Bless this Mess

I’d like to preface this post by saying that, despite the evidence to the contrary I’m about to present, we are not slovenly people. If you were invited to my house for the first time, you’d probably wonder how on earth I keep such a tidy house with three kids at home with me all day. You’d probably marvel at the organization of our school and play area. I’d sit you down at a gleaming kitchen countertop, offer you a latte and some freshly-baked-from-scratch pumpkin muffins, and you’d think you’d stepped into a page of Martha Stewart Living.
I call it the First Visit Facade. 
Truthfully, as much as I love a perfectly put together house, our place is messy more often than not. Today was a particularly messy day. If you stopped by my house unannounced at 2:00 this afternoon, here’s what would have greeted you.

Welcome to the post-sweeping contents of our kitchen floor. 
That poor apricot crayon never knew what was coming.

Then there’s the random clutter that threatened to take over the place. I’m not just talking about the lone shoe here and there.

Although we had those, too.

I mean random piles of crap stuff, such as receipts, plastic fruit, magazines, and Valentine’s candy.
Piles and piles of books and book-like things.

 Music strewn about the floor as if Beethoven lived here.
Remote control in the fruit bowl. I have no explanation.

And other things in places they don’t belong (ahem). 
Then there’s the coffee table. I see no coffee. I don’t even see room for coffee.
I do, however, see zebra striped heels on the couch. Don’t judge.
Still more piles of books and book-like-things.
And who touched Mommy’s crocheting?! OFF WITH THEIR HEADS!!
Perhaps you’ve seen enough. But we’re not done, my friend. Let’s go visit the basement, shall we? The kids have pretty much had free reign down there for the past two days, what with the blizzard and all. 
 And by “free reign” I mean “Free-for-all Reign of Terror.” 
 My OCD friends are probably having a conniption by now.
There really is a place for all this crap stuff. 
This poor little guy just couldn’t take it. That’s right, buddy. Bury your head in the sand. 
Little Susie Sunshine can’t take it, either.

 Nor can Mr. Bear. I can’t say I blame you, little fella.
It’s an epidemic! It seems no one wants to face this reality.
Except for Barbie, of course. She’s game for anything.
Now you OCD folk can calm down. We did clean up after I set down the camera. I promise. 

 You’re all welcome to come over for lattes. See that gleaming countertop? (Better hurry, it won’t last.) 
So there you have it, folks. I share this in the hopes that it makes you feel better about the state of your living space. Unless you’re one of those people whose house actually is spotless all the time, in which case I hope your kid spills Kool-aid on your carpet. 
Just kidding.

Sort of.

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Annie writes about motherhood and other hilariously beautiful things. On good days, she enjoys juggling life with her husband and three children. On bad days, she binges on chocolate chips and dreams of traveling the world alone.

Comments 6

  1. Anonymous

    Awesome post! I’m all about keeping it real and this just says and shows it all. It’s so nice to know that I am not alone in my reality and there are others out there who struggle from day to day. It’s enough trying to survive from one day to the next, without the added pressure of maintaining a Martha Stewart home 24-7. Kids are only kids once and childhood is fleeting. Let them be kids! There will be plenty of time later to scrutinize every detail of my home when my children are older and more independent.My house is maintained… but lived in. I would not have it any other way.

  2. Kelli

    Just clicked over here from your link on “Rage Against the Minivan”–great post and I love your writing style. The series of pics of the toys in your basement (and your commentary) cracked me up!

  3. Bostonbells

    Thank you! Great post and I LOVE the zebra-striped heels! My 7 1/2 yr. old daughter has confiscated my zebra-striped jacket from my closet – and it looks fabulous on her!

  4. E-I and Baby B

    This absolutely makes my day! This is exactly how my house looks! I have 2-3 projects of my own all over the counters, and I won’t even begin to mention the toys! Alas, your post made me feel so much better about my home. It’s nice to see other “normal” homes. And we, too, have a place for every toy or school item. The kids just seem to think that place is the floor.

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