I consider myself a fairly clean person.

And I certainly do love having a clean house. It’s not always easy trying to clean with little ones around, but I do try to have at least part of our scheduled day to include a cleaning time. Maybe that means doing the laundry together or emptying the dishwasher. 

However, even with my best attempts, our house often still feels like a tornado just ripped through it. I don’t even know how it’s possible sometimes. Didn’t I just clean up that mess? Did I not just sweep and mop the floors last night? Didn’t I just clean and fold all the laundry a few days ago (ok, maybe last week)? Yet, there it is again: my messy house.

Granted, not all of the messes are caused by my kids.

Yes, there might be toys strewn all over the living room, but that’s because we just had a playdate and there were multiple little ones running around crazy while us mommas were desperately trying to have an adult conversation.

Yes, the sink might be overflowing with pots and pans, but that’s not because I’m just a lazy cook. More likely, it’s because we’ve hosted a birthday party or anniversary party or engagement party (or, fill in the blank) at our home and the celebration has been epic.

Yes, the laundry might be backlogged and I haven’t worn a clean pair of pants in awhile, but that’s not because I don’t like doing laundry. The reason could very well be because we have friends or family staying with us and I’ve been doing equal time between their laundry and ours. Things just go slower with guests in the house.

In our home, we prioritize people. We celebrate relationships. Our door is always open, and there is a lot of communal eating that happens.

Sometimes, I just can’t keep up with all the cleaning in the midst of cooking, hosting and keeping my kids alive. Who can, really?

But a clean home is not always what I’m going for, anyway. When people see our family, I don’t want their first impression of us to be “Oh, wow, they sure are good at keeping their home clean!” No. What I really want them to see and feel is love. I want them to know they are welcome and that we value their friendship and time.

Sure, that means that sometimes my house looks like a disaster for a week (or two), but I’m hoping that our messy house shows people that we have a loving house.

Michelle Ami Reyes (PhD) is a midwest gal at heart, who loves all things football, BBQ, and a really good pair of boots. Having lived in Austin for over 9 years now, she keeps her days busy as a homeschool mom of two and as a cultural intelligence coach. When she's not doing consultant work (or is knee-deep in art projects and history lessons about ancient empires), you can find her reading an epic fantasy novel, doing ridiculously hard puzzles, or cheering on the Vikings. Follow her on Instagram at @michelleamireyes.


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