dust last. I was raised to do it like that too.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Well, Do unto others as you would have them do unto you was a maxim in my family. Just now, the neighbor to our north, who has trees whose leaves clog our spouts, whose weeds invade our garden, whose corgi barks at us, and who we decided to just forgive, and not hold a grudge, and be civil to, just brought us some beautiful wagu beef and two ribeye steaks in thanks for Husband blowing out their sidewalks this winter.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. I do commend your husband for clearing their snow during the winter; that’s a very nice neighborly gesture. Obviously, their gift of good meat shows that they appreciate it, too.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. The tree needed trimming for years, and the branches hung over our house, and they would yell at us if we tried to trim the branches that hung over the house.


        1. That’s a problem, for sure. I wonder what finally made them trim it? Glad it has been resolved. We had to wait for Parkey, our late next door neighbor, to die to actually cut off the silver maple branch that was dragging on our roof. The tree trimmer needed access to his property to trim it, and Parkey wouldn’t cooperate.


  8. They also, late this winter, had their son trim all the branches of their trees that hung over our yard, so many fewer leaves in our rain gutters and more sun in the gardens.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I don’t remember the exact wording, but the message from my mom – and somewhat my dad – was “don’t say anything unless you can say something nice.” And Be Kind whenever you can.

    Cleaning has become anathama to me. I resent any time spent dusting, sweeping, cleaning toilets, shaking out rugs, and vacuuming. If they can put a man on the moon… I realize they have invented these robots or whatever, but you still have to do something to them – I want to be Samantha on Bewitched – wiggle my nose and it’s accomplished.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. From Louise Erdrich, “Advice to Myself” in her collection called Original Fire:
    “Leave the dishes.
    Let the celery rot in the bottom drawer of the refrigerator
    and an earthen scum harden on the kitchen floor.
    Leave the black crumbs in the bottom of the toaster.
    Throw the cracked bowl out and don’t patch the cup.
    Don’t patch anything. Don’t mend. Buy safety pins.
    Don’t even sew on a button.
    Let the wind have its way, then the earth
    that invades as dust and then the dead
    foaming up in gray rolls underneath the couch.
    Talk to them. Tell them they are welcome.
    Don’t keep all the pieces of the puzzles
    or the doll’s tiny shoes in pairs, don’t worry
    who uses whose toothbrush or if anything
    matches, at all.
    Except one word to another. Or a thought.
    Pursue the authentic-decide first
    what is authentic,
    then go after it with all your heart.
    Your heart, that place
    you don’t even think of cleaning out.
    That closet stuffed with savage mementos.
    Don’t sort the paper clips from screws from saved baby teeth
    or worry if we’re all eating cereal for dinner
    again. Don’t answer the telephone, ever,
    or weep over anything at all that breaks.
    Pink molds will grow within those sealed cartons
    in the refrigerator. Accept new forms of life
    and talk to the dead
    who drift in through the screened windows, who collect
    patiently on the tops of food jars and books.
    Recycle the mail, don’t read it, don’t read anything
    except what destroys
    the insulation between yourself and your experience
    or what pulls down or what strikes at or what shatters
    this ruse you call necessity.”

    Liked by 5 people

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