giving up on good.

i have never joined in with hayley and jessi - mostly because i often feel like i dont have anything to tell you that i have given up on. but about 2 weeks ago, it hit me. i have just recently decided that i am giving this good thing up. 

having a clean house.

now, what i dont mean by this is that we live in filth. but the truth is, i have not yet mastered the 'clean, organized home'. i am working on it. because it is important, it is something that i desire to have, i just have very few organizational skills and i honestly have no idea what to do with all the piles of things in my house. {aaannnd that just made me sound like i should be on an episode of hoarders, but its nothing like that, i promise.} 

i used to think that i had to have that perfectly decorated home, that home that was spotless with no dishes in the sink or crumbs on the floor {or things hidden in our bathtub behind the curtain, which i learned yesterday i am not the only women who does that!} before i could invite people into my house, before i could be hospitable. Jesus convicted me a few weeks ago when my sweet, bride-to-be friend, Brittany, came over for lunch. 

i was rushing around trying to make my house look "perfect" so that she would not see my "mess" and when she opened the door the first thing out of my mouth was, "i am sorry my house is so messy!!" she replied, "well your house is always a little messy, but i dont care, i just like spending time with you." and it hit me. people dont really care about the pile of papers on the counter, or the stack of mail on the table, or the dirty dishes that are still in my sink from last nights dinner. they want to spend time with me, and i have been hindering that by being too proud to invite people over because my couch has crushed cereal bars and cheerios permanently ground into its fibers. 

i have spent way to many conversations with sweet friends worrying about if they are thinking about the fact that i have not mopped my floor in who knows how long, rather than being 100% focused on what they are saying to me. i have had too many rush around and clean as fast as possible because someone is going to be here in 10 minutes moments that leave me frazzled when they knock on my door. and i have probably only invited a handful of people over for dinner in the 3 years i have been married, because i turn into a hot mess when i think about them coming to my house.

Source: someecards.com via Ally on Pinterest

 so, friends, i am giving up on the idea that my house has to be perfect to have you over for a cup of coffee and a scone. and at the same time, i am praying and growing in how to make our house a home, a clean and organized home,but i am no longer going to wait until i have it all together to eat a meal with you at my dinner table. there is so much freedom in that! just last week we had someone over, and they mentioned how messy our couch was {they were not being rude, we were talking about getting a new one...} and i smiled a little bit to myself thinking that 'yes, my couch is messy, but you are here sharing your life with us, and that is far more important than a clean couch.' so, if having a clean and organized home all the time is your thing, good for you! please send me some of your secrets. 



  1. I'd come sit on your dirty couch and have coffee with you anytime! Praying with you friend, that you continue to find the balance!!

  2. Well if you find the secret, let me know!

  3. WELL SAID. One thing that is a big help to me (when by the grace of God I can do it) is giving my perfectionist tendencies a good kick to the curb. For so long I would either have to spend an hour or more getting the kitchen spotless...or if I didn't have the hour plus to spend, I would just let EVERYTHING in the kitchen go for a week.

    Now I really try to focus on "what can I do right now?" and then letting go of the rest. If I only have time to load 2 plates and a couple forks into the dishwasher before we leave for work..well, that's four things I won't have to load another time! And one load of laundry may not be ALL the dirty laundry...but it's better than none!

    Love you, Miss Ally - thanks for continuing to set an example by being HONEST in your pursuit of holiness.

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  5. This made me laugh so hard only because it is something that I truly need to give up on myself as well.

    Last week I hosted a playdate for 4 other mothers and our 8 children. I spent the majority of the day before and morning of cleaning house to make sure it was tidy when everyone came over, and though I bet the moms noticed it was clean, they wouldn't have complained if I hadn't cleaned up to the degree I did. They just wanted good company and a place for their kids to play.

    I just think of the time I wasted cleaning and how I could have been playing with my own kids instead. Totally giving this up starting today.

  6. I struggled with this so much when Jason and I were first married. For me it was the fear of making a full meal for people coming over and not messing anything up. I ended up just not inviting anyone over and my Mom told me 'You won't grow in this area if you hide from it' which is exactly what I needed to hear.
    The clean, organized home thing is probably on ALL our wish lists. Remember that everyone has a different idea of what clean and organized is, so if you focus on meeting other's expectations, you're sure to disappoint someone ;-)

    I don't think I have any real secrets to share... my Mom always taught us that if we clean as we go (ten minutes here, 20 minutes there) the mess will never get that out of control.
    The only other thing I do is totally clean up the house before bed every night. I keep it right up there with praying before bed ;-)
    If I don't, I wake up to messes and the starts off on a horrible foot.
    So the sink is empty and clean, the rugs are vacuumed, clothes folded and put away, bathrooms wiped down and garbages taken out. Oh and the infamous toy messes are picked up by the kids before bed, but when they were little Jason and I did it with them to help them learn.
    Again, if you stay on top of it, it really only takes 30 minutes (an hour max) to have it looking spic and span every night.
    And then of course having a husband that helps is key. We can't do it all on our own - nor should we.

    I bet you're a lot cleaner than you think... we women are harder on ourselves than we need to be ;-)

  7. sorry... that middle part of my novel should say "the DAY starts out on a horrible foot."

  8. Thank you for your honesty and transparency! With my idol struggle being perfectionism, I would clean all day if I could...I have found myself seriously organizing and reorganizing the same closet two or three times in a week because it has to look, "just right". My recent "discovery" secret is setting a timer for 15-20 minutes each day and cleaning as much as I can in that amount of time. (while Gideon is napping so I can be the most productive). I challenge myself to see how much I can get done in that amount of time and it becomes like a game in my mind. It has really helped me focus my time on more important things like trying new recipes and such off of Pinterest! ;)

  9. I was joking on that last part, btw...Some partial truth, but more importantly it frees my time up to be able to focus and spend time with Gideon!!


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