enjoying summer in the midst of the mess

Isn’t it great? It finally feels like summer! To be honest, I don’t think anyone was more anxious for warmer temperatures this year than my kids. You see, last October we put in a pool – and my girls have been counting the days until they could jump in. Seriously. If you thought it was a long, hard winter, try being a kid with a brand-new pool you can’t swim in. It felt like seven months of cruel and unusual punishment.

So on our first 70-degree day my girls popped the question. “Can we invite some friends over to swim?”

I gazed at the backyard. What a mess. The ground was bumpy and rutted from all the heavy equipment driving over it last fall. We had no grass; just weeds and dandelions sprouting up everywhere. My husband and I are planning to add a nice deck and some pretty landscaping, but for now, the entire backyard resembles a jungle.

“I don’t know, girls. How about we wait until it looks a little better back there?”

All three girls stared at me like I’d lost my mind. I suppose I couldn’t blame them. They saw the yard from a kid’s perspective. They didn’t care about a deck. They didn’t notice the weeds. They only saw a great opportunity for some fun with their friends. What else did they need?

Pool Collage 1And that’s when I realized something. It probably wouldn’t hurt me to see our home from a kid’s perspective. Okay, so I’ll admit it. I’ve been known to stress out a little too much before friends come to visit.

If I know company is coming, my house will be spotless. Everything will be in its place. But if someone stops by unexpectedly? Have mercy. Don’t get me wrong. It’s not like my house resembles something from the Hoarders TV show. But it is “well-lived-in.”

At any given moment there could be DVDs scattered throughout the basement. If it’s a softball night, we probably ran out the door and left dishes in the sink. There’s often clutter on the countertops and a pile of clothes on the living room floor. (Why do kids change their clothes in the living room?) Anyway …

There’s nothing wrong with a tidy house, but I will admit I could lighten up. After all, it’s not about the house. It’s about fun with friends. If I’m uptight and worried about the house, no one can relax and have fun.

Pool Collage 2

This summer I’m taking the pressure off myself. I’ll focus more on blessing my guests – rather than worrying about impressing them. It might be a challenge. Summer is a messy time of year. The kids are home from school and we’re busy with lots of activities.

So if you stop by, consider yourself warned. I’ll greet you at the door, but you’ll need to step over the pile of flip flops on your way in. Let’s enjoy summer in the midst of the mess!


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3 Responses to enjoying summer in the midst of the mess

  1. Emily June 2, 2014 at 6:29 pm #

    I love this, Sheri! Sometimes we just need to stop seeing things “as adults” & with the eyes of a child to really appreciate what we have. Thanks for the reminder!

  2. Kim June 2, 2014 at 10:00 pm #

    This is awesome! Such a great reminder to not let a mess stop me from entertaining friends and family. It’s not all about being tidy.

  3. hallyfranz June 9, 2014 at 7:11 pm #

    First of all, Sheri, the pool looks awesome! I am sure you will make many memories in it. I have grown less concerned about my house in the last few years, but I totally relate to how you described cleaning before guests. I think by now they know me, and it’s me and my family that folks come to see. Enjoy your summer, and thanks for reminding us all to do the same!

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