After learning what I do for a living, usually the first thing I hear in response is “your house must look perfect!” or something with a similar sentiment. Well, let me first clear the air about that.
In some ways, YES my house does look neat. The living room and dining room typically look good and tidy on a daily basis! The bedrooms are typically put together as well, beds mostly made and clothing put away. Woohoo! I consider that success. These rooms always fill me with a sense of calm, order and satisfaction. Ahhhh….
Then there are the rooms we LIVE in. In my home like most of yours, the kitchen and family room are the hubs of the house. Those spaces are always in flux. With a toddler and preschooler at home, toys, books, and art projects from school are in constant motion in these two rooms. Does this make my home look neat? Nope! Does it make me smile and fill my heart with joy? Absolutely! Does it drive me a little crazy too? Yes!
So how do I reconcile that? If you saw my last blog post What Does It Mean To Be Organized? you probably already know the answer – it is by creating HOMES!!!!! Having homes for each item in your house are what keep it all in check. At any given time you will see books thrown about, half-finished lego projects on surfaces and crayons and paper strewn everywhere!!! (My toddler refuses to just pick one crayon from the container – must spill ALL every time!!!!!!). This is daily!
But when I get a text that someone wants to stop by in 15mins I’m not in panic mode that my house is a disaster. Why? I have systems in place for easy cleanup. If I choose to clean up – which I may or may not – clean-up is a breeze. The books go in their baskets, the toys in their baskets and the crayons and paper on their designated shelf. I’m also not doing it alone. My kids know where these things go too. Is it perfect? Nope. Is it put away? Mostly. Success!! A quick sweep to corral the crumbs from the recent meal and we are good to go!
Would I like a perfectly neat home? Sometimes I daydream about it, but in reality, I’d rather see the stuff of life that produces the engagement and joy in my family. As long as there’s a place to put it
Do you daydream of a perfectly neat home too? Until then, what messes make you smile?