Clean Home… Happy Kids… Managing Priorities


Five winter coats blocking the stairs. I yell at my kids, “Boys get down here and hang up your coats! I’m not a slave, I am a mom!”, as they look at me with a shocked look. This is my life… This is my daily routine… My world!

Friends, I am a neat freak (or shall I say a “wanna be” neat freak). I have the ideal picture of my desired home’s appearance. I want the floors clear of debris, shiny, and clean. I want the kitchen spotless, with no dishes in the sink, absolutely no crumbs on the counter (this drives me insane, just wipe off the stinking counter), I like the refrigerator organized and clean (no old left-overs, screaming, “Empty me, please!”), I desire the bathrooms smelling clean and no mis-aimed urine (I could tell you some interesting stories of all the random places my boys’ have managed to spray), and clean bedrooms, organized closets and drawers, the beds made, and fresh sheets. Get the picture… I like neat… I really like neat! Actually, I’m pretty sure, “I love neat!”

This morning I began to think, “When my kid’s are grown, my home will be spotless. Then I will long for the mess from my child-rearing days, and I recalled the wise counsel from countless mentors and friends. I have taken these words to heart, and have allowed my home to take second place to my adorable family. I don’t want them remembering, I cared more about a clean house, than I cared for them. Yet, I will outwardly admit, I still long for a clean house. I dream about shiny floors, and organized bedrooms.

Suddenly, standing in the hallway, vacuuming up dust from my previous vent cleaning expedition, I remember my friend. My college roommate, who has been on my heart and mind continually. One month ago, I heard the most tragic news in the media. Imagine the shock, when I realized the story was about my very own friend. A girl I lived with for 6 months, now a woman… a wife… a mother (like myself), tragically lost her husband, and two of her five children. Standing in the hallway, I turn off the vacuum cleaner, and the tears begin falling down my flushed cheeks. I look down the hall and see my happy little girl, throwing my clean and folded laundry onto the floor. Suddenly “NOTHING” else mattered, but my sweet little girl, my husband at work, and my boys at school. I picked her up, and looked at her, as I thought to myself, “Wow! She is beautiful! She is a gift… a treasure from above!”

As I walked around the house cleaning, and every so often tickling my sweet toddling baby. I thought to myself, “As much as I love a clean home, I don’t love “ANYTHING” more than my family… my husband… and my beautiful children.”

Friends, Is today a good day for a priority check? It was for me!

(Luke 12:34 “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”)

Please join me as I daily pray for my friend Sarah, and her children “Kate, Finn, and Elise”!

God Bless,



2 responses to “Clean Home… Happy Kids… Managing Priorities”

  1. oh gosh, crystal, i needed this. thank you!!! i’m just like you—i love an organized and clean home. and many times that takes precedent over my children, when it shouldn’t! i’m going to keep your post in mind and that verse. xo

    1. Thank you for the nice comment Abra! I love it when God uses one mom’s experiences to encourage another mom. God Bless,

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