The sun came streaming through the windows this afternoon. Low in the sky, as it does in winter, RIGHT at the moment when Luke’s new school friends and their mummies (most of whom I didn’t yet know) arrived at our door to celebrate his birthday.
Only a few hours earlier I’d actively decided to work a bit longer, thinking there was no need to spend time cleaning and tidying before the children descended on the house to eat, explore, and play inside and out. Pointless, I thought, because it’ll all need done again afterwards.
But my heart sank as I welcomed our guests through doors with grubby windows…they couldn’t have missed the dust bunnies gently drifting along the skirting board in the hallway…never mind the bits of cardboard and fluff left on the hearth rug after Luke’s early morning crafting session.
Why does it matter!? Is it because I want people to know that their arrival mattered enough for me to present our best side? Or is it because I don’t want them to think I live in a pigsty either through laziness or plain disregard for hygiene!?
I read an article a few weeks ago about how we do nothing to help ourselves or our friends if we welcome them to immaculate houses…apparently it serves only to send our guests back to their homes feeling inadequate about their own sub-par cleaning habits.
Well that certainly won’t happen to people visiting this house. Well done me!
What did happen, though, was that we had two hours of jolly, enthusiastic noise and play. The kids were delighted to have the doors flung open so they could play outside. Some planted seeds, others played football – and they ALL joined in the treasure hunt because they could exchange the treasure for Percy Pigs*.
This was a definite success for Luke who not only felt well celebrated, but who was not at all mortified by the finger prints on the windows, the soil on the table, or the dinosaur fossil dust on the kitchen floor**.
I’ll just keep the baby wipes handy and do a quick wipe round next time the doorbell rings!
*other sweets are available, but are not as good
**there has been some cleaning done since our guests departed