We’re blessed in Florida with plenty of international visitors – and transplants – who tend to bring with them and share international healthy home habits.

And we can all learn from sharing with each other – international visitors and immigrants with Americans and visa-versa.

For example, you probably know it’s customary to slip off one’s shoes before entering a Japanese home. Did you also know it’s equally customary for the home owner to offer visitors a pair of house slippers to replace the street shoes?

More tips and suggestions like this can be learned from the Houzz post published by Elena Ambrosimova, a Russian correspondent for Houzz (Елена Амбросимова, in Russian). And we’re on Houzz, too. Come visit us there.

“It was so much fun to clean the carpets in the snow in the courtyard before the New Year’s celebrations,” Ambrosimova quotes another Houzz contributer. “The children would run around on the spread-out carpets and shovel fluffy snow onto them. Then they would pick up their brooms and beaters and sweep away the year-old dust along with the snow. It was such fun! The air in the household would be fresh and clean in the new year.”

Well, okay, that one probably won’t work in Florida. But how about this?

Bread as a gift“In Russia, bread and salt are given by the groom’s parents to their son and his bride during the wedding ceremony as a way of wishing the young couple well-being, prosperity and hospitality. One of the Russian words for hospitable, khlebosolny, translates literally as “bread-salty,” Ambrosimova explains.

What a lovely idea.

She also points out a traditional German house-warming gift might be a small cup of salt and a loaf of bread.

“In many Asian countries, the days leading up to New Year’s Eve are a time to give your home a thorough cleaning,” Ambrosimova writes. “The idea is to not only begin the new year with a sparkling abode, but to rid your home of bad energy. Cleaning at the start of the year is a no-no — it’s thought to sweep away the fresh, positive energy flowing into your home.

“A friend of mine in Malaysia pointed out to me once that he sweeps and mops the kitchen floor as part of the cleanup routine after dinner each evening to ensure that the area is pristine for the next day.”

What a wonderful world it can be when we decided to learn from each other, from different cultures around the world.

You can read all of Ambrosimova’s post here: