Monday, March 21, 2011


We moved into our house when my oldest son was 14 months old. It was the middle of April and I was absolutely enamored by the crown moldings, master bedroom with en suite and jacuzzi tub, and beautiful hardwood floors. It is our first house. It is brand new. It's is 100% ours.

 Now I look around my house and groan. The beauty has been brutally beaten out of it by the destructive nature that is my kids... The off white color of my walls, which held the slightest of yellow tinge, now looks worn beyond it's years. The chips, holes, scratches, finger hand body imprints of my children smear every wall...even in places seemingly unreachable. And just in case their greasy, muddy, food filled, acts of vandalism isn't enough, they ensure that my walls also meet with stickers, crayons, and pens.

The beauty once held by my walls was highlighted by large, numerous windows; big, beautiful, and mounted over huge stark white, wooden ledges. Gorgeous. That is until my toddlers began to toddle, and their tiny little faces stretched to get a glance outside. As their tip toes propelled them onwards and upwards their mouths did what they did best. Slobbered and chewed on the ledges that were once the pride of my home. Now my window sills are marred by giant bite marks, and missing slivers of wood...

Speaking of wood...I have dark, hardwood floors that just add a certain elegance to my least they did before the toy assaults, dragged furniture, and practically fatal body falls. Everywhere you look you can see divots, scratches, devastating hardwood destruction. Before we move these floors will need a good sanding...or to be replaced all together. Sigh.

But alas, this isn't a museum, and those dirty, marred, walls tell a story...One wall has pen marks made by me, measuring my growing children as they stand (not so patiently) backs pressed pinned to the wall, waiting to be marked. And that hole by our front door was caused by Gabriel...who during a 'time out' unscrewed the door stopper and we didn't notice until it was too late. By the way, those crayon marks in the kitchen, those were made by Edie as her artistic talent just couldn't be contained to the paper I had given her. That trail of grime that leads up our stairs, that's where my kids place their food covered hands as we rush them up for their evening bath, giggling and screaming, the whole way there.

The teeth marks on my window ledges, are a measurement of my children's slowly growing confidence and independence. Unsteady on their feet, grasping tightly to the edge of their world; peering out, safe in this sanctuary I have created.

And my floors are where Edie took her first steps, where Gabriel had numerous potty accidents but through trial and error is now trained. These floors are where I lay Puck for tummy time and on occasion they become a wild dance floor for our entire family.

Yes indeed, my house has been destroyed and reborn as a home.


Anonymous said...

love it! You have put it perfectly! Your house is a home..every last inch of it.


TracyKM said...

I have to keep reminding my husband about this all the time! I have a Family Circus cartoon on my fridge...they're all outside, "mess" everywhere, grass torn up, etc. The neighbours say "Your lawn would look a lot better without all that activity in your yard" and the dad replies "Thanks, but we're raising children, not grass."
The home should just be our vessel, the spotlight is what's growing inside it and WAY too many people have that mixed up :(

carrie said...

So very true! We live in a townhouse and belong to Strata and they told us we couldnt have our playset because it appeared to "messy"...So my kids don't get to have fun because the appearance of our neighbourhood is more important than raising active, contributing members of society!