Last night, well actually it was morning by then, at the 2 am feeding of Sarah,
I read a message from my friend Kim from New Hampshire. She said,
“Just wanted to let you know I loved your video [Family of 12 in Twelve Minutes] and wanted to give you kudos for showing a little of the chaos that comes with raising a family (I think that is so critical for folks to understand that embracing the chaos is part of the journey). In other words you did not portray having all these kids in a pristine environment! Nice job”
That made me feel GREAT!
I am sad to admit that each time my older daughters and I would watch the video we would cringe over the piles of laundry (hey! they were clean piles I hope you noticed), undone hair, the messy unfinished basement, the changing table that just happened to be extra loaded with supplies for picture day that morning (I really do usually keep that cleared for babies!)- even the girly bedspread in my son’s room because we’d had guests the week before made us flinch! (Isaac came home from school the day after my brother put the video up and said cheerfully, ‘kids at school liked the video, no one even mentioned my girly bedspread!’ We were happy for him.)
But in undertaking this vlog endeavor, that was part of the deal: be real. Yes, though the mess may be ‘real’ it has never really been my idea of ideal! But I have finally come to realize and even appreciate that mess is part of EVERY IMPROVEMENT PROJECT!
For instance, recently our hospital was expanding, building new wings and remodeling some of the old ones. It looked downright worse than ever for a while! (Like my house with newborn twins!) One day, visiting the hospital I noticed pleasant signs entreating, “Please excuse our mess, we’re growing!”
Yes, and that is what families are doing—growing people! I could almost use our house as a gauge of just how much growing we have going on in each particular season of life!
We all need and crave order, stability, cleanliness, peace and there are many times and different seasons for those wonderful experiences, but please let’s remember in the building of our own families and others to excuse the mess!– Just as my friend from New Hampshire did, perhaps even celebrate it!
Love, CaMarie and Crew
P.S. Some thoughts that help me remember the hearts and souls of my children are more important than the perfection of my home:
(Grandma gave me this one at Isaac’s birth)
The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
For children grow up,
As I’ve learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs.
Dust, go to sleep.
I’m rocking my baby, and babies don’t keep.
— by Ruth Hulburt Hamilton
“Having a clean home should not be our main goal; it should be part of our goal to be happy and have happy families.”
— The Latter-day Saint Woman, pg 146
6 simple steps to a clean home and heart:
- get the garbage out!
- clean the dirty laundry!
- give, give, give away!
- dust off the good stuff now and then!
- scrub up!
- A place for everything and everything in its place!
I’ve found my housekeeping jobs funner when I think of them as making the home inviting and enticing more than just technical picking up and scrubbing!
Good luck managing the messes! Love, C & Crew
How do you balance nurturing and comforting your family with housekeeping demands?