It’s been said:
Good Moms Have Sticky Floors,
and Happy Kids.
Really? Is that what makes a good mom and happy kids? WOW! It’s that easy to be a good mom and be guaranteed happy kids? Just stop cleaning? I’m sorry, but sadly there are not so good moms and miserable kids with dirty homes out there.
Those “cute” little sayings that dirty homes make good moms and happy kids drive me crazy! Parenting is so much more.
My home is not perfect… not at all. In fact, I wouldn’t want you to go snooping through all the closets and drawers to see that chaos does exist in this home. However, I do believe in keeping a tidy home. I do keep a few rooms in my house that I consider “sacred”. No, I do not let our kids eat in their bedrooms or the living room. I ask that they keep their toys out of the living room too. Is that so bad? Are my kids missing out? Do they lack creativity? Will they grow up without happy memories? Am I a BAD mom??
Absolutely not, we have happy, very creative children, full of wonderful memories. In fact, it warms my heart that when they walk in the door they’ll say “Home Sweet Home”.
My house gets dirty! My oven needs cleaning, laundry does pile up, my daughter LOVES putting her adorable fingerprints on her clothes, my windows and walls, sometimes I even go to bed with dishes in the sink, and I have many times stepped on legos and picked up naked Barbie dolls strewn around the house! However, none of those chaotic, dirty things make for happy kids and good moms.
Our kids make messes & get dirty, in fact, we make messes & get dirty too. And guess what? We clean it up too. No, I’m not a fanatical cleaning and organizing freak, I’m not going to lose it because my child wants to dump every storage bin of toys out all over the floor while they play. My daughter loves to make crafts and being a craft lover myself with that love comes crafty messes. We entertain and throw lots of parties and with that hospitality comes messes. And guess what? I haven’t “missed out” on being in the moment with my kids, snuggling with them, creating memories with them just because we clean up the messes we make.
Our kids love to play, create, laugh and have fun. My husband and I love to play, create, laugh and have fun with them too.
I do take pride in having a tidy home, I love that my husband truly appreciates coming home to a clean house, and that on “most” days I wouldn’t panic if someone knocked on my door. And yet, I don’t expect anyone to have my same thoughts or push my reality of how to manage a home and raise kids on them. I’m not expecting some Mom of the Year certificate or prize. I do what works for my family. And we believe in teaching our children to clean up after themselves and be respectful of our property and belongings. It’s my way of showing my incredible thankfulness for the things in my life, my thankfulness for our children, these precious gifts that we’ve been entrusted with. I’m well aware that as long as we have children living in this home, my house will not be perfectly clean and that is not my aim. I will only make myself crazy (learned that the hard way) if I try to keep everything just so, perfectly organized and clean… perfection isn’t even possible from this imperfect mom living in an imperfect world.
Have I ever felt like a bad mom because of unintentional, thoughtless comments from some of my friends? You bet I have. I shouldn’t have though, I know who/what I am.
I’m not a snob because I like a clean house and clean kids. There’s a time and a place for everything. So I don’t think the couch cushion is a place for juice spills, cracker crumbs, and chocolate hand prints. There’s plenty of room for that in the kitchen. So instead of cleaning up food spills in every room of my house, I get to clean them up in the kitchen only – is that so bad? Is my child deprived of happiness and beautiful childhood memories… I don’t think so.
Bottom line you can be a fantastic mom with a dirty house and you can be a fantastic mom with a clean house too. A dirty or clean home is a choice and to be a good mom or bad mom is a choice. How you keep your home isn’t going to determine your success as a mom, unless it keeps you from what matters most.
What matters most, spend quality time with your children, set a good example for them, teach & show them how to grow up to be respectful, helpful, kind, loving and God-fearing adults. Make sure they know of and can feel your unconditional love. And that they have a home that they feel safe in. Pray with them. Hug and kiss them every day!
And now, I’m off to clean up my house – even if it will only be clean for a few hours before the kids (& hubby) come home. And that is just fine with me. 😀
Happy kids & good parenting to you!…. (dirty or clean house.)
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