Since bringing our fourth child into our home (the fourth in as many years) I have worked to find a balance between spending time with the kids and keeping the house clean = a war that is waged by many a mother. The pendulum swings wide for me, from the house to all the kids. It is the middle ground that I can’t plant my feet firmly on.
Recently I have found a happy medium. Our part of Oregon was hit with snow and ice that paralyzed all outside activity for weeks. It was the kind of weather that makes you want to hunker down and drink hot cocoa. So that’s what I did. I hunkered instead of cleaning. The worst snow since 1968 called for a change of pace.
In those two weeks I found that no one became seriously ill as the clean underwear pile shrunk and the dirty clothes piled up. Everyone coped just fine with blankets all over the floor, topped with pillows and another layer of blankets. Forts were built, magnificent Lego castles were erected and there was a lot of laughter.
All the laughter-THAT is why we rode the adoption roller coaster 4 times. How easy it is to forget sometimes. In fact, there are more than a few things I need to remember far more often than I do. The blessing of children, of friends and of being able to live without worry. Sure, there are little worries about what to fix for dinner or who will take the kids to pre-school but we are blessed to not have the worries that many parents around the world face daily. The worry about not what to fix for dinner, but will there be dinner?
I pray that in all the franticness of getting through the day that we don’t forget to stop and be thankful and to give back because of what we’ve been given. And the cleaning? Well, I’ll know when things need attention: it’s time to clean when my oldest says “Mama, I want the bubble bath up as high as the dirt in the tub.” And so I scrub with a happy heart, thankful to have a bathtub and for children to dirty it.