Home Sweet Home After Kids – Ways the Reality is Different Than the Dream…

18 ways my home is not what iWhen Mark and I moved into our home, I was obsessed with making it perfection. I painted it myself in trendy hues. I placed unread books on bookshelves and organized them by color simply for the aesthetic. I set up little vignettes on counters in groups of three to make my home seem chic, yet warm, you know, a cross between make yourself comfortable and maybe you shouldn’t touch that?

Yes, one day our home sweet home, would be the perfect blend of comfy/zen/chic and people would gush upon entering and then complement it with gusto and envy. (At the very least it would be clean and organized.)

HA ha ha ha ha ha haaaa.

I’m sorry, did I do that out loud? I was just remembering what I envisioned, you know before my kids and pets … and husband ruined, stained, chipped, wrote on, or buried (under toys) everything I owned. Oh, and I had the time or energy to care.

We all had idealistic visions. In my dreams, I imagined people would say things like: “Your house is like walking into a Williams-Sonoma catalog,” and “Your dog is so well trained, he just brought me a seltzer with a twist.” I imagined they would question where all the toys are or how I keep my grout so pearly white or why I haven’t sent pictures into Architectural Digest.

In reality, their questions and comments went more like this (these are things people have ACTUALLY said in my home — and my inner monologue responses):

  • “Did your house come with those window treatments?” Yes, I was gonna get new ones, but those were hung and all.
  • “I think there’s a Lego stuck in my foot.” Better you than me.
  • “Jenny, you know there’s a button missing from your tufted sofa cushion.” Just don’t flip it over, cuz there’s none left on the other side.
  • “You have a ping-pong table in your living room, that’s quaint.” – You know there’s a pool table underneath … wait, that might not make it better.
  • “I love this piece of art, where is it from?”  – Umm, my daughter — circa kindergarten.
  • “It’s nice to know I’m not the only one with so much stuff.” Is it? So glad I could be of service.
  • “Wow, a wall radio? I haven’t seen one of those in years … does it work?” Yes, it does. If you think that’s impressive, there’s one in the kitchen with a tape deck.
  • “Do you happen to have a lint roller?” Not for you to use… Maybe my dog mauled you for the last 10 minutes, but that doesn’t mean you get those precious strips of tape.
  • “What a fabulous floor-plan.” Thanks for throwing out the equivalent of using the word “nice” as someone’s main selling point. 

Look ladies, I do my best. Frankly, you should be thankful your hand didn’t get stuck to the the refrigerator door, or your foot didn’t get caught in a pile of laundry, which you started to sink into like quicksand, and had to be rescued from when I heard your muffled screams and saw only your fingertips waving … because that’s happened before.  


I think many of us Moms envisioned these perfect abodes, and like me … they got them. My house may be filled with once nice pieces of furniture and toys busting out of the seams, but it’s also filled with a ton of love — and it is truly perfect.

I know I got a little sappy on you there. Let me correct that, if you come over and judge my home, I’ll make sure my sofa eats your watch! (That’s better.)

10 thoughts on “Home Sweet Home After Kids – Ways the Reality is Different Than the Dream…

  1. Carrie

    Awesome. True. So friggin real.

    I’m the same way. In my mind, the carpet is spotless. And no one can see that atrocious hot chocolate stain from when my daughter dumped her entire, mammoth size mug on it last Christmas morning.

    Christmas morning or not, I thought of murder. Because I told her NOT to bring it in the living room.

    Yeah. I get this. Totally get this. Which is why I can’t wait for her to go to college so we can get allllll new stuff. And my husband can live in the garage.
    Carrie recently posted…Nobody said anything about old bras and hairy legs. No, no you didn’t.My Profile

  2. Emily

    I once did a post (with photos) of all the things in my house that my 3 boys (4 including husband) broke — it was a LONG post. 🙂 I feel your pain – I am so embarrassed by the furniture in our family room (um, stuffing coming out of ottoman!) that when people come over, I make sure they stay in the kitchen at all times — that way they can only see the broken knob off the oven and the cracked kitchen cabinet!
    Emily recently posted…A Very Special NeedlepointMy Profile

  3. Foxy Wine Pocket

    Ooooo, I feel your pain. And my messy house comes with a critical MIL too. Every time she comes over, “You know there are crumbs in your toaster, right?” “I simply HAVE to get all of the crumbs off of my butter before I can use it.” etc., etc. I once replied, “I think it’s more important to play with my kids than clean the toaster.” That shut her up.
    Foxy Wine Pocket recently posted…I’m Crafty and ShitMy Profile

  4. Rorybore

    Hubby and I just had a discussion about this the other day. How I never got the “house of my dreams” because the children arrived before I could even paint or otherwise redecorate a single room. Besides the children’s rooms of course. And hubby did a kitchen renovation — I had little say being 7 months pregnant at the time and feeling rather stabby due to the amount of dust in my home. Oh, and I had no working kitchen. And I was pregnant hungry beast.
    My house still is decorated the same way it was 10 years ago when we moved here. And I hate every inch of it. My MIL flipped on me when I said that, but it’s the truth. We bought it with the understanding I would eventually make it my own — but then children came and time and money left.
    Now – while I hate the aesthetic appeal of my home — that is NOT to say that I don’t realize we are blessed to have a roof over our heads. Or that I don’t love the people Inside of it to the moon and back.
    But if anyone ever wanted to nominate me for a home makeover show? I am All In! 🙂
    Rorybore recently posted…Tuesday Coffee Chat: Awkward!My Profile

  5. Val

    I cleaned the whole damn house this weekend. I was on a mission. I was sick of stepping on, over and through the toys and dirty clothes and scraps of paper and half piece crayons and wadded up tape and… wait, what was I saying? Oh right. I cleaned like a mad woman. Most of the rooms looked nice for a day, the living room lasted two. But now? Destroyed. Again. I love my family, and we do have lots of love in our house, but the chaos makes me crazy!

  6. Melissa

    This is so very true.
    I moved into my boyfriend’s lovely, kid-less home. We have been there for almost nine years and he finds every mark on the wall and stain on the carpet. I just shrug and tell him it’s not the end of the world. He can’t stand it when I say that.
    I will never get all of the animal hair out of the carpet and he will just have to deal with it.
    Melissa recently posted…Don’t Call Me GrandmaMy Profile


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