Enter a moment of toddler-induced craziness. I texted my friends and suggested they come over to the house instead for an indoor play date.
Why was this so crazy?
Because my kitchen sink was filled with breakfast dishes needing to be washed.
Because the counter still had mail piled up on it.
Because I hadn't vacuumed the carpet, scrubbed the half-bath toilet, swept the floor, dusted the house, picked up the playroom, straightened up the living room, and made a nutritious snack for the kids.
Because I didn't have any activity planned for the kids besides "let them run amok in the house and hope no one gets a crayon stuck up their nose."
And because they were coming over in 15 minutes and there was no way my house was going to be perfectly clean and organized, a snack was getting made, or a toddler-friendly activity found on Pinterest.
Yes, my friends were going to see that actual people lived in my house. They were going to find out that I'm not a perfect housekeeper. That some days my toddler gets Saltines that I have snagged from the last time we were at a restaurant for a snack. And sometimes the best activity I can come up with is letting Ella go to town with a sheet of stickers (it's good for those motor skills, right?).
Believe it or not, the world did not come to an end. The kids still had a fun play date, and I know at least Ella was tired enough afterward to take a fantastic nap, which made the rest of the rainy day go by faster.
It just goes to show that what Jim has been telling me for years is true- that I am my own worst critic when it comes to the house and being a good mom. Inviting people over without thoroughly cleaning and planning involved taking a major step outside my comfort zone. But had I not impulsively invited people over, I would have spent that morning bored and frustrated- as would have my toddler. Instead I got to share the tedium of a rainy day with friends. That trumps a perfectly clean house any day.