Redefining “Clean”

Way down deep inside I am a “neat freak”.

LOVE. a clutter free home!

When the house get messy, I get frazzled.

With two kiddos in a very small house, I’m learning to not let my internal “neat freak” show too much on the outside but it is very much alive on the inside.

When my awesome husband realizes that I’m beginning to get stressed out he asks, “We need to clean the house don’t we?” and proceeds to help me tidy up!  Love him!

About a year ago, when I would throw my hands up in the air and say “LOOK at this house!” my husband gently challenged me to redefine “clean” in my mind and perspective of my home!

SO…what is “clean?”

The first thing that comes to my mind is TIDY, NO CLUTTER.

If that is my definition, than my house will NEVER be clean during this stage of our family life, unless I do all my cleaning right before I hit the hay… but then no one is even awake to enjoy it!


What’s a body to do??

When I thought about it I realized clean means “not filthy or grimy”.

With that realization, my method of house cleaning began to change.

Each day I assigned myself a room/area of our home that I was going to “clean”.

That equals dusting, wiping down dirty surfaces, cleaning the floor, doing ALL the dishes, wiping out my microwave and yes, all around tidying up.

But if in 5 minutes “tidy” no longer defines that room, IT. IS. OK.

There is no filth under the clutter.

And ya know what?

As my definition changed so did my perspective.

The “mom guilt” isn’t quite so strong.

The embarrassment over a cluttery house when someone pops in wears off pretty fast. They might see toys strewn across the floor, dishes in the sink and maybe even the couch cushions off the couch. But I know that the floor has been mopped, the toilet has been scrubbed,  dishes have been done, garbage has been taken out and laundry has been washed sometime this week.

I’m learning to be a lot happier and more purposeful about my home.


I think my girls are happier about it too!

I know I’m not the only mom who has struggled with this and I would love to hear how you “clean” your home while still allowing your kids to be kids!

~ Rachel