Sunday, October 3, 2010

Good Enough

As I was looking around my house the other day I was thinking about the pressures we have in life. As a mother I was feeling pressure to clean and tidy the house, play with my children, finish the laundry and think of a healthy lunchtime meal. This is something I'm sure all mothers can identify with, but if you're a mother, father, single, married, young or old we all feel certain pressures in life. We all feel like we have to live up to certain expectations.

Sometimes I look around my house and feel overwhelmed. My children love to make crafts everywhere, I mean everywhere. This morning I found chopsticks, tape and tissue paper on the stairs. A little while later my daughters were flying homemade kites in the backyard. I just don't have the heart to tell them to keep the craft room tidy. I understand that creativity is messy. I don't have the heart to tell them not to create whenever the mood strikes them. Even if it's in the middle of the newly vaccuumed living room and they are cutting tiny, tiny squares of paper for a collage. My fridge is covered in drawings. The bookshelves are filled with sculptures. The front door is decorated with fall leaves, the shelf for our keys holds pine cones and rocks.

Life is such a balance of what we have to and what we want to do. Over the passed month I have significantly removed a lot of items from my "have to do" list and have left myself with more time for my "want to do" list. My first priority is always my family. That's why we started on this journey towards simpler living in the first place. We wanted to spend time together as a family and really know each other. I didn't want to be a stressed, over scheduled Mommy who didn't have time to look at a drawing or read a book.

My next priority is to follow my passion in life. I love to write, take photographs and create. Last year there was no time for any of that, no time to just be. For me, I would much rather spend my time writing (which I did last night with a cup of peppermint tea) than clean my house until everything is in it's place.

So, today I took an hour to make the house look respectable and then I decided it was all "good enough". The cookbooks piled high on the counter, the mail stacking up in it's tray, the craft table with it's mound of half used supplies and the books scattered across the bedroom floors. Now I have more time for the things I want to do. My children won't remember that I kept a sparkling house when they are older. They won't remember the dirty dishes in the kitchen sink. They will remember that I always had time to listen to their stories. They will remember that I was a happy and passionate mother. Sometimes I have to remind myself of this when a neighbour comes by to visit and the front hallway is filled with laundry.

So the next time you see a messy house or a mother without makeup and her hair in a pony tail let's not judge. Instead, let's believe she spent that hour collecting leaves with her child. Let's believe she spent that hour walking through the park with her daughter. That is what we did this week and it was time very well spent.


  1. Beautifully written and very inspiring.

  2. I needed to read that! Well put. Thank you.

  3. Yes, that was very inspiring. I really enjoyed this post.

  4. Thank you for this today. My house sounds a lot like your house: sometimes messy, always filled with bits of our creativity and love!

  5. Well said! It sounds like you've got the right priorities.

  6. Such a lovely post. Its so nice to know that others mothers feel the same :)

  7. hi there,

    i'm a strong believer in the 'good enough' house. sure i don't want my child growing up in filth, and my house is quite clean really. but if the choice is creative time or dishes, well, no contest.

    and yes, kids will remember the time we spent with them, not the state of the house.

  8. Love these fall pics (and your beautiful picture in your header!!)