I love entertaining in my home. There’s something exhilarating about knowing that you have a group of people coming over for the sole purpose of a good time. Seeing RSVPs from new and old friends pour in gets me excited about what to serve, what mood to set, what music to play (oh yes, there will be dancing). Making those choices is quick and fun, putting me at ease about having everything ready in time for guests to arrive. Then I remember than I live with my children. I suffer from a common condition I call Kid Mess Blindness: I choose not to see the full extent of the trails of DNA and disaster they sprinkle in their wake. But when people are coming to party? I know I need to make a good impression. And so the internal dialogue kicks in:
1. Okay. So. It might not be as bad as I think it is.
2. Maybe I can work the flow of the party away from the messier parts of the house.
3. The attic is pretty tidy. Is it weird to host a party in your attic?
4. I guess I can’t ignore how much spaghetti sauce is Jackson Pollacked across the kitchen wall any longer.
5. What are the chances someone will open my refrigerator and see the science experiments growing in there? Or—even worse—smell them?
6. People will need to use the bathroom. Maybe I could just hose the whole thing down with bleach? Is there an attachment for this particular need?
7. DAGNABBIT. People may need to go in the kids’ bathroom, too. *shudders*
8. Which closet would be the best one to hide all this stuff I don’t have time to put away properly in?
9. Doorknobs: They should probably be less sticky.
10. Light switches: They should probably be less smeared with unidentifiable brown.
11. Is there a decorative wreath large enough to conceal how gross the front door is?
12. If I clean the kitchen island and cover it with a colourful plastic tablecloth, I won’t have to clean it again after the party.
13. Exactly how much of the inside of my home can I fit a colourful plastic tablecloth on?
14. I’m just going to assume that small dirty feet have touched every surface of this house and disinfect the heck out of it.
15. If only I could use the wipes on myself. I feel coated in terrible, terrible things right about now.
16. Where did all these shoes come from?
17. And these candy wrappers?
18. And these broken crayons?
19. Why is there clear tape on the edge of every single counter and table?
20. What was I thinking, hosting a party in this landfill of smudges and tiny toys?
21. I know! If I dim the lights enough, nobody will notice the fine layer of kid filth on everything I might have missed. Mood lighting, here we come!
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