It has been said that love makes a house a home. I have no idea who it was, actually, who said this, but it's a darn good thing she did. Yes, it had to have been a she. A she who tried desperately to use Windex and paper towels to make a home. A she who watched her toddler come along behind her and undo everything she had just tried to do. A she who finally declared, when her little destroyer grinned, climbed into her lap, and gave her a giant open mouthed kiss, that indeed it is love that makes a house a home.
Today I decided that, since I am officially a homemaker, I would get out a pencil with a new eraser, the Goo Gone, and the Pinesol and try to remove the pencil marks that were left here by a previous tenant. Turns out that the entire door of our guest room was covered in some child's creative memories. I erased. I goo goned. I Pinsoled. And Garrett stood and watched. Occasionally he took his precious chubby hands and rubbed the door. He's such a little helper like that. I turned my back to dig around in the cleaning caddy. Of course I heard the noise. Heard it, in fact, continuing for quite some time as I rummaged around. The problem was that it just didn't register. As I turned around I put an image to the sound. My little tiny offspring was making his own creative memories all over the door that I had just cleaned. I couldn't blame the guy. I mean, I had just been wiggling that bright yellow pencil all over that door. I can't really expect a sixteen-month-old to understand the difference between the eraser side and the lead side. So back to work I went with the eraser and the Goo Gone and the Pinesol to try to remove the pencil marks that were left here by the current tenants.
Later, I decided that the central vac really is a good feature and I needed to conquer it. I could pull the brief lesson my father gave me concerning it's functionality out of the deep recesses of my brain. And even if I couldn't quite remember the exact way he explained it, I could probably figure it out on my own. I'm a fairly intelligent human being. I have a college education. As I slowly started unwinding the tube I could not figure out why my son was shrieking and hiding in the corner and sobbing crocodile tears. I would have understood if I was running the vacuum because he's always been a little apprehensive of the noise it makes. But the thing wasn't even on. Finally I realized that, well, the thing looks like a giant anaconda. Apparently, my son has an irrational fear of snakes.
He tried to use the less than sterile toilet brush to comb his hair.
He spilled a full bowl of doggie water all over the floor. This is an almost daily occurrence. Usually, however, the bowl is near empty when he remembers to dump it out.
I organized his books on his bookcase. He followed along behind me and pulled them off.
I am not calling myself a homemaker ever again (not that I think I have ever before). I am a stay-at-home mom. I have time to clean but the boy uncleans everything. If you come over, my house will probably not be tidy. There will be a truck in the middle of the floor because no matter how many times I put it away, it just seems to materialize at the foot of the stairs. There will be craisins smashed on the high chair tray. There will not be vacuum marks on the carpet and it will not pass the white glove test. My son will probably have stains on his shirt but, generally, he'll be smiling. He doesn't care if there are vacuum marks. He's even fine with a layer of dust. I try. I just don't succeed. I'm busy trying to raise a toddler and it's a good thing that love makes a house a home.