By Anessa Cohen

For some reason, catching up with maintenance tasks inside the home seems to become a part of Pesach cleaning every year. Why this happens when most of these maintenance chores have nothing to do with getting rid of chametz, I don’t know.

But I do know that I am not alone in running to get all of my maintenance list items done before Pesach, as if Pesach itself were counting on my catching up with all my chores.One of the first items on my list is changing the water filter cartridges everywhere in the house. Since the first time I put this on my to-do list, I have wondered if other people have several water filter cartridges to change as I do, or if I have just gotten a little carried away with water filter cartridges.

It feels a little like bedikat chametz, going from place to place changing all the cartridges. I start in the basement with the whole-house cartridge and then work my way up, changing the water filter cartridges in the refrigerator and sinks, making sure to get all of them changed so I shouldn’t end up with unfiltered water, G-d forbid!

Next item on my list is checking the mini-blinds in all the rooms to see if any of them are broken and need to be replaced. Tell me — is it only my cleaning woman who seems to break the shades on a regular basis while she is cleaning them, or do other people also suffer from the same?

Of course, in preparation for Pesach, I am also overseeing the moving of furniture and vacuuming under and over and in between all the cushions! Since I have regular cleaning help, I wonder why they are not doing this the rest of the year when I am not supervising, rather than just moving the vacuum cleaner back and forth like they are combing their hair. Another mystery!

The next question I always ask myself is: why do we decide that the garage needs a good cleaning before Pesach? With the weather cold and windy — especially with Pesach coming early this year — why do we put ourselves through this? Don’t you think we would remember how cold it was last year and try to get the lion’s share of this assignment done in warmer weather?

The funny part is that when the weather was warmer, I told myself it was too warm to clean out the garage and that I should wait till the weather cooled down a bit. Then it was time to pull out and then put back the sukkah things and my good intentions went out the window together with the neatness of my garage!

Well, there is still another week to go, and like all years past, somehow everything gets done. Tomorrow is supposed to be a nice day; maybe I will just close the door and go out and pretend it is already done. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!

Anessa Cohen lives in Cedarhurst and is a licensed real-estate broker (Anessa V Cohen Realty) and a licensed N.Y.S. loan officer (FM Home Loans) with over 20 years of experience offering full-service residential, commercial, and management real-estate services as well as mortgage services. She can be reached at 516-569-5007 or via her website, Readers are encouraged to send questions or comments to


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