Being teachers allows my husband and me the opportunity to stay home with our kids during the summer and the holidays. We've often commented on how blessed we are that we get to spend so much time together as a family. It truly is wonderful. Well, except for one thing... The mess.


Five people in the house most of the time, eating most meals in the same kitchen makes a crazy amount of dishes and general mess. Now I'm not a neat freak, but my house wouldn't be featured on one of those hoarding shows, either. I've tried chalking the mess up to "children making memories" or some other platitude, but that's sometimes of little comfort when I'm wiping up melted Popsicle off the counter.

I've tried those Pinterest lists, you know, the ones where you can have a clean house all the time if you just do these things every day? I don't know who makes those lists, but the person who can actually complete all those steps is my new hero.

As I was sitting down, contemplating my cleaning for the evening, I looked up and noticed the kids dancing together. Watching them laughing and hanging out helped bring some perspective to the toys in the floor. My kids are happy in clutter. They don't mind having shoes in the hallway. What they want is the opportunity to have a good time.

Now I'm not going to say that I'll totally give in to the mess. I think kids need to learn responsibility and how to take care of their belongings. But every once in a while, if there is a pathway of pillows in the floor, I will try to take it in stride. The children are, after all, making memories...