Saturday, December 28, 2013

Learning To Shed My Martha Ways

Christmas morning.  

At 7 a.m., Caleb roused the rest of the crew.  They rushed downstairs giddy over a well-stocked Christmas tree.

You can never have enough Batman goodies, says Collin.

Per our family's tradition, Christmas breakfast was served with a Happy Birthday Jesus Cake. 

This year's "wow" gift: a foosball table.  Santa spent six hours assembling this monster and muttered some choice words in the process!

Let this be a lesson:  Always read the card before purchase!  I love my Christmas Valentine's Day card from my husband!  We both got a good laugh!!

The celebrating continued at Memaw and Papa's house with the cousins.  Poor cousin Savannah....born into a testosterone-heavy family!  

Connor showed off his Tasmanian Devil book (needed for a school project) from Aunt Heather and Uncle Matt.  Score, says Connor!

Years ago, I was fluttering around the house trying to get our home "company ready."  I had worked myself into a tizzy making sure to expel every dust bunny, polish each and every counter until they sparkled, and whip up enough food for a small village.  My husband gazed at my frazzled appearance and exclaimed, "You remind me of Martha."

"Thanks," I beamed, imaging he was comparing my domestic prowess to culinary/household icon Martha Stewart.  

He paused, "I mean Martha...from the Bible."

Oh, that Martha.  The biblical Martha who spent more time in the kitchen than at the feet of Jesus.  I had certainly read the story and remembered Jesus's rebuke of her industrious/overloaded actions; He encouraged Martha to drop the dish towel and spend more time on the truly important things, like spending time with Him.

My husband was right; I have Martha tendencies. 

 I think because God knew that about me, he decided to bless me with four spunky sons that do their best to pluck every single Martha fiber from my body.  This fact becomes glaringly apparent around the holidays.  

Take this holiday season.

Between a rush of December birthdays and Christmas celebrations, we entertained a lot.  Each time, I tried my darnedest to create a home that looked like a Better Homes & Garden spread.  I rushed around spraying, polishing, scrubbing, and waxing.  And what were the boys doing during that time:

1) making additional messes,

2)  attempting to help while at the same time creating additional messes, or

3) playing quietly (while making hushed messes).

Yesterday, with company on the way, I elicited their help in straightened the basement.  I ran upstairs to tend to dishes and within a few minutes checked on their progress.  I found the boys actively involved in the creation of their very own brainchild: "Dangerous Cleaning" episodes.  Each episode featured the vacuum cleaner transformed into a mechinical-version of Jaws.  I watched as one son whizzed around the room with a vacuum while the others leaped from peril.  

And in case your wondering about the state of the carpet and the quality of the cleaning during the "filming"?  Let's just say Jaws seemed to favor certain portions of the carpet while leaving entire regions untouched and the rigors of filming left little time for the star actors to touch dusty cabinets or spray fingerprint-laden mirrors.  

I was annoyed; I toyed with the idea of shunning the boys from the house until the company arrived.  (Or shipping them off to the Grandparents until they turned 18.)  Then, I could live in a beautifully maintained home (alone).  

But then I thought about Martha.

Truthfully, I will never have that Martha (Stewart) ready house.  What I have is a home full of boys with a lot of love and dust bunnies.  I'm learning to accept (even relish) that fact.  

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