A Page in the Life of A Mom / Housekeeping / Archives / 12-25-2010 / a glass house

Topie: a glass house
August 13th, 2007 07:34 AM
cretorakline do any of you ever feel like you live in a glass house? You know, the one where people are always coming over or stopping in and there's no space that just be 'left go' when times get busy? How do you cope with this and still remain sane? Are you able to just let these things fly over your head and not bother you?

(you know, the Down's child that is continually sneaking away from everyone, wanders into your office, and starts pulling out cd's and dvd's, then carries his 'favorite' out into the yard where you find him huddled later, still pleased with his 'find'. Meanwhile, you've got one more mess to clean up.)

Or the time when you're rushing to get out the door for a root canal, 18 mo. old isn't being watched well because of your busy-ness, and plays in a no-no area. This happened to be the hall outside the office, which is at the bottom of our basement steps. His play involved a brand new box of paper clips, shredding the foam pieces from a recent purchase of a printer, and magnets. Needless to say, when I (sorry about the change of persons here.) zoomed to the office to print directions, I found him, mess and all. No time to clean up, for it was time to leave! I turned around and ran into the payroll man (who I did not know was coming!) and Charlie, who had a funny look on his face. They were coming in to do some paperwork....needless to say, he and I were more than mortified at having to step on/over the mess....just one more time I wanted to disappear into a hole.)

you might say I need to train my children better. maybe. Actually yes. But those times will still happen, because they are just that-children.

I wonder if I am trying to live a hypocritical life. Am I trying to pretend that we never have sticky floors and smelly trash cans? Or is the real issue that I am lazy and am not being efficient? I hardly think the latter is true, but the devil likes to throw that lie at me now and then.

My mom says I am the busiest person (in my shoes) that she knows of. While that is a semi-comforting thought, I know that cannot be true. There are other moms out there who know exactly what I'm talking about....I want to hear from you!

What are some things that 'work' for you to survive the glass house, yet still enjoy the people who step through your doors?
August 13th, 2007 10:50 AM
twofus I can't say that I identify, but it sounds very much like my SIL. Her husband is a pastor at a small church (around 10 families) and they have weekend/overnight company almost more often than not. Besides the church and school is several yards from their house, so it's used for Sunday school, fellowship dinner prep, and Sunday afternoon meetings. And becauses it's so close to school, it's very easy for people to stop in or use her for babysitting. It just goes on and on. Rarr! I'm pretty sure I'd be setting limits. But you weren't exactly asking for that kind of attitude, were you? :rolleyes: :)
it's easy for me to tell you that I would be okay with coming to your house even if it's messy and sticky, but it feels very different to be in your shoes. In case you can't tell, I don't have answers...
August 13th, 2007 10:13 PM
thecrew I don't have any answers for the glass house. I know the feeling, ahh, all to well. With an in house business, the door bell rings any time of the day and so often I feel like a messy housekeeper when I welcome them in. One thing is "Never apologize for a messy house when you have children living there." In my opinion that is like apologizing for having children. Even if you know the people don't understand or would have a hard time of it, just relax and smile. You can train all you want and puff until you are blue in the face but face it square: children will be children and they are going to be quite normal. And whether you are expecting it or least expecting it, it will happen.
Today I 'found' our almost 3 and almost 4 yr. old having a party on the brick hearth with my china?? What kind of mother lets her real boys play party with the china?? I hid until the laughter subsided then gently cleared their "table". I told them we will have to get some dishes for them to play with... you know the poor guys only have boy toys. ;) That could have ended in a natural disaster.
We often have overnight guests too. Right now I'm struggling with giving up the guest bedroom. It is ultra handy to have a bed and room all cleaned and ready at the spurr of the moment. But with 3 children and #4 coming I'm going to need to extend into the only extra bedroom. It looks a bit overwhelming to have to get a room ready, lickety split, when there are so many other corners to clean. It makes me glum, but who comes first, the family or John Doe?
Cretora, I often feel like a hypocrite when someone comes in and says "Oh, how do you do it?" Of course that was the only morning everything went right, the children are all dressed and combed and the floors are swept and they are playing sweetly.... it looks easy right then and I say something real off handedly like, "Oh, it isn't that hard."
Who you kiddin' girl?
I should say something like "It's well worth the effort."
August 14th, 2007 08:34 AM
damys Sometimes I wonder if there isn't too much significance put in what kind of housekeeper we are, how many bushels of peaches and apple sauce we do and who gets their spring and fall cleaning done first... sigh... or is it just this area?!! Although my SIL (their church doesn't allow internet) was kindly informing me of the amount of time people waste on the computer. This probly takes more time than I realize... but our children are first. My house was never going to look like it does some days. Dana grew up in a very CLEAN home where they put a lot of stock in a woman that kept her house clean. He helps me a lot with picking up, but now we have to have our house ready to show(it's for sale) and he said the other night...this doesn't even look like a home:) I must have rubbed off on him... but til the next day you couldn;t even tell I had cleaned. I am trying to not apologize about my house. That is something I just in the last year have realized how much I do it.
October 17th, 2007 06:47 PM
Denise I like the suggestion of not appoligizing about the mess if you have children at home. I actually enjoy when people stop in. But, we just moved and it wouldn't be for business. It's more if a friend just stops in to chat. It doesn't bother me when other people have messy houses. So, I'd like to come to the place where friends can feel free to drop in and I don't worry about if things aren't in perfect order. A friend told me a quote that her mom used to say. Keeping a house cleaned up while your children are small is like shoveling snow while it's still snowing. Amy I understand the selling a house. It's kind of hard to keep things ready at all times. I guess it is a little added motivation though. We just went through that plus trying to start packing.
October 18th, 2007 10:45 PM
writersblock Cretora,
Yes, I can totally identify. How I cope? I never apologize for the messy house. I figure they come to my house this is what they get. It has been embarassing, but it makes for some fun memories.

The worst was when we (my hus & me) had a misunderstanding with some of our friends. We did not know they were going to come, and they came in the middle of our supper. With suits and ties. We were in our barn clothes. (They were trying to get us involved with a pyramid scheme thing) The toddler had a melt-down. The baby dumped baby cereal all over himself and me. So yucky dress, sweaty hair, and husband with manure on his pants. Just lovely. They were all prim and proper and had even brought a high-up motivational speaker, that speaks to thousands on the weekends. We sat around our table with half eaten green beans & soggy casserole. Ok, I quickly cleared the table.

Anyway our phone kept ringing. Two times some of our nephews came to the door, asking some farm related questions. Then a whole gaggle of local city girls came rushing into the house because we have clubs at our house on Wednesday nights. It was just awkward, and I felt ummm. socially inept.

About coping. I not sure that I do cope. I would love suggestions, because this is a very real struggle for me.

Oh one thing that has helped me. I have a close friend with five kids under five. When we went to visit them, I had to realize that no the house was not perfect. But did I care? Not at all. She was calm, and more importantly welcoming... I try to remember that people will remember my attitude more than my house.

Any more coping suggestions?