Dec 29 2 Comments

Creatively messy, or messily creative

The house is as quiet as only a house full of sounds and noises can be. What I mean is that because there is always so much commotion here, it feels even more quiet when everybody is in bed and the world around me is sleeping. I only hear my fingers typing and the kids turning in their sleep.

All around me there is the evidence of life. Some would call it mess. I did. There are clothes scattered about. Art supplies are taking over the home. Books, newspapers, magazines, musical instruments to outfit a whole band. Wrappers, socks, dust bunnies. Dust horses. “This house will never be clean and tidy,” I lamented to Steve while we admired the view of what looked like the residue of a typhoon. And he said these words of great wisdom: “If this house is tidy and clean you will be sorry. It is looking this way because people are living in it.”

Cozy? Cozy. This is our home on a not so messy day. But Martha Stewart may have have had a cow.

I thought that this was wise and true. The thought also occurred to me that he said it as a cop out. But, let’s assume that it was not a cop out, but a word of wisdom uttered by a man full of insight. Then I can see life, not clutter and messes. I see a scrapbook in the making. I see songs waiting to be played. I see stories in books. I see designs and art being made by pens, markers, paints and paper. I see memories. I see solutions and innovation. I see opportunities to learn and to grow.

So as I am finishing this day, I am thankful that we live in a messy house with messy people. I think that our messes will fill the world one day, and you may be able to enjoy some of them. I am also thinking that tomorrow morning I can tell the girls—again—that they really should pick up the dirty socks and that orange peels don’t belong on the floor. And if they say that they are just being creative and free-spirited, I will have to remind them that actually being creative is not the same as being messy—all the time. Then I need to go into my own bedroom and put my own clothes away. They don’t look good on the floor.

But for now I will be content resting my eyes on a guitar, wool slippers from Riga and the homemade craft box, a book on novel writing and a colorful hat from Nepal.


  • Kathy says:

    Even though we have never met, I feel like I know you. Your poignant reflections speak right to the heart. As a “messy” person myself (even though I adamantly claim to be a “cleany” on the inside), I too have struggled with trying to maintain an orderly house. We are indeed blessed with warm, lived in, people (and pet) friendly homes!

    • oddnygumaer says:

      Thank you Kathy. So fun that you read my blog and can identify. Some times I think that what I write must only relate to myself, so it is nice to hear that it resonates with others as well.