You may find when you visit my home that it looks like it hasn’t been cleaned in awhile. Or possibly some sort of indoor cyclone recently swept through the house. It did, I’ve named it after my children. And they are the main reason my house is a mess.
I know I am not a neatnik, but I do try. If you find the house looks a little messy when you stop by, here is a little slice of life explanation that may help you understand why. Consider this story an excuse I am offering in advance.
At Least They Were Having Fun
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I actually cleaned the house just today, right after lunch. Everything was neat and tidy. OK, not everything. But a lot of things were neat and tidy. For a full five minutes. Then my daughter wanted to finger paint. I believe in encouraging creative expression and at least finger paint means I won’t be washing paint brushes. But then she left handprints over half the house on her way to the sink to wash off. She prefers red paint so it looked like a possible crime scene. Thank you, Crayola, for creating washable paint.
While I was cleaning up the paint, my daughter moved on to Kinetic Sand. It’s great stuff, messy though. Very messy. She also pulled out her box of what my husband and I call “the small stuff”. It’s a box of toys too small to have out around my younger daughter, but super fun to bury in the sand. My daughter loves burying her toys in it and digging for them. Or letting her plastic turtle toys make nests. It’s adorable. But the occasional pile of sand makes its way to the tabletop and the floor in the process. With a scattering of “small stuff” toys mixed in.
Lids and Mud and Boots. Oh, My.
While I was sweeping up the sand, both of my girls decided to empty out the Tupperware drawer. They threw the containers around the kitchen and pulled out all the lids to be Creature Power Discs like on Wild Kratts. Great show, by the way. I am less enthusiastic about the Tupperware explosion, however.
Did I mention we went outside twice today? Once for a walk and once to the swingset. Both times it was wet and muddy, resulting in a pile of wet, muddy boots and clothes from each outing. These boots and clothes are now on my kitchen floor. By the time I finished hanging the clothes and coats up to dry or be washed the Tupperware mess was totally out of control. And now it’s time to make dinner.
Meanwhile as Mom Cooked Dinner
While I was cooking dinner, my oldest daughter pulled out all of my clean dishtowels to use as blankets for her stuffed animals. I tried to limit the number being taken but I was too busy feeding my youngest daughter to keep track of the towels as they disappeared from the kitchen.
After I cleaned up dinner and washed all the baby bottles for tomorrow it was almost my kids’ bedtime.
All of the Tupperware was still scattered to the four winds and the sand hasn’t quite been cleaned up. All of the kitchen towels are still missing and there are bins of Mega Bloks and plastic horses being dumped on the floor even as I tried to solve the first three problems.
And I still had to win the bedtime diaper, pajamas, and teeth brushing battles.
After the Storm
An hour later, both kids were in bed. Wait no, one kid was in bed, the other was enjoying rest time, which is what we call it when she is supposed to stay in her room to play until lights out. She never actually stays in her room. But it’s a nice thought. She pops out every five to ten minutes to see what we’re doing.
After bedtime wars have been fought, I sit down at the computer to write. Pausing occasionally to chase my kiddo back to her room.
30 minutes or so after the time I should’ve been asleep I debated cleaning up the Tupperware and sand or giving up and going to bed.
Sometimes I channel Scarlett O’Hara and decide to worry about tomorrow. I hope you understand.