Tuesday, January 14, 2014

The Cheerio on the Bathroom Floor

A few weeks back I attended a mother's group/night from our parish.  It was basically just a bunch of moms that got together one Friday night for rosary, conversation and wine.  It was absolutely wonderful...a much needed time of prayer, adult conversation, fellowship, chocolate and wine.  What more could a girl ask for?

Yet, the next morning when I woke up, I felt discontented and out of sorts.  The hostess (a mom of several young children) had a gorgeous house.   There was beautiful furniture, marble counter tops, a gorgeous Christmas tree and organic milk to go with the fair-trade organic coffee.    I looked around at my small house, dusty baseboards, yard sale furniture and non-organic milk and just felt the ugly green sting of envy.  I spent the next day cleaning like a madwomen, all while realizing that all the cleaning in the word isn't going to make my house look like hers. 

A few days later, I attended a Christmas Party at a friend's house...another mom's night out...at another much nicer/bigger/better house than mine.  They had a beautiful Christmas tree, cute decorations, nice pictures and nicer furniture.   It was a great time with friends, but that sting of jealousy started to creep in. 

Until I went into the bathroom, and what to my wandering eyes should I see, but a tiny cheerio on the bathroom floor right next to the pink singing potty.  A cheerio....on the bathroom floor!! And, my heart sang because someone else has cheerios on their floors too.  They aren't a perfect housekeeper...must have missed sweeping up that cheerio.  I have missed MANY a cheerio when I was sweeping my floors.   I was so relieved to know that I wasn't the only one with dropped cheerios on the floor. 

Over the years, we've been over many friend's houses.  And, I am always grateful to be invited anywhere...I love the friendship, I love hanging out, I love talking while our kids are playing...I love all of it...sharing friendship and fellowship.  But, I especially love it when people invite us over even though their house isn't "perfect".  They may have some clutter (who doesn't?) or a few piles of books lying around, or maybe a few stray cheerios on the floor, And, I love it. I really do.  I love it when people feel comfortable enough to invite us over, even if everything isn't perfect.  Likewise I know I feel most comfortable with a friend when I feel comfortable having them over, even when I haven't spent the day cleaning madly.  

I think most of us would be a lot happier if we were more social and spent less time worrying that our house is too small or too cluttered or not finished or the colors aren't right or whatever. I know this is a big thing for me.  I don't want to invite people over because we have a small house or I think our furniture is ugly.  But really...most people don't care about that.  And, if they do, I probably don't want to be friends with them anyway. 

 So, the next time you have a friend over, don't worry about the piles of books on the table or the toys in the corner or even the stray cheerio that got missed.  They probably have cheerios on their floor too. 

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  1. Love this reminder, Amelia! It's s ad when we moms start trying to appear perfect to one another. It's good to take care of our homes, for our families' sakes, but not to the extent that it throws our lives off balance and causes us to care more about our homes than about our friends and neighbors, and spending time with them. I'm totally guilty of this sometimes! We're all just human, when it comes down to it. And Cheerios on the floor happen. :)

    1. Yes...you are so right. It is important to take care of our homes for our families, but it's just hard to find that balance. And, messes happen so eaisly with kids! Everytime I was over your house, I was always so impressed with how clean it was!!!

  2. So well said! I am guilty of this do very often, but maybe from a slightly different angle. I don't get jealous, per say, but I feel like homemaking and decorating on general should be more important to me than they are. Neither one of these is a passion for me, so I admit I just don't put my all into it. When I go into a house where it is obviously a higher priority, I feel like I have missed the boat and am doing sonething horribly wrong and no one could possibly be comfortable at our house. This is just a lie but very hard to overcome.

    1. Homemaking and decorating is definitely not a passion for me either. I can appreciate nice wall colors and pretty curtains, but those things aren't a priority to me so I find it really hard to get the motivation up to do them. And, at least in our house, things break so easily and get messy again, it is pretty discouraging to even try.

  3. Love this so much I shared it on the Annery at Home FB page. Thanks for this - from one mama in a tiny house to another!

  4. Missed this post last year. ;) I remember being invited over one time to the home of a mom of 10. She took me into her nice parlor area, and there was an old piece of bread on the floor next to the chair she offered me. I felt so relieved!


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