Surely, there are little things at home that has needed your attention from the beginning of the year. These little things, these household vows or resolutions (“I swear I'll have that fixed next week,” or “I'll work on that tomorrow, I promise!”) have been on your to-do list ever since. Unfortunately, you have never been able to cross them out. Fast forward and it's already December. That Pinoy custom of getting everything fixed and ready for the new year ahead comes into mind and you review your list of resolutions, realizing that you've never really gotten around fulfilling any of them.
This is what we'd like to call the Quarter-year Home Crisis, the anxiety and guilt brought by not being able to accomplish household tasks that seem pretty small but can be quite bothersome. Yes, it's that “oh-no-it's-the-last-quarter-of-the-year-and-yet-[insert problem here]!” feeling that you can't just shake off...until you do something about the problem itself.
There's really no other way around it but, well, by working on it. No house is the same as the other, but here are the four most common resolutions that seemed so urgent...until you forgot all about them:
Household resolution #1: Fix that leaky faucet.
What happened along the way: The first few nights were bothersome and your sleep might have been disrupted. With gritting teeth, you promised that you will call the plumber tomorrow to have it fixed. Tomorrow came and went, your days became busier and your brain started to ignore those little drip-drop sounds from the bathroom.
Why it needs attending to now: Two words: water conservation. While tiny drops may not amount to much individually, the 24/7 dripping will definitely take a toll not only on Mother Nature but also on your water bill. And, no, those rubber bands won't cut it. The danger of the pipe finally bursting while you're not at home and water potentially damaging whatever is on its path to fulfilling its dream of becoming a mini-flood will always be there.
Household hack: When you finally get to call your plumber, ask him to check all the faucets at home and to work on them accordingly. It is in the nature of faucets to go leaky at some point, so go the extra mile and ask him to teach you how to work the wrench.
Household resolution #2: Clean out the refrigerator.
What happened along the way: Yes, you've been meaning to sort out that piece of appliance where you store most of your food, but defrosting takes forever and you simply didn't have enough time for that. Plus, that's partner/sibling/housemate's job and you simply don't have the time.
Why it needs attending to now: Your months-old food is starting to look like aliens from another planet. You have to hold your breath when you open the refrigerator door. Most of your plates and saucers are glued frozen to the freezer. If those are not reasons enough, here's one more: it's totally unhygienic.
Household hack: This important yet quite tedious (and, yes, it can be gross) task shouldn't fall in the hands of one person. Sit your household down and talk about taking turns every two or three months. You can also turn it into a bonding session/habit by doing it all together.
Household resolution #3: Dust off the top shelves.
What happened along the way: You were doing your general cleaning and everything is almost spic and span. Almost. If only you could reach those top shelves. You tried and tried and tried some more...and then you gave up. Oh, well. The guests won't see that part anyway, so you thought you could just try again tomorrow.
Why it needs attending to now: Your guests might not be able to see whatever is accumulating on those shelves, but there is this chance of them inhaling them. After all, dust is heavier than air. More than the unwanted sneezing, what we are really trying to avoid is an even more unwanted asthma attack.
Household hack: Invest in a ladder just for cleaning those tricky spots. If that's not your cup of tea, get a long feather duster or use a clean broom instead.
Household resolution #4: Cover that hole in the wall.
What happened along the way: You noticed that crack in the wall first while you were changing your wall paper. You thought of going back to it, but didn't think it's something urgent. It might be a bit unattractive, but it wouldn't do any harm, right?
Why it needs attending to now: Wrong. Holes in the wall usually mean only one thing: pests. Whether they're rats, mice, ants or termites, pests are and will always be threats to you and your family's health.
Household hack: Before covering that hole up, have an exterminator check it first or at least draw unwanted ones out using pesticides.
These are issues that, despite being seen as something petty or miniscule, can amount to something big in the future – a big headache, that is. We already had enough bad news to last us until the end of 2015. Don't let a few menial tasks destroy what can be your peaceful sanctuary and refuge from all the world's confusion.