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Don’t apologize for your beautiful mess

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #SweepTheMess #CollectiveBias

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Do life’s little messes ever get you down? I often run around my house like a chicken with my head cut off, trying to put away all the toys that have just been strewn about, sweeping my floors like a madwoman.

One Momma recently shared with me that trying to pick up after a toddler is like brushing your teeth with crushed Oreo’s. Do you feel me on that?

There are days I wonder how my house got so messy. Didn’t I just spend the last two hours picking up and cleaning? Today I found stale tortilla chips in a Sophia the First Mailbox. It was filled all the way up with crushed tortilla chips. How?! Then my brush from my Clarisonic went missing, only to find it (to my demise), in my daughter’s hamper. Lastly, to put the nail in the coffin, my daughter decided to “paint” our walls using my brand new blush brush and applesauce.

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I have often debated getting rid of all her toys. Remember Mama Bear from The Bearnstein Bears in the classic book “Messy Room” when she threatened her little bears with throwing away all their toys? Papa Bear ran in and built them new shelves and helped them organize. Well, there are mornings I feel like Mama Bear. I wanna throw everything away, all the clutter and shoes and dirty socks and empty fruit gummy packets and My Little Ponies FOREVER!

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A few weeks ago I visited a neighbor friend. Her kids are all grown up now. Every time we are guests in her home she pulls out an old Elmo train set for Lillian to play. She loves to watch Lillian enjoy herself and run around, and quite frankly, make a mess. I often get up and pick up after my daughter, embarrassed. I will never forget what she told me the last time I was there. There I was, trying to clean up after my daughter, when she told me, “Tiffany, sit down. Let her play. One day you will miss picking up the socks from the living room floor. My house is clean because there is no one to pick up after anymore.”

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Bam. The words hit me so hard. Yea, it is a pain in the rump to pick up all her little princesses and ponies and necklaces and blocks, but I am honestly going to miss the mess. Isn’t that crazy to imagine? I will totally, completely, miss my little princess running around like the dickens pulling out my tweezers and losing them for the umpteenth time. Or watching her awkwardly pick up anything she can with the kitchen tongs. (That happens, a lot). I think I will even miss seeing the permanent marker painting she did in our living room wall.

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The truth is, it can all be cleaned up. Cleaning up isn’t hard. But I cannot stop my kiddo from growing. So I want to let her make messes and enjoy life. Maybe I could learn a lesson to jump in with her and make some messes alongside her.

Often it is the messiest things in our lives- relationships, chores, volunteer work, people- that matter the most. It seems ingrained in us to avoid messiness, to keep things in order and in control.

But what about all those “messy” moments that change us forever. Messy moments like child birth, your friend grabbing the tissue box because you cannot-stop-crying-and-the-mascara-keeps -running-down-your-face, or having it out with your husband only to make up and realize you love him more than you ever imagined. What about those people in your life sometimes cause stress and conflict? Those same people we sit around the dinner table with and belly laugh… those people we love.

People are messy. But people are worth the mess. Love cleans up after spilled milk, and knows it’s gonna happen again. There will always be time to clean up and always more messes to clean. Let’s embrace our messy homes and not apologize for them, because there is some magic happening in a home that is well-used.


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I’ve shared how I found beauty in our mess. I’d love to hear about yours! Leave a comment sharing why your messes are beautiful.

Special thanks to O-Cedar and the Angle Broom for the awesome giveaway and inspiration for this post.
O-Cedar “A Beautiful Mess” Giveaway

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  • Reply Alli Smith

    I like your take on messes! Messes are beautiful, especially when they are made by my grandkids. They were over Friday night for a sleepover and my living room looked like a tornado had hit it, but that’s OK. We were making memories that will last a lifetime.

    March 9, 2015 at 7:51 am
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      Aw that is so sweet! I bet they love visiting you! Making amazing memories! 🙂

      March 9, 2015 at 3:31 pm
  • Reply Brook Devis

    well my mom always use to scold me bcz my room is always messy with books.. colors paint etc. and to be honest i love to see it like this. it makes me feel that i worked actually. so i never applogize for the mess 🙂

    March 9, 2015 at 8:41 am
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      I am the same way. My office is always a little bit chaotic, I wish I were a neater person, but I operate in a bit of a mess. Every once in a while it gets an overhaul!

      March 9, 2015 at 3:31 pm
  • Reply chubskulit

    Looks very familiar lol. My two kids are night and day. One is very organized and the other one is so messy. There’s always beauty in every mess especially when there’s kids around.

    March 9, 2015 at 11:49 am
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      Agree! Thanks for your comment. It is nice to know other moms are dealing with the same stuff!

      March 9, 2015 at 3:30 pm
  • Reply Robyn Black

    yes! i love this! i always say that i don’t want a perfect house, i want a cozy lived in house! if there is some mess, it’s b/c we live here… and it invites others to be comfortable living here as well!

    March 9, 2015 at 2:33 pm
    • Reply Tiffany Cutcliff

      Thanks for the comment! I totally agree. I don’t want my house to be a pig-sty, but I also don’t want to always be stressing over it!

      March 9, 2015 at 3:30 pm
  • Reply Breanna ♥ More than Love

    This is such a beautiful post – and sooooo true! As a Mom, I often find myself stressing over messes and clutter – but the truth is, it’s just “stuff” and someday we’ll miss it! I love having my 2 year old help me clean – and he loves it too!

    March 9, 2015 at 4:05 pm
  • Reply Cara of Stylish+Geek Blog

    My friends knows my OC ways…but when I became a Mom and Pet Owner I have drastically compromised! And rightly so…I love seeing the mess sometimes because it means that the area was used and memories were made there. But yes, at night I do feel the itch to put things away. Some habits I can’t get rid of! LOL! 🙂

    March 9, 2015 at 5:37 pm
  • Reply Krystal

    I can totally relate. It doesn’t matter how much I scrub and clean, it’s just SO messy with a toddler to follow after! Oh, and two dogs. I love this post and it can be overwhelming being a mom. I have an O-Cedar mop and it’s been awesome this past year!

    March 9, 2015 at 7:32 pm
  • Reply Umajean

    I have two Beautiful messes – and no toddler. HA! I just cleaned my bedroom – and the other mess is my studio. Too much art making going on to keep it tidy no matter how hard I try.

    March 9, 2015 at 9:34 pm
  • Reply Lauren

    I am in love with this post! It’s so normal now to apologize for our kids for being…well…kids!! I let the toys go and let his stuff stay around everywhere because I’m proud of my learning child 🙂

    March 9, 2015 at 10:22 pm
  • Reply Mia Myrabev

    I do not yet have kids so I guess I can only imagine what it’s like but if my nephew is any indication well things can go tuts up in 0-60 in 3 seconds as his that good and creating mess but lucky for us he loves to pack up when he wants a nap.

    March 10, 2015 at 1:00 am
  • Reply Lindsay

    i always joke with bloggers about the 2 foot step…when we take our pictures, we’ve found out sweet spot. But move the camera to capture 2 feet in any direction and you see real life. The power of a good crop. 🙂

    March 10, 2015 at 7:29 am
  • Reply owensmom

    Such a beautiful post! I have 3 little ones and the messes drive me crazy. It is quite true… someday there won’t be any little people to pick up afterwards. Thank you for sharing your own beautiful mess. #client

    March 10, 2015 at 9:50 am
  • Reply Sam Sly

    Thank you for sharing! That is so true. The pictures of your daughter playing are just precious! I especially like the one of her sweeping–it is so cute. It sounds like good memories are being made in your house.

    March 10, 2015 at 11:08 am
  • Reply Susannah

    Sometimes messes are truly the most beautiful! Sometimes when Nate gets home and the house is a wreck it makes me smile because I spent the day with our little guy.

    March 10, 2015 at 11:10 am
  • Reply Sarah @ New Wave Domesticity

    This is lovely to remember! I definitely need to find that balance. I’d be excited check out that new broom because our kitchen is just begging for lovely compact new broom to keep in it in order!

    March 10, 2015 at 4:13 pm
  • Reply yonawilliams

    Yikes, a wall painting made from applesauce…that might have had me a little unnerved. What a lovely turnaround for this post. My beautiful messes are with my nephew and our art projects, which lead to beautiful creations. OMGoodness, paper pieces everywhere, oil pastel smears, and marks on the wood table. An O-Cedar Angler Broom could come in handy to sweep up the aftermath of a beautiful mess.

    March 10, 2015 at 5:10 pm
  • Reply Victoria H

    This is a great post. Now I know I hate when my boys make a
    mess because they hate cleaning up. However, one day they will be older and I
    will be reflecting on the days of having a messy house that was never quiet.

    March 11, 2015 at 5:28 am
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